Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter Example & How-To (2023 Guide)

Written by James Vandersmith

May 1, 2023

a medical stethoscope and clipboard with a pen, representing the role of a Registered Nurse, hand-drawn abstract illustration for a company blog, in style of corporate memphis, faded colors, white background, professional, minimalist, clean lines

When applying for a registered nurse (RN) position, one of the most critical components of your job application is your cover letter. Your cover letter serves as an introduction to your skills and experience, providing insights into why you’re the perfect fit for the job. In this article, we’ll be discussing what employers look for in a registered nurse (RN) cover letter example, essential components of a registered nurse (RN) cover letter, common mistakes to avoid when writing one, and final steps on writing your registered nurse (RN) cover letter, including an example and frequently asked questions at the end.

What Employers Look For In A Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter Example

The primary objective of your cover letter as an RN is to convince potential employers that you have the qualifications and experience necessary to provide outstanding care for patients while contributing to the success of the healthcare organization you’re applying to be a part of. Employers typically look for the following aspects in a registered nurse (RN) cover letter:

  • Qualifications and credentials.
  • Relevant experience.
  • Passion for and commitment to the profession.
  • Familiarity with the organization and industry.

As a registered nurse, you have undergone extensive training and education to earn your qualifications and credentials. When writing your cover letter, be sure to highlight your specific areas of expertise and any specialized training you have received. This will demonstrate to potential employers that you have the knowledge and skills necessary to provide exceptional care to patients.

Additionally, relevant experience is crucial when applying for a registered nurse position. Be sure to include any previous positions you have held in the healthcare industry, highlighting specific responsibilities and accomplishments. This will show potential employers that you have a proven track record of success in the field.

However, qualifications and experience alone are not enough to make you stand out in a competitive job market. Employers want to see that you are passionate about the profession and committed to providing the best possible care to patients. Be sure to convey your enthusiasm for nursing in your cover letter, highlighting any volunteer work or extracurricular activities that demonstrate your dedication to the field.

Finally, it is essential to research the organization and industry you are applying to be a part of. This will demonstrate to potential employers that you are familiar with their mission and values and that you are committed to contributing to their success. Be sure to tailor your cover letter to the specific organization and industry, highlighting how your skills and experience align with their needs.

In summary, a successful RN cover letter should showcase your qualifications and experience, demonstrate your passion for the profession, and highlight your familiarity with the organization and industry. By following these guidelines, you will increase your chances of landing your dream job as a registered nurse.

Essential Components of a Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter

In today’s competitive job market, it’s important to make a great first impression with your cover letter. As a registered nurse (RN), your cover letter is your chance to showcase your skills, experiences, and qualifications to potential employers. Here are some essential components that you should include in your RN cover letter:

Heading and Greeting

First impressions matter, so be sure to include a professional heading and greeting in your cover letter. Your heading should include your name, address, phone number, and email address. On the next line, include the date, followed by the employer’s information, including their name, title, organization, and address. Your greeting should be professional and address the hiring manager by name, if possible. If you’re not sure who to address your letter to, a simple “Dear Hiring Manager” will suffice.


Your introduction should be brief but impactful. Start by introducing yourself and stating the position you’re applying for. Mention where you heard about the job opening, whether it was through a job posting, referral, or networking. Then, briefly explain why you’re interested in the position and what makes you a great fit for the role. Remember, your goal is to capture the employer’s attention and make them want to read more.

Body Paragraphs

The body of your cover letter is where you can really shine. Use this space to showcase your qualifications, experiences, and skills that are relevant to the job opening. Be sure to not only list your qualifications but also to provide examples that showcase your skills and expertise. For example, if you’re applying for a job in a pediatric unit, you could mention your experience working with children and your ability to communicate effectively with young patients and their families. You should also mention why you’re interested in working for the specific organization you’re applying to. Do some research on the organization and mention specific programs or initiatives that align with your values and interests.

It’s also a good idea to address any potential concerns the employer may have. For example, if you’re applying for a job in a new specialty area, you could mention any relevant coursework or certifications you’ve completed to demonstrate your commitment to learning and professional development.


Your closing should be strong and leave a lasting impression. Express your enthusiasm for the position and your excitement at the opportunity to speak further about your qualifications. Include a call to action, such as inviting the employer to contact you for an interview or expressing your willingness to provide additional information. Finally, thank the employer for considering your application and sign off with a professional closing, such as “Sincerely” or “Best regards”.

In conclusion, a well-crafted RN cover letter can make all the difference in landing your dream job. Be sure to include these essential components and take the time to tailor your letter to the specific job and organization you’re applying to. With a little effort and attention to detail, you can create a cover letter that showcases your skills and sets you apart from the competition.

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Writing A Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter

When applying for a nursing position, a well-written cover letter can be the difference between landing an interview and being passed over. While there are several things to include in your RN cover letter, there are also several common mistakes that you should avoid:

  • Rehashing your resume: Your cover letter should not simply repeat the information in your resume. Instead, it should highlight your most relevant qualifications and experiences and explain why you are the best candidate for the job.
  • Being too generic or vague: Avoid using generic or vague language in your cover letter. Instead, use specific examples to illustrate your skills and experiences.
  • Not tailoring your letter to the specific organization or job posting: Your cover letter should be tailored to the specific organization and job posting you are applying for. Research the company and the position and use that information to customize your letter.
  • Not highlighting your unique qualifications or experiences that set you apart from other applicants: Use your cover letter to highlight your unique qualifications and experiences that make you stand out from other applicants. This could include specialized training, certifications, or experience working with specific patient populations.
  • Being too informal or unprofessional: Your cover letter should be professional and polished. Avoid using slang or overly casual language, and make sure to proofread your letter for errors.

Remember, your cover letter is your chance to make a strong first impression and convince the hiring manager that you are the best candidate for the job. By avoiding these common mistakes and crafting a well-written, tailored, and professional cover letter, you can increase your chances of landing an interview and ultimately, the nursing position of your dreams.

Final Steps On Writing Your Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter

Congratulations on completing your RN cover letter! Writing a cover letter can be a daunting task, but by following these tips, you’ve created a strong document that will help you stand out from other applicants.

Now that you’ve written your cover letter, it’s essential to proofread and edit it thoroughly. This step is crucial because even a small error can make a negative impression on the hiring manager. Review your cover letter for spelling and grammar mistakes, and make sure that your sentences are clear and easy to read.

It’s also a good idea to have someone else review your cover letter. A fresh set of eyes can catch errors that you might have missed, and they can also provide constructive criticism on the overall tone and content of your letter.

After you’ve made any necessary edits, it’s time to submit your cover letter along with your resume and any other requested documentation. Be sure to follow the application instructions carefully, as some employers may have specific requirements for how they want to receive your application materials.

Remember, your cover letter is your chance to make a great first impression on the hiring manager. By taking the time to write a thoughtful and well-crafted letter, you’re showing that you’re serious about the job and that you have the skills and experience needed to excel in the role.

Good luck with your job search!

Example Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter

Dear Hiring Manager,

I am excited to submit my application for the registered nurse (RN) position at ABC Hospital. With three years of experience working at XYZ Clinic, I have developed the skills and expertise necessary to provide exceptional patient care and contribute to the success of your healthcare organization.

During my time at XYZ Clinic, I worked in a variety of clinical settings, including pediatrics and emergency care. In pediatrics, I had the opportunity to work with children of all ages, from newborns to teenagers. I have experience administering vaccinations, performing routine check-ups, and providing education to parents on proper nutrition and child development. In emergency care, I learned how to think quickly on my feet and respond to urgent situations. I have experience performing CPR, stabilizing patients with severe injuries, and coordinating with emergency medical services to ensure patients receive the care they need.

I am highly skilled in patient assessment, medication administration, and wound care. I have experience working with patients who have chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease, as well as patients who have acute illnesses such as pneumonia and influenza. I have experience administering medications through various routes, including oral, intravenous, and intramuscular. Additionally, I have experience managing wounds of all types, from minor cuts and scrapes to severe burns and lacerations.

I am also experienced in working with diverse patient populations and collaborating with interdisciplinary teams to provide comprehensive care. I have experience working with patients from a variety of cultural backgrounds and have learned how to provide culturally sensitive care. I have also worked closely with other healthcare professionals, including physicians, physical therapists, and social workers, to develop comprehensive treatment plans for patients.

What interests me about your organization is your commitment to patient-centered care and your mission to provide high-quality healthcare services to underserved communities. I believe my skills and experience align perfectly with your organization’s values, and I’m excited about the prospect of contributing to your team.

Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to speaking with you further about my qualifications and experience.


Jane Doe, RN

Registered Nurse (RN) Cover Letter FAQ

Do I need a cover letter for an RN job application?

Yes, a cover letter is an essential component of your RN job application. It provides insights into your qualifications, experience, and why you’d be the perfect fit for the job.

How long should my RN cover letter be?

Your RN cover letter should be concise but comprehensive. Ideally, it should be one page or less.

What should I include in my RN cover letter?

Your RN cover letter should include the following:

  • A professional greeting and introduction
  • Your qualifications, experience, and skills
  • Why you’re interested in the specific organization
  • A call to action and closing

In addition, you may want to include specific examples of your nursing experience and how it relates to the job posting. For example, if the job posting emphasizes the importance of patient care, you could describe a time when you went above and beyond to provide exceptional care to a patient.

Should I mention salary expectations in my RN cover letter?

No, you should avoid mentioning salary expectations in your RN cover letter. Wait until the job interview to discuss salary. Instead, focus on highlighting your qualifications and demonstrating why you’re the best candidate for the job.

How should I format my RN cover letter?

Your RN cover letter should include a professional heading and greeting, clear body paragraphs, and a professional closing. Use a standard font and font size to ensure readability. You may also want to consider using bullet points to make your qualifications and experience stand out.

Remember, your RN cover letter is your chance to make a great first impression on potential employers. By following these guidelines, you can create a compelling RN cover letter that will make employers take notice and consider you for the job. Good luck!