Graduate job seeker

10 tips for new grads seeking their first job

Are you a New Grad RN looking for a job? Want to stand out from the crowd? Here are a few tips from a recruiter’s point of view on how to “put your best foot forward”.

  1. Always include a short cover letter. No more than 2 paragraphs. Let us know those areas of practice in which you are truly interested (ER, critical care, women’ services, OR) and why.
  2. If you are applying to a hospital in a different city from your hometown, tell us why you want to relocate to that area. There are new grads in most big cities and normally locals are picked up first, so you need to make us feel you have a real desire to be in our town in order for us to seriously consider you.
  3. Please, please check you grammar, spelling and specific data. Check it twice. Lots of people don’t get a job because they put a wrong telephone number or email address on their application.
  4. Don’t apply to every open position that is posted. Too many applications just make you look desperate. Be Selective. Pick 2 or 3 at the most.
  5. Make sure to include any volunteer work in your work history. It speaks well to your work ethic.
  6. Be realistic. You are a NEW RN. You probably won’t get a job in ICU right out of school. Have a career path mapped out and know that you may need to work in a med/surg unit to get some experience. Directors like to see candidates with not only ambition but a real world plan for doing the work to get the experience needed to move up.
  7. Don’t make your job search about MONEY! You have chosen an honorable profession of service to your patients. You will be paid well and have many opportunities to advance in salary if you keep in mind the main reason you became an RN—a desire to care for the sick!
  8. If you get the interview—Come prepared. Do your research on the facility and the unit for which you will be interviewing. Study “Behavioral Interviewing” questions and have good solid answers regarding your customer service skills. Being a RN is a customer service job.
  9. Be professional. Look the part. Don’t come to an interview in jeans or flip flops. Be clean, neat and conservative. If your grandmother were going to interview you, would she be impressed with how you look? Do you look like someone I would want taking care of my sick family member?
  10. Always get the name and email address of the person who interviews you. Then send them a thank-you note promptly after the interview.

And last but most importantly, if you call the HR dept. or recruiter about your application, make sure you leave your name and number so they can return your call. Speak clearly and slowly. You definitely want this person to be able to write down your name and number. You want them to call you back.

Good luck in your job search! Enjoy the career you have chosen!

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