Overtime - When do you do it?

  1. Overtime - when do you do it?

    There is no mandatory overtime in my town, but everyone I know does work overtime RNs,LPNs, and CNAs.
    When you answer the phone, how do you decide whether or not to work?
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    About Joybug

    Joined: Jan '01; Posts: 24; Likes: 1
    Registered Nurse


  3. by   canoehead
    For myself I rarely say yes to a phone call. Don't really know why, except I have regretted it so many times that now I prefer to sign up for open shifts rather than respond to phone calls. I don't think quickly on the phone, and have said yes, not remembering I have something else I have to do. I also say no if there is any hint of a guilt trip, or if the crisis could have been predicted and addressed.

    I do overtime every week, but I guess I want to do it on my own terms, not because of guilt or because "they" think I'm obligated to fill in their holes. As for mandatory OT, I have volunteered to stay, but if I was ever told to stay I would be out of there in a hot minute, job or no job.

    And frankly I don't think any nurse has any obligation at all to do more than the hired hours. If they need more nurses they should hire them and pay out accordingly. If they are desperate, just try asking for travellers nurse wages and you will quickly flush out the fake desperation calls.
  4. by   RNforLongTime
    Well, at my hospital, we have MANDATORY OVERTIME. Unfortunately, we were unable to eliminate it in our new 3 year contract. The other alternative would be to work short staffed and I am not sure which the lesser of two evils would be. I have worked short staffed at other facilities and it was not fun.
  5. by   canoehead

    If you all decided to stop accepting the mandatory OT they would let you work short, and let you think it was your fault. It's not, it's the hospital's responsibility to provide adequate staffing. If they really need the MOT then the supervisors and the managers should be the first ones mandated because that responsibiltiy is in their job description, it's not in yours.

    Just the fact that as a staff nurse someone would try to pull off telling me that lack of patient care and safety was my fault, when it's clearly THEIRS was enough for me to walk away from MOT. Their ace card has always been the guilt trip, and we always suck it up like a Hoover Deluxe, so


    And FYI I am now a supervisor, and yes, I have had times when MOT would be appropriate, and I have been the one to stay and help out. I can't see any other defendable position.
  6. by   kaycee
    We don't have mandatory OT. We are a closed unit and cover are own call offs. I have come in on my day off to cover when it's conveniant for me and I need the extra money. Also I am the steady charge for 3-11, so if there is a call off for 11-7 that I can't cover I have to stay. Fortunately that doesn't happen too often. I'm getting too old to double after being up since 6am that morning and staying until 7am. Especially if you have to come in at 3pm the next day. yawn!

  7. by   Genista
    We do not have mandatory overtime. I will work over 1/2 shift sometimes if needed (I work 8 hr shifts/days). I used to get phone calls to come in early, come in on day off, etc at ALL hours, so now I have caller ID & I will let my machine screen the calls. I can call them back if I want to work extra. We do get extra pay for extra shifts, but the highest predictor of my picking up a shift is if they offer me a day off in exchange. I work HARD and give 110%, so I need my days off to live my life & be w/ my family & friends.
  8. by   CindyJRN
    Originally posted by kona2
    I work HARD and give 110%, so I need my days off to live my life & be w/ my family & friends.
    AMEN!! I work 12 hr shifts and will sign up for extras when I need a little extra $$$, but my life is outside the hospital.
  9. by   KRVRN
    We don't have mandatory overtime. When they call me, I only agree to come in if they're offering double time for the whole shift. This does happen.

    I'll only stay over for 16 if I don't have to come back the next shift. And then I want to retain my same pts. It's just too hard to change assignments at the 13th hour. I've never come in early because It's just too early.
  10. by   psnurse
    I work extra every once in a great while. No manadatory OT here. Usually when I sign up in advance and have the opportunity to plan around it. Don't even answer the phone calls. Gotta love that caller ID.

    I am a part time employee and don't get 1 1/2 times for extra since I am rarely going over forty hours in a week. So, I will only come in for extra pay incentive.

    My favorite thing that happened recently. I had worked charge 7a - 7p. Well 7p charge called in. I didn't volunteer..... biding my time. So when no one else would come in I said I would stay until 11p for extra pay incentive and the following Friday off. The sup says, "I guess I don't have any choice this late in the shift" (It was 6:15p). I said sure you do, YOU could stay and do it.

    No more complaints about demanding both incentives. HEHEHE

    Someone came in at eleven and I had the rest of the week off!
  11. by   misti_z
    We don't have mandatory overtime either. Like canoe, I sign up for overtime shifts. I sigh up for one shift every other pay period....and that's all the overtime I do.
  12. by   Sundowner
    I, Like the imfamous words of Nancy Regan, "JUST SAY NO"!
  13. by   OneChattyNurse
    I work days at the VA. If someone calls in for evenings and they cannot find a replacement, someone from dayshift gets mandated (this happens on all shifts) I don't mind helping out once in a while, but my husband is home with the kids while I am at work and I get home about 1/2 hour before he has to leave for work. I do not have a regular sitter so I just cringe when someone calls in. Last year my daughter had a dance recital on a friday...well thursday was rehearsal and they tried to mandate me. I explained that if she missed rehearsal she would not be able to participate in the recital. I had to go through hell just to get to go home at my regular time!!! I HATE mandatory overtime!!! I do not sign up for extra shifts since my days off are the only time I get to see my hubby. I guess if I wanted to work 50-60 hours a week, I would have found a job that would give me that!!! We do use ALOT of agency staff at the VA...I would hate to see what they pay out in a month!!!!

  14. by   canoehead
    Chatty- tell them to go straight to H-E- double- hockey- sticks.

    You shouldn't have to justify why you can't, you have a life. If they don't have a life they can stay, and welcome to it.

    I had never heard of MOT until I came to the USA and still don't get how nurses can swallow such crap. Just say no, what are they going to do? This is the time to put your feet down as they are likely short of nurses and jeopardize themselves by losing another one.

    Just watch, once one person has the guts then the others will follow.