Experienced or qualified?

Written by: Jane Davidson
Published on: 13 Nov 2018


Image © zhu difeng / Adobe Stock

Creating an honest advert is important and using the correct titles for the jobs you are advertising is key.

The days of the “qualified or experienced nurse” are over. Unless they’re still in training, your vet nurse will be qualified – you can no longer use the description “veterinary nurse” for anyone, as the RCVS Code of Professional Conduct for Veterinary Nurses protects the title.

In clause 3.5 – under the heading “Veterinary nurses and the profession” – the document states veterinary nurses must not hold out themselves or others “as veterinary nurses unless appropriately registered with the RCVS” –  a restriction included in both the vets’ and nurses codes of conduct.

Job roles by experience

Qualified nurses have gained experience throughout their training, so you are already employing someone with experience – even with a newly graduated nurse. However, if you require a particular kind of “experience”, you need to specify exactly what you’re after.

Vet roles are often advertised using descriptions of experience from:

  • New grad vet.
  • One to two years' experience.
  • Capable of sole charge.
  • Certificate holder preferred or be willing to work towards one.

It’s not difficult to transfer these descriptions to a vet nurse role and tailor them to your needs, with phrases such as:

  • Suitable for a newly qualified nurse.
  • Experience of OOH preferred.
  • Capable of lone working.
  • Advanced surgical nursing experience preferred.
  • Advanced certificate held or be willing to work towards one.
  • Trained clinical coach or be willing to work towards it.

Three little words

All the examples above help celebrate your practice; what you can offer and what the applicant should expect. They make a job advert far more interesting than the standard “experienced vet nurse”.

That phrase in itself can be off-putting, as I would think of all the people more experienced than me and I would think that’s what an employer is looking for.

Really sell yourself to the potential job applicant and use my previous articles on being honest about the role to give more information than “experienced vet nurse”.

It’s only three words, and I’m sure there’s a lot more to the role you’re offering than that.