Career Advice


I worked as a clinical research data coordinator during nursing school (entering data into case report forms mostly). I worked closely with the research nurses so I have a pretty good idea of what the job entails.

I currently am a bedside nurse - I have just over 13 months experience in nursing. As much as I love the 3 days a week, I miss out on so much working evenings, nights, weekends, holidays, etc. I really want more of the 9a-5p Mon-Fri type job so I can be on the same page as most everyone else.

I have an opportunity to work as a research nurse. I'm debating whether or not to take it. I'll still get frequent interaction with patients, but I won't be doing any hands on patient care. While that isn't all bad, I worry it wil hurt me down the road if I ever decide I would like to return to the bedside.

Has anyone left bedside nursing this early in the game? Has anyone successfully returned to bedside nursing? What if I end up hating it?

Just looking for some advice before making a major career change! Thank you!


1 Article; 50 Posts

I was a bedside nurse for a little less than 2 years, and just recently made the switch to Research Nursing. Bedside nursing and research nursing both leave something to be desired. That being said, even with the drawbacks of my new job, I don't regret my decision one bit. I also worried if I would be limiting future career opportunities (should I move to an area with little to no research going on, or just decide I want to get back into bedside). But after doing some browsing here, I noticed there were numerous threads about individuals who had left the nursing profession altogether and then returned 5+, 9+ years down the road. Then you take a refresher course if needed (although you will likely maintain your licensure as a research RN), go through orientation, and get back in the saddle. If you end up hating it, you leave. If anything you will gained additional skills above and beyond the bedside skills you already have. All IMO. Good luck!