On average, most job industries have a growth rate of only 7%. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment rate for RNs from 2014 to 2024 is expected to grow over 16%, more than double the average growth rate for other jobs. In number terms, this equates to almost 439,000 new potential RN dream job opportunities. These statistics show what many nurses know already, finding a job in nursing can be easy, but finding the right job in a sea of options can feel impossible!

To help you out, we’ve put together a list of tips and tricks that nurses often overlook while on the hunt for an RN dream job. With these steps you’ll be able to find the right position, nail the interview and land that RN dream job. 

Step 1: Know where to look.

With a significant shift towards technology in recent years, many hospitals now rely on the Internet to recruit potential employees. Job listings for careers in medicine can be accessed through hospitals’ career sites, which offer a lot of untapped potential for RNs. Unlike sites like LinkedIn or Monster.com, job applications through a hospital’s website are sent directly to the human resources department who often have a team of people designated to review applicants. This direct approach ensures that candidates do not get “lost in the shuffle.”

Step 2: Do your research.

There are so many different areas in the “nursing world” to specialize in, and many are often overlooked. Researching different specialties or areas within a hospital can be extremely advantageous and open doors applicants might not know are even there! Consider applying in a high-demand area that you are interested in learning about further, like oncology or case management.

Step 3: Know the core values and mission statement of the facility to which you are applying.

Oftentimes, hospitals are named after someone in particular. Finding out the origin of the facility’s name, or the core values of the place you are applying, can give you a leg up in an interview. This is also an opportunity to find out if your professional values align with the facilities to which you are applying, and if you as a potential employee can see yourself fitting in there.  Do they strongly value patient-provider relationships?  Are they focused on company culture? Are they focused on innovation and using the latest technology?  Find out and stress your areas of experience in it.

Step 4: Tailor your resume.

It is important that you showcase the skills you have that would be useful for the particular position you have applied for. Do you have special training or certifications? Did you take care of similar patients in a past job? What specific skills did you gain from your previous experience? It is important to highlight the areas that align with each particular position you apply for; even moving up special skills to the top of your resume can make a huge impact. P.S. It’s ok to brag a little, you’ve earned the right!

Step 5: Dress like a professional in order to land that RN dream job.

Though you may be wearing scrubs during the job, make sure to dress professionally for the interview. This shows employers that you are able to conduct yourself in a professional manner and take the job seriously. You can never go wrong with a nice pair of pants and a jacket!

Step 6: Be mindful of your demeanor.

Frequently, an applicant’s personality in an interview translates into their bedside manner, which is important for recruiters when trying to discern how you will treat future patients. This is especially important for all medical jobs, so make sure your personality shines through both in your interview and in the back-and-forth e-mail communication to them as well.

Originally posted on 2/3/2016

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