I recently lost my job and started applying. Seven years of experience and a bachelor's degree, I thought I'd be a hot commodity. It's 2019 and things are no different than when I graduated shortly after the recession. I apply to jobs and my applications are instantly rejected because I don't have medical/surgical experience. I don't fit the requirements for a new grad program, either.
Well there is this supposed shortage where everyone is understaffed and desperate for nurses. I don't see it. Nobody is willing to train new staff and nobody will hire those of us who got screwed during the recession.
I think it's all BS. I've met a lot of nurses in similar situations and they all struggle trying to get out of this low level line of work.
My last job was at Kaiser where I had a benefits plan worth my annual salary. We were horribly understaffed too. But, I would look at the jobs page for anything available so I could tell my friends where to apply. There were never any jobs there. Management always told us they were going to hire more, but they never did. When the Joint Commission left, they got rid of the travel nurses and stopped hiring. Then, they started instituting mandatory overtime and overloading us past the ratio policy limits.
Honestly, I think hospitals and facilities are just happy the way things are. They know there are nurses who want to get in. I've never been in management before, so I don't know why they make that decision. However, I suspect it costs more to hire a new employee than it would to pay overtime for current staff.