- 28 June 2018
- 5 min read
How to write a nursing personal statement for your first nurse job application
Your personal statement is a vital part of your first nursing application. Here's the information you need on how to create it.
You should take some time to draft, re-write and refine it until you’re completely happy with it.
It’s your opportunity to talk directly to the employer about your experiences, your skills and most importantly why you’re the right nurse for the job.
An employer will usually have to read several personal statements in the course of recruiting for just one newly qualified staff nurse, so it’s vital yours is well written and stands out from the rest.
If you can engage the reader from the very beginning, they will not only finish reading your personal statement in full, but they will also have a clear idea in their head of who you are and how you could fit into the job they are recruiting for.
How To Begin Your Nursing Personal Statement
> Draw attention to your personal achievements, completed placements and learning outcomes that make you the ideal nurse to fill the job.
> List the skills you have that are relevant to the nursing job you’re applying for
> Draw attention to any placements as well as all the learning outcomes you achieved
> Make use of your nursing portfolio
> Draw upon reflections you completed and use one as an example to illustrate how you overcame a particular challenge that could be related to the role
Draft Everything Together
The next step is to draft all the information together into a document.
Don’t worry about the length of it at this stage because you will come back to edit it later.
Include all your achievements as a student nurse, and reference your nursing portfolio where appropriate.
Give practical examples of how you have learned, applied and improved upon the key skills required.
Show you have a clear understanding of the job, the responsibilities, and what will be required of you as a newly qualified staff nurse.
Gather all the information from the job description and person specification, then detail how you fit the requirements and how the skills you listed earlier fit those requirements.
Research whether or not they are offering a preceptorship, or a supernumerary introduction period. You can include some detail about the learning outcomes you plan to achieve during this period, and how this will help you be a better nurse.
Recruiting is a time consuming and expensive activity, so any employer will expect to see that you have plans to develop your nursing skills and progress within the organisation.
Revise And Edit
When writing the first draft of your personal statement, it’s common to write more words in a sentence than you actually need, and to write as things spring to mind.
When you re-read your draft you will probably find the order in which you refer to your nursing skills may need to change according to how relevant they are to the job.
> Make sure there is a flow to your writing
> Always draw attention to your skills, experience, and passion
> Have an objective, experienced and motivated voice throughout,Sound confident and professional
> All the experience you’ve had is relevant.
> Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you aren’t experienced just because you haven’t worked as a fully qualified registered nurse before
> Address all the essential criteria and the desirable ones that you also fulfil.
If you’re happy with the content, the next step is to proof read it. Either give it to a friend or come back to it the following day so the text isn’t fresh in your mind.
Be very strict with your writing, and chop out any unnecessary words that don’t fulfill a purpose or are repeating a point you’ve already made.
Always Refer To The Role
Unless you’re applying for the same type of nursing role every time, you shouldn’t use a personal statement more than once and even then, you will still need to adjust small parts of it to fit each application.
Every time you apply for a nursing job, your personal statement should be tailored specifically according to the person specification and job role.
Of course you can adjust the original as you see fit, but don’t send off exactly the same version time and time again. It’s easy to spot a recycled personal statement and it doesn’t exactly convey your commitment to the role if you haven’t bothered to re-write your personal statement.