Writing a nursing CV that will get you selected for interview is a careful balance of providing enough detail to prove you’re a suitably qualified nurse, and not confusing the employer with too much information.
There are a few simple points you can follow to ensure you stick to this principle:
1 – First and foremost, you’re a nurse. If you’ve had other jobs prior to becoming a qualified nurse then you should definitely move them lower down on your CV. While you can certainly highlight skills you gained from these jobs, they aren’t going to be specifically relevant to whether you are suitably qualified nurse for this job.
2 – Give your NMC pin number at the top of your CV alongside your contact details. It immediately validates you as a candidate able to work as a nurse in the UK. You’d be surprised how many nurses forget to give this essential piece of information, and it leaves the employer trying to decide from your CV if you are actually a qualified nurse or not.
3 – Make sure you cover all dates in your employment history, even if you were job-hunting after becoming qualified. Employers like to see a continuity in the dates of your activities, so lay it out really clearly for them. Give the dates of your nursing course, any part time or bank work you did during that time, and when you started your first job as a qualified nurse. If you stayed working on the bank as an HCA while waiting for your PIN, then say so.
4 – If you’re a newly qualified nurse, make sure you use your placement experience as well as your nursing course to detail the skills you have that make you a relevant candidate for the job. Use the person specification and job description from the advert to identify the skills of the successful candidate, and draw attention to as many of them that you have achieved as possible. If you’re a more experienced nurse then professional development achievements are very important to show. List the ones that are relevant to the nursing job you’re applying for nearer the top of your CV, and give your other CPD achievements somewhere further down.
5 – Your current nursing job is a crucial part of your CV and is one of the first things that an employer will look at when they see your application. Make sure you give your job title in full, and preferably in bold, along with the employer’s name and your job responsibilities. This will immediately give the employer reading your CV an idea of the level you’re working at and whether the experience from your current nursing job will be directly applicable to the job you’ve applied for. That’s not the say you can’t apply to work as a nurse in an area that’s not similar to where you work currently, but if you’re doing that you should highlight the transferable skills you have that can be applied should be offered the job.
For more info about writing CVs at various stages in your nursing career, follow these links:
Build your nurse CV – step by step guide
How to write your nursing CV as a third year student nurse applying for your first nursing job
How to update your nursing CV for the new year
How to use non-healthcare experience in your nurse CV when applying for a nursing course