Career Tips

The benefits of a higher degree in business administration for nurses

The benefits of a higher degree in business administration for nurses 1

Nurses typically further their education by enrolling in the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs. While these options are the typical and conventional routes to stepping up in your career as a registered nurse, they are not the only options available. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree makes a highly effective option for nurses, especially those with air in administration and leadership in the healthcare sector.

In this article, you will be exposed to the benefits of earning an MBA as a nurse. When you finish reading this article, you will perhaps realize that an MBA is your best route to furthering your nursing career.

What are the benefits of getting an MBA as a nurse?

Opportunities for management-level nursing roles

Interestingly, leadership and managerial positions in healthcare are so varied that you have numerous opportunities in front of you. Getting an MBA as a nurse gives you an excellent chance of being prepared and preferred for managerial roles in nursing and healthcare generally. While you can begin to get optimistic about a promotion at your current job as soon as you earn your MBA, you may also look at directly applying for open management-level roles in healthcare.

Your role could entail training newly employed nurses, supervising patient care, implementing better healthcare methods, etc. On the other hand, you may be more interested in business-oriented and executive opportunities in healthcare. Your MBA, one or two certifications in administration, business, and leadership, and clinical experience as a nurse will make you a top pick for such roles.

Employment opportunities in the public sector

As a nurse, it is possible to break through into the public sector by working for government agencies such as health ministries and globally known health NGOs such as the WHO and UNICEF. As job opportunities in these environments are usually highly specialized and competitive, they often require more than the typical BSN and RSN degrees to qualify for.

Also, because healthcare roles in the public sector involve making key policy decisions to improve working conditions for nurses as well as patient outcomes, ensuring better efficiency of healthcare delivery, and obtaining needed funding, they require adequate knowledge of leadership and administration, which is what the MBA degree will expose you to.

Higher salary ranges

Getting an MBA increases your earning potential as a nurse. PayScale reveals that nurses with an MBA earn an average salary of $91,000 annually, with chief nursing officers (CNOs) earning an average of $134,934 annually. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports an average annual salary of $77,600 for ordinary registered nurses.

The reason for this salary difference is not far-fetched. Nurses with MBA degrees are more confident applying for job opportunities in higher-salary organizations. Also, these organizations would go for the best picks out of their applicants, including those with better qualifications, such as an MBA and nursing degrees.

Moreover, working in an administrative role, which is the case with most nurses with MBA degrees, will make you eligible for higher salaries.

Better future career outlook

Trends show that the healthcare sector will experience an increased demand for medical services in the coming years. Also, the industry is experiencing one of the fastest growth rates, with an increased demand for nurses and other healthcare workers compared to other occupations. As more nurses are employed, there will also be an increased need for qualified personnel who can manage these nurses effectively while equally possessing adequate knowledge of clinical work to collect medical information.

That said, earning an MBA as a nurse would be an investment in the future, as it secures your career outlook and gives you better chances of employment as the sector continues to boom.

Escape the bedside

Although you love your nursing job, you may be tired of being by patients’ bedsides daily. You know that you have so much to offer to the sector. You desire something different and exciting, but it is still not outside nursing. You’ve crafted some innovative ideas in your mind that no one will ever get to know of if you remain at the bedside every day.

If this is you, then getting an MBA is something you might want to consider. While many believe leaders are made, others believe that leaders are born. Most often, people who become leaders have always realized that they have the potential for leadership in how they innovate and are always conceiving ways to improve things.

If you have recognized yourself as such a person, you don’t have to remain at patients’ bedsides all day for as long as your nursing career lasts. You can escape the bedside once and for all by seeking higher education. A Ph.D., for example, would prepare you for roles in academic and research settings. On the other hand, an MBA is the quickest way to get you set for administrative positions in those same environments where you would have been attending to patients at the bedside all day of the week.

Fast-tracked academic experience

With opportunities now available for earning an MSN and MBA concurrently, you can round up your academic experience in no time, even as you strive to obtain better qualifications. Rather than going through the BSN-MSN-DSN route, you can earn an MBA at the same time that you make your MSN and never need to return to school. Meanwhile, if you already have an MSN, you can obtain an MBA in one or two years and get set for life-changing career opportunities in nursing.

Most universities have full-time and part-time options for their MBA programs, with several institutions now allowing you to earn your MBA online – so you do not have to quit your job while earning your degree.

Better chances at non-nursing job opportunities

If you ever decide on a career change, your MBA degree allows you to begin applying for non-nursing jobs almost immediately without waiting for when you’ve earned a new degree in a different field. The MBA will enable you to use it for entry-level and even intermediate-level managerial roles in healthcare and non-healthcare organizations.

While cases of totally switching career paths do not often occur with nurses (since most tend to derive satisfaction from their jobs), if you ever have any reason to consider a change, your MBA degree can make your career switch pretty quickly. Besides, with a recognized master’s degree in business administration, you could apply for doctorate programs in business administration, accounting, management, economics, human resources, marketing, and law. These are all areas you would never be able to explore for a Ph.D. with just a master’s degree in nursing.

If you want a thriving career with a wider range of job opportunities, the MSN/MBA program from Spring Arbor University will equip you with the knowledge and skills you need. These special MSN/MBA programs allow you to earn two degrees simultaneously. That way, you get fitted for what it takes to be a successful nurse and healthcare leader all at once.

Where can you work as an MSN/MBA graduate?

Whether you obtained your MSN and MBA concurrently or your MBA degree separately, you are exposed to working in diverse organizations and sectors as a nurse with an MBA degree. Considering your knowledge of clinical work, leadership, and management, you would be able to work in almost any industry where healthcare is relevant.

Below are just some of the places you can work as a nurse with a higher degree in business administration:

  • Hospitals
  • Community health centers
  • Academia
  • Healthcare-related government sectors and parastatals
  • Insurance companies
  • Consulting
  • Health maintenance organizations (HMOs)
  • Non-governmental organizations (NGOs)

Examples of roles you can do as a nurse with an MBA

  • Nurse manager
  • Nursing director
  • Nursing supervisor
  • Clinical Administrator
  • Chief nursing officer (CNO)
  • Corporate chief nursing officer (CCNO)
  • Executive manager
  • Hospital chief executive officer (CEO)
  • Chief nurse practitioner
  • Chief nursing officer
  • School nursing program director
  • Hospital’s chief operating officer
  • Dean of Nursing
  • Patients experience director
  • Hospital administrator
  • Clinical operations director


An MBA can fast-track your study experience, expose you to leadership roles early in your career, and enable you to scale up faster into those administrative roles you’ve always dreamed of while getting you ready to become a pacesetter, a leader who addresses organizational challenges in the healthcare sector.

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