How to craft compeling nurse cover letter

The medical industry is dependent on skilled nurses to handle everything from providing patients with counseling and advice to conducting physical exams, administering medications, and more. To earn a position as a nurse, you need a cover letter that perfectly showcases your professional passion and qualifications.

In this guide, we will teach you the 5 essential steps for writing a cover letter as a nurse. Keep reading to learn all about how to:

  • Properly format your nurse cover letter header & headline
  • Personalize the content & greeting of your nurse cover letter
  • Craft a compelling nurse cover letter introduction
  • Showcase your most relevant skills & accomplishments as a nurse
  • Conclude your nurse cover letter with an effective closing statement

1. Properly format your nurse cover letter header & headline

The first key step to writing an excellent cover letter as a nurse is to create a well-formatted header and headline.

A cover letter header contains all the necessary identifying information about you and the medical facility you are applying to, while the cover letter headline is an optional yet highly useful title statement used for hooking an employer’s attention.

Your cover letter header should include:

  • Your name and professional title
  • Your professional contact information
  • The name and department of the medical facility you are applying to
  • The medical facility’s address and location

Here is an example of a well-formatted header on a nurse’s cover letter

Mary Smith, Registered Nurse

(123) 456-7890 | marysmith@email.com | linkedin.com/in/mary-smith

To: Glenvale Urgent Care
Nursing Department
1234 Street Address
New Haven, CT, 06501

After your header comes your headline, which should always include a keyword related to the position, an eye-catching number or trigger word, a powerful adjective or verb, and a promise statement that informs the employer this letter is tailored for the position.

Here is an example of a compelling nurse’s headline, followed by a brief breakdown of its core components

My 5 Best Skills as a Nurse & How I Will Apply Them to Provide Empathetic Care to Your Patients

Trigger Word/Number: 5 Skills
Keyword: Nurse
Adjective/Verb: Best, Apply, Empathetic
Promise: Your Patients

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2. Personalize the content & greeting of your nurse cover letter

In your headline, you included a promise statement that indicates to an employer that your cover letter is tailored for the exact position you are applying to.

This makes it incredibly important to follow through with this promise and thoroughly research the medical facility before applying to complete this tailoring process. To personalize your cover letter in this way, you will need to look up information such as:

  • The medical facility’s current goals, projects, or initiatives – use this information to explain how you can apply your skills for the company’s current needs.
  • The language and keywords the medical facility uses in marketing materials – use this information to alter your cover letter to reflect the company’s own writing style.
  • The person at the medical facility who will review your cover letter – use this information to create a personalized greeting that addresses a specific person by name.

Here are 3 examples of personalized cover letter greetings

  • Dear Head Nurse Jack Jones,
  • Dear Mr. Jack Jones,
  • Dear R.N. Jack Jones & the Nursing Team,

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3. Craft a compelling nurse cover letter introduction

Your introduction is the first full paragraph of your nursing cover letter and serves a key purpose – to convince an employer to continue reading.

To make your nurse’s introduction compelling, make sure to include:

  • A concise overview of your professional experience and any specializations you possess
  • A statement on why you have chosen to apply to this facility
  • A mutual acquaintance (when possible) – mutual acquaintances help to immediately establish rapport and credibility with an employer

Pro Tip: If you do not have a mutual acquaintance, consider using the professional platform LinkedIn to grow your professional network. Connect on the platform with other nurses and medical professionals, as well as current employees at the facilities or institutions you are most interested in.

Here is an example of a well-written nurse cover letter introduction

Dear Head Nurse Jack Jones,

I am a registered nurse with more than 3 years of experience working in nursing homes and palliative care centers. As a dedicated medical professional, this opening at your facility excites me because my professional beliefs and practices are well-aligned with your facility’s mission and goals. My former employer, Mr. George Green, is a former colleague of yours who alerted me to this opening and strongly recommended I apply for this position.

4. Showcase your most relevant skills & accomplishments as a nurse

Following your introduction are the body paragraphs of your cover letter where you will provide greater insights into your skills and accomplishments as a nurse.

As you describe your various, relevant skills and accomplishments, make sure to include details that are:

  • Specific: Rather than simply stating a skill or accomplishment, use exact keywords to give these details greater specificity.
  • Contextual: Always include contextual information, such as explaining your role or responsibilities at a previous job.
  • Quantifiable: Whenever possible, include quantifiable and verifiable facts or statistics when describing your skills and accomplishments.

Here are 6 examples of nursing skills that are excellent to describe in a cover letter

  • Patient consultations and preparation
  • Administering medications and vaccines
  • Performing standard laboratory tests
  • Providing patients with treatment instructions and education
  • Knowledge and certification in first aid care
  • Maintaining patient records (physical & electronic)

Here is an example of how to describe an accomplishment in a nursing cover letter

As a registered nurse at [Former Employer], I worked directly with patients, providing education and instructional resources to guide them through treatment plans. As a result of my empathetic and personalized care, I received more than 100 positive online reviews and helped to raise the practice’s customer satisfaction rating by 75%.

5. Conclude your nurse cover letter with an effective closing statement

Finish off your nurse’s cover letter strong with an effective closing statement that encourages an employer to get in contact with you. This closing statement should include:

  • How and when you can be contacted
  • When you would like to hear from the employer
  • When you plan to follow up on your application
  • A formal sign-off

Here is an example of an effective conclusion from a nurse’s cover letter

I am eager to learn more about your facility and staff, and hope to hear from you within the next week. If I have not heard back by next Monday, I plan to follow up regarding the status of my application. I am available to talk or meet any weekday between the hours of 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and the best way to reach me is at (123) 456-7890, or at marysmith@gmail.com after hours.

Appreciatively,

[Applicant Name]

If you have ever wondered how a cover letter differs from a resume, this article will tell you everything about the key differences between the two.

Martin is a resume expert and career advice writer at Kickresume. In his five years at Kickresume, he has written nearly 100 in-depth, painstakingly researched resume advice articles and, as chief editor, he has also edited and revised every single article on this website. Tens of thousands of job seekers read Martin’s resume advice every month. He holds a degree in English from the University of St Andrews and a degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Amsterdam.

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