How Can a Health Care Recruiter Help You?

How Can a Health Care Recruiter Help You?

Nurses are in high demand across all health care settings right now, and health care recruiters are an excellent resource to help nurses find the best job. With excess strain on resources from the pandemic and nurses leaving the profession from retirement or burn out, many organizations are anxious to fill empty positions. A health care recruiter can be the link that connects qualified nurses with the right opportunity.

Theresa Mazzaro, RN, CHCR, RACR, and senior talent acquisition specialist with Johns Hopkins Healthcare LLC,  is president of the National Association for Health Care Recruitment and says health care recruiters have the experience to know what nursing qualifications and attributes will work best for specific organizations and their job opportunities.

Because of the tight job market, health care recruiters tend to reach out to nurses right now, rather than being sought out by nurses. Whether a nurse is contacted by or is reaching out to a recruiter, Mazzaro offers some suggestions to make the experience better and raise the chances of nurses finding just the right role.

Mazzaro says a health care recruiter will talk with job candidates to find out how their skills will fill the organization’s needs, and they also want to know what a nurse is looking for in a job. They are the first step in the hiring process, and so are an excellent resource for nurses to find out if things like pay and benefits or shift opportunities will meet their expectations. She even invites nurses to join a LinkedIn group specifically for job-seeking nurses.

Apply If You Have the Needed Skills

“If you see a job you want to do, apply for it if you’re qualified,” she says. But if the job description says you need five years of experience and you’re a new nurse, don’t send in a resume. “Read the job posting and be respectful of what’s written,” she says. If you write a cover letter, make sure you have the proper organization and names in the letter. Mazzaro says she’s received letters in which a competitor organization was listed. That lack of attention to detail will immediately disqualify you.

Give All the Details

Make sure your resume is up-to-date, says Mazzaro. If you provide all the necessary and accurate details it will save time in the hiring process. Some organizations calculate pay based on years of experience, so if you’ve been a nurse for 30 years, say so. Be clear and specific about what type of unit you work on. List your specific accomplishments and describe the types of patients you work with.

Understand the Job

If you are moving from one nursing responsibility to another, have an understanding of what the job means for you. Knowing the job’s typical duties is essential so you know how your skills will help you succeed and how you’ll help the organization. But also understand other details such as if you are moving from a night shift to a day shift, the pay rate might change. And if you’re moving from a staff nurse to an administrative role, you’ll be expected to have different hours and benefits. If you’re coming off a travel contract in particular, being realistic about the salary you’ll make as a staff nurse is essential, says Mazzaro.

Be Honest with the Recruiter

“Do some research and talk with the recruiter,” says Mazzaro. “The time to talk about salary and benefits is with the recruiter and not when you’re interviewing with the hiring manager.” And also be open about your needs. Do you want a traditional schedule or do you really need three 12-hour shifts to accommodate your life? How far are you willing to commute? And Mazzaro says she always asks nurses why they are looking for a new job. “I want to find out what’s important to them,” she says.

A health care recruiter is an excellent resource for nurses who want a new job. Because nurses are in such demand, you might hear from one about opportunities you didn’t know were available. For the best results, be honest about your needs and wants in a job. With the right information, a health care recruiter can place you in a new role that will advance your career and benefit the organization you’re joining.

Health Care Recruiter: A New Path for Nurses

Health Care Recruiter: A New Path for Nurses

Health care recruiters, honored today with National Health Care Recruiter Recognition Day, are often a piece of a complex puzzle in health care staffing. But did you know a role as a health care recruiter is often a great move for a nurse looking for other nursing career options?

Theresa Mazzaro, RN, CHCR, RACR, and senior talent acquisition specialist with Johns Hopkins Healthcare LLC,  is president of the National Association for Health Care Recruitment and says the career is a great move for nurses who want to explore new roles or who have a particular interest in human resources work.

Health care recruiters help bring together job seekers with organizations that need their specific skill set. A nursing background gives recruiters a significant boost in understanding how units work, what the responsibilities of different nursing roles are, the typical shift needs and requirements, and the exact skills that each nurse specialty requires.

The career merges an understanding of health care on the clinical level and on the hiring and administrative level, so many nurses will need training to get up to speed on human resources rules and regulations, but Mazzaro says that’s not a problem. Many nurses might be intrigued by a health care recruiter role, but think they aren’t qualified, says Mazzaro. “As an RN, you can do anything,” she says. “You can be taught and learn to do anything. My advice if they want to pivot they that they can be taught the human resources aspect of the role.”

If you’re thinking of merging an interest in the administrative side of nursing and your nursing skills, Mazzaro says the two paths converge to create a fulfilling career. “There’s a certain personality type that is perfectly suited for this role,” she says. Because recruiters are continually interacting with job seekers and employers, an outgoing nurse who enjoys the constant work with different parties will find this role a good match. Nurses excel at critical thinking skills and as a health care recruiter, those skills are used constantly, she says.

Mazzaro says recruiters aren’t expected to know each nursing role, but good recruiters will learn about them enough to help hiring managers find the nurses they need. For instance, she says, it doesn’t matter if a nurse who is now a health care recruiter has never worked in the OR. But if that person is recruiting for an OR nurse, finding out about the job needs requires an extra step of holding an intake session or maybe even shadowing in the OR to find out what the nurses do. Then when a recruiter meets with a job seeker for an interview, they will have a much better understanding of what makes a good candidate to send to the hiring manager.

Mazzaro says any health care recruiter should earn credentials as a Certified Health Care Recruiter. They should also consider joining a professional organization like the National Association for Health Care Recruitment. “All of that information and content is curated for you,” she says. And joining isn’t as rewarding or effective as being an active member. “Get involved by attending conferences, listening to webinars, and learning from speakers,” she says. “Put in the time and get every piece of information you can.” Find out about best practices to make your own work better.

Mazzaro says a health care recruiter role is different from shift work that a nurse might be used to. The role is generally more of a traditional work week schedule and is an exempt position, so even if you work overtime, your pay rate doesn’t change. But the ability to make an impact for an organization, particularly one in which you believe in its mission and values, is exciting.

Placing the right nurse in the right role with the best organization is complex. “It’s truly important,” she says. “As a recruiter, you realize how one nurse is going to impact so many people. But as a recruiter, your impact is more than that. You have direct impact on how a unit, a team and a hospital is going to run. Ultimately the people you hire could be caring for someone like your mother. I always keep that in the back of my mind.”