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What to expect from your employer

What to expect from your employer

Transitioning from undergraduate student into health professional practitioner is an exciting time in your career pathway. ANMF (Vic Branch), wants to ensure that your graduate program experience is safe, positive and supported.

ANMF, universities and health services have worked with the Department of Health and Human Services to develop the ‘Transition to practice guidelines’ after a two-year review process to replace the 2009 ‘Early graduate nurse guidelines’.

These new guidelines for nurses and midwives use the ‘best practice clinical learning environment’ framework, which consists of six key elements:

  1. An organisational culture that values learning
  2. Best practice clinical practice
  3. A positive learning environment
  4. An effective health service-education provider relationship
  5. Effective communication processes
  6. Appropriate resources and facilities

Essentially this means that your employer will demonstrate that they model best practice by ensuring their systems are appropriately resourced to create a positive learning environment for you.

For example, that there are allocated nurse/midwife preceptors on rostered to every shift, perhaps working in a mirror or ‘buddy’ arrangement. Or educating experienced nursing or midwifery staff so they are realistic in their expectations of you. It could also be ensuring that you are allocated patients and rostering appropriately to your level of experience.

What if your graduate year isn’t living up to expectations?

If you feel you are not getting the support you need, like not enough time with your preceptor to debrief, having unrealistic expectations put on you by experienced staff, being allocated a workload that is inconsistent with your experience and confidence, or other issues, raise your issues in the first instance with your preceptor, grad coordinator or N/MUM.

If you don’t get the support or response you need, then contact our Graduate and Final Year Officer ( and she will be happy to help you.

If you’re experiencing personal issues or feel like you’re not coping, the Nursing and Midwifery Health Program Victoria provides a free and confidential support service for nurses and midwives by nurses who understand the demands of the professions.