10 things more important to a nurse than just salary

When we start out in our career and chosen career path, do we choose it because it’s something we’re truly passionate about, or because of the thought of a high salary when we eventually complete our training? It’s a hard question and one which affects all of us in different ways.

Within the nursing profession, there is often so much more to think about than salary.

In fact, we’ve highlighted the top 10 things which we’ve identified as being much more important in a nursing job than just a wage.

1. Job satisfaction 

Ok, yes, this might sound a little bit of a cliché, but for nursing professionals it is true. Complete job satisfaction in the medical world is much more rewarding than a high salary. To care for your patients and help them no matter what and then to feel this appreciation from not just the patient but their family too is what makes a difficult day a better one. Knowing that you have helped them and their family in some way, no matter how small can make the world of difference to someone. For nurses they receive this appreciation everyday in their jobs and at times it might not always be seen or spoken but it is always felt.

2. Flexible

Nursing jobs offer a great deal of flexibility when it comes to working around the other important things in your life. Yes, those 12-hour shifts can seem daunting and something to dread but they also allow you manage your working week and time off more productively before the rotation starts again.  Because shift patterns are also usually planned months in advance it allows you to schedule things better, you know where you stand, you know what you can plan for and when and it is especially beneficial when it comes to childcare. Operating a shift pattern like this allows for much more flexibility with options of working nightshift, or split shifts for example.

3. You can work in different types of establishments and anywhere you want

This is a great benefit for those working in the nursing profession or certainly looking to enter the profession. Once qualified as a nurse you are free to choose where you work, whether this be in a hospital, GP surgery, school, prison and more, the opportunities and job vacancies are vast and certainly much more open. The same can also be said for the “anywhere”. Nursing is a universal practice and again once qualified it means you can take your skills and experience and work anywhere in the world.  Opening up a whole host of opportunities and allowing you to explore the world, tick things off your bucket list almost whilst still earning a living and doing something that you love.

4. Every day is different

This is a statement that can’t be said for a lot of jobs out there.  However, for nursing it is 100% true.  You never know from one day to the next what might happen, what patients you will see, the treatments you will be involved in, peoples lives that you will begin to understand and become a part of. Nursing brings this exciting element to it, there are very few regular 9 to 5 roles or ground hog days in nursing.  Constantly being kept on your toes and when you think you’ve just about seen it all, something else can happen in a second which soon becomes the new eye opener of your day.

5. Time with people

Spending time with people and building your interpersonal skills is another area that is considered more important than salary. Listening to people’s stories, learning about their world, their families, the affect that your care and support is having on them is what builds lasting relationships. Getting this close to someone isn’t something everyone does as part of their regular day job.  But it is part of a nurse’s and its one that is taken on and not seen as a job or a chore but part of that person’s skill. To be able to communicate to anyone, find out and really understand them – it’s this element that even Doctors rely on nurses for.  Finding out even the smallest of details from patients can sometimes become crucial to helping them with their overall care.

6. Progression Opportunities

Due to the shortages in nursing staff, building a career as a nurse allows you to advance through the ranks at a fast pace, if you so wish. Opportunities to learn new skills, delve into specialised areas of medicine and care, as well as learn the management side of the job are frequently available. Quite often, career progression in this field is not always about the money, but more about being able to provide more and putting your skills and your abilities on a higher platform for all to see.

7. You make a difference

Nurses make all the difference when it comes to the running of a hospital. Nurses know the ins and outs of everything that goes on, on their wards. They know the people, they know their lives. They know the systems, the rotas and how best to support their team. It is all of this combined which really makes a difference.  Wards are run smoothly, patient care is always at the forefront and doctors and teams within the hospital are supported, all because of the dedication and commitment of nurses.

8. Hospitals atmosphere and values

This is a big reason because so many of us now choose our profession based on what values the company holds, rather than what salary they are offering. Working in a great environment, as well as one which promotes the same values as you believe in, is the perfect working environment for you!

9. Good Management

Within the nursing profession good management is critical. It is what can drive nurses to become the best they can be. To have someone in your corner, someone you can rely on and someone you can trust. All of these factors combined make you want to stay in your job, because the feeling is mutual in that you also want to support your manager and not let them down. It’s not always about the money, it can be about working with a great team.

10. Benefits

Of course, all of the above could be considered as benefits in their own right but also think about the employment opportunities on offer. Things such as number of holidays offered, healthcare package, pension, social events and more.  All of these things again have to be weighed up and are dependant on the person who is looking at the role.

Of course, every profession could and in some instances should have the same pointers, albeit slightly different depending on the sector.  It’s about creating an understanding that people do the jobs they do for a number of different reasons and to be honest a high salary isn’t always number one on the list.

Hats off to our nurses and healthcare professionals for providing a little insight into why they do the job they do and for reassuring us that you are always putting us and our families first – for that we believe you when you say salary isn’t your number one priority (although we also understand your frustration and anger when governments announce pay cuts and freezes!)

Finally, if after reading this you are 100% positive that nursing is for you, then IHR Group can help! We can match you with vacancies for nursing jobs across Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and the UK.

Our pages are regularly updated with new jobs, ranging across all levels and if you see something that you might be interested in simply drop us an email or call us to find out more – we’d be happy to help!

Check out our jobs’ page today and see just where your career could take you.

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