If you're a clinician looking for your dream position at a healthcare system you can't wait to work for, you'll need to get noticed. So, how do you stand out among a sea of qualified applicants? One way is by creating a solid curriculum vitae (CV) about you and your experience.
Here are some can't-miss tips on how to create an eye-catching CV that will gain a recruiter's attention and get you hired in your ideal career field.
Remember: A CV is Not a Resume
You may use the term CV and resume interchangeably, but there are some crucial distinctions between the two. Resumes are typically a page or two long, while CVs go into greater detail on your skills and qualifications. There's typically no length limit to a CV, though more is not always better. The American Medical Association states education should be listed first, with society membership, experience, accomplishments, and postgraduate training also referenced.
CVs are often used for those who have graduated from a Master's or Doctoral line of study, which is often the case for clinicians. This is where you can relate your field of study to your eventual practice.
Aim for Clarity and a Quick Read
There may be a temptation to make your CV extra dense, packed with information. You might think that more is better, but if the document is too hard to read, how can you be sure this information will get through to the recruiter?
Focus less on the quantity of information you include and focus more on the quality. Your CV should be clear and concise. The easier it is to read, the better chance you'll communicate the message to your hiring manager.
Make sure to proofread your CV carefully for typos. It may not seem like a big deal, but a CV is an opportunity to convey your thoroughness and professionalism - typos can diminish both of those if you aren't careful.
Turning in a CV with no typos shows you possess a keen attention to detail. Error-free documents help distinguish you as someone who gets the little things right. That's a quality many healthcare systems - or employers from any industry, for that matter - value greatly.
Look at it another way: if you submit a CV with zero typos, the reviewer may not notice this. But they will definitely notice if it does have mistakes. Take the extra time to carefully comb it over to ensure there are no mistakes of any kind. If you can, ask someone else to look over it with a fresh set of eyes.
Beyond the ethical implications of exaggerating on your CV, there's a practical reason not to do it: you may end up working in a position you're not equipped for. If you exaggerate your skills, you could end up with job responsibilities you aren't well-suited for. That's all well and good when you're collecting your paycheck, but at some point, your leadership will expect you to deliver results. If you don't have the skills or experience to do that, you may end up losing the position, constantly feeling stressed or overwhelmed due to a lack of qualifications, or worse: providing substandard care to a patient.
Include a Cover Letter
A cover letter is a chance for you to provide valuable context about your experience at a high level that you can later drill down on in your CV.
You can discuss what makes you such a great fit for the role. What skills do you have that make you a great provider for this particular healthcare system? Have you worked in or led teams at similarly sized operations in the past? These kinds of connections are ones you should point out.
Finally, your cover letter can help you set yourself apart from your competition. You may have the same experience or skills as another person applying for this role. What your cover letter does is showcase your communication skills. Clinicians need to communicate clearly and efficiently - with patients, their families, and even other providers. A cover letter demonstrates your ability to write clearly, which is an excellent first step to showing you can communicate well.
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