This is my situation: I had been a R.N. in the same emergency dept for my entire four years of my nursing career, and also worked as an extern there during nursing school, up until this past June. My employee file was impeccable, with no issues of professionalism or personal nature, and had many "Job recognition" cards from both patients and coworkers describing how happy they were with my care/assistance, etc. And I was often told by management that I was one of their stronger nurses, that patients and coworkers loved me, and that my clinical skills were excellent.
As I will explain below, I lost my job due to violating the attendance policy, due to some personal problems that management was working with me for. At the time of termination, they offered for me to resign in lieu of termination so that I could apply for a position in the same system if I wanted to, so thats what I did. Well my manager who had told me that was newer to management but had been a charge nurse there for years, and after he spoke with HR again, he called me to say that he was incorrect in what he had told me. As dumb as it sounds, apparently when a person resigns, the computer system "codes" them as ineligible for rehire, but if you are terminated it codes them as being eligible for rehire. He then said, that in the past hes known of other employees in similar situations who still went on to work within the same system, and that I should give any future employer within the system, his name/number as well as that of my other manager because he would give me an excellent recommendation and if needed, explain the situation.
So my question is.. should I list their information at the end of my resume and then put "additional references available upon request", because my fear is that when a prospective employer or HR reads my application/resume and sees that my last position was within the same system, if they pull me up in the computer it could say "ineligible for rehire" and toss my application and go to the next one. But my thinking is that if I list them, they could either know who they are and ask them about me, or even if they don't know them, might possibly contact them when they see my eligibility status. I just wanted to know what you guys recommend as this is the first time I'm applying to a position since nursing school, especially after being terminated, and I really want to work at one of the system's satellites that is closer to my house because I really love this system.
Now before anyone thinks I'm just tooting my own horn, let me explain my predicament, and why I started with all of my positives. About a year ago, I had a family death that afterward, I did not realize how much it actually did affect me. Slowly, I began to have some attendance problems, including oversleeping and coming an hour late, or copying my schedule incorrectly and not showing up on the right day or coming in on the wrong ones, as well as tardiness of just a few minutes, but always called them to make them aware, instead of just walking in a few min. late as many others did.
This all started happening just every now and then, but became more frequent as the year progressed, leading to my first verbal warning, then written, and ultimately 2 day suspension. When discussed with management, who by the way are very close-knit with employees, and genuinely care for our well being and will always back us up when we needed them to, they were concerned as to what was going on, and said numerous times to not let attendance be why I lost my job there. As I said, I was close with and very comfortable with my managers and told them about issues with sleeping and that I had been on medication for insomnia for years, and now thought it was ineffective, causing me to not sleep for days, and then crash to where I overslept. They agreed that it was likely due to this and not because I was irresponsible or didn't care about my job.
Not long after my suspension, (which is the last step before termination in occurrence policy), I experienced a panic attack on my way to work and couldn't get out of my car for 30min or so, but had called my manager as I pulled into our employee lot. When I could finally walk into work, it had been over 30min tardy which made it a full occurrence & would technically put me at termination. The managers there were not my those assigned to me but I knew them, and although they didn't know everything I had talked with the others about, they knew about the progressive attendance issues and vaguely about my sleep meds, and asked me if I had actually overslept and was now trying to make an excuse. I then lost it in their office, I had what I can only describe as a emotional breakdown, and couldn't stop crying. I opened up to them about how I have been going through something I couldn't explain, how I had let myself and my responsibilities go, I wasn't eating, sleeping, or paying bills, that my house was a disaster to look at, and that even though I was constantly anxious about all of these things I needed to do, I couldn't seem to make myself do them. That had resulted in me keeping myself awake with intentions of doing the things I needed to, but never doing them, and always ended with me crashing from exhaustion and still not fulfulling my responsibilities.
To be honest, I hadn't really put all of that into perspective myself until that moment, and realized it wasn't my medication being ineffective, it was something going on with me. They realized that I was being truthful and was scared, and they said that although they wish we had all realized this earlier, before it had come to this point, they would do everything in their power to help me and that they didn't want to lose me. I had been diagnosed with clinical depression twice, years before this all came about, and was still on antidepressants, as well as seeing my psychiatrist for med reviews every few months, and neither her or myself had recognized this depression because it was so different from past ones, and presented primarily with sleep issues.
Well fast forward a little bit; HR thankfully listened to my managers explanation and had my doctor fill out a disabilities with accomodations form describing management of chronic depression and how it related to my situation, as well as FMLA for when I was having these panic attacks or days of not sleeping so that I wouldn't lose my job while we worked on treating this current depression. Things seemed to be slowly improving with occasional slip ups with tardiness or misreading my schedule and being late because I didn't know I was supposed to be there... and I was adament about not misusing my FMLA for things like that, so I did receive a few occurrences for those times.
Then one day in June, I came home after a busy shift and fell right asleep, oblivious to the severe storms going on outside that incidentally knocked my power out, including my alarm & backup alarm on my phone that was almost dead when I began charging it, and subsequently died w/loss of power. I woke up realizing something was weird b/c it was too dark to be 3pm when I would normally get up. I figured out what had happened and panicked when I saw it was 1.5hrs after I was supposed to be at work, ran to my car to put my phone on the charger there, and called work. My manager had a sad tone to his voice and told me to come on in to talk to him, which I did, and was told to go ahead and work if I was able because it wasn't final until he could talk to HR after the weekend.
I'm sure by now you've all figured out that I did end up losing my job there after that, or else I wouldn't be here writing this obnoxiously long post lol. But I wanted anyone who takes time to read this to know that I'm not some irresponsible person with that all too common attitude of "I didn't do anything and I was wronged!" I honestly am a great nurse, in fact it's one of the only things in my life that I AM confident about and know to be true. I just really don't want to screw up my chances to get this position, especially with all of the recent grads who are saturating the job market right now.
Thank you in advance!
Aug 22, '12
by Ashley, PICU RN
I didn't read the personal details behind the situation because I'm a little short on time, but regarding your resume question:
References do not go on resumes. Your resume highlights your experience, skills and certifications. If the place to which you apply wants to interview/hire you, they will ask for references at that point. References are not usually checked until after an interview when a job offer is pending.
I don't think it would be helpful to put the name of your current manager on your resume in the hope that the person reading the resume would contact them. Likely, the recruiter would pull you up in the system, see you are ineligible for rehire, and move on without even reaching the contact information for this manager. Or, if they do see the information, they won't think it is pertinent to call him, since the system clearly says you are not eligible for rehire.
Some online applications have a section to fill out references. If you find that to be the case, list your manager as the contact person for the ER job. But again, you would not add references into your resume itself- only a separate references section if the application asks for them.
Now, is it completely necessary for you to apply within this same hospital system? There must be many other places that you can apply- both in acute care and subacute settings. If you're concerned about being denied opportunities at your old facility, applying to a new one and providing your former manager as a reference is probably your best shot.
Last edit by Ashley, PICU RN on Aug 22, '12