How long did you stay on your first nursing job?

Nurses General Nursing


I am a new graduate working in the OR...because of the nursing shortage in this area my hospital offered a special program to attract nurses to the OR. I have been working in this speciality for about 8 months and I feel...I am afraid to say but...I feel bored and ready to make a change to another area of nursing. I am curious as to how long other nurses stayed in their first nursing job before they changed. Please add to my discussion. Thanks!

Darlene Jones

16 Posts

Just to tell you that you are not alone, My first Nursing job was on a busy Med-Surg floor which lasted 4 & 1/2 months. Second job on Telemetry,ICU stepdown unit,lasted 5 months. I have been with an Agency ever since doing prn assignments with no stability. After only 1 year and 2 months out of Nursing school,I have decided that I would like to get out of bedside Nursing for a while and try my hand at Case Management which I am about to begin. Talk about instability? I am not sure anyone else can beat mine.......Darlene


238 Posts

Specializes in Hospice and Palliative Care, Family NP.

My first job was in a long term care facility as the ONLY RN and nursing supervisor. I left after three months, staying two months and three weeks longer than I should have! LOL I went from there to a hospital, worked on the surgical care unit for one year, then left there to go into critical care, lasted three months at that hospital, went back to the first. (I stayed as a casual employee), then tried Critical care at another hospital, hated it, and now do Casual at my original hospital as well as agency nursing. I like the flexibility of working PRN. It gives me an opportunity to work in different areas, at the hospital I can work ER, ICU, step down, surgical care, all of them except OB. OB is not an area I care to work in. Also, I can work around my daughter's school activities and work at my home-based business.

It is easy to get bored in surgery, During nursing school that was one area that I knew I would not like to work in. I missed talking to my patients, patients cant' talk during surgery. LOL

Say with it get your cert and then go. My first job was in ICU and I did my cert and it open sooo many doors, I feel I have achived in my eight years as a RN more than I would have with out my cert in ICU. I also did a cert in OT and found out it was not for me, but again it has open another door into the job I have at present.

Good Luck


27 Posts

4 years...and counting biggrin.gif


131 Posts

I stayed with my first facility for 4.5 years. I was in 2 different positions. The first was an internal float nurse in LTC. I was hanging in because instructors and other nurses said I should have 1 year in my first job.

I didn't like it. I got lucky when they opened an Alzheimer's Unit. I had a permanent position there and loved the reisdents. It was the politics that ran me out. I offered suggestions and upper management did not take me seriously.

So I started sending out resumes. I have been at my second LTC facility nearly 3 years, and as long as there is no shake up in administration I will be with this company a long time. I will not stay in the same position, but there is plenty of room to grow.

Nancy smile.gif


14 Posts

I got my 1st job in CCU and stayed @ that hospital full time for 9 mos until I decided 8's and 12's were too much (working nights) and asked for 3 12's. They said no, I said bye. But stayed prn (better $$$). Then I went to another hospital ICU and stayed a year. Then I did the travel thing and moved across the country for 6 mos. Now I'm happy to say I'll be moving back to Canada for a more permanent position. Just hoping my wanderlust won't strike for at least a few years smile.gif


21 Posts

Well here you go. My first job was on a straight medical floor and lasted 2 1/2 months, left that hospital and spent a year on a Med/surg floor. Got bored and went to yet my third hospital on a step down type floor. Hopefully, Ill last a year before i move on. The work on this floor is not boring, there is always something happening but Im just not interested in it.

If you are going to leave OR do yourself a favor and do some med/surg.




39 Posts

Two years on a Gyn floor as a LPN which I like very much, had to leave and go to L&D after becoming a RN. Hated L&D. Lasted 7 months. I had to leave Gyn because of the Union and bidding process in our hospital. Well, no RN jobs on Gyn, so off to L&D. So, after L&D, home IV therapy. Love it!! Good luck.


5 Posts

I have been a nurse for approx 8 months. I am still employed at the same hospital on the telemetry/cardiovascular interventional unit. I am so tired of floor nursing, and am surprised that I have kept my sanity this long.

Due to the "nursing shortage" I work various shifts. Sometimes, I am scheduled to work 7A-7P, 7-3, and 3-11 all during the same week. I LOVE MY CHOSEN PROFESSION but I hate my job...

At the present, I am trying to remain at this job for another 2 or 3 months. (I plan to go per diem next month in order to pursue other interests.) Before my first anniversary, I plan to leave the hospital and, possibly, try home health care.

I don't want to give up on nursing, yet. But if these first few months are any indication of what the remainder of a career in nursing holds...I am in BIG trouble.

Baby, RN


36 Posts

I say go for what makes YOU happy. The wonderful thing about nursing is the many areas you can expand your horizions. I have expanded into an internet business in preventive health that is a great experience for lots of nurses. I have yet to be sorry. Life is too short to be "bored" or unhappy, so take advantage of what opportunities are open to you. BTW, I have been a LPN for more than 10 years, and I was at my first job for almost 2.

Specializes in Hospice and palliative care.

Linda--if you can, I would recommend trying to stay in your current job for a year. However, if it's absolutely intolerable, then go for the change! Obviously other people have left positions after being there for short periods of time. Me, I spent a year and a half in my first job, which was on a medical floor with telemetry beds. Moved onto a telemetry floor where we took drips, and later on, chronic vent patients--stayed there 3 3/4 years. Just made the jump to critical care and by the time I finish grad school (I'm going for NP), I'll have 2 and 1/2 years in critical care (and plan to stay per diem even when I get an NP job). Best of luck to you regardless of your decision! smile.gif

Laurie, RN

Medical CCU

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