Overview

Being a Caregiver is an honorable and important profession in societies with large aging populations. Overlapping with other healthcare related professions such as nursing, patient care, rehabilitation and hospice, caregivers are a diverse and highly skilled professional group.

From live-in contract positions to fixed hourly rate positions, this profession is diverse in both the hours worked and compensation received. Caretakers with more work experience and larger, more specific skill sets and certifications stand to earn more than entry-level and low skilled workers.

Industry Forecast

This is one of the fastest growing industries to be featured on Copy My Resume with a projected growth rate of 26% between 2014 and 2024. To put this into perspective, the national average for all occupations combined is a mere 7% in the same span of time.

With the trend of increasingly strict national immigration policies, there may not be enough supply to satisfy demand which could result in increased hourly pay rates in the medium-long term.


Overall, the caretaking industry is projected to continue the robust growth it has experienced over the last 10+ years. With the retiring and aging of the baby boomer population, the demand is only expected to skyrocket over the coming decade. Search trends for this profession and similar professions reflect the average industry growth and sunny career outlook status.

Pay

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the average salary figure for caretakers at just around $22,000/year. Job salary aggregator Payscale puts the figure a little higher at around $24,000/year. This is more commonly an hourly paid career, however, so these salary figures are median estimations.

Bonuses are also common in this industry and have not been factored into these median pay figures. Bonuses are most common when working with placement or home care agencies and often awarded upon completing annual contracts. Self-employed caregivers can earn much more, however, liabilities like filing a business and health insurance are responsibilities to consider as well.

With an increased demand and shortage of supply, these figures are expected to increase drastically in coming years and can fluctuate hugely depending on the geographic region where demand is highest.

Caregiver Salary Statistics

2016 Median Pay
$21,920 per year
$10.54 per hour
Typical Entry-Level Education
No formal education required
Work Experience in a Related Occupation
Not Required
On-the-job Training
Short-term
Number of Jobs, 2016
1,768,400
Job Outlook, 2014-2024
+26%
Employment Change, 2014-2024
+458,100
Sources: U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics & Payscale

Types of Caregivers

Caregivers can go by many names. Ultimately many overlap considerably in the duties required but may be referred to as other positions. Job titles that may also be used to describe this role include but are not limited to: Caregiver, Care Giver, Care Provider, Caretaker, Primary Caregivers, Certified Caregiver, Direct Care Provider, Personal Caregiver, Caretaker, Assisted Living Caregiver, Home Care Giver, Medication Caregiver, Home Health Caregiver

It is advisable to adjust the title of your resume and cover letter to suit the title of the job opening being applied for. For example, some companies/organizations will be seeking Home Health Care Specialists while another company may be seeking Experienced Primary Caregivers. You will thus want to adjust your job title when referring to yourself in your resume and cover letter as to appear the perfect fit for the job.

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How To Write Your Own

Below are some tips specifically designed to help caretakers write effective resumes that will help them stand out from the competition and put them at the top of the “to interview” list.

Self-Employed to Employed

Many personal aide/caregiver resume first time writers are those who previously were self-employed and are transitioning into working for someone else. This can sometimes be a hard choice but can also be more stable and provide a more structured work environment.

If you were previously self-employed then you will want to write your resume as a former businessman/woman. Mention the number of clients you had, your annual revenue, your staff,  and other numerically quantifiable responsibilities and achievements. It is important to provide scope when self-employed.

If you were not self-employed and are instead just switching jobs or are an entry level candidate, you still want to numerically quantify when you can, but instead of focusing on running a business, your resume will instead emphasize practical skills required for daily completion of expected responsibilities.

Safety First

In this industry more than almost all others a focus on safety and professionalism is paramount. Cover this first by including all of the safety training and/or certifications, from first-aide and CPR to knowing how to carry an adult safely, let alone the ability to lift heavy weight when required.

Safety training classes can be found everywhere, from online courses and certifications to community center training, this is a skill that is necessary to compete with the best in this industry.

Satisfaction Rates & Recognition

Beyond having some relative experience and being safe you will also want to emphasize people skills as you will be working directly with people on a daily basis so the ability to make a positive impression and leave clients happy is critical.

Mention polite bedside manners, previous client satisfaction ratings, recognitions you’ve received for your upstanding service. Working with a smile and being positive in the face of adversity is a skill many employers value as it will reflect well on their business in the long run. Nobody wants to hire a grump!

Diverse Skills

Finally, the cherry on top of everything else, try to include other diverse skills that other job applicants may not have but will be very useful for an employer.  These could include solid Microsoft Office skills including PowerPoint and Excel, or even time management organizational tools. Showing you are organized and flexible in terms of responsibilities you can take on add to your market value.

Including experience working with particular client types like working with the disabled, elderly, hearing/visually impaired or mentally challenged will also increase your market value.

Of course including staples like the ability to prepare strictly regimented meals, administer medications and provide washing/hygiene services are also important pillars of an effective home caregiver resume.

Do not forget to include things like foreign language skills, as well, as America’s population is ever increasingly diverse and the ability to interact in multiple languages makes you a massive asset to any company or organization operating in a large metropolitan area.

Sample Bullet Points

Below is a hand-selected variety of bullet points you can use for inspiration and build off to help fill your resume out to a full page in length. Remember, it is best to stick to one page whenever possible unless you are a senior level candidate with over 15 years of experience to summarize.

Useful Caregiver Bullet Points

Administer bedside or personal care, such as ambulation or personal hygiene assistance.
Prepare and maintain records of client progress and services performed, reporting changes in client condition to manager or supervisor.
Perform healthcare-related tasks, such as monitoring vital signs and medication, under the direction of registered nurses or physiotherapists.
Participate in case reviews, consulting with the team caring for the client, to evaluate the client's needs and plan for continuing services.
Care for individuals or families during periods of incapacitation, family disruption, or convalescence, providing companionship, personal care, or help in adjusting to new lifestyles.
Perform housekeeping duties, such as cooking, cleaning, washing clothes or dishes, or running errands.
Instruct or advise clients on issues such as household cleanliness, utilities, hygiene, nutrition, or infant care.
Plan, shop for, or prepare nutritious meals or assist families in planning, shopping for, or preparing nutritious meals.
Transport clients to locations outside the home, such as to physicians' offices or on outings, using a motor vehicle.
Provide clients with communication assistance, typing their correspondence or obtaining information for them.
Train family members to provide bedside care.
source: http://www.onetonline.org/link/details/39-9021.00

Career Objective

Many caregivers either started out originally as something else or plan to switch to something else later in their career and are afraid of writing that in their resume. There is however no shame in stating your background or your intended career path right away in your career objective section, ESPECIALLY if you are an entry-level candidate.

State your years of relevant work experience and the position you are seeking to fulfill in 1-2 very succinct sentences. Do not worry about not fitting everything in; you have your entire cover letter and the body of your resume to expound on your skills/qualifications.

The goal of the career objective is simply to “hook” the reader into processing the rest of your resume and then ultimately inviting you in for an interview.

Additional Skills & Certifications

You will want to mix in a variety of skills, from “hard” skills which include training, software knowledge and other technical abilities, to “soft” skills like customer service and being compassionate with clients and communicating clearly with both patients and coworkers/managers.

Do not forget to include the basics like having a valid driver’s license and CPR training, as HR’s will look for these first. If you have formal education and can included licensed nursing credentials do so at the very top of your resume by your name, such as “Leslie Shultz, CNA” proceeding your contact details.

If you feel you are lacking in training or would just like to make more money, consider obtaining a Home Care Registered Nurse certification which can come in the form of a nursing diploma (can be achieved online), an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree.

Having nationally recognized nursing or health related certifications are big sellers and also great chips for demanding a higher pay rate.

Useful Skills to Include

In addition to the above mentioned below is a selection of sample skills-related bullet points you can sprinkle into your resume to make sure it includes exactly the types of hard and soft skills caregiver employers today are looking for.

Caregiver Additional Skills

SkillSkill Description
Service OrientationActively looking for ways to help people.
Social PerceptivenessBeing aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Active ListeningGiving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
SpeakingTalking to others to convey information effectively.
MonitoringMonitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Critical ThinkingUsing logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
CoordinationAdjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
InstructingTeaching others how to do something.
Judgment and Decision MakingConsidering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Time ManagementManaging one's own time and the time of others.
Reading ComprehensionUnderstanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
WritingCommunicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active LearningUnderstanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Learning StrategiesSelecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
Complex Problem SolvingIdentifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
PersuasionPersuading others to change their minds or behavior.
Operation MonitoringWatching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
NegotiationBringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
Quality Control AnalysisConducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Systems AnalysisDetermining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
Systems EvaluationIdentifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
MathematicsUsing mathematics to solve problems.
Management of Personnel ResourcesMotivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
ScienceUsing scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Operation and ControlControlling operations of equipment or systems.
TroubleshootingDetermining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Management of Material ResourcesObtaining and seeing to the appropriate use of equipment, facilities, and materials needed to do certain work.
Technology DesignGenerating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
Management of Financial ResourcesDetermining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.
Operations AnalysisAnalyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
Equipment SelectionDetermining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
InstallationInstalling equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
ProgrammingWriting computer programs for various purposes.
Equipment MaintenancePerforming routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
RepairingRepairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Do not limit yourself to the above skills. The key to standing out from the crowd is to include things that other people do not have, while still being able to be relevant to the industry. Dig deep and ask your friends who know you best for suggestions and critiques when composing your resume.

Additional Resources