• Director of Nursing – Here is How You Become?

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  • Category: Career Advice
  • Published Date: November 25, 2021
  • Modified Date: November 25, 2021
  • Reading Time: 5 Minutes

Featured Image Caption: Nursing | Image Credit: pexels(.)com

Are you one of those high schoolers who are highly ambitious and want to bring a positive difference to society? Nursing might be the right occupation for you. Yet, instead of spending your whole life as a junior-level nurse, why not aim for a higher designation? Gaining an authoritative position in the healthcare sector by becoming a director of nursing provides you with the power to bring reforms and positively impact healthcare practices.

Nursing is a profession that is deeply connected to people’s health. Although nursing directors hold a higher designation, their primary motive is to improve people’s overall wellbeing. Directors of nursing hold tremendous power in the healthcare sector and can influence a larger area. Moreover, unlike other nurses, they do not have to be at patients’ bedsides and deal with their wounds, bruises, or illnesses. However, efficient directors of nursing do not think twice about catering to patients’ needs if the circumstances put them in such a situation.

Director of Nursing Duties

Nursing directors are responsible for multiple duties, such as:

  • Planning and setting short-term and long-term goals for the nursing department and ensuring that these goals align with the organization’s objectives
  • Ensuring that nursing personnel adhere to rules
  • Directing administrative tasks
  • Allotting duties to nursing personnel
  • Implementing new policies and rules to maintain a healthy and productive work environment
  • Hiring nurses and other junior staff
  • Devising budgets for the nursing department and conducting business plans

Steps to Become a Director of Nursing

Today, many high schoolers want to choose a career that gives them financial stability and a chance to serve humanity. But they do not want to deal with patients directly. Becoming a nursing director might be the right path for them. The director of nursing salary is comparatively higher than other professions, and it offers professional growth. Therefore, the director of nursing has become one of the sought-after career paths; however, it requires you to undergo a procedure.

Let’s delve into the below-mentioned points to learn how you can attain the esteemed position of director of nursing:

Get a Bachelor or Associate Degree

The initial step to becoming a director of nursing is to enroll in an associate or bachelor’s program. BSN equips students with the basic academic knowledge of nursing so they can work towards an authoritative position in the healthcare sector.

Obtain License after Passing NCLEX-RN Exam

Now that you have gained an associate’s or a bachelor’s in nursing, the next thing is to pass the NCLEX-RN examination. The exam assesses bachelor or associate degree holders’ competencies, and successful ones receive a registered nurse’s license. Although RN requirements are not standard across the country, most states require students to pass NCLEX-RN exams.

Gain Experience

After obtaining a license, you can work as an RN and get exposure to the nursing sector. Although many people choose to continue their education and directly opt for higher degrees, gaining experience broadens your horizons. While working as an RN, you get an opportunity to bring theoretical knowledge into practice and earn hands-on exposure. In addition, you work with seniors and can learn from their experiences.

Register in MSN

As an aspiring nursing director, you need to achieve a graduate degree. Whether you have gained experience after passing NCLEX-RN exams or not, earning a Master’s of Science in Nursing is a must to serve as a director of nursing.

Master’s of Science in Nursing offers several specializations. Director of nursing aspirants can pick administrative courses and earn a specialization in them. The course helps students earn administrative and leadership skills, such as analytical thinking, observational skills, organizational skills, and time management.

Earn Certification

MSN or BSN is not sufficient for an influential director of nursing position. You need certification from authentic boards to land a job. The certificate shows your expertise and is proof of your dedication to the field. To earn a certificate, you must have at least two years of long-term or post-acute care experience. Some of the credentials you can pursue are:

  • The American Association of Directors of Nursing Services’ Director of Nursing Services-Certified (DNS-CT)
  • Nurse Executive Advanced Certification (NEA-BC) or the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Nurse Executive Certification (NE-BC)
  • The National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration in Long Term Care’s Certified Director of Nursing (CDON)

Enroll in a Doctorate Program

Enrolling in a doctorate program of nursing is not a prerequisite of becoming a director of nursing; however, it raises the chances of securing a leadership position in the nursing sector. These programs hone your research skills and allow you to dive deep into practical work. Furthermore, DNP holders have command over nursing practices and understand nursing better.

Tips for Applying for Director of Nursing Position

Since the director of nursing is a higher designation that comes with many responsibilities, securing it is far from a piece of cake. Thus, after undertaking the standard procedure, you must start applying for jobs. Below are some tips that can enhance your chances of landing a job as a director of nursing:

  • Make a solid résumé, with your complete academic information and experience listed in chronological order.
  • Carefully integrate the keywords listed in the job description to make your résumé and cover letter stand out.
  • Create a separate cover letter for each vacancy, ensuring to speak about the respective healthcare facility.
  • Focus on your leadership experience and emphasize it without making it obvious.
  • Proofread résumé and cover letter at least twice.
  • When you get an interview call, prepare for an interview by watching videos on the internet and answering common questions.


Directors of nursing occupy an influential position in the medical sector. They serve in clinics, hospitals, maternity homes, rehabilitation centers, outpatient care centers, or government agencies. However, to secure such an acclaimed position, high schoolers have to demonstrate perseverance and put in earnest effort. They need to pick up the required knowledge, skills, and experience to supervise the nursing staff and ensure seamless running of the healthcare facilities, and this is only possible if they follow the steps stated above.

Marlene Coleman

By Marlene Coleman
– is a passionate blogger who love to write on digital marketing, Business, technology and finance related topics. Also, a reader and loves to share quality content prevalent on the web. She is a featured author at UpLearn.

Member since October, 2021
View all the articles of Marlene Coleman.

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