Posted 20 Oct 2010

We've seen thousands of CVs from nurses. If you want to change your CV or create a new one, why not let us help you build it - quickly and for free. Once done remember to register on Nurses.co.uk and upload your new CV. About Matt Farrah - follow me on Google+

Before we get going on our 4-part CV builder, we'll just explain who is going to be reading your CV....

Your CV is going to be read by someone who doesn't have much time and who has seen hundreds, even thousands of CVs from nurses.

With our help, you'll be able to create a CV that will be refreshingly easy to take in, clearly laid out, and with all the important information they need to know about you. You'll grab their attention quickly and help them decide that you're the right person for their nursing job.

In truth, there's actually nothing complicated about CV writing. These are the important elements:

> contact details

> key skills

> nursing employment history

> duties and responsibilities

> good English

1.

Put Contacts in your CV

OK, this sounds too simple to even state. But many people still fail to get this right!

Put your full contact details clearly and at the top of your CV. Remember ALL your details too (phone, address AND email). Sounds simple, but some CVs don't put phone or email.

So we think your nursing CV should start like this:

JOHN DOE

Address: 9 Acacia Gardens, Tooting, Merton, London, SW25 789

Mobile: 01234 5678910

Email: john.doe@emaildomain.com

2.

Keywords -

"theatre nurse"... "london"... "band 6"...

Most job boards have a CV search. By planning your CV carefully you'll increase your chances of being found by a nursing recruiter who's using such a search.

The best way to improve your chances of being found on a CV search is to think carefully about the words that most accurately describe you. You then make sure you get these words into your CV. Simple.

For instance, a Senior Nurse in theatres who's looking to move jobs in London would probably want to focus on the words and phrases like "theatre nurse", "scrub nurse", "band 6", "london".

Returning to our example nurse, John Doe, again... Let's imagine that John is actually an RMN working in a psychiatric ward. So John should make sure he puts into his CV - "rmn", "psychiatric", "PICU", "mental health nurse", "registered mental nurse". A recruiter searching for mental health nurses will find John because his CV closely matches their search criteria.

We'd also suggest putting the most important keywords high up in the CV. Search engines can only do so much, but then a human will look at your CV. If John has written the key terms about himself clearly and near the top of his CV then they'll shortlist his CV immediately. An easy and useful way of doing this is to have a short personal statement near the top of your CV. If you then repeat some of the same keywords later in your employment history then this will work very well.

So, we think this might be a good way for John Doe to now add some more information to his CV. Note how high up his NMC Pin number appears on the CV. Finally, the very useful information for your next potential employer is

a. what you're doing now

b. what you'd like to do

c. a short paragraph summary of yourself

JOHN DOE - NMC PIN 12A3456B

Address: 9 Acacia Gardens, Tooting, Merton, London, SW25 789

Mobile: 01234 5678910

Email: john.doe@emaildomain.com

Current Nurse Job: Registered Mental Nurse (RMN) Psychiatric Unit

Current Employer: The Blah-Blah NHS Foundation Trust of Surreyshire

Experience: 7 years

Desired Nurse Job: Staff Nurse RMN jobs - PICU

Personal Statement

Currently employed as a Registered Mental Nurse by the NHS Foundation Trust in Surrey. My duties are working with patients in a Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). I've got 6 years experience of PICU, and my responsibilities include administering medication, restraint, checks and liaising with the rest of the health team including the consultant and psychiatric therapist. I manage the ward including the rota and staff numbers.

3.

Tell us about you

OK, now here's the interesting bit.

In CVs, we think, there's only one way to convey your employment record and that's in reverse chronology (current job first, your first ever job at the end of the list).

All you need to do is describe, briefly, your duties and responsibilities. We'd recommend bullet-points. It forces you to be brief. So let's see how this grows John's CV...

JOHN DOE - NMC PIN 12A3456B

Address: 9 Acacia Gardens, Tooting, Merton, London, SW25 789

Mobile: 01234 5678910

Email: john.doe@emaildomain.com

Current Nurse Job: Registered Mental Nurse (RMN) Psychiatric Unit

Current Employer: The Blah-Blah NHS Foundation Trust of Surreyshire

Experience: 7 years

Desired Nurse Job: Staff Nurse RMN jobs - PICU

Personal Statement

Currently employed as a Band 6 Registered Mental Nurse by the NHS Foundation Trust in Surrey. My duties are working with patients in a Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). I've got 6 years experience of PICU, and my responsibilities include administering medication, restraint, checks and liaising with the rest of the health team including the consultant and psychiatric therapist. I manage the ward including the rota and staff numbers.

Career History

Oct 2003-now

Blah-Blah Foundation Trust Hospital

Senior Nurse RMN Band 6

Assess the health care needs of all new patients / clients to the ward

Identify psychiatric, physical and substance misuse health care needs

Implement a programme of care and manage the treatment processes

Monitor treatment progress with team members

Work with the psychiatric team - therapist and consultant

Administer treatment medication when necessary and appropriate

Urine screening

Caseload management and reporting

Liaison with external agencies

Supervision and recruitment of bank/NHS pro/temp nurses

Emergency assessment and documentation

Jun 1997- Oct 2003, So-and-So Hospital

More bullet pointed info

Qualifications

Clearly, in an industry with such clear and necessary qualifications it's important you list and detail your nursing qualifications clearly and quickly. Put your qualifications after your employment history. They're crucial, but not more important than proof that you have been employed and put your qualifications into practice each day.

4.

CV Builder details - give your nursing CV some gloss

So that's the basics. You've presented your contact details, your key skills and your employment record.

That just leaves some tidying up and housekeeping... And it's this detail that may get your CV shortlisted over a competing applicant!

Use a common font type (Verdana, Lucida Grande, Arial, Georgia). Some unusual file types won't be read by ALL software

Use any software that can save as a .doc file (Microsoft Word or, better, Mac Pages). Everyone can open a .doc file.

Keep things brief. 2 sides of A4 is ample. If shorter, so much the better. But don't blindly follow the "must be on one page rule"

Explain any gaps in your employment history

Interests are only worth noting if they're interesting (everyone likes reading, socialising and going to the cinema - it's not worth putting regular interests!

References - just say 'on request'

Keep your CV up to date! If you upload your CV to a job board, make sure you frequent the jobs board and keep your CV and Profile up to date