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What Goes into a Medical Resume?

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Summary: Even though a great deal of education, time, and training goes into preparing for a career in the medical field, having a well-prepared resume is just as important.

Writing a powerhouse resume to match your powerful medical training does not have to be hard. You put in years towards an education and training, so you want a proper resume that shows you have what is needed for the job. When considering that an employer makes a decision about a candidate in less than five minutes of reading a resume, your resume needs to be hitting all the right marks.

Roughly 90 percent of employers report finding errors on resumes. Of these employers, 93 percent note that the errors negatively impact their decision to offer a candidate to attend an interview. In order to avoid being in this position where the employer decides against your resume, a thorough proofreading must be done as well as chronological organization, bullet points, and industry-specific formatting and keywords.

Depending on the position you are applying for a curriculum vitae (CV) may be more appropriate. Resumes are accepted for those in clinical positions, management, office staff, and administration. A CV or “course of one’s life” is more appropriate for doctors, nurse educators, academics, and researchers. Seeing as how a CV is less familiar for those starting out in the medical field, they are able to exceed one page if the individual has numerous experience. CVs should have a tone of understated modesty with all credentials listed in an unboastful manner. Generally, the headings of a CV include education/degrees, internships, professional experience, awards and honors, speaking engagements, publications, professional affiliations, and conferences.

Regardless of which form you are preparing, it should include industry-specific keywords that demonstrate your knowledge of the job. However, do not go overboard and use too many industry-specific keywords that will make it difficult for anyone to understand. If a non-medical term will do, choose it over a medical term. Also, avoid inserting excessive amounts of keywords into your resume when they serve no purpose.

There are very few exceptions for a resume to be longer than a page. Hiring managers do not have a lot of time. They are skimming numerous resumes to find the best candidates since they do not have days or weeks to carefully read multiple pages of resumes.

Your resume should include your unique assets, even your non-healthcare positions. This is especially important if you have experience in customer service positions and you applying for a position that involves interacting with people. If you have abilities that set you apart such as fluency in another language or strength with technology, then highlight them.

Include a personal statement where you can directly tell potential employers why you want the position. Put a great deal of effort into your statement. Mention your education, certifications, and professional memberships in your resume.

Do you use a resume or CV when applying for a medical position? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

To learn more about careers in the medical field, read these articles:


What Goes into a Medical Resume? by
Authored by: Amanda Griffin