The benefits of being a nurse in the UK

11 March 2021 By Chanelle Wate

​While we are all aware of the amazing work that nurses do caring for patients, it can be easy to focus on how hard they work and the sacrifices they make. However, there is overwhelming evidence of how rewarding this career choice can be as many nurses choose to stay working in healthcare for their entire careers and help thousands – if not hundreds of thousands – of people regain and maintain their health.

Few careers offer the benefits and advantages that working as a nurse does; every day is different with endless opportunities. We’ve looked at what benefits there are to a career in nursing - and there are many – and picked out just 10 of the top ones:

10 benefits of a nursing career:

1. Multiple career options

Nurses make up the largest proportion of the NHS workforce and have a prominent role in private facilities too. There are many different roles and avenues to explore in nursing, and many ways to get there! With a diploma or degree in nursing you can register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)

From there you can choose to work in a wide variety of nursing roles, such as:

  • Advanced Nurse Practitioner

  • Emergency Nurse Practitioner

  • Healthcare Assistant

  • Nurse Practitioners

  • Urgent Care Practitioners

  • Registered General Nurses

  • Practice Nurse

  • 111 Clinical Advisors

  • Triage nursing

  • Mental Health Nursing

  • Children’s nursing / paediatrics

  • Learning Disability Nursing

  • Community nursing

  • Neonatal Nursing

  • Health Visitors

  • Health and Justice /School Nursing

2. It’s an internationally-recognised career

Every single culture around the world, and throughout time, has a care role that’s central to their medical practices. While education and training qualifications may differ, the role of a nurse is recognised and appreciated anywhere in the world.

3. Career progression

There is plenty of opportunity for career progression in nursing as hard work, dedication and exceptional care standards can be recognised and rewarded, when applying for promotion.

4. Variety or speciality

Nursing tends to work in a ‘shift’ format, with nurses working shifts of a certain number of hours either in one facility or several (this is called locum or agency nursing). This means nurses can care for a wide variety of patients, facilities or practices to work with during a week of shifts.

Alternatively, nursing also offers you the opportunity to find an area that you really enjoy and specialise in it. This can be a great way to focus your career in a particular direction and develop your clinical skills within this specialism.

5. Continuous learning

Working different types of shifts in different types of facilities affords unlimited opportunities to learn new skills in care. There are also numerous additional courses and training schemes that can be explored to learn new skills as your career progresses. Many are available online.

Not only is there a constant level of learning that happens with every shift, as all patients are individuals, it’s also a necessary part of being a nurse. Showing evidence of continuous learning, or Continuous Professional Development (CPD), is a mandatory part of a nurse’s revalidation application. ‘Revalidation’ is the process that all UK nurses, midwives, and nursing associates need to complete to maintain their registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). It is required every three years.

6. Flexible schedule

In a permanent role, your schedule will be determined by the rota, this means you can have a level of flexibility when agreeing to or rearranging shifts based on your availability. If you choose to go down the agency nursing route you would have even more flexibility when choosing which shifts and assignments to work.

7. Job security

We will always need nurses and healthcare is one of the largest sectors in the UK. Nurses are also well respected in the wider medical community and across other industries. This means there is a lot of opportunity to cross over and use your experience and medical knowledge in other industries or sectors, like recruitment, consultancy, technology, etc.

8. Good salary

Salaries for nurses depend on whether they are in a permanent or part-time role, what kind of facility or practice they work at, or if they do agency work. Locum work can offer higher rates of pay than permanent, salaried roles and taking on additional locum assignments can be a great way to top up a permanent salary.

9. Knowing you’re helping people

One of the most important benefits of pursuing a career in nursing is knowing that every day you help people. All your hard work, effort and training has tangible results in helping patients get well and resume their lives. Not only are they grateful for your care, so are their family and friends! ​

Nurses have a very deep impact on many people’s lives not just in the immediate action of care or safeguarding, but even in long-term education by teaching people how to take medication, eat nutritiously, watch out for signs and symptoms of recurrence in the future, etc.

10. It’s exciting!

Every day in nursing presents a new challenge, and gives you the opportunity to work with diverse patients over the course of just one week!


If you’re looking for your next role then we want to help. Whether working in primary care or acute nursing, our skilled recruitment consultants are currently working on several opportunities and may have the right role for you.​

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