Do I Need a Remote Nursing Certification?

When looking for your first remote nursing job, you might struggle with feeling inadequate.

  • Do I have enough experience?
  • Will my resume look good enough?
  • Will I stand out compared to other candidates?

In an effort to avert uncomfortable feelings of self-doubt, you might ask the popular question: Should I get a remote nursing certification? 

There is not one single all-encompassing “remote nursing certification”, but there are several specialty certifications that are common in many of the most popular remote nursing jobs. 

Here’s what you should know about various remote nursing specialty certifications. 

Consider The Experience You Do Have

Don’t feel like any job is off-limits because it inherently requires a certification. There are some remote roles that may require or prefer you to have a certification, but the job posting will clarify the qualifications for those positions.

Many remote nursing certifications require that you have experience in that specialty in order to get certified, which is common for other nursing specialties. 

For example, a bedside nurse with labor and delivery experience may choose to get credentialed in their specialty by getting an RNC-OB. This requires over 2,000 clinical practice hours in that specialty within the last 2 years, studying to pass the exam, and paying over $300 in fees.

Many remote nursing certifications work the same way and will require a similar investment of time and money. Those types of remote nursing certifications aren’t something to worry about when looking for your first remote nursing job.

However, you may want to consider getting a specialty certification relevant to your own nursing practice. If that L&D nurse wanted to do remote case management for pregnant members of an insurance company, the RNC-OB would be attractive to a hiring manager. It is important to consider both the time and money that you would need to invest vs. the opportunity the certification would bring, though.

Common Remote Nursing Certifications

Here are some of the common remote nursing certifications for several of the most popular remote nursing job specialties. This is not an exhaustive list of each specialty or each possible certificate, but it can guide your search.

Appeals and Denials

  • There is no specific certification, but you can use other remote nursing certifications or courses to bolster your resume for this role

Prior Authorizations

Utilization Review and Utilization Management

  • Quality Management (HCQM) by the American Board of Quality Assurance and Utilization Review Physicians (open to nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals)

Case Management

Data Abstraction

Telephonic Triage

Clinical Documentation Integrity Specialist

Nurse Billing and Coding

Freelance Writing

Nurse Coaching

Legal Nurse Consultant

Will A Specialty Certification Land You A Remote Nursing Job?

Remote Nursing certifications may elevate your candidacy to an employer.

  • They demonstrate expertise
  • Remote nursing certifications show you are committed to your field
  • You may not need as much training as a typical new hire
  • It may save the company money if they were going to pay for that certification

Certifications alone don’t guarantee you a remote nursing job. Other factors, such as your work experience, skills, and personal qualities, will stand out much more to a potential employer. Additionally, the job market and demand for certain nursing specialties can also affect your chances of landing a remote nursing job.

What About Nursing Licenses or a Compact License?

Having an active nursing license in your state of residence is key to landing a remote role. Depending on the regulations of the role, the remote nursing job may require you to live in a geographical area of your patient population. For example, some roles that require a California license would require you to live in California. 

However, there are roles that don’t require you to live in any specific geographical area. You could be licensed in California and live in Ohio. It will completely depend on the position and company. 

If you’re able, having a compact nursing license is ideal because that will automatically license you in 40 states. You can only apply for a compact nursing license if:

  • Your primary state of residence is in a compact state
  • You have a nursing license in that state
  • You apply for a compact nursing license with that state 

To apply for a compact license, go to the board of nursing website applicable to your state of residence and follow their instructions to apply. 

As of 2023, the states not in the compact include:

  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • California
  • Nevada
  • Minnesota
  • Illinois
  • Michigan
  • Pennsylvania (awaiting implementation)
  • New York
  • Massachusetts
  • Alaska
  • Hawaii
  • American territories

Most remote nursing jobs that require several specific state licenses will reimburse you for obtaining those licenses once you start working for them. Contemplate if getting a specific license beforehand will end up being worth it for you. Most state licenses require fees of $100 up to $400 dollars.

Boost Your Resume With CEUs

Since acquiring CEUs is already necessary for maintaining your nursing license, consider getting this year’s CEU on a relevant skill for your dream job. 

Check out the following online learning platforms in addition to your regular CEU site:

  • Coursera
  • LinkedIn Learning
  • Udemy
  • edX

A Word Of Caution

Remember there are tons of companies out there who would love to take your money. There are a plethora of spammy courses available that won’t provide you with any real value but will cost you. Even though the prospect of a remote nursing job may have you feeling rushed to get a certification so you can stand out, consider the cost-benefit analysis of the course you have in mind.

Remote nursing certifications are not a must-have. Research what options are available to you to start your remote nursing career off on the right foot and leverage the nursing experience you already have. 

Want to learn more about remote nursing jobs? Check out the Nurse Fern remote nurse role job guides.