There are nurses and then there are nurses

nurse222A nurse is somewhat of a broad term as the general description is a "person educated and trained to care for the sick or disabled", "a woman employed to take care of a child or a woman employed to suckle children other than her own".

Florence Nightingale is widely regarded as the founder of modern nursing.  A nurse today is much more then that as they are over 10 types of nurses including:

  • Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)
  • Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
  • Registered Nurse (RN)
  • Public Health Nurse (PHN)
  • Nurse Practitioner (NP)
  • Nurse Midwife
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Home Health Nurse (HHN)
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)
  • Occupational Health Nurse

Taking this in consideration, individuals, hospitals, health care centers, schools and nursing homes all have different needs when it comes to recruiting a nurse.This page will help you understand why nurse recruiting is such a challenging task.

Outlook for the Nursing Industry

Currently, there is a global shortage of nurses. One reason for this is the work environment which individual nurses are overwhelmed by the number of patients they are responsible for.

Governments from different countries expect the shortage to grow and to reach a nurse deficit of well over 1 million by the year 2020 and are currently working on ways to alleviate this growing crisis.

Due to this trend, nurse recruiting is at an all time high and the recruiting methods are getting more and more sophisticated and more demanding.

Nurse Recruiting Methods

In the past, hospitals did not have to do much leg work in recruiting nurses as they would simply wait for nurses to come and apply at their hospitals and would get a large nurse database out of it and when it came time to find a nurse to fill a position, they would just go through their database of nurse leads.

Today, hospitals, schools and other healthcare facilities have to use more aggressive tactics which include but are not limited to the following methods:

  • Industry Publications
  • Staffing Agencies
  • Recruiting events at nursing schools
  • Personal and professional Networking
  • Job and Career Fairs
  • Nurse Job Boards
  • Employee Referrals
  • Newspapers
  • Radio

Job Position Analysis and the filtering Process

The first step in nurse recruiting is to analyze the job position and figure out the essential necessary skills as well as the preferred but not essential skills that will be needed to find the best person for the job.

Some of the key questions about the position should be why the nurse is needed, what the nurse will be doing, how the nurse will contribute to the company.

It is a good idea to create a check list of the necessary skills and certifications required for the nurse position as well as another check list for the extra but not necessary skills.

This information will then be used in the job posting or ad as well as thoughout the recruitment process.

phone interviewsThe next step is to filter the resumes. This process is a tedious job and was often done by an untrained person.  Eventually, the process of resume filtering became more complex and required specialized training as the person had to be trained to go beyond looking for certain keywords but also has to be able to analyze career paths on the resumes. In many companies, human review of resumes has been replaced by automated recruiting software that selects resumes and applications for recuiters to review for further consideration.  Many nurse recruiters have discovered that traditional nurse recruiting methods are no longer adequate and use specialized software and nurse recruiting services that enable them to search for and select qualified candidates from a database of nursing resumes, profiles and applications.   

The third step is phone screening that will ask short questions to determine whether their personality would be a good fit in the company. If after the phone interviews are done and you still have some candidates left, it's on to the physical interview.

The physical interview should be done by at least 2 people and these people should be trained in that area.

Last step is choosing the candidate that best matches all of the criteria and above from the job position analysis.