Choose type of cookies to accept
Performance and Personalization
These cookies give you access to a customized experience of our products. Personalization cookies are also used to deliver content, including ads, relevant to your interests on our Site and third-party sites based on how you interact with our advertisements or content as well as track the content you access (including video viewing). We may also collect password information from you when you log in, as well as computer and/or connection information. During some visits, we may use software tools to measure and collect session information, including page response times, download errors, time spent on certain pages and page interaction information.
These cookies are placed by third-party companies to deliver targeted content based on relevant topics that are of interest to you. And allow you to better interact with social media platforms such as Facebook.
These cookies are essential for the Site's performance and for you to be able to use its features. For example, essential cookies include: cookies dropped to provide the service, maintain your account, provide builder access, payment pages, create IDs for your documents and store your consents.
Because job offers attract hundreds of candidates, it's extremely hard for hiring managers to get to the resumes that actually meet the position requirements.
If you don’t want your application to go straight to the rejected folder, you need to make sure you use the right resume keywords to describe your nursing skills for a resume.
How to identify these keywords?
Revisit the job offer and describe your experience and nursing resume skills using the phrases you find there.
For example, your nursing assistant resume skills could be presented like this:
Nursing Assistant Skills for a Resume
Provided patient care assignments as delegated by and under the direction of an RN.
Respected and regarded the dignity of patients, families, visitors, and fellow employees to ensure a professional, responsible and courteous environment.
Cooperated with 3+ department and unit teams inter- and intra-departmentally to facilitate the department's and unit's ability to meet goals and objectives.
This way, you can be sure the relevant keywords are included, and you’ve presented exactly the nursing skills the employer is searching.
You can do even more to give your nursing skills maximum exposure on a resume.
Cherry-pick up to three of your achievements you can quantify and you take pride in and put them in a separate key achievements subsection:
Critical Care Nursing Skills for a Resume
Consistently met high standards of service by achieving an average of over 95% compliance rate.
Won Nurse of the Year Awardby scoring 93% in an internal patient experience survey
If you single out your biggest wins like this, you can be sure your best intensive care unit nursing skills won’t go unnoticed.
Put your strongest nursing skills in a dedicated key skills section to draw the recruiter’s attention to your strongest side. The trick is not to populate the section with random nursing skills.
Pick out the clinical nursing skills and techniques that you excel at. Plus, look back at your job description section to pick out the skills you’d really like to show off.
Pro Tip: Select up to 10 key nursing skills to put in your resume’s key skills section. And go for the ones you have a very strong grasp of to avoid Presenter’s Paradox.
And one more thing.
You can also use the objective of a nurse resume to present your nursing skills.
Here’s what it could look like:
Skills Summary for a Nursing Resume
Compassionate and adaptable Registered Nurse with 10+ years of experience in high patient turnover hospital units. Eager to support the Hospital of St John the Baptist with superb organizational and ER nursing skills. In the previous role managed a team of 5 ER nurses in an 18-bed Level-2 Emergency Room.
The resume summary example above proves you can pepper your entire registered nurse resume with relevant nursing skills and sought-after character traits of a nurse. Make sure you put every square inch of your resume to good use and demonstrate your nursing expertise.
Most of the time you’ll be dealing with the people and patient's family members who aren’t at their best. Your patients could be grumpy, irritated, spiteful, uncooperative, worried, grieving, or in shock. You name it.
And even though you’ll never fully know what you can expect of them, they’ll always expect one thing of you, namely professionalism. And your professionalism will be judged by the way you communicate with others.
Your nursing communication skills are part of a larger skill set, namely interpersonal skills. Keep developing them to become a master communicator.
Critical Thinking Skills in Nursing
Critical thinking skills always come in handy in dynamic situations with lots of variables. Like deciding on the best course of treatment for your patients.
Nurses must be able to think on their feet, weigh in pros and cons, and make informed choices with the patient’s life at the back of their minds. Critical thinking skills in nursing pertain to many different aspects of patient care. From administering medications to making conclusions about the patient’s condition based on the readouts to administering CPR when necessary.
Critical thinking skills consist of several interrelated abilities. You can develop your critical thinking skills in nursing by improving your analytical skills and conceptual skills.
In fact, one study identified prioritization as one of the most crucial factors shaping patient experiences.
Ever-changing situations, issues calling for your immediate attention, large numbers of patients to take care of, and all this happening simultaneously. All these require you to be a master prioritizer, especially if you happen to be working in an emergency room.
It’s impossible to bilocate, but the ability to efficiently allocate your time will take you far. So make sure to keep working on your organizational skills.
Empathy in Nursing
It all starts with empathy.
You do need to have solid clinical nursing skills, but without empathy, you shouldn’t be really considering nursing as a career. The best nurses can relate to the feelings and pain a patient is going through, and channel their compassion constructively, not letting the negative emotions bring them down.
And truth be told, a compassionate nurse who cares is sometimes the only thing a patient needs to get better.
Leadership Skills in Nursing
Nursing leadership skills are a crucial element of a nurse’s professional development.
Just remember, leadership is not about your seniority level. It’s about setting an example, inspiring people into action, building trust, and making others feel safe. This is why leadership and decision-making skills are important in nursing.
Strong work ethic has become a bit of a buzzword in modern business.
But the nursing profession is much more than business. It’s a mission. And work ethic is one of the essential nursing skills. A strong belief that your hard work serves the greater good and its value transcends hospital walls is fundamental to being a great nurse.
Attention to Detail
Nursing isn’t for the faint of heart. Nor is it for the careless.
Precision and attention to detail are the nursing skills that can mean the difference between a patient’s life or death. Simple as that.
Acting and talking in a confident manner is a sign that you know what you’re doing. And it’s not only a crucial nursing skill. It’s also reassuring to the patients, their family members, co-workers, and other medical personnel.
Healthcare is not a solitary profession, you need to be sure you’re cooperating with a team of professionals. If someone isn’t sure of what they’re doing, the morale of the entire team might get undermined eventually. On the other hand, would you like to be catheterized by a nurse whose voice is faltering and hands are shaking?
Take your time and practice your leadership skills to gain confidence and take your nursing skills to new heights.
When you consider all the skills needed for nursing, adaptability mustn’t go unnoticed.
In fact, adaptability should be every nurse's middle name. Why? If there’s one thing that you could expect in your daily nursing work, it would be the unexpected.
In such circumstances, only the adaptable can thrive, which segues us into the last item on our nursing skills checklist:
Pro Tip: An iCIMS study identified adaptability as the second most desired skill by the employers. Also, adaptability is one of the most crucial employability skills.
Even though stamina comes last on our essential nursing skills list, it’s far from being the least important nursing skill.
Quite the opposite. Nursing work is both mentally and physically strenuous, without enough stamina no nurse would be able to go through their working day.
Here’s a summary of all you need to know about nursing skills and how to describe them on your resume for nursing jobs:
Nursing skills can be divided into two broad categories: clinical nursing skills and soft skills.
The technical nursing skills are different for each nursing specialization.
Good nurses share certain common soft skills and character traits, such as compassion or adaptability.
It’s crucial to display the relevant nursing resume skills to go past the ATS scan and impress the recruiter.
Do you have any questions about nursing skills? Maybe you’d like to share some tips on how to develop them or show them on your resume. Give us a shout out in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you!
Maciej is a career expert and Certified Professional Resume Writer with a solid background in the education management industry. He's worked with people at all stages of their career paths: from interns to directors to C-suite members, he now helps you find your dream job.
Don't miss out on exclusive stories that will supercharge your career!
Get a weekly dose of inspiration delivered to your inbox
Great to have you on board! Check your email & enjoy our newsletter.
What is the best font for a resume? Which resume fonts to avoid? Serif or sans? What about bolding, italicizing, resume font size, and section heading titles? In this article, we take a look at over a dozen professional fonts so that you can choose the best font to use for your resume and cover letter.