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nursing networking

Networking: How to Take Your Nursing Career to the Next Level

Being a nurse is a rewarding career.  You get to help people while also making a decent paycheck.  There are many different types of nursing and ways to advance as a nurse.  One of these is networking. 

Networking is basically just meeting people and talking to them.  These connections are vital when it comes to career changes for nurses.  Because nursing is such a broad field with many people working in different areas, networking with people and hearing about their jobs can be one of the best ways to decide where you want your career to go next.  Here is how to take your nursing career to the next level through networking.

Attend events and conferences

One of the best ways to meet other people in nursing is through professional groups and events.  Joining a nursing association early in your career can help you start building a network early.  You can then use these contacts when you are looking for a career change.  Going to conferences is also a great way to meet people.  Some of these are through specific nursing associations, while others are run by hospitals, nonprofits, or other organizations.  When attending an event like this, be prepared with contact information cards so you can get back in touch with people you meet.  Volunteering is another great way to build your network while also giving back to the community.  At any of these events, don’t be afraid to talk to people that you work with or sit near.  You never know who might be able to help you find a job a few years down the road.

Utilize social media

In today’s day and age, social media is everything.  There are many platforms that people use to make and continue personal and professional connections.  Nursing Facebook groups are a great place to start.  LinkedIn is another site that many people use for networking, as it is catered toward your work life.  You can even become an influencer as a nurse.  Use your Instagram to share graphics with heath facts, or start a blog where you talk about your experience as a nurse.  You don’t have to have a lot of followers for this to be worthwhile.  Focus on creating good content, and the value will come from there.

Stay in touch  

Never forget about your friends and family.  They are part of your network.  Even if they don’t work in nursing, chances are they might know someone who does.  Also, if they care about you already, it’s likely that they will want to keep up with what you are doing in your career.  Keep them in the loop. 

That’s good advice for all parts of your network.  Once you connect with someone, reach back out regularly over social media or email.  Even just a quick comment on one of their posts can remind them that you exist.  It is important to stay in touch with your network so it doesn’t seem awkward to ask them for help.  If you see that someone got a new position that you’ve been considering, it’ll be much easier to set up a chat over coffee with them if you don’t have to explain who you are first.  Connecting with someone online soon after meeting them in person can help prevent this.

Looking for career changes for nurses?

If you are looking for the next step in your nursing career, New Directions Staffing can help.  They build relationships with their clients so that you can find the perfect position.  Call (888) 654-1110 to learn more. 

travel nursing

3 Reasons Travel Nursing Is in High Demand

The demand for nurses is high across the country.  Because of this, the average travel nurse salary is higher than that of an RN that lives and works locally.  This can be explained simply: higher need equals higher pay. But why exactly is there such a need in the field of travel nursing?

1. Travel nursing was created to meet increasing demand.

Before travel nursing, hospitals and clinics were generally staffed by people from the surrounding area.  This meant that a nurse in one place could easily find a job because her town lacked RNs while one in another city had to fight for the single open spot in his local clinic.  While some areas have a good number of qualified RNs, the United States is facing a country-wide nursing shortage. The idea of travel nursing is to move nurses to where the demand is highest so that the maximum amount of jobs are being filled.

Healthcare providers need to meet set nurse-patient ratios in order to be considered a safe practice.  As the U.S. population gets older, the need for more healthcare professionals increases. This is especially true in states that are popular retirement spots like Florida, Arizona, and California.  These states have a high demand for travel nurses.

Just because there is more need for nurses does not mean hospitals have more money.  Hiring travel nurses can save clinics money as they don’t need to pay for benefits like insurance, retirement, and days off.  It also reduces the time spent on recruiting and training new nurses. In return, a normal travel nurse salary is higher than that of a permanent nurse.

2. Travel nurses need specializations and multi-state licenses.

In order to qualify to be a travel nurse, one must have a nursing license and at least one year of specialized nursing experience.  The demand for nurses, in general, is increasing, but even more so the demand for specialized nurses is growing rapidly. Hospitals are looking to hire nurses with higher education and specialized skills, such as dialysis nurses.  These positions usually offer higher pay and combined with travel nursing can be a great opportunity for nurses.

Another detail in the travel-nursing picture is that most states require an individual RN license in order to qualify for work in that state.  People planning to become travel nurses should look into getting licensed in multiple states, especially those with the highest demand. Nurses can also get an Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC).  This allows them to treat patients in any eNLC state.

3. Travel nursing is not for everyone.

Travel nursing is professionally, financially, and personally rewarding.  At the same time, it can be a difficult career. On top of the everyday stresses of being a nurse, travel nurses are relocating every 8 to 26 weeks.  It can be hard to make friends and feel connected to a community when you are moving so often. Settling into new workplaces can also take a while. People considering travel nursing should utilize any and all resources available to them so that they are able to feel successful and happy in their assignments and lives.  Connecting with other travel nurses can be a great way to create relationships around a shared experience.

Sound like the job for you?

If the demand, salary, and locations make travel nursing sound like a great career for you, look no further than New Directions Staffing.  Contact us today to learn more and see if we are the right travel nursing agency for you.