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5 Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Resume Samples 2022

Author: Stephen Greet, Co-founder
Published on: February 7, 2022

You're a caring person. You like to look out for others and make sure they live happy, healthy lives.

You're a great certified nursing assistant (CNA), but you shouldn't also need to be an expert at writing a resume. It can be challenging to talk about your experience and qualifications on your resume in a way that demonstrates your expertise.

These CNA resume samples have helped professionals like yourself land jobs at great hospitals, rehab facilities, in-home care companies, and so many more! They're a great place for you to get started.

CNA Resume

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Download CNA Resume (PDF)

CNA resume example

Why this resume works

If you include a resume objective on your CNA resume, you should customize it for each job you apply to by matching the keywords mentioned in the job description.

To become a CNA, you need to be certified, which involves completing a training course followed by a certification exam, usually differing by state. The certificate usually lasts for two years, so make sure you include the year you were last certified on your resume. Similarly, most CNA jobs require that you're certified in CPR and First Aid, which also lasts for two years. Include the organization that certified you (like the American Red Cross or ACR) and the year.

Hospital CNA Resume

Hospital CNA resume example

Why this resume works

CNAs work in a wide variety of settings. Some focus on patients in hospitals, while others work with patients in rehabilitation facilities, or in-home health care. So when discussing your work history, you should demonstrate the environments in which you have experience.

When discussing skills on your hospital CNA resume, be as specific as possible but broad enough that a recruiter glancing at your resume can still keep up. The two most common skills we've seen for CNAs are Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and Vital Signs (both reading and measurement).

To become a CNA, a college degree is seldom required. If you have one, you should certainly include it in your resume. If you don't, include the highest level of degree you've obtained (usually high school or a GED). Our handy resume examples can offer visual insight! You should also list any certification training programs you've attended. Tap into our free resume builder if you find yourself despairing all these details!

Entry-Level CNA Resume

Entry level CNA resume example

Why this resume works

The most difficult certified nursing assistant job to land is your first one. Fortunately, this should become far more straightforward once you get your certification. Make sure you attend a training class if possible and study hard for the certification exam, which varies by state.

If you're a little light on relevant work experience and have compelling hobbies and interests (especially those that demonstrate leadership), feel free to include them. Strive to make your entry-level CNA resume fill up a single page.

For entry-level candidates, include past work experience, even if it's not in the medical field. This helps show your dependability.

Senior CNA Resume

Senior CNA resume example

Why this resume works

Craft your senior CNA resume with solid bullet points proving you've made an impact. Starting each bullet point with a strong action word (provided, led, helped) is a quick and easy way to achieve this.

You hold a lot of responsibilities as a CNA, some of which extend beyond medicine. When discussing your work experience, show that you can thrive at the more human-centered parts of the job, like light housekeeping and leading social activities.

The CNA certification generally lasts for two years. Getting re-certified usually doesn't require taking another exam, and it's mostly a formality. However, if you have a lot of experience, demonstrate that you've recently been re-certified (instead of certified for the first time).

Home Health CNA Resume

Home health CNA resume example

Why this resume works

Home Health CNAs spend their days in patients' homes who need extra care. The non-medical parts of the job are especially important for these CNAs. When discussing your work history, highlight your experience with these types of activities (like meal prep, housekeeping, and sociability).

Colleges throughout the country offer specialized certification training programs, with the end goal being a certification in nursing assistance. These programs vary state by state but generally last for 12 weeks. If you've attended one of these programs, then absolutely include it in your home health CNA resume.

Measuring vitals is also a technical and important part of the job. In addition to including it as a skill, try to devote at least one bullet point in your work experience to detailing your proficiency in this area.

Formatting Your Certified Nursing Assistant Resume

How you format your CNA resume can determine whether or not you will land the job. Therefore, it's crucial your resume is readable, logical, and looks complete. You should list your skills or training in reverse-chronological order, starting with the most recent. You should also make your format as appealing as possible so it's easy to read. Here are a few popular formats:

Reverse-chronological format, functional format, and combination/hybrid format

You can consider three popular formats for your CNA resume in 2022:

Reverse-chronological format

  • It's the best choice for your CNA resume since most recruiters prefer it.
  • It's easy to skim and quickly retrieve pertinent information.
  • It allows you to list relevant work experience or skills, starting with the most recent and working backward. You can use this format if you have a solid work history.
  • You may need to choose a different format if you're changing careers or have large gaps in work history.

Functional format

  • Instead of highlighting your employment history, this format emphasizes your skills. In place of work history, list your professional accomplishments and proficiencies first. You may choose to omit your employment history or place it near the bottom of your resume.
  • Functional formats are ideal for those changing careers or having large employment history gaps. It allows you to showcase the skills you possess for the position.
  • Many recruiters may not be as familiar with this format, so it may be difficult to pass through applicant tracking systems.

Combination/ hybrid format

  • As the name suggests, this format combines functional and reverse-chronological. You can list your skills at the top of your CNA resume and your reverse-chronological work history below it. However, your work history is not the main focus and rarely takes up much space.
  • This format lets you highlight what makes you the best fit for the job while still giving the recruiter what they're seeking.
  • The challenge with the combination/hybrid format is that it's more difficult to read, and the recruiter may have trouble getting it through the applicant tracking system.

Listing name, city, and how to contact

The header of your CNA resume must contain a few things for identification purposes:

  • Your name
    • Your name should be at the top of your CNA resume. Avoid making the busy recruiter scour for it. You can set it to size 18-22 font, bold, at the top since your CNA does not use a title. It's preferable to use black font for uniformity since it's easy to read, but sprinkles of subtle color are acceptable.
  • City
    • Your CNA resume can indicate your city, state, or both. Include your city location or area of residence. If you have security concerns, you can omit your street address. Check out our resume examples for quick design tips if you're feeling uncertain!
  • Contact details
    • Use your most current contact information. Include your contact details in the header. Provide your phone number, while email address and Linkedin profile are optional but helpful. Email addresses with the year of birth are not ideal due to age bias.

Notice the larger font for the name here, in comparison with the job title.

CNA resume contact information

Get through the ATS

Companies widely use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to check applicant qualifications. Therefore, it's advisable to read the job description carefully and use the exact wording within your resume. Hiring managers set most ATS systems to search for keywords, so avoid using acronyms. Here are a few ways your CNA resume can pass the ATS:

    • Use a clean format
      • Overly-playful visuals can make your CNA resume hard to read. Maintain a simple format without using graphics or unusual fonts. Use black ink, font size between 10.2-12, and Calibri, New Times Roman, or Arial fonts. Your margins should also be consistently one inch. The ATS can't process fancy formats, so exercising too much creativity could cause an automatic rejection. Create a one-page resume a busy recruiter can effortlessly scan and digest.
    • Use simple headers
      • Simple headers accommodate the ATS since they are on a keyword search for specific skills, professional experience, and education. Arrange your resume contents in a logical order so that the ATS can find important information. Include your city since most recruiters vet applicants according to location.
    • Check for keywords
      • Your choice of words is key to getting your resume accepted by the ATS. Use words relevant to the job description or industry-specific terminologies, such as "patient care," or "clinical research." If you need help crafting your CNA resume, you can use our handy resume builder.

Writing Your Certified Nursing Assistant Resume

Writing an effective CNA resume can be overwhelming, but our resume builder is here to simplify your work. It can help you elevate your product to an excellent piece. Experts design our templates so that you can benefit from our free AI resume checker. This savvy tool makes editing, tailoring, or updating your existing resume a cinch, while our resume builder tool allows you to craft your CNA resume step-by-step from scratch. Our tools offer some excellent ideas on what to include in your resume objective and summary. Here are a few things you might need on your resume:

When do you need to include a resume objective or summary?

Most hiring managers take a brief amount of time skimming through resumes, considering the significant number of applicants applying for a position. Writing a CNA resume objective or summary is a way to catch their attention and stand out from other applicants. A resume objective highlights significant aspects of your character, career goals, roles, and qualifications. Potential employers are interested in knowing who they're about to hire. Having a compelling objective makes it easier for the hiring manager to glimpse who you are and your role-related strengths.

Resume objectives can be useful.

    • If you're considering a career change
    • If you're interviewing for an entry-level position
    • If you've recently switched locations/areas of residence
    • If you're willing to tailor it to each job for which you apply

In contrast, writing a vague objective statement can work against you.

  • Vague objective example: I am a recent graduate with a passion for the job that you are offering. It would be my sincere pleasure to work for you.
    • Significant aspects like the job description, specific qualifications, and company name are missing in this case. Generic objectives fail to hook or impress.

Appeal to potential employers by including detailed qualifications.

  • Example: Compassionate CNA nurse with over ten years experience working in three major hospitals. Having graduated from John Hopkins School of Nursing, I look forward to using my excellent communication, expertise, and empathy with all John Muir patients.
  • Example: Nursing is a calling. As a member of the nursing community with six years of experience, I'm eager to collaborate with Kaiser Permanente in helping patients recover and victims heal.

If you have considerable work experience and a diverse skillset that distinguishes you from the crowd, you can add a summary. A good resume summary should include your work experience and specializations valuable to the organization. Generally, it's best to keep your resume objective/summary statements concise since readers often gloss over your resume. 

A well-crafted summary can be a useful tool in your CNA resume.

  • A poor summary: I am a nurse looking for work. I can help your institution grow into a highly-esteemed medical center.

Such a summary statement is vague and fails to illustrate your strengths, lengthy work experience, or why you desire to work for the target business.

  • Compare the previous yawn-worthy summary with the following on-point examples:
    • Three-time award-winning nurse specializing in childcare and emergency services. Highly computer savvy, I'm looking to hone my 12-years of expertise with San Francisco General Hospital. 
    • Dedicated registered nurse looking to advance my 11-year labor and delivery career by joining a caring, patient-centered organization like Sutter Hospital.

    Work history

    Your CNA resume should also include a work history section so employers can determine how to align your skills with their interests. Although it's crucial to provide a detailed description of your previous work, you also want to keep your information concise. If you have an extensive work history, try including your last two to four engagements, detailing how long you worked in each, your roles, and how each experience shaped your skills and personality. Ideally, you can also include relevant accomplishments, awards, and other distinctions that show you're a perfect fit.

    How to write strong job description bullet points

    Job descriptions are essential for both employers and employees. A good job description should highlight your responsibilities, job title/position, a brief overview, and an ideal salary range. Take the time to research the work culture and other vital information.

    Maintain consistent verb tenses and punctuation. Avoid using personal pronouns. Furthermore, it's also a good idea to use active sentences in your resume.

    Examples of poor job description-relevant bullets include:

      1. Took care of patient needs
      2. Assessed patient conditions
      3. Assisted co-workers with additional services

    Poor job description bullet points reduce your chances of securing employment. Such job description bullets are too vague to captivate potential employers. The roles in each are poorly defined, and employers can't get a solid idea of how to quantify your performance.

    Compare the previous job description bullets with the following improvements:

      1. Assessed needs and implemented appropriate care, providing 17 daily terminal patients with bathing, fresh linens, making their beds, and engaging in conversation to help them live out fulfilling lives
      2. Assisted 6 doctors and 4 nurses, ensuring they were well-equipped with fresh, sterilized supplies and informed of individual patient progress more than 8 times per day
      3. Represented the care center's ideals, morals, and commitment to quality for 20 patients daily

    Tailoring bullet points to the job description remains an invaluable tool for young entrants and experienced professionals. A look at the last three job description bullets highlights why some applicants would succeed over others. The latter offers a detailed description of a CNA's duties, gives tangible metrics, and implies what management can expect from them.

    Add numbers to show your impact

    Numbers can have a significant effect on your resume's appearance. Including metrics is a sure way of spicing up your CNA resume, making it more appealing for potential employers.

    Include at least three to four numbers or statistics in your resume for a more professional touch. You can also use numbers to show data, improve credibility and rankings.

    Here are some ideas for incorporating numbers within your resume:

      • Patient numbers: you can mention the specific number of patients you've served.
        • For instance: Attended to 16 daily patients, 85% of whom had undergone a successful surgery
      • Revenue: consider discussing revenue increases from your department during your duration.
        • For instance: Impacted team morale and productivity, resulting in a 25% increase in revenue, complemented by a 97% improvement in patient satisfaction ratings
      • Time: use metrics to detail the specific duration of your professional engagements.
        • For instance: Built skills as a CNA specialist for 15 years, enhancing the workplace for a team of 11 other nurses and 60+ monthly patients

    The best CNA skills to include

    As a CNA, you need a combination of soft and hard skills. Soft skills relate to the interpersonal aspects of your job, such as communication, leadership, and empathy. In contrast, hard skills focus on the technical aspects of your job, such as knowledge of HIPAA regulations, EMR, and obtaining vital signs. Include a blend of hard and soft skills to show your qualifications and give your resume a human touch.

    Examples of skills you can include on your CNA resume

    1. Communication 
    2. Empathy
    3. Time management
    4. Teamwork
    5. Microsoft Outlook, PowerPoint
    6. Knowledge of OSHA 
    7. Medication administration

      Don't forget to research job ad keywords to determine and include potential skills that qualify you with the recruiter and the ATS.

      Education, awards, and certificates

      Remember to include your CNA certificate, graduate/diploma certificates, and additional certifications from specialized courses that you may have undertaken. Certifications are a definite means of ensuring credibility. Always include your relevant educational certificates in your CNA resume to show your potential employer that you have the necessary qualifications for the position.

      Build confidence in potential employers by listing your certs!

      CNA resume certifications

      Adding projects, interests, hobbies, and activities

      Adding hobbies, interests, and projects helps employers understand your traits and measure how well you might fit into the organization's working environment. Projects are not particularly important for experienced professionals, but they can be a valuable addition for entry-level applicants hoping to show relevant, though possibly unpaid, experience.

      Examples of hobbies and interests include:

      • Led weekly CPR training club for local high school students
      • Captain of my college basketball team

      Examples of projects include:

      • Developed 6-month memory loss study and solutions for 12 aging volunteer patients
      • Designed patient-centric care ideas by interviewing and assessing 18 volunteer patients who had undergone recent surgeries and short-term care through local hospitals

      Remember to research the job descriptions for keywords that could help align your hobbies/interests and projects with those of your potential employer.

      Customizing your resume for each job

      Tailor your certified nursing assistant resume for each job application. Customizing your resume to each job shows the hiring manager that you cared enough to research the position and sincerely desire to work with their company. Learn about the workplace culture, and use that information to write an enticing resume that perfectly suits what your recruiters want. Create new summaries, objectives, and bullets as necessary to make your resume look hand-tailored to the specific job every time.

      Notice how you can customize your objective to the target business.

      CNA resume objective

      Double-check for any errors

      Spelling mistakes, formatting errors, and other trivialities can negatively impact the quality and desirability of your CNA resume. Therefore, it's crucial to double-check your work before uploading or sharing your resume with recruitment agencies. You can use a spellchecker to help improve punctuation, spelling, and sentence structure. Additionally, our free resume checker can remove your doubts and help you create an error-free, easy-to-read masterpiece in no time! 

      Secure That Position!

      Congratulations! You're now ready to share your certified nursing assistant resume with the world. Consider the essential aspects to include in your resume while making it as brief but detailed as you possibly can.

      Here is what you need to remember:

      • Pick a suitable format
      • Include name, city, and contact information
      • Outsmart the ATS (applicant tracking system)
      • When to use objectives/summaries
      • Work history/job description
      • Include hard and soft CNA skills
      • List education certifications and add relevant hobbies and interests when appropriate
      • Customize your resume
      • Check for errors

       We are good to go!

      After everything checks out, share your CNA resume proudly with hiring managers and ready yourself for the next exciting step in your career!

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