Administrative Nurse: Career and Salary Facts

Explore the career requirements for administrative nurses. Get the facts about education and licensure requirements, salary, and potential job growth to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Nursing Administration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is an Administrative Nurse?

Administrative nurses complete supervisory and patient care duties. As they still perform some routine medical procedures and provide patient care, these professionals must be registered nurses. However, administrative nurses train and oversee nursing staff, manage work schedules and motivate their staff through goal-setting. They may also sit on governmental boards within their organization, keep records for their facility, manage finances and ensure compliance with all laws and regulations. Administrative nurses are also in constant contact with department heads and other health services managers. Learn about the education and certification required, as well as the career outlook and potential earnings from the following table:

Degree Required Bachelor's or master's degree
Education Field of Study Nursing
Nursing administration
Licensure and Certification Registered nurse (RN) license required; American Nurses Credentialing Center Nurse Executive certification available
Key Skills Organization, ability to stay cool-headed, compassion
Job Growth (2014-2024) 17% (for all medical and health services managers)*
Average Salary (2015) $106,070 (for all medical and health services managers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Type of Work Will I Do As an Administrative Nurse?

Administrative nurses work in hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities and organizations to oversee medical and health services. In some facilities, you will work directly with patients and also supervise other nurses and medical staff. You may train staff and evaluate programs, providing leadership and direction for your program area or unit. You will be called upon to assess the effectiveness of care plans and to document and monitor progress toward the facility's or unit's goals. This is a career in which you can find full-time and part-time positions at an administrative level.

What Education and Training Will I Need?

You will need to be trained and licensed as a registered nurse (RN), and you'll typically require a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or in a relevant field for entry-level administrative nursing positions. Higher-level positions may require a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), particularly if you have a bachelor's degree that is not specifically in nursing.

Certification as a nurse executive is available through the American Nurses Credentialing Center ( This credential is available to nurses with supervisory or teaching experience or who worked in nursing management for at least two of the previous five years. Candidates for the certification exam must also have a master's degree in nursing administration or have completed 30 hours of continuing education in the area of nursing administration over the previous three years.

What Is the Outlook for This Career?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that administrative nurses, classified as medical and health services managers, were projected to see job growth of 17% for the decade spanning 2014-2024 ( This is a more rapid rate of growth than the average for all occupations.

How Much Can I Expect to Earn?

The BLS reported mean wages of $106,070 for medical and health services managers in May 2015. Salaries in the 10th-90th percentile range were $56,230-$165,380.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

For those interested in pursuing related careers, you may wish to consider human resources managers, insurance underwriters and social and community service managers. All of these positions require at least a bachelor's degree. Human resources managers are responsible for the administrative tasks of an organization, as well as hiring new staff. They also provide communication between management and employees. Insurance underwriters determine how to provide insurance to customers and at what prices. Social and community service managers oversee different community organizations to help coordinate social services that are offered to the public.

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