I would like to start applying for new positions because I am unhappy with staffing on my unit. When they ask if they can contact your current employer can you select "no?" I don't want my current manager to know I am looking at other jobs. Or does the job you're applying for just contact HR to verify dates of employment?

Tweety, BSN, RN

32,755 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 31 years experience.

They don't contact them at all if you say no. They can hire you based on your resume and other references. Employers understand that people are going to look for other jobs on the low.


474 Posts

Specializes in ER, ICU, Education.

On the application or in the interview ask them to wait to contact your current employer - until you are a final candidate. Most employers do not contact references unless you are a serious candidate for the position - I am a manager so I speak from experience on this. The reason they wait is because it's quite time consuming to talk to references and previous employers, so in order to conserve time and they usually only call on ones the want to hire.

I will confess and tell you I am in the same situation - I've started applying for other positions but have asked them to wait to call my current employer. Most potential employers know that it can be a touchy subject. If I am chosen as a final candidate for one of the positions then I plan on going to my boss and letting him know that I have applied elsewhere and why (I really don't like being the manager - it's the most stressful, lonely, thankless job I have every had in my life). Sorry for the rant.

Specializes in SDU, Tele, Hospice, Radiology, Education. Has 6+ years experience.

I put in my app today at a different hospital and requested that they not contact my employer for the same reason (and more). They said that it was no problem and then off handedly mentioned that they would contact my employer later. Of course, in my situation, I don't want them to contact my employer at all (I'm afraid that they will try to sabotage me--illegal but I still think they might try), but that is a different story.

allnurses Guide

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 46 years experience.

I agree with the general trend of the other posters. It's OK to say "no," particularly in the beginning of your search. If possible, I would add a note to your application explaining that why you don't want them contacted now, but that you would be willing to have them contacted at the final stage of the hiring process.

Most people in a position to be hiring other people understand that because they have been trhoug it before.

Sippy RN

6 Posts

Specializes in Peds, ICU. Has 5 years experience.

Here's a great advise, make sure you have at least 3-4 references. If you've been in nursing for a few years, make sure your references are from nurses you've reported to... IE: charge nurse, etc.. In our industry nowadays, there's a lot of moving around (maybe based on my travel nursing experience) I make sure that I get at least 1 reference from each of my assignmet. Include name, title and 2 contact numbers. This should help especially if you don't want potential employers to contact current employers. Hope this helps.

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