Nurse managers function as a link between patient care and hospital administration. With both clinical expertise and leadership skills, they are responsible for supervising nursing staff in healthcare establishments, creating work schedules, and coordinating bedside care. They make decisions regarding the budget as well, promote or hire personnel, and perform other managerial duties.

Nurse managers are energetic and mission-driven professionals who have a huge capacity for empathy not only for patients but for staff members as well, while being able to keep clear emotional boundaries. Balancing on this thin line, they walk at least 5 miles every day, taking their almost two-millennia-old profession to the next level.

Demand for competent nurse managers is on the rise, as around 500,000 registered nurses are predicted to retire over the next ten years. As a nurse manager, you will make $79,725 per year on average, with salaries reaching up to $108,478 in higher paced intensive care units.

What Does a Nurse Manager Do

There are certain skills that many nurse managers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, interpersonal skills and leadership skills.

Learn more about what a Nurse Manager does

How To Become a Nurse Manager

If you're interested in becoming a nurse manager, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 44.7% of nurse managers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 13.8% of nurse managers have master's degrees. Even though most nurse managers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Nurse Manager

Nurse Manager Job Description

Nurse managers are tenured or expert healthcare professionals who, on top of their duties in patient care as a nurse, oversee a specific department of nurses and ensure the success of the department. They do so by ensuring that all nurses are equipped with the skills and tools needed, managing the schedules, and assigning the nurses based on skills.

Learn more about Nurse Manager Job Description

Nurse Manager Career Paths

Average Salary for a Nurse Manager

Nurse Managers in America make an average salary of $83,684 per year or $40 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $115,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $60,000 per year.
Average Nurse Manager Salary
$83,684 Yearly
$40.23 hourly

What Am I Worth?


Roles and Types of Nurse Manager

The role of a nurse manager includes a wide range of responsibilities. These responsibilities can vary based on an individual's specific job, company, or industry.Here are some general nurse manager responsibilities:

  • Participate in developing, maintaining and updating written policies
  • The infection prevention and control program nurse manager is responsible for managing
  • Nbsp; enforce regulatory and compliance issues, ensuring the highest of quality standards are met. Human resources selection of staff

There are several types of nurse manager, including:

Registered Nurse Case Manager


Registered nurse case managers work in hospitals and clinics. They are responsible for overseeing the work of nurses at the facility. They plan and supervise the implementation of appropriate care for patients and assist in exams and evaluations of the patients' conditions.

This is not an entry-level position. RN case managers typically have years of experience on the job as nurses, in addition to holding a nursing degree. Due to the complex set of responsibilities and tough patient care decisions that come with it, this position can be quite overwhelming. If you are really good at your job as an RN case manager, you will get the privilege to do everyone else's work, too.

As opposed to the rotating shifts of nurses, though, RN case managers usually work regular hours in 8-hour shifts. Their average annual salary is around $64,000, potentially reaching as much as $83,370, if you have the highest qualifications and most relevant experience.

  • Average Salary: $72,815
  • Degree: Associate Degree

Unit Manager


A unit manager, also known as a head nurse, is responsible for managing a nursing unit at hospitals or other healthcare facilities, working under the supervision of a nursing director. You rise to this position after having worked extensively as a nurse, taking on the role of supervising and hiring staff, managing budgets, and performing administrative tasks while continuing to perform patient care as well.

Unit managers are the main point of contact between patients or residents and their families. They make sure the unit complies with regulatory standards and company policies, identify any procedural issues, and take care of admission and discharge assessments.

Leadership skills and an organized mindset are essential to be a successful unit manager. Your workload will be massive, so you have to learn to manage your time well. The average annual salaries of a nursing manager are around $63,896 a year, which is usually completed with a comprehensive benefits package, so if you have compassion and find helping others rewarding, this job will be worth your while.

  • Average Salary: $60,561
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Practice Manager


If you desire to work in the healthcare field but are not interested in giving direct care to patients or clients, then pursuing a career in administration as a practice manager may be an ideal role for you. It's an exciting role with lots of varied work, plenty of career rewards, and lucrative salaries. Besides having a high salary potential, a career as a practice manager provides benefits like being in one of the most recession-proof industries, ensuring a high level of job stability. You might be wondering who exactly is a practice manager. A practice manager is a healthcare professional who oversees the business side of the medical practice. They ensure the day-to-day operations run smoothly and meet the financial objectives. Whether your title is manager, physician practice manager, practice administrator, or executive director, as a practice manager, you may wear several different hats in making sure that medical practice runs smoothly and efficiently. Working as a practice manager, in addition to managerial tasks, your duties may include hiring and training administrative staff, keeping records, and managing budgets and payments. Being a practice manager, you may not only work under the supervision of a single-specialty physician, but you may work in a variety of settings, including hospital-based practice, diagnostic imaging center, ambulatory surgery center, or even in academic centers. Generally, working in a medical facility, you may work during regular business hours, but you may work during weekends when your medical office opens. Occasionally, you may work overtime or may travel for meetings and conferences.

To take the role of a practice manager, like any other administrative professionals in the industry, you may require a bachelor's degree in business management, human resources, or a related field. However, earning a master's degree in public administration or healthcare management may help fuel your resume. Most employers prefer an individual with a strong administrative, educational background, having a proven experience working in a managerial position in a clinic or medical setting. To be successful, you must have an eye for detail, excellent communication and organizational skills, and an ability to manage employees with different personalities and backgrounds effectively.

Working as a practice manager, you may also receive the emotional rewards of working alongside physicians, insurance representatives, healthcare staff members, and patients in handling the daily operations of your medical facility. Additionally, you may earn an average annual wage of $91,000. However, your additional years of experience in medical practice management may lead to sizable salary increases in the future. Above all, the demand for practice managers may expect to rise dramatically over the next decade. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of practice managers may grow at a rapid rate of 23 percent before 2022. This projected growth rate is more than twice the nation's average 11 percent increase across all other occupations. As the demand for medical services grows among the large aging baby boomer population, the job prospects become foreseeable to you as a practice manager.

  • Average Salary: $107,374
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

States With The Most Nurse Manager Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active nurse manager jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where nurse managers earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Nurse Manager Jobs By State

Nurse Manager Education

Nurse Manager Majors

81.9 %

Nurse Manager Degrees


44.7 %


32.4 %


13.8 %

Top Colleges for Nurse Managers

1. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition




2. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition




3. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition




4. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




5. University of California, Irvine

Irvine, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




6. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition




7. University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA • Private

In-State Tuition




8. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition




9. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition




10. University of Connecticut

Storrs, CT • Private

In-State Tuition




Top Skills For a Nurse Manager

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 22.1% of nurse managers listed patients on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and interpersonal skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Nurse Manager Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Nurse Manager templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Nurse Manager resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume
Nurse Manager Resume

Nurse Manager diversity

Nurse Manager Gender Distribution


After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among nurse managers, 86.5% of them are women, while 13.5% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among nurse managers is White, which makes up 60.8% of all nurse managers.

  • The most common foreign language among nurse managers is Spanish at 65.5%.

Online Courses For Nurse Manager That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  

1. Value-Based Care: Managing Processes to Improve Outcomes


COURSE 3 of 7. This course is designed to introduce you to critical office-based processes that a value-based practice must manage in the drive towards improved patient outcomes. In Module 2, we’ll focus on office-based and clinical patient-based supporting functions. At every level in healthcare, guidelines, processes, and functions exist to improve outcomes, and following a consistent process will return the best effect. Refine your understanding of value and learn strategies to provide real...

2. Symptom Management in Palliative Care


This course should be taken after the Essentials of Palliative Care course and continues building your primary palliative care skills – communication, psychosocial support and goals of care. You will learn how to screen, assess, and manage both physical and psychological symptoms. You will explore common symptoms such as pain, nausea, fatigue, and distress and learn specific treatments. You will continue to follow Sarah and Tim’s experience and learn cultural competencies critical for optimal...

3. Home Health Aide, Nurse Aide, Caregiver Certification Course


Become A Certified Home Health Aide, Personal Care Aide, Nurse Aide/ Caregiver At The End Of This Course. Enroll Now!...

Show More Online Courses For Nurse Manager
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time

Best States For a Nurse Manager

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a nurse manager. The best states for people in this position are Nevada, California, Washington, and Rhode Island. Nurse managers make the most in Nevada with an average salary of $105,315. Whereas in California and Washington, they would average $97,122 and $95,461, respectively. While nurse managers would only make an average of $94,451 in Rhode Island, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Washington

Total Nurse Manager Jobs: 3,105
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

2. Delaware

Total Nurse Manager Jobs: 541
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

3. Rhode Island

Total Nurse Manager Jobs: 412
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:
Full List Of Best States For Nurse Managers

How Do Nurse Managers Rate Their Jobs?

Working as a Nurse Manager? Share your experience anonymously.
Overall Rating*
Career Growth
Work/Life balance

Top Nurse Manager Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ nurse managers and discovered their number of nurse manager opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Kaiser Permanente was the best, especially with an average salary of $108,046. PeaceHealth follows up with an average salary of $100,024, and then comes DaVita with an average of $87,830. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a nurse manager. The employers include Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, and Hackensack Meridian Health

Most Common Employers For Nurse Manager

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1Mayo Clinic$116,056$55.8055
2Kaiser Permanente$108,046$51.9564
5Encompass Health$99,554$47.8632
6Henry Ford Health System$97,823$47.0342
7Dialysis Clinic$96,950$46.6153
8Good Samaritan$96,637$46.4634
9Methodist Hospital Of Henderson, Kentucky$96,354$46.3228
10University Hospitals$95,773$46.0446

Nurse Manager Videos

Becoming a Nurse Manager FAQs

Charge Nurse Vs. Nurse Manager

A charge nurse provides patient care and also has administrative responsibilities, while a nurse manager focuses more on administrative duties.

A charge nurse is a registered nurse who oversees a department of nurses. They require clinical and managerial skills to care for patients while also providing guidance and leadership to other nurses who are working with patients. This can be a static, full-time position in some health care facilities, or it may rotate among nurses by shift.

How Do I Become A Nurse Manager?

To become a nurse manager, you typically need a college degree, certification, and experience. Most employers ask for a bachelor's degree in nursing. It would be advantageous to also take business courses. Also, you must pass the NCLEX-RN exam to earn your nurse license.

How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse Manager?

It takes about six to seven years to become a nurse manager.

Typically, you need a bachelor's degree in nursing and pass the NCLEX-RN exam to become a registered nurse before you can be considered for a managerial position. That time is usually about four years. Also, you need to gain clinical nursing experience, usually at least three years, before you're qualified.

How Much Do Nursing Managers Get Paid?

Nursing managers get paid around $80,000 per year or about $38.51 hourly.

On the lower end of the salary range, they may only make around $61,000. On the higher end, they can earn an average salary of $104,000. As most jobs go, factors like location, company, and experience can determine your pay.

What Is The Difference Between A Charge Nurse And A Nurse Manager?

The difference between a charge nurse and a nurse manager is the level of responsibility and leadership.

Nurse managers are the liaisons between upper management and nurses on the floor. They coordinate not only nurses but others in their unit, such as doctors and support staff. They may also handle more administrative duties such as overseeing budgets and handling internal communications across departments.

Who Is Above A Nurse Manager?

Upper management nurses like directors and chief officers are above nurse managers.

At the top of the typical hierarchy in nursing is the chief nursing officer (CNO) or also known as the chief nursing executive (CNE). This person is responsible for all nursing services across the hospital or healthcare unit and reports to the CEO.

Search For Nurse Manager Jobs