Working part time?


Has anyone ever or does anyone now only work part time? Do you feel that it hurts or hinders you in your career? I'm a nursing student and I worry sometimes about this. We do not have children yet, plan to start trying after I graduate. And I plan on working fulltime up until I have kids. But we both would like me to be home with kids, at least while they're very young, and working part time would be a great option I think. Clearly I am a little more family oriented than career oriented but both are important to me! I would never leave the profession altogether but I was wondering how it is working *just* part time as a nurse?

Specializes in LTC, Psych, Hospice. Has 15 years experience.

Lots of nurses work part time or PRN.


1,062 Posts

Lots of nurses work part time or PRN.

Over the years many employers have decreased the number of full time positions due to

benefits etc.

I worked mostly part time positions, and added on call hours or a second job,

and it gave me experience in different specialties.

Specializes in Mental Health, Medical Research, Periop.

I just accepted a part time job because I have 3 children. A 10 yr old, 4 yr old, and a 2 month old. It kills me just to leave them 3 days a week, short hours. So yes, some nurse do work part time.


12 Posts

I work prn and love it. I give a couple of different managers my availability and they schedule me. It allows me to work my schedule around my 4 children. Part time works well if you don't need the benefits which I don't.

Specializes in Critical Care.

Almost everyone where I work is either 32/36 or less! Virtually know one works 40hrs, that is just too much! But 32 hrs is the cut off, then they double your insurance premiums!

I'd recommend 32/36 you can always pick up if you want, but its hard to get days off. Plus you can figure on some overtime as you can hardly ever get out on time, also all the extra inservices, staff meetings etc.

Specializes in Critical Care.

Hospitals also are offering more part-time, esp as they can charge double the premiums for insurance. Then they want you to be on call.

Back when they didn't charge part-timers more for insurance, some would work the minimum .5 and then pick up the rest of the hours thru agency, making a lot more money, but can be cancelled and then if you are off sick your disablity is based on what you are scheduled at the main job also retirement so there are pro's and con's.

Specializes in Critical Care.

I didn't want the hassle of agency working anywhere, last minute cancelled, etc. But I think its a good way to check other places out ahead of time, get to know people, the routine and the manager and then if you want a job there; you've already got your foot in the door.

I find nursing stressful enough and like a set routine to keep my stress level down; but agency gives you a chance to be paid to "shadow" if you will different jobs at different places.

Some people work agency once and a while take a flu shot gig, for instance, which is low stress, easy money, when you can get it! Problem is, I don't believe in flu shots, I've seen people end up with GB after on more than one occasion. One guy was paralyzed for a year, he was an active 70 something cyclist, very sad!


101 Posts

Has 3 years experience.

I made the choice of family over career when my daughter was born 2 years ago. Since then, Ive worked weekends only (12hr days) with no insurance or benifits. This way I get to stay home with her during the week and she stays with her dad or family on the weekends. Not only have I saved a TON in childcare but I get to spend these years with her that, to me, are priceless. If I need extra $ I can sign up for an additional shift or two. When she starts school, Ill get a FT job but for now I wouldnt have it any other way.

joanna73, BSN, RN

1 Article; 4,767 Posts

Specializes in geriatrics.

I work part time and there are always shifts to pick up. I don't ever plan on accepting full time status. You have more flexibility with part time. And most facilities now hire more part timers over full timers. I also have full benefits.

netglow, ASN, RN

4,412 Posts

More and more facilities will only offer part time, especially to NGs. These jobs do not convert to full time, say, if you end up being a great employee. So don't think that. You would have to hunt around your facility for a full time open position and interview for it and hope your current manager will not have done anything to prevent you from getting it. As bugsy says, part time works for your employer because they can avoid giving you benefits of all kinds. A friend of mine found out that she is ineligible for ANY education including classes provided by the hospital, ACLS for one. Also health insurance etc. Lots of nurses don't have health insurance because they don't qualify, or they cannot afford it as a part timer.

RNperdiem, RN

4,580 Posts

Has 14 years experience.

I worked full time for 3 years at my current ICU and have been per diem for the past 9 years there.

I work about once a week.

Like everything in life, you make trade-offs.

I enjoy the fact that I can set my own schedule, pick the holidays I want to work, work for the higher per diem wage and have a husband with benefits from his job. I am lucky that I don't have to deal with the stress of working full time and have lots of time to spend with my children.

The downside? I am something of an outsider among my more ambitious peers. A lot of my coworkers have plans for CRNA school, or are working on a MSN or plan for NP.

Also, learning comes much slower when you work only part time. On the novice to expert scale, I would rate myself somewhere between competent and proficient. If I worked full time all these years, I would be much more proficient.

In all, I have accepted these trade offs, and have never regretted my choice. After all, one day the kids will be grown and gone and there will be plenty of time to work.