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Working on More than One Floor?

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Forgive me if this is a dumb question, new grad here. I'm currently applying to hospital positions and have to wonder if it's possible to accept (for example) a full time and a part time or PRN position at the same hospital, but on different floors. Would it even be a good idea? I am just used to working six days a week and can't imagine a world where I don't! I get the feeling that it isn't a wise option, but I'm definitely curious. Thanks!

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Hey, GentheRN!

I don't think it's a silly question at all. You wouldn't necessarily have two positions as full time and PRN, but from my experience, hospitals will utilize you for overtime on different units.

At one time, Wrongway Regional Medical Center cross-trained staff to work Psych or Medical. Fact is, I met my wife Belinda on geriatric psych when she was pulled from med/surge back in '06! Even now, staff work different units.

Another example, our Psych House Sups work the units on their scheduled time off.

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As a new grad, your choices will be limited. If staffing is tight you might be able to pick up overtime shifts in your department.

Many of my coworkers pick up extra shifts in different departments. These are all experienced ICU nurses who sign up for vacant spots in the staffing in other adult ICUs in the hospital. My coworkers say that overtime is a little easier if you can change things up a bit and not work in the same unit 4 or 5 shifts a week.

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As Davydo said, you could be crosstrained to different floors and pick up hours.

You likely wouldn't hold two official FTE positions because it would be bad policy to regularly schedule you for overtime. You could possibly hold one FTE position and one prn position (I have done this) but it's likely just less complicated to cross train and pick up.

I will say though that in my experience, most places are understaffed so you may not even need to be crosstrained to pick up hours. Most units may even expect you to pick up hours on your own floor first before sending you to a different floor.

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No, but express interest in the other floor for the future.

They usually don't like new grads double dipping into the OT pool. Good luck!

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I agree with the general tone of the previous posts. It is possible for a person to pick up some extra hours on another floor -- but it is not something that is usually done by new grads. It's more likely to be something arranged by an experienced nurse who has experience on the 2nd floor, where he/she ocassionally picks up some extra shifts when they need some help.

As a new grad, you should be focusing on getting oriented to your full time job -- getting comfortable there -- and getting accepted/respected by the staff there. Once you have accomplished that, then you can pick up a few extra shifts if/when they need some extra help. Later, after you are well-respected as a seasoned nurse, you can start exploring more unusual possibilities.

(And think about it ... if you become a regular member of another unit, you would have weekend commitments, holiday commitments, etc. that become complicated. It's not something Managers want to have to deal with on a regular basis.)

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As a new grad, your choices will be limited. If staffing is tight you might be able to pick up overtime shifts in your department.

Many of my coworkers pick up extra shifts in different departments. These are all experienced ICU nurses who sign up for vacant spots in the staffing in other adult ICUs in the hospital. My coworkers say that overtime is a little easier if you can change things up a bit and not work in the same unit 4 or 5 shifts a week.

I am ready for some overtime! And some work in general! I can't wait to get some experience.

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No, but express interest in the other floor for the future.

They usually don't like new grads double dipping into the OT pool. Good luck!

Thanks for the warning, wouldn't want to step on any toes as a newbie. :)

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I agree with the general tone of the previous posts. It is possible for a person to pick up some extra hours on another floor -- but it is not something that is usually done by new grads. It's more likely to be something arranged by an experienced nurse who has experience on the 2nd floor, where he/she ocassionally picks up some extra shifts when they need some help.

As a new grad, you should be focusing on getting oriented to your full time job -- getting comfortable there -- and getting accepted/respected by the staff there. Once you have accomplished that, then you can pick up a few extra shifts if/when they need some extra help. Later, after you are well-respected as a seasoned nurse, you can start exploring more unusual possibilities.

(And think about it ... if you become a regular member of another unit, you would have weekend commitments, holiday commitments, etc. that become complicated. It's not something Managers want to have to deal with on a regular basis.)

Yeah learning about how the schedules are set up for weekends and holidays that makes sense. Through interviews I've learned some floors don't even schedule in the same way as others. I'm looking forward to being "seasoned" :) :)

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I doubt the hospital would let you hold 2 different positions (full time on one floor and part time or per diem on another) because that would essentially guarantee that they'd have to pay you OT every week. They don't want to do that. Plus working full time on one floor and part time on another is not feasible. Every part timers have weekend requirements on those floors and one floor isn't going to consider the needs of the other when scheduling you.

Working full-time plus per diem is possible but, IMO, not wise for a new grad. You need to learn how to be a nurse first. Also usually the per diem position would be with a different employer for the reasons mentioned above. Once you get your feet wet in nursing, you could consider a per diem position elsewhere but you may find that you actually cherish your days off.

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I doubt the hospital would let you hold 2 different positions (full time on one floor and part time or per diem on another) because that would essentially guarantee that they'd have to pay you OT every week. They don't want to do that. Plus working full time on one floor and part time on another is not feasible. Every part timers have weekend requirements on those floors and one floor isn't going to consider the needs of the other when scheduling you.

Working full-time plus per diem is possible but, IMO, not wise for a new grad. You need to learn how to be a nurse first. Also usually the per diem position would be with a different employer for the reasons mentioned above. Once you get your feet wet in nursing, you could consider a per diem position elsewhere but you may find that you actually cherish your days off.

Thanks for that, I'm looking forward to seeing what it actually feels like to work only a few long days. I have so much to learn and I'm so excited, I just accepted a job offer!

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