Half of the nursing workforce has a “side hustle,” or extra job, according to the findings of a new survey from connectRN and The Nursing Beat.

The poll of 1,300 registered nurses found that, for many, the side hustle is not just about moonlighting for extra income. Approximately a third (34%) of the nurses who said they work an extra job said they are honing new skills or are following a passion.

The top factors important to almost 90% of the nurses surveyed? Maintaining their mental health, being present for their family and friends, maintaining a personal/professional life balance, maintaining their physical health and excelling at work. 

According to the survey, almost half of the nurses who have been in the profession fewer than three years see their side gigs as a means to transition into a new field altogether. Eighty percent of this group said they hope to start their own businesses.

“It comes as no surprise that nurses are multifaceted and wish to pursue different opportunities. However, the amount of new nurses who surveyed that they plan to leave permanently for their side hustle is alarming,” stated Tamara AL-Yassin, a former bedside nurse and the CEO of The Nursing Beat. 

Burnout may be a contributing factor for nurses to look for other opportunities, according to The Nursing Beat. Twenty percent of the total nurse respondents said that working solely at their nursing jobs without a side hustle was too stressful.

“Burnout is among the common influences hurting healthcare workers,” the authors wrote. Routine shifts already last 12+ hours, and many involve overnight work. Workloads have become more intense than ever, with 62% of nurses reporting an increase since COVID started.”

For additional coverage of the survey, see McKnight’s Home Care.