A Clinical Nurse Manager Position Can Provide Opportunities for Leadership and Professional Advancement
If you enjoy leading teams, mentoring others and financial planning, you may want to consider a career as a clinical nurse manager. This position combines both clinical experience and leadership skills, and can lead to further advancement.
Clinical nurse managers are responsible for directing, organizing and supervising the work of their nursing staff, which typically includes registered nurses (RNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs), certified nursing assistants (CNAs) and medical clerks. They also coordinate nursing efforts to ensure that effective patient care is being provided and that quality standards are met. A clinical nurse manager is considered a middle manager, and generally reports to a nursing administrator.
The Responsibilities of a Clinical Nurse Manager
Among a clinical nurse manager’s primary duties are evaluating the performance of staff nurses, providing feedback and mentoring, developing education programs, contributing to staff professional development, interviewing and hiring nurses and medical staff, developing departmental budgets, and maintaining inventory of medicines, equipment and supplies. Clinical nurse managers may also speak on behalf of their nursing staff when upper management is making decisions that affect the nursing unit. In this situation, clinical nurse managers serve as a representative and promote the best interests of their staff and the patients that they care for.
Other duties of a clinical nurse manager include:
- Provide leadership and guidance to other nurses
- Ensure that staff is properly trained
- Address any personnel issues to promote a productive and supportive work environment
- Monitor patient care for quality
- Collaborate with top management, interdisciplinary teams and other stakeholders in order to develop, implement and evaluate programs and services
- Apply evidence-based healthcare practices and nursing standards
- Review patient and staff data to measure the effectiveness of patient care
How Do You Become a Clinical Nurse Manager?
Clinical nurse managers are usually RNs that have the education, experience and leadership qualities to be promoted into roles of increasing responsibility. The career path for RNs on a management track might go from charge nurse to assistant manager to clinical nurse manager. With advanced education, a clinical nurse manager has the opportunity to be promoted to such roles as assistant director, director of nursing or chief nursing officer.
For appointment to a clinical nurse manager position, an RN usually needs to have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. BSN holders can position themselves for the best job opportunities and advancement to executive-level roles by earning a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. All management positions require strong leadership, communication and negotiation skills, as well as extensive clinical experience.
Clinical Nurse Manager Salaries
According to national salary data on PayScale.com, clinical nurse managers earned between $62,614 and $85,759 annually as of October 2010. Individuals in this role have the opportunity to be promoted into more prominent and higher-paying positions. Salary.com reports that head nurses earned a median annual salary of $87,810 in November 2010, with the middle 50% earning between $77,917 and $99,265.
A Convenient Way to Earn Your BSN or MSN Degree
If you aspire to a clinical nurse manager job or other nursing management positions, you can earn your RN to BSN online or MSN degree online through Jacksonville University (JU). Ranked among America’s best universities by U.S. News & World Report, JU offers world-class online nursing programs that allow RNs to earn an undergraduate or graduate degree while maintaining a full-time job. Those participating in JU’s convenient RN to BSN online program are eligible to receive 30 credit hours for their current U.S. nursing license and transfer credits from their associate’s or diploma program. MSN students studying full-time can finish their degree in just two years and specialize in nursing education or nursing administration. With both online nursing programs, there is 24/7 classroom access and no required login times. Students can easily schedule lectures and coursework around work and personal obligations. With JU’s flexible online BSN and MSN programs, you can be on your way to a career in nursing management!