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Not all registered nurses want to make a career out of direct patient care. There are other paths to venture along and one of them is working in the administration or management arena of nursing. These nurses may be in charge of developing nurse training programs, interviewing and hiring nursing staff, managing department budgets, performing research and analysis in order to maximize patient health care and nurse performance and conduct employee and/or department reviews in order to make sure proper procedures are being followed among other administrative duties. They also have an opportunity to encourage personal development and professional growth among staff. Nurse managers also interact with ancillary staff who care for the environment, provide nutritional services, maintain physical facilities, and support the nursing staff in care delivery.

Administrative nurses may work in a wide variety of departments and health care organizations such as at hospitals, doctor offices, rehabilitation clinics, geriatric centers, neonatal care units and emergency rooms as well as in other medical facilities and departments. Many administrative nurses may work on the floor training nursing staff and managing patient care. There are also administrative nurses who work primarily in desk positions managing paperwork and performing medical related duties behind the scenes.

There are jobs in specialty clinics such as one posted in March 2017 for a Nursing Program Specialist with the Department of Health in Florida. Responsibilities include managing specific aspects of the Centering Pregnancy and Parenting clients’ care throughout pregnancy and collecting and compiling all pregnancy, birth outcomes and well child data for the first 2 years from birth. Position serves as trainer, preceptor, and consultant for internal and external partners. Base salary for this position is posted as $1858 biweekly.

Another example is a posting on indeed.com for a Nurse Manager at Methodist Hospital in San Antonio, Texas. The successful applicant is responsible to the Director, Vice President and/or the Chief Nursing Officer for facilitating, coordinating and delegating the delivery of patient care to a defined group of patients during their entire hospitalization period. She/he works cooperatively with administrators, physicians, staff, other managers and all customers of the Methodist Healthcare System to provide services, which consistently meet and exceed the expectations of their customers.

A review of job postings for this branch of nursing suggests that there are openings requiring at least an RN. Others may mandate a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with or without experience-depending on the particular job requirements. To meet the BSN requirement, there are several online RN to BSN degree programs with reasonable tuition.

As you move into the executive branch of management, experience is likely mandatory in addition to a Master’s degree. A current (March 2017) posting for a Chief Nurse Officer (CNO) in a Critical Access Hospital in Arkansas states that a master’s degree in nursing administration or business is a necessity. The posted salary range for this position is $137,000 to $180,000/year with 5 years CNO or equivalent experience. This salary may be attractive enough to look into the degree choices in either a top online MSN degree or one of our top online MBA programs.

Administrative nursing is a dichotomous role-divided between your clinical acumen and management skills. Effective managers know that developing and maintaining healthy work relationships is key to their success. This is paramount in any management position. Great nurse managers use their power to set the bar high, to challenge employees to perform at their best, to coach and to mentor.