Tulsa, Oklahoma
Travel Guides

6 Career Tips for Tulsa Nurses

Although Tulsa doesn’t have as many residents as New York or San Francisco, it has all the amenities of a mid-sized city, from highly-rated restaurants to a lively music scene. It also has plenty of job opportunities for RNs, making it an attractive destination for nurses seeking staff positions or travel jobs. This guide offers six tips for finding RN jobs in Tulsa, building strong professional relationships and developing a nursing career you love.

1. Network with Other Nursing Professionals

Formal education is important, but sometimes the best insights come from experienced nurses who’ve cared for 1,000s of patients in their careers. That’s why networking is so beneficial for nurses. Nurses living in Oklahoma have several online groups dedicated to helping nurses find job opportunities within the state and sharing information with each other.

Oklahoma Perinatal Nurses Forum

The Oklahoma Perinatal Nurses Forum is designed exclusively for nurses involved in perinatal care. Members have access to a listserv where they can ask questions and share their experiences, making it easier to build strong relationships and learn more about nursing in Tulsa and other Oklahoma cities. The organization also has an annual boot camp, with classes on respectful maternity care, fetal monitoring, safe sleep and other topics of interest to perinatal nurses.

Travel Nursing – Oklahoma

Travel Nursing – Oklahoma is a public Facebook group with more than 4,500 members interested in travel nursing opportunities throughout the state. If you’re looking for RN jobs in Tulsa, consider joining this group to network with other nurses and ask about their travel experiences in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Nursing Network 

Oklahoma Nursing Network is a private Facebook group with more than 14,000 members, making it a good resource for those interested in nurse jobs in Tulsa and surrounding areas. The group aims to unite nurses and make hospitals safer for patients of all ages and backgrounds. Hospitals, staffing agencies and other organizations also post available nursing jobs on the site.

Oklahoma Nurses

Created in 2018, Oklahoma Nurses is a private Facebook group with more than 7,000 members. The group is a bit more informal than the other groups on this list, giving nurses a chance to vent their frustrations and look for new opportunities. Members also have access to job postings from hospital recruiters and staffing agencies.

2. Join Local Nursing Organizations

Nurse organizations boost your career

Joining a professional organization has many benefits. For example, your membership usually comes with networking opportunities, access to conferences, members-only job boards and discounts on publications of interest to people in your industry. Oklahoma has several organizations dedicated to advancing the nursing profession and ensuring that nurses and APRNs have ongoing opportunities for professional development.

Oklahoma Nurses Association

The Oklahoma Nurses Association (ONA) offers membership to registered nurses in Tulsa and throughout the Sooner State. As a professional community, ONA advocates for better work conditions and actively promotes patient safety. ONA staff members also work to ensure that registered nurses understand their scope of practice and work in safe environments. The organization has the following core values:

  • Ethical patient care
  • Professional development
  • Nursing competency
  • Diversity
  • Health equity
  • Educational advancement
  • Accountability
  • Integrity

If you join ONA, you’ll have access to members-only job postings, events and other resources that aren’t available from other organizations. ONA also operates the Nurses Helping Nurses Network, which allows nurses to share their experiences. Staff members use the information provided to better understand why burnout and low morale are so common among nursing professionals.

Association of Oklahoma Nurse Practitioners

The Association of Oklahoma Nurse Practitioners (AONP) seeks to promote high-quality care by nurse practitioners throughout the state. Staff members fight against legislation that would harm NPs and their patients. Members have access to a variety of benefits, including continuing education, CE certificates, insurance and networking opportunities.

Student members also have access to a list of preceptors willing to supervise their clinical placements, making it easier to meet clinical practice requirements before graduating. AONP offers a members-only job board and career-related assistance. Dues vary based on what type of membership you purchase. You can also purchase a lifetime membership, which includes admission to all conferences, priority seating at all AONP events and recognition on the organization’s website.

National Black Nurses Association (Eastern Oklahoma Chapter)

The National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) accepts nursing students, first-year graduates, registered nurses and licensed practical nurses. If you’re a student, you must submit a letter on school stationery indicating that you’re enrolled in a nursing program and don’t have an RN or LPN license. An official from the school’s nursing program must sign the letter. Dues vary based on student, RN or LPN status.

NBNA is the only organization in the country dedicated to advocating for Black nurses. As a member, you’ll enjoy the following benefits:

  • Access to an online career center
  • Position papers on issues related to the care of Black patients
  • Subscription to the organization’s professional journal
  • Continuing education hours
  • Ongoing networking opportunities
  • Leadership opportunities
  • Speaking engagements
  • Webinars

3. Learn Which Specialties Are in Demand

Choosing an in-demand specialty potentially gives you access to higher-paying nursing jobs. In Tulsa, there was significant demand for travel nurses in telemetry, neonatal intensive care, medical/surgical nursing and rehabilitation on Vivian Health’s job board on December 10, 2022. If you’re interested in a staff nursing position, Tulsa employers needed nurses with experience in rehabilitation, intensive care and med/surg during this same period.

4. Accept Tulsa-Based Travel or Per Diem Nursing Jobs

If you want to explore opportunities in Tulsa without committing to anything long-term, consider accepting a per diem or travel nursing job in Tulsa. Both types of employment allow you to discover what it’s like to work for some of the top healthcare organizations in the city. You’ll also have a chance to learn everything Tulsa offers residents and visitors.

5. Look for Job Opportunities at Top Tulsa Healthcare Organizations

St. Francis in Tulsa

To advance your career, look for job opportunities at facilities touted as top healthcare employers in Tulsa. These hospitals frequently rank among the best in Tulsa by independent outlets like U.S. News & World Report and receive favorable employee and facility reviews.

Saint Francis Hospital consistently ranks as the best hospital in the city. Located on South Yale Avenue, Saint Francis has more than 1,100 beds and provides tertiary care to 1,000s of patients each year. The hospital is well-known for its expectant family program, spine center, comprehensive stroke center and rehabilitation services. Saint Francis also earned a Level II Trauma Center designation.

Ascension St. John Medical Center was the No. 2 hospital in Tulsa in 2022. The hospital has a 24/7 emergency department, a Level II Trauma Center designation and a comprehensive primary care program. Ascension St. John also has an excellent reputation for providing specialty care, especially in women’s health, cancer, orthopedics, stroke and heart conditions. If you’re interested in labor and delivery nursing, the Ascension St. John Birthing Center may be a good fit for your skills.

Hillcrest Medical Center has 656 beds and is known for its high patient satisfaction scores. The hospital offers the TeamBirth experience in its labor and delivery unit, ensuring that laboring mothers and care team members communicate effectively. This approach aims to improve maternal and neonatal outcomes. Hillcrest has an excellent burn treatment program and renowned wound care and rehabilitation centers.

6. Know Local Nursing Salaries

Before you make a big move, it’s essential to find out if nursing salaries in your new location are substantial enough to meet your needs. Several factors influence the amount of money you earn as a nurse, such as where you work, how much experience you have and what specialty you choose. You may also command a higher salary if you’ve earned an advanced degree or a specialized nursing certification.

According to Vivian Health’s job data, travel positions in Tulsa paid an average of $2,553 per week on December 10, 2022. The highest salaries were available to nurses with experience in OR, interventional radiology or cardiac cath lab nursing. Some of the top-paying employers in the city during this period included Springboard Healthcare, Star Health and Innovate Healthcare Staffing.

During this same period and according to Vivian’s data, permanent positions in Tulsa paid an average of $31.41 per hour. However, many positions had hourly ranges between $29 and $48, based on the employer. Positions in the PACU and the cardiac cath lab typically fall within this range, as do nursing jobs in local infusion centers. If you’re interested in home health nursing, Sooner Home Health often has RN jobs in Tulsa for individuals with experience in case management.

Rachel Norton BSN, RN

Rachel Norton became an RN in 2007 and has been part of the Vivian team since 2019. She has always worked in critical care, and spent the first 12 years of her career working in a surgical neuroscience trauma ICU. She's also worked as a flight nurse, started travel nursing in 2010 and continued working in the ICU until joining Vivian full-time in 2022. As a user researcher, Rachel advocates for healthcare workers to help bridge the gap between employee and employer expectations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Most Popular on Community Hub