How to develop your nursing career
Whatever your nursing specialism, there are many opportunities and resources available to enhance and develop your career.
What is a typical nursing career path?
The NHS banding system allows nurses to see their progression, from entry-level staff nurse roles, up to senior staff nurse, advanced nurse practitioner and director of nursing positions.
Each band will offer more responsibility and nurses will be paid accordingly.
There are many other ways to progress your career beyond the linear approach – for example, you may wish to move into specific areas, or you could choose to work in community.
What training is available to help nurses develop their careers?
Training is vital and you will be assessed on this as part of your registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). All nurses are required to undertake 35 hours of relevant continuing professional development (CPD) in the three-year period between registration and renewal.
There are many different types of training available; statutory training is required by law (such as basic risk assessment or manual handling) and mandatory training is determined by your employer to ensure the safe delivery of services. This could include areas such as infection prevention and control, mental capacity and safeguarding or hand hygiene.
The Royal College of Nursing has a helpful article on their website which explains more about different training opportunities available for nurses.
Can I use networking to boost my nursing career?
Networking is a great way to develop your career and can improve your learning and knowledge. You may choose to use online platforms such as LinkedIn to communicate with others or attend workshops, conferences and job fairs to meet likeminded nurses and build relationships.
How can I make the most of community nursing roles?
Working in an NHS role is a great way to build experience, but you can also develop nursing skills through sabbaticals and secondments; you could work within care homes, schools, community settings or prisons. Making the most of different opportunities will allow you to improve skills in different ways – making you a more accomplished nurse practitioner.
Can agency nursing jobs develop my career?
As an agency nurse, you can move into different settings in and out of the NHS to give you broader experience and knowledge. This will not only help you improve your skills but also identify the aspects of nursing that you enjoy the most. Find out more about choosing between perm, locum and bank nursing jobs.