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UCC Nursing Event

On Friday the 18th of November University College Cork held a Career Insight event for Nursing and Midwifery Graduates. We were delighted to be asked to join, to speak with the class of 2023 and to provide Nursing students with practical advice on interview preparation and some insight into the wide range of interesting and exciting careers open to them as Nursing graduates.

The online virtual event kicked off with an opening presentation on Career Opportunities for Nursing and Midwifery Graduates. A hiring manager panel was introduced to discuss what hiring managers and nursing clients are seeking in candidates during the interview process.
This was followed by an alumni panel where past pupils in all different roles were able to speak and talk about their career journey.

The last part of the event was held with numerous different recruitment agencies, including Clarity Recruitment and Clarity Locums. Some of the questions that were asked on the day were as follows:

Q1. What nursing degrees do you hire from in your agency? e.g. general nursing, mental health, disability etc.? And what are the typical steps in your recruitment and selection process for nursing roles?

Clarity Recruitment focuses on General and Paediatric Nursing roles. Although in the past and indeed if there is a client need in the future we have looked after Mental Health, Intellectual Disability and Psychiatric Nursing before.
We seek candidates by advertising and marketing on various social media platforms and job boards. We initially like to have a career conversation to understand the Nurses or candidates goals in order to match them with a role or job that we feel would be of benefit to her long term career.

medical staff smiling

Q2. What aspects of a nursing CV would attract your attention in a positive way?

There is a lot to consider; Layout, tasks and responsibilities in detail however; I do stress the importance of a good ‘personal profile/introduction’ which should be tailored to the job you are specifically applying for and outlining the skills you have to be successful in the role.

Want to find out more about CV writing? Read our blog here

Q3. What interview advice can you give final year nursing students or recent graduates?

Be confident in the skills you have acquired over the last few years. although you will hear the term ‘newly qualified’ Nurse a lot while you are seeking work. Do not be put off by this. Focus on your clinical experience during your rotations and the responsibilities associated with this.

Q4. Have you or your client organisations made any changes to your approach to interviewing candidates for nursing roles in recent years? What motivated the change in approach?

Brought on from the pandemic and the dreaded Covid word has changed the interview style and layout immensely. Interviews can be conducted from anywhere and everywhere. Which is really accommodating to both the client and Nurse.
Putting that to one side the biggest change I have witnessed is in regards to the personal profile or attitude of the candidate rather than the clinical skills. Clinical skills can be thought and perfected. Attitude and willingness to learn and succeed can not. Hiring managers and Clinical Nurse Managers want to know about the passion and personality more nowadays.

Q5. Are there any part-time CPD courses or online certifications that you would highly recommend to newly graduated nurses? And what is the value of a postgraduate qualification in nursing in your opinion?

In a lot of job advertisements nowadays Continuous Professional Development is part of the essential criteria. Employers like to see that you are upskilling and willing to learn. Do not underestimate all the free training available online through HSeLand etc. Clarity hopes to open training days and upskilling events in 2023 to support this also.
I would suggest thinking about your long term career plan, where would you like to be in 5 years? 10 years? And look into what skills or certificates you will need to get there. Review job advertisements online to see what are the mandatory training certificates of Post Grads that are needed for that role.
Amazingly a lot of clients are more than willing to pay for these courses to upskill and retain their workforce.

smiling nurse

Q6. What have you noticed about the job market for nurses? How has it changed? How is it likely to develop in the future?

In the past we had found that nurses who go into a speciality tend to get ‘stuck’ to that speciality. If they wished to change roles or directions Hiring Managers would pin them into that niche and they would struggle to change sectors or departments.
Over the last year and indeed the last six months this has changed dramatically. Nursing Managers are more willing to consider candidates who might not match the essential criteria directly but are willing to upskill and develop in a new area. Ward Nurses are moving to Theatre. Nursing Home Nurses are switching to the Hospital Setting. Acute nurses are moving towards the community. It is fantastic to see this developing and we see this continuing into the future.

Q7. What advice would you have for nurses seeking international experience?

As a company Clarity have decided (at the moment) to only work with Irish based clients and roles. With the huge shortage of nurses in Ireland we feel it would be a conflict of interest on our clients behalf to support nurses relocating from Ireland to work internationally. However; personally I believe as a Newly Graduated Nurse, overseas opportunities are endless and an amazing life and work experience to seek. I would encourage any Nurse considering the possibility of overseas placements to consider completing one year of acute experience in Ireland to support your application for overseas placements. Irish trained Nurses are considered the Best Trained Nurses in the world and a role internationally is easily obtainable. On the other hand a lot of clients are supporting Irish trained Nurses to relocate back to Ireland, including generous relocation packages and bonuses up to €5000.


Get in touch!

If you are a newly qualified Nurse or a Nurse seeking some advice on her career plans or goals please feel free to reach out today. At Clarity we offer free confidential career conversations, where we discuss your experience but most importantly your goals and what you would like to achieve. Whether we have a role now or in the future we are happy to keep you updated on the market place and the changes that are occurring in the healthcare industry.

Contact us for more information

Posted on 18 November 2022 by Laura Mulchrone
Author Info

Laura Mulchrone

01 567 3123
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