According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of nurse aides and nursing assistants is projected to grow more quickly than the average for other occupations.
Pay isn’t great and the position presents high physical and emotional demands, but there are thousands of people who apply for jobs every year.
If you want a new nurse aide job, you need a convincing resume. So, we’re going to help you write one.
Resume objective for nurse aides
A generic resume won’t cut it in the medical world anymore. This is partly because it’s easy to highlight the wrong features in your resume and not stress the important parts.
Apart from this, recruiters only spend about 8 to 20 seconds on each resume.
Additionally, the purpose of a nurse aide resume is not to tell recruiters all about you, but to get you the interview. So, somehow, you need to make your resume stand out on what could be a pile of hundreds of others.
Traditionally, a general resume objective appeared at the top of nurse aide resumes. Many people still include “objectives,” but what you need is a clear, concise statement about your goals that will add value for the employer.
It shouldn’t be a simple statement of intent that relates to the job, otherwise, it won’t be any different to other applicants’ objectives.
According to RegisteredNursing.org, an organization formed by registered nurses to provide resources for future nurses, it is acceptable to label this section “Objective,” but a section title that attracts attention is preferable.
Either way, its function is to attract attention in the form of written words that will make recruiters notice you in those few vital seconds.
Dedicated certified nurse aide with clinical experience in fast-paced teaching hospitals. Thrives multi-tasking and excels when it comes to establishing a rapport with patients and their families.
Resume skills for nurse aides
Nurse aides need soft and hard skills.
Soft skills include personal skills like good communication, the ability to form a good rapport with patients and their families, compassion and caring,
Hard skills are learned and they include all the technical skills a nurse aide needs including the ability to use medical equipment, recognize vital signs, collect specimens, take blood pressure, and work with Epic and Cerner systems.
Proficiency in Microsoft Word, the ability to capture patient’s medical histories, and patient confidentiality, and knowledge and understanding of the US Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) are also important skills.
According to the leading recruitment company, Indeed, because certified nurse aides or assistants (CNAs) frequently work with sick and/or elderly patients, the technical and communication skills required are quite specific although relatively basic.
Eight required skills they see on job postings all the time are attention to detail, good verbal and written communication, consistency, excellent interpersonal skills, record-keeping abilities, a thorough knowledge of medical terminology, an understanding of common disorders, and proper hygiene and cleanliness.
Study the skills specified in the advert for the job post you are applying for and make sure that they match, at least in part.
Compassionate and caring | Empathetic | Good written and verbal skills | Interpersonal affinity with patients | Critical care skills | Basic medical skills | Computer including MSWord | Medical terminology | Hygiene
Nurse Aide work experience
When you list your work experience on your nurse aide resume, the ideal is to show that you have exactly the experience required in the job description.
The problem many newly qualified nurse aids face is that even though they have passed the exams required to get a license and certification as a nurse aide (to be able to work as a CNA), this is an entry-level position and it might well be a first job.
The registered nurses at RegisteredNursing.org maintain that employers hiring new graduates accept that the work experience section of a CNA resume will be much smaller than that of an experienced registered nurse (RN).
For nurse aides who have limited or no prior experience, they suggest listing clinical experiences from college as well as any volunteer or extern jobs they might have had, even if they were only PRN (as needed).
You can even include work experience prior to graduation, as long as they are relevant to the job you are applying for.
Sample Work Experience
Canonsburg Health Network, PA
Nursing Assistant – ICU, 2018 – 2020
Provided for the care, safety, comfort, and privacy of patients on an individual basis and in accordance with an interdisciplinary plan of care.
- Primary function was to provide direct patient care within COVID-19 safety parameters.
- Reported changes in physical, mental, and emotional conditions of patients to the nursing staff and/or the health care team.
- Regularly escorted patients to other areas of the hospital to ensure they stayed safe.
- Stocked supplies in patient exam rooms when required to do so.
Dumont Wellness Center, IA
Temporary Nurse Aide, 2016 – 2017
Provided routine assistance and nursing care and services to residents at the center according to assessment and care plans provided. Documented and implemented residents’ care programs.
- Included as a member of the Center’s healthcare team.
- Provided resident care assistance with daily living activities including bathing, dressing, incontinence care, transferring/mobility, and feeding.
- Was awarded Nurse Aide of the Year in 2016 for exemplary customer service.
- Successfully completed the certification exam in 2017.
Centennial Medical Center, TN
Student Nurse Aide Extern PRN, 2015
Gathered data and showed I knew a range of treatments. Cared for patients and reported to the senior nurses to ensure I was able to meet the needs of individual patients.
- Experienced working as a nurse aide in a medical center environment.
- Commended on my tenacity and compassion.
- Observed several emergency operations.
- Declared competent to perform specified technical skills and procedures.
Nurse aide education
Nursing assistants and nurse aides typically complete state-approved (certified) education programs at community colleges, technical and vocational schools, and in some hospitals and nursing homes.
A brief period of on-the-job training is usually included in programs.
Courses are short but varied in length. We researched various colleges and schools and found that most courses lasted from four to 12 weeks and resulted in a diploma.
Stone Academy in Connecticut offers a flexible program that runs as long as 16 weeks. Like most other courses, it includes on-site clinical training that prepares students for jobs in nursing homes, long-term care facilities, hospices, hospitals, and other care facilities.
The PIMA Medical Institute, which has colleges in eight states as well as an online program, offers an accredited six-week program that includes a short externship.
The American Red Cross offers a CNA training program too. Recognized as the leading provider of Nurse Assistant Training (NAT), the American Red Cross has been active in the industry for more than a century. The CNA course takes four to eight weeks.
All nurse aides need to pass a certified course to be able to get a license and their certification … and then a job.
Moon River Nursing Careers, VA
Red Cross Certified Nurse Aide, 2019
Stone Academy, CT
Certified Nurse Aide, 2018
As mentioned above, the American Red Cross is the main provider of NAT in the US.
In addition to the CNA course that they offer at certified schools and online, they have first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), automated external defibrillator (AED), basic life support (BLS), and other programs.
All of these offer invaluable education opportunities to nurse aides to help with achieving certification, and even after they have been certified.
The American Heart Association (AHA) offers CPR training as well as BSL courses that lead to certification.
Additionally, numerous continuing education courses are available to nurse aides who want to extend their knowledge base.
Even though the position of nurse aide or nursing assistant is an entry-level one, certification is still required. Like all nursing programs, BLS certification is required and some
According to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN), their National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP) is the largest nurse-aide certification program in the US.
More than 200,000 nurse aides do the written and practical exams every year.
The Medication Aide Certification Examination (MACE) is more advanced and designed to enable nurse aides to become certified medication aides. A nurse aide would attract a higher salary with this certification.
As mentioned in the section Courses, above, CPR and BLS certification is usually required for nurse aides to qualify for state licenses.
All certifications have to be updated from time-to-time.
- CNA state certification
Complete nurse aide resume sample
Some nurse aide job posts give a lot of information in terms of the education and training required. But for this complete resume sample, we chose an ad that gives relatively little information except that certified nursing assistants are required.
We will show you how to use the information supplied to craft a resume that should cliche an interview.
This position for a nurse aide at a senior living facility in Nebraska requires a passion for excellence and a strong desire to help people and make a difference in their lives.
While some soft skills are specified, the company wants to see what applicants find important.
Following the advice we gave you earlier, we had a look at the Vetter Senior Living website to get an idea of their mission and vision.
Clearly, quality of service is vital to the company, which has been voted one of Omaha’s Best Places to Work eight times since 2008.
The company’s mission is “Dignity in Life” and keywords include excellence, quality of life, outstanding, integrity, and teamwork.
Caring and compassionate nurse aide with more than five years of experience. Certified and licensed. Passionate about quality healthcare and enabling elders to continue living with dignity. Positive attitude.
Integrity | Excellence | Caring and compassion | Communication and interpersonal relationships | Good technical and medical skills | Empathetic
Centennial Park Retirement Village
Certified Nurse’s Aide – SNF, 2017 – 2019
Worked with registered nurses in this skilled nursing facility that comprised more than 130 units offering independent living. Participated as a team member providing skilled nursing care and assisted living.
- Performed routine care rounds on assigned residents at least every two hours, often more frequently.
- Accurately performed and recorded vital signs, height, and weight as well as calculating and recording weight loss/gain and fluid intake/output.
- Recognized abnormal changes in body functioning in more than 30 residents – all reported to a supervisor.
- Performed palliative and post-mortem care.
Hillcrest Health Services, NE
Elder Assistant/CNA, 2015 – 2016
Assisted residents with the full range of personal care needs from hygiene and dressing to coping with adaptive devices including hearing aids, dentures, glasses etc.
- Regularly took vital signs as ordered and reported “out of range” responses.
- Took responsibility for infection-control procedures in the cottage where I worked.
- Assisted in hundreds of resident activities to improve their quality of life.
- Proud to have been part of the national push for culture change in long-term, freestanding care facilities where residents live in large 13-resident cottages and benefit from 24-hour nursing care.
Hero Health & Rehabilitation, NE
Nurse Aide Trainee, 2014
Provided resident care assistance with daily living activities. Participated in the lives of residents to enhance their well-being and reflect the warm, safe, caring environment provided by the center.
- Added to my training by working in this paid training program that included 75 hours of online instruction and hands-on clinical training.
- Remained on the staff for six months after certification.
- Was commended for my ability to serve as a valuable resource to residents, their families, and visitors and staff.
- Completed the AHA CPR and BLS certification courses.
- CNA in Nebraska
- AHA CPR & BLS
PIMA Medical Institute (Online course)
Nursing Assistant, 2013
- American Red Cross Basic life support
The position of a nurse aide is considered entry-level in the nursing industry, but many nursing assistants continue in related jobs for all their working lives. If you fit this scenario, you might find yourself applying for new nurse aide jobs now and then.
Just because it’s the same job, don’t be tempted to use the same old resume you used before. Not only must you update your work experience and other areas of your resume, but you also need to make the resume relevant to the current application.
- Nurse aide courses are relatively short but the position requires licenses and certification. Additional training and courses will strengthen your position.
- You know that it can be a tough, challenging job emotionally and physically, but it is a job that appeals to thousands of other nurses. To make sure your resume stands out from all the others, you will need to show quickly and effectively how you plan to add value to the position.
- The debate about resume objectives continues, and there is a strong argument against the traditional approach that states what the common objective of the job is. Instead, use the objective to sell yourself. You can even call it something else.
Tips from Experts
“Remember to customize your resume to your own skill set and experience. Make sure your resume is the best and most accurate representation of your studies and experiences so you and your employers can choose the right candidate for the job!” – Harris School of Business, Pennsylvania
“The purpose of a CNA resume is to get your foot in the door so that you can actually have an interview with a hiring official. So, start your resume with a bulleted list of professional skills and qualifications to get noticed.“ – Dana Murguia, CareMatch Career Solutions
“Technically, the more knowledgeable (more years of on-the-job experience as a certified nurse assistant) the higher your salary or pay grade level. Job experience is probably the most typical variable when structuring pay packages.” Pastor Ezekiel, Owner of the Nursing Institute of Dallas
If you’re in the market for a new position as a nurse aide, make sure that your resume does you justice and markets you effectively.
We’ve provided lots of advice that can help you craft a resume that presents you as a unique candidate ready to do the best possible job. Use what you can, and adapt what you can’t use. It might take you a bit of time but it will be worth it.