You never get a second chance to make a first impression, and that’s why it’s so important to put your best foot forward when preparing your certified nursing assistant (CNA) resume. Whether you’re an experienced CNA or just getting started, you can benefit from looking at sample resumes from other CNAs and following some basic guidelines to improve your resume writing. While it’s important to keep your CNA skills sharp so you can excel at the job, it’s also extremely important to hone your CNA resume skills to make certain you can land the nursing assistant jobs you want throughout your career. Let’s break down the basic components of the resume and how you should approach them.
This is an area where many people go wrong with their resumes. While there are areas in life where excessive creativity can be a good thing, you don’t want to distract potential employers with unnecessary frills when it comes to your resume’s design and layout. Avoid pictures, images, or anything that will distract from your credentials. Lay things out in a common format (more on that below). Rather than starting from scratch, it makes sense to work from one of the many available templates you can find online. This will help ensure your formatting will be clean and professional looking.
We’ve assembled a couple links to downloadable CNA resume examples that you can use and modify in Microsoft Word. Just click on the images below to download.
Entry Level CNA Resume Template Download (.docx)
Experienced CNA Resume Template Download (.docx)
Here are some additional links to downloadable CNA resume sample templates from Monster.com that can also help to get you started. Feel free to download any of the provided CNA resume samples and personalize the details:
Provide all of the basics here including your full name, address, phone number, and email address. Professionalism is key here, so make sure that you use an email address that looks professional. [emailprotected] seems much less like a serious job candidate than [emailprotected] Also keep in mind here that you’ll be receiving phone calls from potential employers, so be sure that your voicemail message is straightforward and professional sounding.
In one or two sentences this is your chance to quickly explain who you are and what you’re looking for in your next CNA job. The CNA’s resume objective is usually the first substantive thing that a potential employer sees when looking at a Certified Nursing Assistant resume, so get to the point quickly and concisely, and try to tailor it to the job description of the job you’re applying for if possible. So, for example, if the job is in a nursing home facility, you may want to mention specifically that you’re seeking a position in a nursing home.
- Trustworthy, team player seeking to utilize service skills to transition into the healthcare field as a CNA at a nursing home where I can use my skills to assist residents.
- Experienced CNA with excellent patient care skills seeking a specialized position as a Psychiatric Aide.
Skills and Qualifications
Don’t overthink or underthink this section. For entry-level CNAs, they may try to add too much to this section to compensate for a lack of skills, while CNAs with fewer years of experience CNAs may overlook some basic skills that they may not feel are noteworthy. You’ll want to have a mix of healthcare and nursing specific skills as well as some general skills to show that you’re a well-rounded employee. Some examples of these types of skills can be seen below.
Example of general skills:
- Strong communication skills
- Highly organized and detail oriented
- Works well in a team based environment
Healthcare and nursing skills:
- First-aid and CPR certified (include the date of certification)
- Privacy and HIPAA Regulations
- Patient care and safety
- Vital signs and patient monitoring
Be careful when listing the skills and qualifications that you use the correct terminology and don’t make any typos or spelling errors. You don’t want your attempt to look qualified to backfire on you.
In the education section of your resume, you should list your most recent educational experience at the top of your list – which most likely is your CNA training. Add the name of the program or school along with the city, state, and the date of completion. If you’re still working on obtaining your certification, rather than the date of completion you can make a note that your certification is “in process” or provide a target completion date. If you are a recent high school graduate, you can add that to the list, but if it’s been more than five years since graduation you can skip that detail. In addition to your standard educational items, you can list other formal training you’ve received here such as computer courses you’ve completed at another job, or any applicable medical training.
The CNA schools displayed in this section offer tuition-based programs.
Your work experience should highlight your relevant experience as a CNA if possible. If you’re an entry-level CNA you’ll want to call out your clinical experience and any extern work that you’ve done. Provide the date, location and a short list of the patient care work you did including any specifics such as assisting with blood pressure readings, vital signs, bathing, feeding, grooming, etc. If you are a CNA with more experience you can go into greater detail of job specifics and also call out any specialized work that you’ve done and work recognition that you’ve received.
Typically, CNA resumes should include two or three references from past co-workers, supervisors or instructors. If you’ve had prior work experience, make sure at least one of the references listed was a supervisor so they can speak to your abilities as an employee, whether you have prior medical experience or not. When it comes to listing references, don’t make the mistake of listing people who haven’t given you permission to list them as a reference. Speak to any potential references first so they won’t be caught off guard when they receive a call and can be mentally prepared to give you a positive referral.
Other Job Hunting Tips
Perception is important, and many employers will do a quick search on social media platforms to gain insight into potential employees as part of the hiring process. If you’re active on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter you’ll want to be careful of how your account is set up or how you manage it. Make sure that you don’t post any objectionable content that could concern employers, or you’ll want to lock down your settings to make sure your profiles are private and only available to people you choose.
It’s also wise to provide supporting documents when applying for a position. It’s wise to send along a cover letter that you can tailor a bit for each job you apply for. Additionally, if you have letters of recommendation, those can be another way to help separate yourself from other candidates.
Where to find CNA job opportunities
There are a number of tried and true CNA job searching sites that are specific to CNAs that can help you find local opportunities. Here are a few of the more popular ones.
There are also standard job searching sites that list CNA jobs among their listings.
Another valuable tool to find local positions is to simply search for Google using your target area. You can do searches for things like “nursing assistant atlanta, georgia”, or “palm springs nurse aide”, or you can look for local nursing homes or medical facilities and browse their career pages. If you find an open position that asks for you to fill out an application, be sure to find an email address to send along your resume as well. You’ll stick out to the hiring manager if you show some extra diligence in your application process.
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How do you make a CNA sound good on a resume? ›
- Attention to detail.
- Verbal and written communication.
- Knowledge of medical terminology.
- Understanding of common disorders.
- Proper hygiene.
- Choose a layout. There are a variety of layouts and designs to use for your CNA resume with no experience. ...
- Write a professional objective or summary. ...
- Add your education. ...
- List your experience. ...
- Use action words. ...
- Share strong references. ...
- Proofread extensively.
To obtain employment as a CNA at Hospital X to help doctors and registered nurses in the emergency room by applying my knowledge of first aid and basic life-saving skills. To earn a position at Hospital X that enables me to work first-hand with terminally ill children and adults.What soft skills should a CNA have on resume? ›
- Strong Attention to Detail. Certified nursing assistants must have good attention to detail. ...
- Excellent Communication Skills. Clear and direct communication is key for a CNA career. ...
- Knowledge of Medical Terminology. ...
- Patience. ...
- Empathy and Compassion. ...
- Flexibility. ...
Skills crucial for CNAs involving communication and behavior include: Ability to explain procedures well to patients. Actively listening to the patient's needs and healthcare provider's instructions. Wide medical background especially knowledge in medical terms and procedures.What are your greatest strengths as a CNA? ›
Compassion and Empathy.
These are qualities that can't be taught as a nursing assistant. To have the ability to show compassion and put yourself in someone else's shoes and understand how they're feeling is a much-needed trait to have while in this career.
The key to creating a resume that will land you a job when you have no experience is to focus on the professional skills that you have learned at school or during the course of social activities. For instance, you may have learned leadership skills at a summer camp, or you might have taught yourself programming.How do you sell yourself on a resume with no experience? ›
You can create a killer no-experience resume by emphasizing your education instead. Include relevant internships, soft & hard skills, and projects. Other sections you can include on your resume are hobbies & interests, languages, certifications, or achievements.What to say on a resume if you have no experience? ›
Writing a resume with no formal work experience means emphasizing other aspects of your life that'll showcase your skills and passions—like your education, and involvement in activities like extracurriculars or volunteering. Having dedicated sections for a summary and a list of skills can round out your resume.What is a skill example? ›
Technical skills: computer skills, programming languages, social media, and enterprise software. Problem-solving skills: creativity, critical thinking, and analytical skills. Customer-service skills: active listening, time management, and prioritization. Interpersonal skills: communication, teamwork, and empathy.
What is the perfect objective for a resume? ›
Here's how to write an objective for a resume:
Start with a strong trait, add 2–3 key skills, describe your professional goals, and say what you hope to do for the company. State the position to which you're applying and use the name of the company. Keep it short: 2–3 sentences or 30–50 words is the sweet spot.
A certified nursing assistant, also known as a nurse assistant or CNA, assists patients with various activities in hospitals, nursing homes and other facilities under the direction of a nurse in charge. CNAs often help people under their care with day-to-day activities such as bathing, toileting, dressing, etc.What are some weaknesses as a CNA? ›
- Spending too much time on paperwork.
- Paying too much attention to detail.
- Attempting to complete too many tasks at once.
- A lack of clinical experience, which may apply to recent graduates or new nurses.
- Indirect care.
- Measuring blood pressure.
- Measuring body temperature.
- Measuring and recording pulse.
- Measuring and recording respiration.
- Measuring the output from a urinary bag.
- Ambulation with a gait belt.
- Time management.
- Teamwork skills.
- Interpersonal skills.
The six principles of care listed by the American Red Cross / CNA in their training materials are dignity, infection control, safety, communication, independence, and privacy.What motivates you as a CNA? ›
Emotionally Rewarding. One of the main reasons a person chooses to become a CNA stems from the emotionally rewarding aspects of the work they do for their patients. You have the chance to impact the lives of people based on the care you provide.Why should we hire you as a CNA answers? ›
Anything that makes you great at caring for patients, working in a healthcare facility environment, or even working as part of a team would be a good answer. My greatest strength as a CNA is my ability to stay calm under pressure.How do you answer your skills you don't have? ›
In addressing the question, you should admit that you don't have the skill but then quickly backup your answer with “supportive reasoning,” he explains. Drexler uses this example: A hiring manager asks whether you have experience using PowerPoint and you've never used it before.How do you write training experience? ›
- Review the job description. ...
- Highlight training in a professional summary. ...
- Describe your training experience. ...
- List your training skills. ...
- Include additional training information.
How do you explain you have no experience? ›
If you're asked a question about prior experience regarding something you've never done, the best way to answer isn't to say, “No, I've never done that.” Or, “No, I don't have experience in that area.” The best way to handle the question is to say something along these lines: While I have not had any direct experience ...How do I sell myself in 30 seconds? ›
- Know exactly what you want to achieve. ...
- Bullet point it. ...
- Tell a story. ...
- Eliminate jargon. ...
- Make sure it invites conversation. ...
- Time yourself. ...
- Record yourself on video. ...
- Pitch it to your friends and colleagues.
- Highlight your stand-out features. ...
- Ensure correct spelling and grammar. ...
- Keep it directional with the most relevant points.
- Technical skills.
- Computer skills.
- Microsoft Office skills.
- Analytical skills.
- Marketing skills.
- Presentation skills.
- Management skills.
- Project management skills.
- Internships and/or apprenticeships.
- Self-employment experience.
- Volunteer work.
- Extracurricular clubs and activities.
- Projects that you've completed through school or other organizations.
- Critical thinking and problem solving.
- Teamwork and collaboration.
- Professionalism and strong work ethic.
- Oral and written communications skills.
- Problem solving.
- Initiative and enterprise.
- Planning and organising.
Resume strengths are things you're best at, traits or capabilities that make you excel at your work. Often they are talents that let you exceed expectations. Sometimes, they are even special abilities you may not be aware of, because they're part of who you are.What is a personal summary for resume? ›
The personal statement is a short paragraph that sits right below your contact information at the top of a resume. It sums up your experience, goals and skills with confidence. Think of your resume's personal statement like an extended tagline for your career.
How far back should a resume go? ›
Don't go back more than 10 to 15 years
The majority of experts agree that a resume should only include the last 10 to 15 years of employment, and there are several good reasons for this.
resources. Ethical nursing care is defined as promoting the values of client well-being, respecting client choice, assuring privacy and confidentiality, respecting quality of life, maintaining commitments, respecting truthfulness and ensuring fairness in the use of resources.How do you answer tell me about yourself as a CNA? ›
Paint a positive picture of yourself by detailing your relevant accomplishments, showing your passion for the role, and focusing on how you've helped others in the past. Share something unique about yourself to ensure the interviewer remembers you, and end on an upbeat note that connects your response to this job.How much does CNA make an hour? ›
As of Feb 4, 2023, the average hourly pay for a CNA in the United States is $16.03 an hour. While ZipRecruiter is seeing hourly wages as high as $24.76 and as low as $8.89, the majority of CNA wages currently range between $12.98 (25th percentile) to $18.03 (75th percentile) across the United States.What are 3 areas of improvement? ›
- 1) Time management. Time management is crucial to your business's success. ...
- 2) Organization. Organization can make time management much easier. ...
- 3) Interpersonal communication. ...
- 4) Customer service. ...
- 5) Cooperation. ...
- 6) Conflict resolution. ...
- 7) Listening. ...
- 8) Written communication.
- Too self-critical.
- Too critical of other people's work.
- Difficulty delegating tasks.
- Too detail-oriented.
- Need more experience in X.
- Impatient with others.
- Unfamiliar with X.
- Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including those on social media. ...
- Take care of yourself. ...
- Take care of your body. ...
- Make time to unwind. ...
- Talk to others. ...
- Connect with your community- or faith-based organizations.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol.
- Practice your skills as taught by your instructor and as demonstrated in your text book. ...
- With each skill you perform during your test, remember to introduce yourself. ...
- Get a good night's sleep before your test. ...
- Eat a good meal before your test.
The Highest-Paying States for CNAs.
|San Jose — Sunnyvale — Santa Clara, CA||$47,690|
|San Francisco — Oakland — Hayward, CA||$47,500|
Is the CNA Exam Hard? The exam can be hard if Nursing Assistants do not have the knowledge and skills needed to pass the exam. The written or oral section of the exam may consist of approximately 70 questions, but the exact number of questions varies by state.
How do you describe a nursing assistant on a resume? ›
Compassionate, service-oriented Certified Nursing Assistant with 3+ years of experience in a fast-paced hospital setting. Passionate about providing personalized care to patients, focusing on comfort, safety, and patient dignity.How do you sound impressive on a resume? ›
- Use text that's clear. ...
- Use bullets and numbered lists to separate large bodies of text.
- Make sure to clearly define the sections of your resume.
- Simplify any complicated wording or lengthy phrases.
- Proofread for spelling and grammatical errors.
- Maintain consistency of voice and tone.
- Edit your resume for every job. ...
- Prioritize. ...
- Use bullets in addition to narrative paragraphs. ...
- Quantify your accomplishments. ...
- Show what you have accomplished on the job. ...
- Keep it concise.
Their everyday job duties include helping patients with dressing, bathing, grooming, feeding, and exercising. They assist other nursing staff, such as LPNs and RNs, with medical tasks such as monitoring vital signs and reporting patient wellbeing.What are 3 common nursing assistant duties? ›
- Turning or moving patients.
- Gathering medical supplies.
- Bathing patients.
- Grooming patients by brushing their hair, teeth, shaving them, etc.
- Feeding patients and documenting their food and liquid intake.
- Checking vital signs such as blood pressure and heart rate.