Tips for Creating a Professional Resume for Nurses

Whether you’re a nursing student, a registered nurse or a specialized DNP, your resume can be a make-or-break component of your career trajectory! Your resume conveys your professional image even before you have the chance to interact with your potential employer. Your resume can help you stand out amidst thousands of applicants if its constructed well. That why a professional resume for nurses is of utmost importance when it comes to landing an interview. 

But that’s easier said than done. As hiring practices evolve, resumes don’t just need to appeal to employers. With a lot of recruiters turning to AI for candidate sourcing, resumes need to be optimized for search ranking as well. But fret not, we have a few tricks up our sleeves that with help you create the perfect nurse resume that appeals to both artificial and human intelligence. With these tips you can create an effective resume that not only appeals to human employers but also ranks well on AI searching tools!

Tailor your resume

This is probably the most common advice when it comes to creating a unique resume. Sadly, this is also the most ignored one. We know, it can get exhausting to craft a resume for every job you apply to but making a resume look like it was tailored for position can definitely give you an edge over other applicants. And the best part is you don’t have to start with a blank page every time!  

Create a master resume and make adjustments here and there when you submit it for an application. Highlight your skills and experiences that would be relevant to the position you’re applying to with necessary formatting. Make sure the information pops out at a cursory glance. And while you’re at it, make sure to research your prospective employer’s core values and work culture and fit your resume to resonate these values. This will significantly increase your chances of a call back. 

Make it keyword friendly

Keywords play a major role if the employers are dependent on ATS. But they can also be beneficial if recruiters are manually sorting through resumes. Go through the job description well and pick up keywords relating to qualifications and experience sections. If you have held a similar position at a previous employment, make sure you use the same job title as the one listed.  

For instance, if you are applying for a position titled ‘Nurse Manager’ while in your previous position, you were employed as a ‘Chief Nursing officer’ make sure you write ‘Nurse Manager’ in your resume. This will ensure you get on the ATS radar, perhaps even earning a high compatibility ranking. It will also make sure your resume stands out if a recruiter is going through it manually.  

On the other hand, don’t go overboard with keywords either. Stuffing unrelated keywords can disqualify your resume. Make sure you include relevant keywords in the top 1/3rd of resume, especially the most important ones, as most ATS screen for keywords in that part. 

Keep it clean  

Did you know that the average recruiter only spends six seconds on a resume? This means you have six brief seconds to hook their attention. While your keywords serve as the hook, it is important you maximize their visibility by keeping your resume clean. Use legible font in size 10 or 12 with proper headings and line spacing. Use bullet points and text indents to carefully sectioned paragraphs. Look up nursing resume examples for pointers on a suitable formatting style. 

If you find your designing skills falling short, there are tons of nursing resume templates available on the internet to choose from. Make sure you choose one that is minimal and has experience and qualifications sections at the top. 

Keep it short

Be it a nursing student resume with barely any experience, registered nurse resume with tons of experience or a CNA resume with resonating a nursing transition, short is sweet. Ideally, a resume should be one page long. Use bullet points for neatly listing qualifications, experience and education. Stick to industry jargon when it comes to describing specifics.  

Also, stick to putting strictly relevant information on your resume. For instance, in most resumes for nurses, high school diplomas don’t hold much weight. You can simply begin with your ADN or BSN degrees directly. For more experienced nurses, experience will take precedence over education. 

Use power words

Power words are more impactful as opposed to using generic descriptive words. Consider this: 

“Was responsible for ensuring all patients in the ward took their medications on time.” 

And consider this: 

“Routinely administered medication in specified dosages to all patients in the ward in a timely manner.” 

See the difference?  

Power words like ‘administered’, ‘oversaw’, ‘specialized’, and ‘conducted’ can be far more impactful than generic descriptions. 

Don’t forget the ‘hidden’ experiences

When writing a unique cv for nurses, it is important that every single relevant detail is included to maximize chances. From your familiarity with specific medical procedures to a section listing volunteer work, achievements, even nursing conferences and seminars that can play the cards in your favor must be mentioned on the resume.  

Bonus tip: What to put on your resume when you’re a nursing student who’s just starting out?

If nursing students have an advantage, that would defiantly be in the experience section. Even when you’re starting out, you’ll probably have hundreds of hours of clinical experience under your belt. Highlight your clinical experiences to make your resume more unique. Add a section of ‘hard skills’, mentioning basic medical procedures you’ve completed, like IV – line placements and infusions or technical skills. Also include a section of ‘soft skills’ mentioning qualities like critical thinking and interpersonal skills. These additions can elevate your resume from looking all blank and conveying nothing to conveying the impression of a trained professional, well equipped to get started on their healthcare journey. 

Over to you

A well-crafted resume sets the stage for a positive professional experience. Therefore, it is important for nurses to have a professional resume to convey a memorable first impression. With these tips, take your CV to the next level so that your healthcare career starts off right and continues on steadily. Now, you can design a resume that will help you land that dream nursing job and open the doors to more opportunities for a fulfilling and rewarding nursing career! 


Related Posts

nurse lifestyle
Fitness and Exercise Tips for Nurses

The hardest part of exercising is certainly finding the will to do ...

nursing careers
Nursing Careers Outside the Hospital

The nursing profession is incredibly versatile. It has the potential to suit ...