If you’re looking for a role in nursing, you may be wondering how best to structure your CV/résumé. There is no set rule, as résumés are very subjective, but there are some guidelines that will make your résumé in your job search, ATS compliant and easy for a recruiter to read. Below, we will review some examples of résumé templates for nurses, along with some insights, tips and tricks.
1. Student nurse
This résumé template is perfect for someone starting out in their career. Education is still very relevant at this point, so having it at the start is important. However, the column layout means that experience is still very prominent. This means that if you have work experience to highlight, you can get it right to the top, level with your education.
The profile section on this example gives a clear overview of the person, highlighting their key nursing skills and where he is looking to be in his career, whilst making sure all the relevant keywords are included.
2. Graduate / Entry-level nurse
This nurse CV/résumé template is great for someone with limited experience, as it puts emphasis on competencies and areas of expertise, which goes a long way in making up for the fact that the applicant may have less experience than the next person.
The ‘areas of expertise’ section uses keywords that will help in terms of making the CV/résumé ATS compliant. The summary gives a clear indication of the candidates motivations, as well as highlighting her most desirable skills and qualities. The experience section is also very detailed, listing specifics of what she has already done, and this is further complimented by the skills section below, which gives more detail than a standard list of skills.
Sophie Milliken, Managing Director at SRS Recruitment and Employability Experts, suggests adding transferrable and soft skills to your CV/résumé to showcase your strengths, as it shows resilience and proves you can handle difficult situations and improve your skills.
3. Registered nurse
This is a simple, traditional template which reflects the candidate’s registered status. Her level is very clear, with her registered nurse status written as a title at the top of the résumé. Given her experience, this candidate can outline in the summary her area of specialism, as well as key experience to emphasise her skills.
Experience for this person is more recent than her education, so usually experience would be listed above education, however, in this case, the candidate has an excellent GPA, which sets her apart. So, listing education first is a smart move. The order of sections can be interchangeable depending on your skills, education and experience. Her experience section is clear and concise, making use of numbers and measurables, which further highlight her achievements. This is also an excellent way of keeping the résumé concise. Numbers get to the point in a way that long descriptions can’t.
4. Senior registered nurse
Here is an eye-catching nurse CV/résumé which still has a very professional feel. It’s great for standing out, whilst still following a traditional chronological template, making it easy to follow with a clear progression.
The profile in this example is very professional, written in the third person, which is preferable to using ‘I’ or the person’s name. It communicates skills and experience well and is highly tailored to a role as a senior nurse.
The experience section follows this trend, with well-defined achievements listed that are all inline with the role in question, and a skills section backing up the main points. The keywords focus on leading and managing, as well as the skills expected of a registered nurse, in a way that is tailored to the more senior position, setting her apart from the people she oversees.
5. Specialist nurse
This résumé offers a clear picture of the candidate’s education, experience and career progression. Education is at the top to demonstrate a recent master’s degree, followed by experience that shows how she has worked in the same position and a previous similar position for a long period of time, building up the skills and experience that have allowed her to specialise in oncology. Her oncology experience is clear and presented throughout the résumé, making it highly optimized and clear where her skills lie.
The way the text is centred adds a new element and makes the résumé stand out, but you may prefer to align left in-keeping with a more traditional format.
6. Nurse practitioner
The one thing that really stands out with this résumé is the use of measurables to demonstrate the candidates’ achievements. She has used percentages, stated how many people she manages and the number of years she has been working. This is an important element of a résumé. If an achievement is measurable, it adds impact.
In a similar vein, her experience section is very specific. It identifies the types of patient care she offers, rather than being too general, and tells of interpreting specific results, and what she monitors.
7. Labor and delivery nurse
This is another professional looking, clear, chronological résumé. The profile is concise but comprehensive, detailing her experience over the years with some specifics that set her apart. Experience is the most relevant entry here, so it comes first, and shows a clear progression.
The candidate has listed her GPA in the education section because it is particularly high, which is very effective. She has also added a key skills section at the bottom of the résumé, homing in on her most relevant attributes, backing up the information in the profile and experience section.
8. Clinical nurse supervisor
The simplicity of this résumé is balanced with some minimal design features that make it very eye catching, such as a pink font and simple lines to separate sections. Pink is a color that symbolizes being caring, so it’s an excellent choice for a nurse’s résumé.
This résumé starts with an objective, before launching into a summary by stating exactly what she is looking for in a role. It makes the résumé very focused as it is tailored to the position in mind, highlighting management and leadership skills, as well as very nurse-specific skills. Education and certifications are clear and easy to read on a quick scroll.
9. Nurse case manager
This is another example of a traditional chronological résumé, made more appealing with some simple colors and features. Titles and sub-headings are clear, and the variations in color of the font make everything easy to read when scanning quickly.
Achievements are backed up with numbers. For example, ‘Improved overall patient satisfaction by 75%’ which is much more effective than simply saying there is an increase. The experience section and profile are tailored to managing large caseloads and managing staff, as well as highlighting areas of specialism and general patient care.
10. Surgical registered nurse
This candidate has only had one position, even though it has been for many years. Having one position can make the résumé look a little shorter, so this has been accounted for with a very visual skills section on an otherwise standard résumé design. The skills section offers a blend of soft and hard skills, with a rating for each. This is an effective way of highlighting skills that have been developed without having to list everything in the experience section.
The summary and experience section are concise and professional and highly tailored to the role of a surgical registered nurse.
As you’ll see, there are numerous versions and résumé templates that you can use to apply for different nursing roles. The key is finding one that matches your level, experience and focus. The order you present your experience and experience can vary depending on how long ago you qualified, and a skills section is a great way to add keywords and set yourself apart from someone with similar experience.
The summary or profile is important in whichever format you select. Think of it as your sales pitch. If your summary is good and draws in the recruiter for the right reasons, they are more likely to read on. Scannablity is also important. Make sure a recruiter can find all they need at a quick glance. If they like what they see, they will read in more detail.
Did you find these nurse CV/résumé examples helpful? Share this with your nursing friends, you never know who might need some guidance!
This is an updated version of an article originally published on 2 June 2019.