How come no one wants to interview me?

Dear Nurse Beth Advice Column - The following letter submitted anonymously in search for answers. Join the conversation! Nurses Nurse Beth Nursing Q/A


How do I increase my chances of being interviewed? Let alone hired. I started my nursing career in 2013. I also stopped nursing in June 2019 to take care of my parents on a full time basis. No one wants to interview me now. I have never been fired or found incompetent as a nurse. On the contrary, always got compliments. What am I doing wrong? Should I look for a job in a totally different field?

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Specializes in Tele, ICU, Staff Development.

Dear Stopped Nursing,

It's understandable you're facing challenges landing interviews and job opportunities after taking a break from your nursing career to care for your parents. Here are some steps you can take to increase your chances of being interviewed and hired:

  •  Make sure your resume reflects your qualifications and highlights your nursing experience. Address the gap in your employment history due to caregiving and emphasize any transferable skills gained during that time. Be sure to read Please...Resume Help Needed! and Revamp Your Resume
  • Read Do's and Don't's of a Cover Letter
  • Reach out to former colleagues, classmates, and mentors in the nursing field. Let them know you're looking for opportunities and ask if they can provide referrals or recommendations.
  •  Consider taking a refresher course. It will update your knowledge and skills, and show commitment on your resume. A refresher course is also a good way to make contacts that can lead to jobs.
  •  Being a member of nursing associations can help you stay informed about industry trends, job openings, and networking opportunities.
  • If possible, consider volunteering or working part-time in a healthcare setting to demonstrate your commitment to the field and gain recent experience. This can help bridge the employment gap on your resume.
  • Tailor your resume and cover letter for each job application to highlight relevant skills and experiences. Use keywords from the job description to ensure your application gets past applicant tracking systems.
  •  If you're not getting interviews, consider reaching out to healthcare recruiters or career counselors for feedback on your application materials.
  • Use professional networking platforms like LinkedIn to connect with healthcare professionals and explore job postings.
  • Attend job fairs and career events. Participating in nursing job fairs or healthcare career events can allow you to meet potential employers and network with industry professionals.
  • Be patient and persistent. The Job Search process can be challenging, especially when reentering the workforce after a break. Keep applying, following up, and refining your approach.

Regarding whether you should consider a job in a different field, that's a personal decision. It's important to weigh the pros and cons of staying in nursing versus transitioning to a different career. Consider your interests, skills, and long-term career goals. 

Remember that re-entering the job market after a break can be challenging. Still, with the right strategies and persistence, you can improve your chances of landing interviews and finding the right nursing position.

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth

When you get a call for an interview, I want you to be prepared! Here's some great tips for you:

How to Answer "What Did You Like Least About Your Last Job?"

How to Prepare for Your Interview

How to Answer "Tell Us About Yourself"

How to Answer "What's Your Greatest Weakness"

Uncomfortable Answering Interview Questions