Director of Nursing Cover Letter Writing Tips and Sample

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Written by Ayana Dunn, BSN, RN Content Writer, IntelyCare
A woman works on her director of nursing cover letter.

You’re a capable nursing leader, and you know it — but how do you show it? Your resume proves to future employers what you can do, but your director of nursing cover letter shows them how you’ll manage their nursing department. Keep reading for tips on how to make your nursing cover letter stand out from the rest, and check out a sample that can help get you started on the right track.

Show Off Your Leadership and Organizational Skills

The director of nursing (DON) oversees all nurses and nursing operations in a facility. They work with other administrators to ensure the best possible quality of care and adherence to regulatory standards. That’s a lot to have on your plate. You must advocate for your facility, kick-start initiatives to make positive changes, and ensure that processes are running smoothly.

Think of how you can showcase these skills. When have you successfully led a team and made sure all of the necessary pieces were in the right place? How can you show these attributes in your director of nursing cover letter?

Here are some examples:

  • Starting new programs to address unmet concerns
  • Implementing changes suggested by JCAHO
  • Facilitating the hiring process for new staff
  • Demonstrating your conflict-resolution style in team dynamics
  • Increasing the efficiency of your unit and department

Explain Why They’re the Right Fit For You

Although you’re seeking a new position, the ball isn’t entirely in the hiring team’s court. They need a director of nursing, and you have the skillset they’re looking for. It goes both ways. Explain how they’ve met your criteria as a worthwhile employer, and why their organization is a great fit for you. This shows your passion for your career and future team.

Below are some facility green flags:

  • You feel like you’ll fit in well with their company culture.
  • Their values align with your own.
  • They have a reputation for excellence.
  • Their schedule meshes well with your personal life.
  • You can see their potential and how your contributions will increase their success.

Highlight Your Soft Skills

The importance of soft skills in healthcare cannot be overstated, especially in leadership positions.They can be the difference between your staff members feeling supported or feeling like just another name on a list. Leading with competent soft skills can also improve the flow of your operations and strengthen staff morale.

Soft skills that are helpful to a DON include:

  • Clear communication
  • Calmness under pressure
  • Effective conflict resolution skills
  • Empathy and cultural competence
  • Attention to detail

Cover Letter for Director of Nursing Position Sample

Nursing cover letter samples are a great way to learn about industry application standards. You can check out our nurse manager cover letter and the director of nursing cover letter below to help set the stage for creating your own.

Melanie Cojocaru, MSN, RN, DNS-CT

876 Virgo Street

Sagittarius, Maine 04019

(555) 555-5555 |

Helen Midori, MSN
689 Pisces Rd
Capricorn, ME 04019

Dear Ms. Midori,

My passion for geriatric care, organizational skills, and empathy make me a strong candidate for the director of nursing position at Gemini Post-Acute Care. I have more than a decade of nursing experience, and have been a director of nursing for five years, so I’m familiar with what it takes to successfully lead a nursing department.

My time as a DON at Scorpio Home showed me the realities of running a nursing home. As the elderly population in our area increased, it led to an uptick in our residents. We cared for more than 100 residents at a time while I managed commodities and resident needs amidst chronic short staffing. I held regular one-on-one meetings with the staff nurses to gather input on the realities of the unit. When I could identify the overarching patterns, I addressed them by advocating on the nurses’ behalf and creating initiatives to alleviate the roots of the issues. I prioritized visiting each unit daily to ensure they were supported, and I assisted with small tasks when possible. The nursing staff expressed appreciation for my commitment to them.

At Leo Rehabilitation Center, I was a nurse manager for a unit that cared for more than 40 geriatric patients. I built a close rapport with various nursing agencies — and the agency nurses themselves — to maintain readily available backups when there were unexpected callouts and to help ease the general staffing shortage. During the hiring process, I often sat in on interviews to ensure the applicants were good fits in the company culture. I resolved conflicts between staff with tact, pragmatism, and compassion to foster a healthy work culture. I learned the importance of being proactive to avoid future complications, and that mentality continues to serve me well.

I’m grateful for your time, and I look forward to elaborating further during the interview process.


Melanie Cojocaru, MSN

Director of Nursing Salary

DONs take on a great deal of responsibility, and that’s generally reflected in their salaries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for medical and health services managers in the U.S. is $104,830 per year.

You’ve Polished Your Director of Nursing Cover Letter. What’s Next?

Now that you’ve written your cover letter, it’s time to use it. Take your next step towards finding a job that meets your needs when you search for director of nursing jobs on IntelyCare.