Nursing is a highly-respected profession and there is a great demand for nurses in all specialties globally. Most nurses choose this career path because they want to help people, they want to see them get well again. It is this desire that gives nurses the benefit of a sense of accomplishment, like teaching a new diabetic how to check their blood sugars or teaching a new mom how to care for her new addition. The list goes on and on. But, this isn’t the only benefit you will gain in a nursing career. We’ve listed a few other perks that not many other professions besides nursing sees.
- Personal Satisfaction: This is an important benefit as people spend one-third of their lives working. Nurses take great pride in what they do and according to the American Nurses Association (ANA), nurses have a job satisfaction rate of over 60%. Nurses who participated in the study stated they were especially happy with their career development opportunities, professional status and the ability to interact with others in the medical profession. Having the ability to make a difference is someone’s life greatly enhances their personal satisfaction.
- Flexibility: Nurses probably have some of the most flexible careers. You can work when and where you want, whether it be full-time, part-time or temporary. You can take time off for additional schooling or to have a family and easily return to work when you’re ready. Other flexibilities include:
- Schedules – You can work a variety of shifts: 4, 6, 8, 10, or 12 hour shifts. Nurses have the options to work in an area where they work only weekdays, yet some choose to work weekends only.
- Location – You can work in an urban, suburban or quiet rural setting. Basically, you have the freedom to choose a setting anywhere in the world. You can also choose to be a traveling nurse. Traveling nurses can work an assignment in the northern US, then pack up and head south to the beaches of Florida for the next adventure. Traveling nurses not only get the opportunity to see the world but their rate of pay is higher as well.
- Career – It’s typical of nurses to change jobs throughout their career to take advantage of the numerous opportunities available. This may be to learn a new specialty, such as orthopedics, trauma, obstetrics etc. Or maybe to work with a variety of populations from newborn to geriatrics.
- Job Security: It is estimated that by 2020, there will be a nationwide shortage of approximately 800,000 nurses. Some hospitals are even offering sign-on bonuses of up to $14,000 for experienced nurses. This means that no matter where you want to live or how often you want to work, you will be able to step into a rewarding career.
- Salary & Benefits: As there are a number of career opportunities for nurses, this means higher earnings and competitive benefits for your future nursing career. As a registered nurse, you can expect an average salary of approximately $69,000 annually, which is equivalent to just over $33 per hour, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nurses are also offered comprehensive benefits such as: Health, Dental, Vision, Retirement Savings, Life Insurance, Paid time off, Scholarships and even Adoption assistance.
- Advancement: Having a nursing degree offers you several opportunities for advancement. You can work your way up to a charge nurse then unit coordinator followed by unit manager. In long term care or home care, nurses can advance to directors of nursing. If you seek even further advancement, with the right education you can become a Nurse Anesthetist, Nurse Midwife, Nurse Practitioner etc. The opportunities are endless in the field of nursing to become a leader in healthcare.