How to Write a Nurse Resume
Whether you are working as a CNA, LPN, RN or one of the many other diverse nursing positions, a successful nurse resume should include all the required education, licensures, certifications, clinical work experience, and technical skills associated with your specific nursing field and job opening. Hiring managers looking for a nurse are searching for an experienced candidate with an educational background in nursing, which may vary depending on the specific nursing field. Educational requirements may range from undergraduate degrees, such as an Associates Degree in Nursing or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, to graduate levels of education, such as a Master of Science in Nursing or a Doctor in Nursing Practice.
Remember that the purpose of your resume is to sell yourself to the employer, demonstrating all of your relevant work experience and skills that make you an ideal candidate for the nursing position that you are applying for. With this in mind, it is always recommended that you read through the job role description in order to identify the required education, skills, and experience necessary to fulfill the job at hand. Afterwhich, consider, which of these requirements you possess and make sure to highlight them within your nurse resume.
One of the key elements of any nurse’s resume is the Skills section. It is vital to incorporate hard skills, otherwise known as technical skills in the Skills section of your resume. When it comes to soft skills or people skills, we suggest including these personal attributes and social intelligences within the Executive Summary and/or Work Experience descriptions. It is not necessary to include these characteristics in the Skills section of your resume. In fact, it is recommended that you only list your technical abilities within the Skills section so as to strengthen your resume and overall application.
Nursing Resume Structure
Nursing Job-Specific Skills
Highlighting your job-specific skills, whether in a Skills section, Executive Summary, or Work Experiences is crucial for any resume. An exceptional Nurse resume, in particular, should incorporate a number of essential technical nursing skills that the employer is looking for in an applicant. In order to be considered as a strong candidate, it is important to include nursing specific knowledge and abilities. Be sure to include your technical nursing skills that align with the job listing requirements and nursing unit at hand. Here are some basic, technical, and soft skill set examples to give you an idea of which of these capabilities you can include on your nurse resume.
- Patient Care & Comfort Practices
- Electronic Health Documentation
- Patient & Family Education
- Diagnostic Testing & Result Analysis
- Medication & Treatment Administration
- Treatment Planning Development
- Management of Nursing Department
- Advanced lifesaving training (ACLS)
- Use of telemetry devices
- Chest tube, ventilatory, and airway management
- Lumbar punctures techniques and conscious sedation
- Tube feedings and ostomy care
- Specialized diabetic care
- Communication & Interpersonal Skills
- Compassion & Emotional Intelligence
- Critical Thinking & Problem Solving
- Reliability & Dependability
Action Verbs for Nurse Resume
It is important to boost your resume by incorporating action verbs specific to your job role. Along with your job specific skills, these powerful action words will amplify your responsibilities and accomplishments.
Nursing Resume Executive Summary Example
Showcase your greatest nursing achievements and skills here. Use as many action verbs and job specific information and skills as possible. It is important to highlight your key attributes, as well as your qualifications and accomplishments for this specific nursing role and medical unit.
Registered Nurse with 8 years of experience working in Geriatrics and Palliative/Hospice care units at the Montreal General Hospital. Awarded RN of the Year, two years in a row by fellow coworkers, supervisors, and patients. Highly passionate, caring, and socially skilled nursing professional and caregiver who aspires to give the highest quality hospice care for patients and their families in their end-of-life processes.
Work Experience Description Example
The Work Experience section of a resume is definitively the most important. So, if you are applying for a job as a nurse, make sure to include all relevant job positions and work experience related to the medical field. You may also list work experiences that have transferable responsibilities as well as required skills for a position as a nurse.
It is beneficial to provide a brief employer description before listing your responsibilities and accomplishments for each job position. You should describe the hospital or clinic where you worked, what unit you worked in, how many patients you cared for, and the number of hours you worked on each rotation.
Make sure to use action verbs specific to your job field to describe your job responsibilities. Do not simply list general tasks performed. Instead, mention your greatest achievements within each work experience and try to measure them in numbers. Ask yourself the following questions in order to quantify your work history: How many patients did I care for?, How many hours did I work?, How many beds were there in my unit?, How many nurses did I collaborate with, train, or manage? By incorporating the answers to these questions and using your nursing action verbs, you will more effectively prove that you are an ideal candidate for the job!
01/2014 - Present | Registered Nurse | Palliative Care Unit - MGH, Montreal, QC, Canada
As a full-time, day shift RN for Montreal General Hospital's Palliative Care Unit, I coordinate and deliver quality end-of-life/hospice palliative care for a 15 patient unit for up to 12 hour a day rotations.
- Administer medications, provide treatments and assist with activities of daily living for up to 15 clients receiving Palliative Care.
- Provide comprehensive education for clients and family regarding end-of-life and the dying process on a daily basis.
- Coordinate with up to 10 interdisciplinary team members according to client's care plan.
- Delegate tasks to 3 ancillary staff members on a weekly basis.
- Attend End-of-life Nursing Consortium (ELNEC) training on a yearly basis.
- Awarded "RN of the Year" by coworkers, supervisors, and patients in 2017 and 2018.