This is an older post... but I've worked both nights and days on the same unit. Here's what I've noticed.
On nights, you hit the ground running. People want to get their last walk in. You have one more patient than the day shifters have, so you still have to medicate and assess 6 patients within two hours. Not really possible to do a thorough job and chart in the room, so usually I assessed, then charted later when the lull came (assuming you have no gremlins). Ah, the lull... that's nice. You can catch up on charting, power walk around the hallway and get your steps in early, review charts.. that DOESN'T happen during the day. If you don't chart as you go, you're behind and will be hanging out for two hours after shift is over. Mornings also (usually) start out slower on days. You have time to get report, review your charts, then get started on med pass where you chart as you go. Just don't expect things to slow down, because many doctors will waltz through, sometimes multiple on one patient and place orders... more orders. Better not miss any in the onslaught or lab will be calling you or night shift will be asking why you missed that CBC that was due. You also have discharges, admits, transfers. Overall, I think days are a lot more busy, but I've never felt the need to come in early and review charts on days. Nights start faster, and you need to know whats going on BEFORE you hit the ground running or things could get dangerous real fast, so I always came in an hour early to look at charts. Probably depends on your unit what the differences are, but this is what I've observed on my unit.