Screening Hospitals/Critical Care Units

  1. I recently completed my BSN (LPN-BSN in December) and am working in a general critical care unit. I am planning to cross-train to the emergency department as well. I hope to move to a warm(er) climate after I have completed two years at this hospital. I am looking for advice about screening criteria for the next employer. How do I "screen" potential employers? There is no rush - I am learning so much in my job and enjoy what I do, but again, I want to live somewhere warmer (I live in ND) when I get that all important first year of RN experience unless global warming sets in and ND has much milder winters for a few years!
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    About ShereenL

    Joined: Mar '12; Posts: 11; Likes: 10


  3. by   roma4204
    I'm not sure how you would accurately screen hospitals the way you want to, as most like to sell themselves as amazing and supportive to their employees no matter what! All I know is I work in San Diego at an amazing hospital in the ICU and I can't imagine a more nurturing environment in which we are given lots of educational opportunities and our voices are really listened to. I think I got lucky. I think the best resource you can have is asking other nurses so this is a good place to start!
  4. by   Esme12
    Qualify "screen".
  5. by   ShereenL
    "Screen" is difficult to qualify and even more so to quantify. Perhaps a better term would be "choosing a future employer." I appreciate the note from roma. We are all different as we practice, but it seems there are definite things to avoid.
  6. by   Esme12
    I would ask about tuition reimbursement, pension/retirement. Do they contribute? When/What was the last raise. Are all raises merit base. What is the vacation policy? What do they offer for benefits? Do they have long term, short term disability? How do they celebrate their staff. Do they mandate their staff to OT? How often do they mandate? What is their turn over rate/vacancy rate? How Long has the present manager/director been in their position? What is the average tenure at the facility.

    I Have found if they offer a good benefit package with benefits, pension, disability and education reimbursement you can usually bet they have a happy staff.
  7. by   ShereenL
    All excellent thoughts - thank you so much!
  8. by   Esme12
    YOU're welcome!
  9. by   sauconyrunner
    One thing I have done when interviewing is to do all the interview stuff and then after, go to the cafeteria. Get a cup of coffee and try to plant myself close to any Nurses that might be in there. I would listen to their conversations. Sometimes you get a lot of information this way.
  10. by   porterwoman
    When you tour the unit, ask to speak to some preceptors & charge nurses. Ask how long they've been working there & how long they've been nurses. I think it's telling if a unit has nurses taking leadership positions with relatively little experience. I mean, it's good to promote leadership in your staff, but not before they have some experience.