Turning down PRN job offer?

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So I just received a job offer for a PRN job that is perfect for my specialty and what I want to be doing. However, during the interview the nursing director asked how much I wanted to work, and I said 1-2 days a week. She said it could be more or could be less and asked if that was okay and in the heat of my shaking-in-my-boots-interview-nerves I said it was. After talking to my hubby and trying to figure out childcare, I realistically can't work more than 1-2 days (I also will be starting homeschooling with my oldest kiddo as well).

Is this something I can bargain over? I hate to turn down this incredible job opportunity for this reason, but I also know I need to do what is best for our family.

Also, how can I decline the job offer without shooting my self in the foot for another job opportunity at this facility?

Thanks! 😀

Calalilynurse

155 Posts

Specializes in peds. Has 7 years experience.

Could you talk to her fast and tell her you can't do more than 2 days a week. Do theyself schedule or will you fill in the schedule as needed. As prn your hours aren't guaranteed and at my workplace your called off first so maybe the weeks when its more than 2 days won't really be a problem. I would definitely see ti the manager again about your concerns before turning down the job.

NICU Guy, BSN, RN

4,103 Posts

Specializes in NICU. Has 8 years experience.

You need clarification. When she asked you how much you want to work and you said "1-2 days" Her response can be taken one of two ways. It could be taken literally as it could be less than 1-2 days per week or more than 2 days per week. The other interpretation is when someone says "more or less" meaning "around that much" or "sounds about right".

amg418

43 Posts

Thank you for your responses!

I have been in communication with a nurse recruiter for the hiring process. She called me Wednesday afternoon to give me the job offer and I have been trying to figure out childcare stuff and such since. Do I contact her about this? Ask her for the nurse director's email or number?

I really want this job. It is for a small clinic and I would be filling in the schedule for vacations and such as well as being available for call outs. They are looking to hire another PRN nurse as well. As far as I know they have no other prospects for the job.

JKL33

6,527 Posts

You need to know whether they have specific policies related to the shift requirements of their PRN staff, since these may end up representing reality better than the less-specific things you are told at the interview. Also know that some places have holiday and weekend requirements for their PRN staff. While that may work out well for you, you need to know what you're getting into either way. Think now about how you can avoid getting roped into a situation that doesn't work for your family. One of the main benefits of PRN obviously is the ability to work according to your own needs and schedule, make sure that in talking with them you don't inadvertently erode that benefit by agreeing to do more than you realistically can, nor by accepting terms of employment that are overly-restrictive for a PRN position.

Your interviewer may also have meant that it's okay if the PRN nurse picks up less than or more than 1-2 days per week, but not necessarily that more than 2 will be expected/required.

You could reach out and just say that you have a couple of questions now that you've had time to process the interview; it's also a good opportunity to thank the director for interviewing you, although I'm one who would still send a note as well.

ETA: was writing while you posted. So maybe no w/e or holiday options with clinic?

Has 33 years experience.

PRN status is defined by the facility. Some facilities require 2 days per month. You should know their baseline requirement, Then you could work more as needed.

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Trauma. Pediatrics. Has 6 years experience.
PRN status is defined by the facility. Some facilities require 2 days per month. You should know their baseline requirement, Then you could work more as needed.

Agree with this. The HR recruiter should know what the companies requirements are. For example I worked PRN at Duke, their requirement was 8 shifts every 8 weeks. They preferred you did it at least once a week. However as long as you picked up your 8 per 8 weeks that's all they required. Because it was a commute for me I would work a stretch and be good for many weeks. They also had a requirement of 1 holiday for the winter and 1 for the summer.

I could also pick up more if I wanted. There was always a need. So getting the higher PRN pay working OT or Holiday ended up being really beneficial financially.

I had always just worked massive OT in my main job but found it was better financially and for my sanity to work my 32 hrs required at one place and get a second PRN job for my OT.

Other places can be more detailed. The whole point of PRN is you pick (if there is a need) days you want to work as long as it fits the amount they require.

amg418

43 Posts

Thank you, everyone!

So if I find out the minimum for the PRN nurses for the facility, I can go off of that even if it's different from what the nursing director was thinking? I'm totally game for finding out the minimum number of days and going from there with working additional days as I can, I just don't want there to be an expectation for me to work more (based on what she said and my response during the interview) and I'm not doing it. I'm still very new to the whole PRN thing (besides being familiar with my old facility's policy, which was most of the PRN nurses working mainly 1 day a week and then picking up more shifts as needed).

amg418

43 Posts

Yes JKL33, there are no weekend or holiday requirements since they are a small clinic and closed then. :)

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Trauma. Pediatrics. Has 6 years experience.
Thank you, everyone!

So if I find out the minimum for the PRN nurses for the facility, I can go off of that even if it's different from what the nursing director was thinking? I'm totally game for finding out the minimum number of days and going from there with working additional days as I can, I just don't want there to be an expectation for me to work more (based on what she said and my response during the interview) and I'm not doing it. I'm still very new to the whole PRN thing (besides being familiar with my old facility's policy, which was most of the PRN nurses working mainly 1 day a week and then picking up more shifts as needed).

Yes just find out what the facility requirement is and ask HR if there is a different number for your unit and if so what that is. (sometimes a unit with a higher need might have a different number) but it would be in your job offer and the standard for that unit. The Director can "hope" you'll work above that. But you will only be obligated to work the required amount. I mean my manager always made sure to tell me there was always shifts available and if I didn't see any in the shift bid program but wanted to work to let him know. But he was completely OK if I couldn't pick up more than required.

SaltySarcasticSally, LPN, RN

2 Articles; 440 Posts

I had a different experience with this, I would take what they are saying at face value. They may have minimum requirements but it sounds like they will want you to cover full vacations, like an entire week. Yes, they may only require you to work so many days as a policy, but it wont look good to them if they think your game to do however many days a week when you can't.

I signed on to do a perfect PRN job for me while in school last year. This particular place did not have a minimum amount of days because they did not do PRN workers very often. I made it clear that I only wanted to work 1-2 days a week. Because I was one of two PRN people, they called me constantly, to work every single day. It got exhausting reminding them what we had initially agreed on when I got hired. I left within my 90 days to keep things kosher, just let them know it was more than I could handle in that particular time of my life. Parted on good terms but still was a waste of my time all in all. Just make sure you both are very clear on the expectations. GL!

amg418

43 Posts

Again, thank you everyone for your insightful responses and sharing your experiences!

I will be contacting the nurse recruiter tomorrow and asking the minimum PRN requirements for the health system and clinic.

Should I mention to her my concern about the potential expectation to work more than what I can for 1-2 days a week so she can touch base with the nursing director and to maybe clarify that? I want to make sure we're all on the same page if I do accept the job since it is a small clinic and they might not have many other options if I can't fill a hole.