Finding your first job after nursing school may seem intimidating. In school, you learned the skills you need to do your job as a nurse. Now, you need to learn the skills to get that job. Here are five things you need to know to make your first permanent nursing job a reality.

Your School is Still Your First Resource

Visit the career office at your nursing school or college. Use their alumni contact lists to get in touch with graduates who are working in the field of nursing. Reach out to these alumni for informational interviews to learn what sorts of jobs are in the area and how you might get them. Attend Nursing Career Days at your school or nearby. Talk with your friends, faculty, and anyone else who might know someone who is hiring. Make connections and follow through on them. Let others help you find your first job after nursing school.

Job Listings Abound On the Web

Today’s employers use the Internet to find the employees they need. Look for a job where employers are looking to hire. Websites that list nursing jobs are numerous. Use Google to find them. Read user reviews to find which work the best in the specialities you want to pursue. Sites like Careerbuilder or Monster have valuable resources that enable you to get your resume out there even as you search for listings. Be proactive online. Your first job after nursing school is out there waiting for you.

Nursing Associations Can Connect You to Jobs lists many state, national, and international nursing organizations. Ask your faculty which of these associations might help you to connect with colleagues and potential employers. Join one or more, and be an active member. Don’t just attend the conferences, offer to help organize them. Such volunteer work shows initiative and increases your visibility among your colleagues. Employers love to hire people they already know will go above and beyond the minimum level of effort required, even those seeking their first job.

Temporary Postings Can Open the Door

Be willing to start with temporary postings at places like As a temporary worker, you will gain valuable experience and get to know a variety of jobs. Temporary postings can be a great avenue to permanent jobs. Work hard and well as a temp, and you may get the inside track for your first permanent job after school.

How You Present Yourself Matters a Lot

No matter how skilled a nurse you are, if you don’t interview well chances are someone else will get the job you seek. Make sure your interview attire is professional looking. Be ready to demonstrate you have the skills the employer seeks. When asked about your skills, don’t just list them. Give examples of how you have applied them well during your training. Don’t hide your weaknesses. Tell the interviewer what they are and how you intend to overcome them. Give examples of how you have overcome former weaknesses in the past. Ask questions of your own. This will help you find out if the job is right for you. Don’t go into an interview cold. Seek out opportunities to be asked tough questions about your qualifications as a nurse by your friends, faculty, family, and anyone else who cares about your success in finding that first job after nursing school.

Related Resource:
How To Interview for Your First Nursing Job

Your first job after nursing school is waiting for you. Use the resources at your school, on the web, and in the nursing community to find it. Then nail the interview to make it yours.