How to Hire a Nurse

Does your growing business need a nurse? The health care industry relies on knowledgeable, compassionate nurses to provide quality patient care in a variety of settings. Your business can immediately benefit from hiring a nurse who is deeply invested in their career. A gifted nurse effortlessly connects with patients while evaluating and treating symptoms and medical conditions.

Here are some tips to help you find great nurse candidates and make the right hire for your business.

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Nurses searching for jobs on Indeed*

323,122  

Job seekers that clicked on nurse jobs

XXXX

Resumes for job seekers with nurse experience on Indeed

13,720   

Nurse jobs that received clicks

What is the cost of hiring nurse?

  • Common salary in US: $31.87 hourly
  • Typical salaries range from $8.80$69.15 hourly
  • Find more information on Indeed Salary

*Indeed data (US) – April 2021

*Indeed data (US) – April 2021

Why hire a nurse?

The need for new staff can affect both your existing team and your bottom line. Hiring a nurse who remains focused in high stress environments can motivate colleagues, put others at ease in uncomfortable situations and quickly bounce back when faced with challenges. Qualified nurses are able to maintain clear thought processes and precision when administering medication, executing physician orders and educating patients.

Contributions of a great nurse:

  • Provide exceptional patient care
  • Administer medication, vaccinations and fluids
  • Monitor vital signs, such as temperature, blood pressure and pulse rate
  • Assess and document patient complaints, symptoms and progress
  • Identify red flags and inform physician of patient condition
  • Provide patient education on medication, treatment plans and at-home care

Deciding between a full-time vs freelance nurse

Before you post your nurse job or start interviewing candidates, compare the options of hiring a full-time or contract nurse. Many nurses are hired as full-time employees directly by the health care facility. This option gives you a dedicated nurse for ongoing staffing when you expect patient care needs to remain consistent.

Hiring a contractor nurse is an option if you have a temporarily high demand for nurses. Travel nurses serve as short-term placements at different clinics, often for a few months at a time. You can fill your current nursing needs without committing to a full-time, long-term employee by hiring a freelance nurse. Contractors can have general nursing experience or specialty experience, allowing you to fill specific nursing roles temporarily.

What are the ranks of nurses?

Understanding the ranks of nurses can help you decide which type of nurse you need. The duties of different levels of nurses vary, with higher-ranking nurses taking on more responsibilities, sometimes including supervision of other nursing staff. Degree requirements can also vary. Some common nurse ranks from highest to lowest include:

  • Chief nursing officer or director of nursing: These nurses serve as supervisors or administrators and manage all nursing services within the organization or a specific unit. 
  • Nurse supervisor: A nurse manager or supervisor is a leadership position, often with a mix of patient care and management tasks, such as scheduling and supervising staff nurses.
  • Advanced practice registered nurse: APRNs have at least a master’s degree and collaborate with physicians to provide care; some states allow APRNs to practice independently without a supervising physician.
  • Staff nurse or registered nurse: An RN performs direct patient care and monitoring, including recording patient data, helping with plans of care and collaborating with doctors.
  • Licensed practical nurse or licensed vocational nurse: An LPN handles basic medical care, such as taking vitals and administering medication, and usually works under the supervision of an RN.

Where to find nurses

To find the right nurse for your business, consider trying out a few different recruiting strategies:

  • Hire from within. If you’re looking for a supervising nurse, consider promoting one of your current staff nurses. Encouraging LPNs to go back to school to become RNs is one way to promote within.
  • Network with nursing schools. Partnering with local colleges and universities that have nursing programs can help you recruit new nurses when they graduate. 
  • Participate in health care events. Speaking at a conference for nurses or being a sponsor for a nursing event helps you meet potential employees and get your organization’s name in front of nurses.
  • Be active on social media. Use your organization’s social media channels to showcase what’s special about being a nurse at your facility. 
  • Post your job online. Try posting your nurse job on Indeed to find and attract quality nurse candidates.

What are the ranks of nurses?

Understanding the ranks of nurses can help you decide which type of nurse you need. The duties of different levels of nurses vary, with higher-ranking nurses taking on more responsibilities, sometimes including supervision of other nursing staff. Degree requirements can also vary. Some common nurse ranks from highest to lowest include:

  • Chief nursing officer or director of nursing: These nurses serve as supervisors or administrators and manage all nursing services within the organization or a specific unit. 
  • Nurse supervisor: A nurse manager or supervisor is a leadership position, often with a mix of patient care and management tasks, such as scheduling and supervising staff nurses.
  • Advanced practice registered nurse: APRNs have at least a master’s degree and collaborate with physicians to provide care; some states allow APRNs to practice independently without a supervising physician.
  • Staff nurse or registered nurse: An RN performs direct patient care and monitoring, including recording patient data, helping with plans of care and collaborating with doctors.
  • Licensed practical nurse or licensed vocational nurse: An LPN handles basic medical care, such as taking vitals and administering medication, and usually works under the supervision of an RN.

Writing a nurse job description

A thoughtful job description is important to finding qualified nurse candidates. A nurse job description includes a compelling summary of the role, a detailed list of duties and responsibilities and the required and preferred skills for the position.

When writing your nurse job description, consider including some or all of the following keywords to improve the visibility of your job posting. These are the most popular search terms leading to clicks on nurse jobs, according to Indeed data:

  • Registered nurse
  • Nurse
  • RN
  • Aesthetic nurse
  • Nurse RN
  • Nursing
  • School nurse
  • Remote nurse
  • Vaccine nurse
  • Work from home nurse

Interviewing nurse candidates

Hire the right nurse candidate by asking thoughtful questions about their education, professional experience and nursing philosophy. Strong candidates for nurse positions will be confident when answering a variety of questions related to nursing responsibilities.

Topics for nurse interview questions:

  • Methods of evaluating patient needs and addressing concerns
  • Experience in specific health care settings
  • Managing difficult or demanding patients
  • Work ethics and values
  • Proficiency with computer software and applications
  • Continuing education goals

Need help coming up with interview questions? See our list of nurse interview questions for examples (with sample answers).

FAQs about how to hire a nurse

How do I choose between two good nurse candidates?

Review your job description and requirements for the job to refresh yourself on what you need. Look at the experience and qualifications each nurse has to determine if one has an edge. Consider how well each candidate might fit in with the work culture.

How do I keep my nurse happy?

Providing nurses with the tools, support and continuing education they need to do their job correctly helps keep them happy. Give your nurses autonomy and trust them to make the right decisions. Listening to their concerns, asking for input and backing them up in difficult situations can also help.

What does a nurse wear?

Nurses typically wear scrubs, which include a shirt and pants made of slick, easy-to-clean fabric. You can choose to have all nurses wear the same color or let your nurses choose their own colorful or patterned scrubs.

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