The nursing career is a great option to choose. There are a lot of industries who will utilize the skills of a qualified nurse and who are happy to provide them with great compensation and benefits for their time and talents. Add in the huge shortage of nursing professionals, and it is a great field to enter. 

However, most nursing professionals want to take the time to improve their own salary. You went through a lot of tough education and put in the hard shifts to get your nursing degree, but how can you make sure you can increase your salary as much as possible? Some of the steps you can take to help increase your nursing salary include:

Go Back to School

Higher education is your friend when it comes to the nursing career and your salary. While some nursing careers simply need a certificate and others will do fine with a bachelor’s degree, the careers that pay the highest amount will require a Master’s or a Doctorate degree for you to really see the higher medical salaries. 

One career that pays well in the nursing field is an aesthetic nurse practitioner. The aesthetic nurse practitioner salary is estimated to be an average of $115,497 a year. Those interested in this career will need an advanced degree, so heading back to school may be the best option for you. 

Whether you work for a certificate or you go back for a full degree, you will find that enhancing your education will make a world of difference. 

Take the Right Shifts

There are some shifts in the nursing field that will pay more than the others. This is most often because they are not popular and most nursing professionals would like to avoid them. As a result, the medical facility may be willing to offer a higher salary as an incentive to get nurses to take those shifts. 

There are many shifts that will fall into this category and it depends on what kind of medical facility that you are working with. Some of these shifts include:

  • Extra shifts in a location that has a higher need
  • Extra shifts in specialties that have a higher need
  • Weekend shifts
  • Late night shifts

It is a good idea to check whether the facility you work at will offer these kinds of shifts. If they fit around your own schedule, you can cover a few and make more money doing the same job. 

Spend Some Time Traveling

There are a number of perks and benefits to becoming a traveling nurse, rather than staying at the same facility all the time. The biggest benefit comes with the pay. It is estimated that traveling nurses will make 18% more than other RN staff positions. 

By taking on the position of a traveling nurse, not only can you make more money, you can explore and travel around the country. This is a great way to build up your network, giving you great friendships and connections that could help increase your salary later on, even if you decide not to travel any longer. 

Get a Compact License

One option that you can do to help increase your salary is to get the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact, or eNLC. This license will allow the nurse to practice in any of the 30 eNLC states. The nurse will be able to more quickly and effectively provide care to patients in the locations where it is needed the most at any time. 

When the nurse professional decides to get this license, they will find it easier to find a new assignment in any location. And if they decide to become a traveling nurse, the whole country is open to them, without the hassle of applying for a new license each time they need to go to a new state. 

Getting this license can take some time, but it can be worth it when you want to move around and catch any opportunity that is out there. 

Consider the Whole Package When Applying

Many medical facilities are on the lookout for nurse practitioners who are able to work for them. There is a national shortage and good nursing professionals with the right skills are hard to find. That opens up the door to a higher income as well, but the nurse needs to look at the full package to see if this is right for them. 

For example, some facilities will offer a sign-on bonus to attract new talent and work on their retention rates. This bonus will often get split up over a certain amount of time, helping to keep you there and giving you a nice bonus throughout your time as well. 

Another type of bonus that you can choose is an annual bonus that is based on certain key performance indicators. This can include things like patient satisfaction. Even if you do not get this bonus upfront, you can talk to the recruiter to discuss whether this is something they would offer you.

Move Into a Managerial Role?

Compared to a traditional RN salary, the average nurse manager salary is going to be $88,122 per year. Once you are done with the BSN, you will be ready to move more into a managerial role, which is going to provide you with a higher pay than before. 

If you spend some time looking around, you may be able to find some open managerial roles that allow you to come in as a nursing professional and take the role. You can also talk to your current supervisor to see what it takes to be considered in a managerial role and whether there are any current openings available in your network. 

Choosing the Right Path for Your Nursing Career

There are so many paths that you can take when it comes to a great nursing career. Whether you are looking to finish your education or go to a different industry, you will be able to make a great salary as a nursing professional. 

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