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How to Write a Nursing Resume

December 3, 2019



According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, about 12 million healthcare professionals work in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that “the healthcare industry is projected to add more jobs—over 4 million—than any other industry between 2012 and 2022.” It is a competitive industry for professionals that can use their writing skills to highlight the best parts of their career history in a resume and cover letter.


The next time you find a job opportunity, here are helpful tips for writing an effective resume.


The Most Common Resume Templates


An online resume template is an efficient way to format an existing resume with a professional appearance. It can save time in using Adobe Suite or InDesign to create a resume that piques the interest of recruiters in the medical industry.


4 Types of Resumes to Use


These resume types will depend on the stage of your career, education, and experience. A brief outline is below for you to take into consideration when drafting a resume.


Functional: It is used to focus on your medical skills and on the job experience that showcases work experience under the first part of a resume, which is the section on Medical Skills.


Combination: A combination resume is mainly used to apply the requirements of a job posting as a blueprint to write a resume. It includes skills, experience, and work history, starting from the most recent job.


Chronological: A resume that recruiters prefer because it is easy for them to scan a candidate’s work history. It starts with the most recent employment at the top in chronological order.


Resume Mistakes of Healthcare Professionals

Most job seekers believe that writing sentences of achievements in the healthcare industry will capture the interest of a hiring manager. It is a true statement. However, it is essential to write with purpose. The idea is to write with clarity versus an opportunity to highlight the number of promotions or awards gained for exceeding expectations. I recommend emphasizing using terms used in your industry in addition to action words that exhibit leadership skills. The goal is to add qualitative information that includes the following:


  • Specific examples of how you helped employees

  • The average number of patients you help monthly

  • How you solve problems under the high level of stress

  • Techniques learned that helped a company save money or time


Additionally, healthcare professionals should avoid exaggerating on the job experience. The content should have a consistent tense throughout the document. If you can avoid including a complex situation with a format that is easy on the eyes, it will work in your favor.


Impactful Personal Statement

A personal statement is similar to an objective people add to a resume with between four to six sentences. It is at the top of a medical resume. The main focus of a personal statement is to explain why an employer should consider you for the position. It is personal branding at its best in a professional manner. An example of an impactful personal statement is below:


“A highly efficient healthcare professional with a wealth of experience in …. Excellent leadership skills with the skill of communicating with patients of diverse backgrounds.”


Tips for a Curriculum Vitae (CV)

A Curriculum Vitae is used by professionals in healthcare and individuals that work in science. The document is detailed, outlining the achievement of a professional with a minimum of two pages. At times, it can be confused with a biography of work experience. However, it has a personal tone to the content.  It reflects a tone of modesty when writing a series of achievements without appearing to be showing off one’s talents. A few of the headings to include on a Curriculum Vitae includes:


  • Education

  • Volunteer experience

  • Internships

  • Honors

  • Journalistic publications

  • Professional membership affiliation


Concluding Thoughts

Imagine you are the hiring manager when sending a resume for a job opportunity. Think of the experience at a health clinic, hospital, or with patients that are heartwarming and present a passion for the job. A healthcare professional that can write a resume that speaks to a recruiter that they love their profession with that goal of helping to serve their community will be selected for an interview despite the competitive nature of a job.


We hope these tips help you throughout your journey. Good luck!




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