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What should an experienced nurse include on her resume?

Dear Donna,

How far back should I go on my resume? I am an experienced nurse and have had a number of nursing positions in the last 37 years. It just seems like too much information to put on a resume. Do employers really need to know what I did 37 years ago?

Resume Quandary

Dear Resume Quandary,

You are right when you say that including all 37 years of work experience on your resume is too much. Less is more today. Prospective employers are on information overload and only need and want to know what is most current and relevant.

The rule of thumb, which is flexible rather than rigid, is to go back about 15-20 years maximum. Beyond that you can include a one-sentence statement such as “Prior to this had experience in several major medical centers” or whatever your previous experience is. This way you are letting others know you have additional experience but are not bogging them down with details they likely don’t care about.

Best wishes,

By | 2021-05-07T16:32:23-04:00 July 22nd, 2015|Categories: Nursing Careers and Jobs|0 Comments

About the Author:

Donna Cardillo
Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, CSP, is president of Known as The Inspiration Nurse, she is a keynote speaker, retreat and seminar leader, and author of "Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional" and "The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career." She brings more than 25 years of clinical, management and business experience to her role as career guru.

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