What does a Nurse Recruiter actually do??

Nurses General Nursing


Ok Guys, I'll try and make this short, but it's my turn to vent.....

I am a Travel Nurse, if you could call it that, I was with the same hospital for 3 years, just kept signing on for another 3 months. The hospital downsized,(combined floors), so there is no need for me anymore, which is fine that's the risk you take being a travel contract nurse. I'm a single Mom, 3 kids. I have been having a hard time finding another contract in the area, so I decided that maybe it was time to go on staff somewhere. Which by the way makes me want to throw up because I detest hospital administrations, I put them right up there with Enron and American Airlines. They are the type of people that never just do what is right, the only thing that matters to them is them. Sorry, I better not get going on that subject. So I started calling Nurse Recruiters, I am tele trained, have floated everywhere from the ER to CICU to Med/Surg, not bragging, just fortunate enough to have a broad base knowledge. Here is the kicker, "Not ONE Nurse Recruiter has gotten back to me!!!!!!!!!

What is up with that?? UHMMMM Doesn't the word Recruiter define their job. Here I am, an experienced RN making there job easy, going to them, they didn't have to come recruit me, and they won't freaking call me back. The hospitals I've called all have jobs posted so it isn't like there's nothing available. HELLO, there actually is a Nursing shortage!!!

Please tell me I'm not crazy and that the obvious is very obvious.

Any suggestions?? Yesterday I put some calls into Nurse Managers and left messages. I wonder if I'll hear back from any of them.

Overland1, RN

465 Posts

Sometimes it is easier to go through the Nurse Managers or Directors, than through the Nurse Recruiters. My first Nursing job was at a hospital in which the Personnel peeps did precious little to screen and hire nurses. They put a stack of applications at the main receptionist's desk and would not see anybody in person until they chose to do so. There were ads in the local and nearby newspapers which indicated they need nurses, and they would tell numerous prospective candidates that they were not hiring :confused: . I swear, when "Personnel" became "Human resources", all effectiveness and efficiency were gone. I came into Nursing from a business background, and no business with whom I was involved EVER treated prospective candidates this way.

My solution was (and still is) to talk directly with several of the hospital's Nurse Managers, one of whom passed me along to the one who actually interviewed and hired me. After the interview, she and I went to the Director of Nursing and she handed my paperwork to the DON, saying, "this is Jerry Falletta, were are hiring him and need him to be oriented and working as soon as possible." She was one of the best Nurse Managers I have ever worked with. The paperwork was sent through on a fast track and I was working there within two weeks.

My current hospital has an excellent Nurse Recruiter, a very energetic and professional lady who takes her job very seriously. The facility interviews the prospective employee, then uses the Talent Plus system to screen from there. Everybody in the office is extremely professional, positive, and supportive - now THIS is the way a smart business operates :cool:, although many hospitals have missed the mark on this point.

If nothing is available in your immediate area, then moving out a bit farther may be the next logical step. Either way, the phrase occasionally expressed by (Dr.) Michael Savage.... "Illegitimi non Carborundum" may well apply here.

I wish you well in your search; let us know how it goes.


24 Posts

Thanks Jerry! Just to answer your question, I wasn't comparing Enron and American Airlines to recruiting, just to Hospital CEO's and Administrations, majority are just as dishonest as the CEO's that ran those companies. When you tell Nurses that we can't afford to give you more money, but take millions in dollars in bonuses, you should be ashamed. I strayed from my topic, sorry bout that.

I have contacted 4 different hospitals, and there are 9 hospitals in the area, and that's just in a 30 mile radius. There are quit a few more within a 50 mile radius.


951 Posts

Specializes in Hospice, Critical Care.

I was nurse recruiter at my facility for 7 months. I left the position and went back to critical care. While I was nurse recruiter I brought the vacancy rate down from 14% to 4.8%. I called **every** RN whose application or resume touched my desk.

I left the position, though. Couldn't stand the restrictions they put on you and the bullstuff they expect you to hand out. The expectations they had vs. the limited resources and the limited control I actually had. Drove me nuts.

I don't understand why a NR wouldn't call you back. Like I said, I called EVERYone. And anyone who stopped in the office just to get information or get an application...I'd do on the spot interviews and tours if they were interested. (One of the reasons all the paperwork crap I was supposed to do wasn't always done on time!). I talked to nursing students and people THINKING about becoming nursing students.

And guess what my evaluation said?! I didn't get paperwork done on time. *sigh* But I sure recruited.


49 Posts

The other day at work at 0710,right when we were giving report to the day shift,I answered the phone. It was a nurse recruiter from a nearby bigger city hospital wanting to know if any of our nurses in our 9 bed ICCU wanted to 'go over'.

Now, I find this all pretty intriguing....for one thing anyone should know that this is a bad time to call. Don' t most iccus work 7 to 7? and give report at this time?

Or maybe, that was the point to catch two shifts. The recruiter insisted on leaving his name and number.

I don't know,I thought this was a bit cheeky calling the unit directly. We have a pretty good crew right now and I as a staff nurse and part of this crew wanted to go ballistic on him.:(


24 Posts

ZEE, I don't suppose you would like to come to the Pacific Northwest and train some Recruiters on how it is done??? It is just so typical that your evaluation would focus on the paperwork and not the fact that you actually recruited.

I am more convinced at this time that a study needs to be initiated on why people in management suddenly lose their brains. Where do they go?? I swear there has to be this huge storage room filled with Managements brains. I should make it my quest to find them and help these poor souls that have lost their ability to think. I know, I know, my sarcasim is showing isn't it.

I am now at a week since I left messages and have not heard from a soul. Come Tuesday it is time to hit the pavement. O" they are going to speak to me if I have to park my ass in front of their door. Am I allowed to say Ass??


415 Posts

What nurse likes paperwork? But paperwork is essential in the hiring game. Unless you have clerical support it will fall to the recruiter (nurse or not) to check the references, do the background checks (or see that an outside company does them), check licensure and certifications, do the OIG, and possibly the I-9. And this is just the beginning. You might also have to pre-screen, write a summary of that interview and forward that and the application to the hiring manager. Then there's the turnover report, the retention report, the EEOC report, the cost-per-hire report, the job posting, etc., etc., etc. All of this is addition to hand-holding of the applicant, the hiring manager, and anyone else concerned with the hiring process. Why are these things necessary? To hopefully prevent a bad hire and do it in the most cost effective way.

Yes, there are bad recruiter, lazy recruiters, "never-return-phone-calls" recruiters. But most are hard working people who are trying their best with a mountain of rules and regulations; much like bedside nurses have with their duties.


475 Posts

JillRene, I know EXACTLY how you feel, the last time I looked for a job I had the same experience. No call backs, my resume was lost, my appointment had been forgotten, someone had made the appointment with the wrong person..... and the list goes on and on. I was amazed. The area where I live is experiencing such a terrible shortage, but you wouldn't know it by the way these people act. Where I am presently employed has a very hard working recruitor, but she also has a great assitant. Maybe if more recruitors had a good staff to back them up, they could do the job they were meant to do(finding and hiring good nurses) and the staff could do paperwork.


24 Posts

Gomer: I hear what you're saying, but 2 things are obvious. First, someone who developed all these reports and bullcrap paperwork had way to much time on their hands. Second, it's not an excuse to not do the job that you are hired to do. I can't tell a pt., "Sorry, can't get that anti-hypertensive med that you need for that BP of 221/110 because I have way to much paperwork to do." My job is to make sure that pt. is safe and gets the medical attention that they deserve it's also to get my documentation done. Therefore I prioritize, pt. first, paperwork second. Don't make excuses for someone not doing their job. Maybe they should set aside time everyday just to return phone calls. I'm tired of accepting things because that's the way it is. If your job is a Nurse Recruiter and you have too much paperwork then start finding ways to eliminate some of it so you are able to do what you are actually there to do, which is RECRUIT!!!

Remember, I've contacted 6 hospitals, and no-one has called me back. That's 6 Recruiters!!!


951 Posts

Specializes in Hospice, Critical Care.

Gomer, you described the job perfectly! Just horrendous. But I always put the applicant first....and I always DID get the paperwork done but was not my *first* priority. Hence, the "average" evaluation. Hence, I quit and returned to the bedside. And a year later, I'm still very happy to be out of administration and back into the field.


1 Article; 5,758 Posts

And then there are the ulterior motives. A lot of nurses tell me they are working one person short on everyshift. They also tell me that managment tells them they can't find anyone. However, if you check into it you will find that those same managers are in no hurry to hire. Why should they when everyone is doing the work of two everyday and bringing them in under budget. After all they get a % of that amount they come in under budget. All I can say to mangers that do that sort of thing is that it is diabolical and will come back to bite you in the rear.


115 Posts

I'm not a nurse yet, but I'm having a similar problem with a nurse recruiter where I just finished clinical. On our orientation day he came up and told us about all of these programs the hospital had to offer, including the summer nurse tech position I'm interested in. That same day I applied and turned my app into him personally, he said he would call. I didn't receive a call in a week, so I called him and had to leave a voicemail message. No return call. I see him last week at a job fair at my school, and tell him that I have applied, blah, blah. He says call me on Monday afternoon. I call on Monday afternoon and he says okay I remember you, did you want to work on Med/Surg? I say yes. He asks what shift I wanted. I say I'm flexible but would prefer days. He says that's no problem I'm going to call you back this afternoon. No call. So I call him the next day and leave a message. No call all week. I call him today (I really want this job!), and leave a message and he calls me back on my cell phone but asks for a totally different person, I don't recognize the voice or the number so I say you have the wrong number. But when I get home I see that he has left a message there for the same wrong name. Anyway he says to call him on next Tuesday. So we'll see.

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