Guidelines for Landing Your First FNP Job

After you graduate and take the certification exam, the next step is to find family nurse practitioner jobs. Family nurse practitioners have diverse opportunities in today’s healthcare settings. NPs can work in clinics, hospitals, urgent care centers, emergency departments, or private practices to name a few options. NPs are also in high demand in the education sector, with positions opening up in public school systems and universities.


Even with all the employment possibilities, it is still a competitive field. New FNPs seeking employment must be able to identify or create the appropriate position. They must also learn skills to get the appropriate salary and leverage the clinical experience many FNPs take to the workplace. Consider these five guidelines when looking for FNP jobs.


1. Assess and be mindful of your strengths and areas of growth

Looking for employment requires you to market yourself and skills successfully. That’s true if you are searching for your first FNP job or are a seasoned veteran.


The only way you can show others what you offer is to understand your strengths and areas for growth. Start by creating a list of your clinical strengths. Chances are, you have critical skills in areas that interest you the most. Look through that list for a common thread.


Consider how these core skills might translate into a dream job to get a starting point for your search.


2. Determine what you want and don't want from your first FNP job

It's tempting to accept the first position that comes your way; weigh your options. Be selective as a family nurse practitioner because there is great demand for your skills. Make sure you choose a work environment that piques your interest. If you're going to start your career there, you want to be excited about it.


Make a list of all the things you want in your first FNP job and list the things you wish to avoid. That will help focus your vision and give you criteria to use for your search.


3. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box

Do your research and discover all the opportunities, including the ones that are not as obvious. You might consider relocating to a rural area, for example. FNPs are in high demand in these regions, and many offer perks to grab your attention. You might also consider working as a traveling health professional to expand your skills and knowledge base. It’s a good chance to see parts of the country you might otherwise miss, too.


There are non-clinical roles worth looking at, too, such as teaching, research or health journalism, and medical writing.


4. Clearly define your vision of the FNP role

Once you’ve made the list of things you want and don’t want, fully examined your skills, and done your homework about job opportunities, you are in a position to define your vision of the FNP jobs that best suits you.



  • Location
  • Mentorship opportunities
  • Skill-building opportunities
  • Worthy pay
  • Benefit packages


5. Network and forge connections

Finally, build connections and a network that can help you find the right role. Join state and national professional associations as part of your networking strategy. Membership in these organizations provides several benefits, including high-quality speakers and continuing education and networking possibilities with potential employers and other healthcare professionals.


Some of the best jobs arise from a conversation between an NP and possible employer. For example, if you wish to work in a specific clinical area, talk to the practice owner or the medical director about adding an FNP role if one does not already exist.


Aside from joining NP organizations, contact other NPs, PAs, and MDs with whom you have previously worked or who are already in your network. Inform these individuals that you are looking for work. Maintain communication with them to get leads on potential employment opportunities.


Check out social media sites geared towards professionals, too, such as LinkedIn. Doximity is a social media platform for healthcare professionals. Either site can serve as a powerful resource for those looking for a job.


Get more FNP job search assistance at Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald offers the materials and tools you need to achieve your objectives and improve your abilities. Please contact us if you have any concerns about FNP certification or need more information on finding employment.

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