12 Staff Nurse Skills: Definition and Examples

By ResumeCat Editorial Team
Published September 1, 2022

As a staff nurse, you are responsible for providing direct patient care. In order to do so effectively, you need to have a strong foundation of skills. This article will provide you with 12 essential staff nurse skills, along with definitions and examples. By the end of this article, you will have a better understanding of the skills needed to be a successful staff nurse.

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Staff Nurse Skills


The ability to communicate effectively is a critical skill for any nurse. In order to provide the best possible care for patients, nurses need to be able to clearly and concisely convey information. They also need to be able to listen attentively and empathize with patients and their families. Effective communication can help reduce errors, build trust, and promote positive outcomes.


Organizational skills are important for staff nurses because they need to be able to keep track of patients, medications, and treatments. They also need to be able to communicate effectively with other members of the healthcare team.

Nursing Process

The nursing process is a systematic, evidence-based approach to planning and providing nursing care. It is used to assess, diagnose, plan, implement, and evaluate patient care.


Documentation is a critical skill for staff nurses. It is important to document patient care in order to provide an accurate record of the care provided, as well as to communicate information to other members of the healthcare team.

Patient Advocacy

Patient advocacy is the act of representing the interests of patients and ensuring that their voices are heard. This skill is important for staff nurses because they are often the ones who are closest to the patients and have the best understanding of their needs. By advocating for their patients, staff nurses can help to ensure that they receive the best possible care.

Medication Administration

The skill of medication administration is the ability to correctly and safely administer medications to patients. This skill is important because it ensures that patients receive the correct medication in the correct dosage, and that they do not experience any adverse effects from the medication.

Infection Control

Infection control is a set of practices used to prevent the spread of infection. It is important for staff nurses to be familiar with these practices in order to protect themselves and their patients from potential harm.

Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is the ability to analyze a situation and make an informed decision. As a staff nurse, you will often be required to make decisions in the best interest of your patients. Therefore, it is essential that you are able to think critically in order to provide the best possible care.

Time Management

Time management is a skill that is needed in order to be successful in any field. It is especially important for nurses, who have to juggle many tasks and responsibilities. Good time management skills can help nurses to prioritize their tasks, use their time efficiently, and avoid burnout.


Prioritization is a skill that is needed in order to be an effective staff nurse. This is because there are often many tasks that need to be completed during a shift, and it is important to be able to prioritize them in order to ensure that the most important tasks are completed first.


Teamwork is a skill that is needed in order to work effectively with others. It involves being able to communicate and cooperate with others in order to accomplish tasks or goals. This skill is important for staff nurses because they often have to work with other members of the healthcare team in order to provide care for patients.

Stress Management

Stress management is a skill that is needed in order to cope with the demands of nursing. It is important to be able to manage stress in order to maintain a healthy work-life balance and avoid burnout.

How to improve staff nurse skills

As the healthcare industry continues to grow and evolve, so too must the skills of those who work within it. Staff nurses play a vital role in providing high-quality patient care, and as such, it is essential that they are always striving to improve their skills. There are many ways in which staff nurses can improve their skills, and some of the most important are outlined below.

Continuing Education

One of the best ways for staff nurses to stay up-to-date on the latest developments in their field is to pursue continuing education opportunities. Whether it is taking courses, attending conferences or seminars, or simply reading up on new research, continuing education helps staff nurses to keep their skills sharp and maintain a high level of knowledge.

Pursuing higher levels of education is also a great way for staff nurses to advance their careers. By obtaining additional qualifications, nurses can move into management or leadership positions, or become specialized in a particular area of nursing.

On-the-Job Training

Another excellent way for staff nurses to improve their skills is through on-the-job training. Many hospitals and other healthcare facilities offer programs that allow nurses to learn new techniques and procedures in a hands-on setting. These programs can be extremely beneficial in helping nurses to keep up with the latest changes in their field.

In addition to formal on-the-job training programs, many hospitals also encourage staff nurses to shadow more experienced colleagues. This can be an excellent way to learn new skills and gain insights into best practices.

Performance Reviews

Performance reviews are another important tool that can help staff nurses to identify areas where they need to improve their skills. These reviews provide an opportunity for nurses to receive feedback from supervisors and other colleagues on their strengths and weaknesses. By taking this feedback to heart and using it to guide their professional development, staff nurses can ensure that they are always improving their skills.

Technology Use

In today’s world, technology plays a big role in just about every industry – including healthcare. As such, it is important for staff nurses to be comfortable using various types of technology. From electronic medical records systems to bedside monitors, there is a lot of technology that nurses need to be familiar with. Those who are not comfortable using technology may find themselves at a disadvantage when it comes to providing high-quality patient care.

Time Management Skills

One final skill that all staff nurses should strive to improve is their time management skills. Nurses are often required to juggle multiple tasks at once, and those who are not good at managing their time may find themselves feeling overwhelmed and stressed out. By learning how to better manage their time, nurses can ensure that they are always able to provide the best possible care for their patients.

How to highlight staff nurse skills

If you're a Staff Nurse looking to highlight your skills, there are a few things you can do. First, make sure your resume is up-to-date and includes all relevant experience. Secondly, highlight any specialties or areas of expertise in your cover letter or during interviews. Finally, be sure to emphasize your bedside manner and ability to connect with patients and families. By doing these things, you'll be sure to stand out as a qualified and skilled Staff Nurse.

On a resume

To highlight your skills as a Staff Nurse on a resume, you should include your experience in the field, as well as any relevant education or certification. You should also list any special skills or training you have that make you a good fit for the position. Be sure to tailor your resume to the specific job you are applying for, and highlight your skills and experience that are most relevant to that position.

In a cover letter

In your cover letter, be sure to highlight your skills as a Staff Nurse. Include your experience working with patients, as well as your training and education. Be sure to detail how you are able to provide care and support to patients and families.

During an interview

When you are interviewing for a staff nurse position, be sure to highlight your skills in patient care, assessment, and documentation. You should also be able to demonstrate your ability to work well with other members of the healthcare team. Be sure to give specific examples of how you have provided excellent patient care in your previous positions.