As careers go, nursing tends to be highly recommended. ‘Nurses can always find work.’, people will tell you. It is true that skilled nurses are in high demand. Indeed, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the occupations related to healthcare will add the newest jobs between 2012 and 2022 with the total employment increasing by 10.8%.
That said, nursing is a very competitive field. To get the best jobs, you have to outdo a lot of other skilled professionals, hunting for a better job. A great resume is key to accomplishing that and landing more interviews.
Below you’ll find some quick tips for writing a resume, plus a detailed resume example for nurses for your review.
Always Research The Hospital or Clinic You are Applying To
Teams deliver the best care to patients when everyone works very well together. Obviously, skills and experience are important. However, in nursing, culture is everything. Before you put together your resume and cover letter, learn more about the organization. This will help you to tailor your submission, and give you the assurance that you are pursuing a job that is a good fit.
Write Your Resume For Two Readers
Chances are, your resume is going to be read at least twice. The first time, it will be read by an ATS system or HR type. This is all about screening out applicants that simply aren’t a good fit. Your resume will be scanned for specific keywords. If a human is doing the job, and not an ATS system, they’ll look over your skills and experience briefly. To get through this, add relevant keywords in your resume and your cover letter.
The second reader is much more important. This is your direct supervisor, the person you need to convince that you have the right skills and that you are a great match for the job. This leads up to the next tip…
Be Thorough When Outlining Your Hard and Soft Skills
Successful nurses combine hard and soft skills in their efforts to meet the needs of patients. Both are important, and you should showcase them. Nurses must be patient, adaptive, team players. They should have excellent communication skills and show empathy in frustrating situations.
Then there are your hard skills. These will vary according to your experience, specialization, and career path. List all relevant skills, but emphasize the ones that are most relevant to the job you are seeking. To make a list of these skills consider the type of procedures you perform, equipment you use, the medication you administer, and the populations you treat.
Emphasize Your Duties and Accomplishments
The standard resume advice is that you should focus on your accomplishments, and not spend much if any time on your duties. That’s not really the case when it comes to nursing. Because your ability to perform your duties as required, with great accuracy and speed if needed is so important, your resume should feature both.
Show You Pay Close Attention to Detail
Editing and proofreading are very important here. That cannot be overemphasized. Accuracy and attention to detail are so important in this field, that missing spelling or grammatical errors can really count against you.
Resume Example For Nurses (.docx version)
Sample Resume For Nurses (text version)
4748 Shadowmar Drive, Metairie, LA 70001
I’m a registered nurse with just over ten years of experience in clinical care experience. I’m an experienced team leader who specializes in coordinating continuing services for geriatric patients. I specialize in working with elderly patients who have ongoing mental health needs. I have managerial experience having led a team of nurses for the past five years.
Nursing Team Leader
Geriatric Mental Health/Memory Care Unit
State Hospital, Everyday, CA
June 2014 – Present
Managed nursing staff in the geriatric, mental health and memory care unit of a state hospital. Duties included ensuring that the unit was adequately staffed at all times, supervising nursing staff, coordinating services, providing care to patients, administering psychiatric and other medications, assessing incoming patients, accompanying the resident physicians on rounds. Helped patients and their families arrange ongoing care after discharge. Coordinated care with local service agencies.
Staff Nurse (RN)
Maple Leaf Retirement Home And Rehabilitation
April 2009 – June 2014
Delivered ongoing care as part of a team of nurses, physicians, and other stuff. Maintained customer records. Administered medications, inserted IV lines, intubated patients. Coordinated care with physicians, occupational and physical therapists, and social service workers. Complied with HIPAA and other regulations.
Nurse’s Assistant (CNA)
City Hospital, Everyday, CA
July 2003 – March 2009
Worked as a part-time CNA while attending university. Floated between multiple departments. Assisted nurses with various patient care and clerical duties.
City College, Everyday, CA
AAS in Nursing (RN)
March 2007 – March 2009
City Technical School, Everyday, CA
HS Diploma And CNA License
Graduated June 2006
Geriatric Nursing Association of America
Treasurer, Everyday CA Chapter of Nurses And Healthcare Professionals
California State Nursing Commission
In this sample, the person who’s applying for a job is fully licensed and has several years of experience. If your situation is different, play out your education and soft skills to your advantage, and opt for a functional resume format instead.
And don’t forget — a persuasive cover letter, combined with a matching resume template — can change your odds of getting called back for that interview!