Nurses are increasingly important to nursing homes, with more than two thirds of the nation’s population now employed by a provider, according to a recent analysis by the National Nurses United.
Nursing home employees have been among the most vocal critics of the ACA and their jobs have also been at the forefront of efforts to repeal the law.
This article offers tips on how to maximize your chances of landing an education role in your home or nursing home, including hiring an education recruiter and what the job prospects are for each.
You can also read more on the NNU’s Nurse Educators Jobs Analysis.
Research the job listings on job portals, such as CareerBuilder.
Choose a position that is similar to yours.
For example, if your job is in the social work field, you might be a home health aide or a social worker.
Ask for a salary.
It’s possible to negotiate a salary for an education position, but it’s not recommended unless you’re confident in your ability to negotiate it, said Lori Williams, director of public affairs at CareerBuilder, which has more than a million jobs for people aged 16-64.
“When you have a nurse on the job who has been in the field for 20 years, they have a proven track record, they know how to navigate a variety of jobs, and they know what it’s like to have to make a difficult decision,” she said.
“That’s why it’s so important to be proactive in your search for an educational position.”
Ask about a “specialty.”
A specialty is a specific field in nursing that you’re applying to.
For instance, you could be a social work nurse who focuses on mental health or you might work in a family medicine or pediatrics practice.
“A good education recrucer will look for the specific job description and ask about the specialties,” Williams said.
A recruiter will also look for what type of educational credentials are being sought, such if it’s a bachelor’s degree, associate’s degree or doctoral degree.
You’ll want to know what you’re looking for in a specific job and what experience and qualifications are required, Williams said, especially if you’re trying to get a position as a nurse or social worker who works with older people.
Talk to friends.
If you’ve already interviewed for a position before, ask if you can call the recruiter to see if they can help you out.
If not, call back and ask what they would need in terms of experience, Williams added.
Check out job boards.
Some job boards have posted a list of opportunities, including nursing education positions and nursing positions that are open at this time.
For more tips on finding the best education position for you, read our article on the best jobs for nursing educators.
Don’t be afraid to ask for money.
The more money you can make, the more valuable your education will be, Williams explained.
“You need to be willing to accept whatever your future employer might offer,” she added.
If they offer you more money, you may want to consider a position where you can earn more while also earning more for your education.
“If you’re willing to take a lower salary and accept the lower salary in exchange for being able to work on the floor and supervise your family members, that’s a much more valuable position,” Williams explained, including a position in a nursing home.
Consider the pay.
There are some benefits to the position and there’s no guarantee that your education is going to pay for itself, said Ashley Farrow, director for nursing education at CareerConnect.
“Nurses are often in positions where they have to stay for a longer period of time and earn a lot of money.
You might be in that position if you do get an education,” Farrow said.
You may have to take out a loan to do so, and you’ll likely have to do some work on your own to make ends meet, she added, including staying in the workforce to take care of family members and getting paid for your work.
Find a recruiter who has experience recruiting nurses.
“It’s important to find someone who has some experience recruiting nursing students,” Williams advised.
“Because you don’t have to have a nursing degree to recruit, you don’st have to be a professional nurse to recruit.”
Farrow added that nursing education programs have been the focus of recruitment efforts since the ACA was passed, so finding an educator who has a track record of doing so will be important.
“This is a great opportunity to be able to get in front of an educator that’s already well versed in the industry and have a strong connection with the community,” Frow said.
Learn the skills you’ll need.
As an educator, you’ll be expected to work with patients and communicate with patients, Williams suggested.
“Your job is to learn about the nursing profession, the medical