As a registered nurse, you probably already know that our profession is in demand around the world and that there are several destination countries that you can choose from to work and live such us USA , UK , Canada , Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Japan, Singapore, UAE, Saudi Arabia and many more.
I feel grateful and blessed there was a nursing boom when I graduated high school in 2002. I still remember there were 16 sections in our batch with 40-50 students in each class. Our university built a new building just to accommodate the demands of the nursing student at that time.
After I graduated in 2006, I found myself working and living in New Zealand in 2009 and WOW that was 10 years ago. Life has been so great in New Zealand and it has definitely given me amazing opportunities not just in my career as a nurse but in my life overall.
I also have the option to work and live in Australia anytime I like but sometimes I wondered what would happen if I chose a different path?
So I decided to write this so you will have more ideas to guide you in making a decision.
1. Do your homework and decide on a destination country that fits your personal and professional goals.
Take the time to know what your personal and professional goals are before choosing a destination country.
This is crucial in shaping your determination and commitment to work abroad, and whether you will be happy once you move there.
Then, take the time to research the destination country you are considering.
Learn about the way of life, cost of living, the culture, the country’s healthcare system, it’s a nursing profession demand, pay scale for nurses, and the network of other professionals like yourself who have decided to work abroad.
Moving to another country is a big and serious decision- every nurse has their own stories to tell.
The more prepared you are, the easier the process of moving and integrating into your new country and workplace
2. Determine if you need your qualifications recognized before working abroad.
Undertaking a job abroad as a nurse often entails meeting certain professional qualifications.
Most important of these are language requirements, education and training, and work experience prerequisites.
For example, in the New Zealand ( NZ) , if you are an internationally qualified nurse ( other than Australia) who obtained your training outside of New Zealand,in order to practice as a nurse, you must register with the Nursing Council of New Zealand, which requires at least a score of 7.0 in the International English language test (IELTS) or OET.
3. Decide if you will want to get help from a Recruitment Agency or Immigration Consultant or if you want to Do- it- Yourself ( DIY)
Exploring nursing job abroad and then undertaking the move to a foreign country is a complicated and sometimes it takes a long process.
And there are PROS and CONS – whichever you decide to choose.
I encountered many stories of nurses who felt misguided and given false promises by some agencies and consultants.
On the other hand, I also know a lot of nurses who are very happy about the services and guidance they received from their agencies or consultants.
So take your time before making a decision. Do a lot of research for yourself and verify information in case you choose to get an agency or consultant to help you.
The keys here is choosing a recruitment agency or consultant that is transparent, professional and looks after your best interest and welfare- rather than the money they will make from you.
So again, the key is to get as much information as you can to prepare yourself for your journey abroad.