Dear Nurse Beth,
I have two competing job offers, and I don't know what to do. I am an ER nurse, but I also have experience in Case Management. The pay for each position is practically equal (with the exception of having a night shift differential). I have been an RN for 6 years.
Job A: ER floor nurse, night shift (big negative for me), Pro: keep my clinical skills sharp in the ER, Con: old hospital, good health system - but an icky, old ER. Bad part of town with a large indigent and psych population. Consideration: If I am out of the ER for too long, it will be really tough for me to get back in.
Job B: ER Case Manager, day shift with a rotating schedule (pretty sweet schedule), Pro: I'm good at Case Management and I like it, good health system, really nice new hospital, a bit longer commute - but a gorgeous, state of the art facility in an extremely upscale neighborhood. Consideration: possibly less flexible than a position in the ER.
Also a big consideration - I am in school right now to become a nurse practitioner - so clinical exposure is important to me - and also it is important to network and meet the right people in the right roles - for this reason, the ER floor position appeals to me.
What should I do???
Dear Future NP,
Congrats on having two job offers! I consulted with a colleague who is an ED RN turned FNP for the answer to your question:
It all depends on your future goal as an NP. Are you planning on practicing in the ED? If so, working in the ED is a good way to gain exposure and observe providers in action. What are they ordering for which conditions? While you would be practicing as an RN and not as an NP, you would learn a tremendous amount with such a focused approach and it could outweigh the downside of working nights.
If you are planning on working in a clinic or office setting as an NP, then the ED experience is not as germane to your future role. The Case Management position would be a good transition job while you are attending school. Networking is important but you will have networking opportunities during your clinical NP hours.
Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!