Get Your CV to Stand Out
The role of computers and search engines is often over looked by candidates during job applications. For example, how many people take into consideration Boolean search terms when preparing their CV?
Fact: Employers and Recruiters will store your CV in an electronic data base or talent bank which will be intermittently searched for specific key words.
The ability to get the CV found online is making it difficult for many medical professionals to get their skills to stand out. To select the most suitable CVs for jobs in the industry, keywords are searched for by employers. But what are these words, terms and phrases, and how is it possible to give yourself the best possible chance of being discovered in a mass of thousands of potential employees?
Nobody can say for sure what the words employers looking for certain employees use are. However, there are a number of techniques that you can use when writing your CV that increase the likelihood of it being picked up by a computer search.
Stick to the Essentials
Firstly, ensure that the basic essentials are there. Always include your full title starting with your Dr/Prof/Mr and ending with the degrees you hold and associations you are a member of. For example; ‘Dr Named Example MS MRCS’ would be a master of surgery and a member of the royal college of surgeons. This is crucial as it shows, at a glance, how qualified you are for a role, and is likely to play a big role in your application being looked at. It is also likely that employees will search for certain titles to get rid of under qualified candidates.
Secondly for the basics, ensure that your most relevant qualifications are at the top of your resume. This increases your chances of being found quickly, and additionally prevents the employer from having to look in detail at your CV to judge whether or not you would be suitable for the role they are recruiting for.
As well as this, don’t ever consider ‘dumbing down’ your qualifications, or not writing out their full name which is often mainly jargon. The employer will know what they are looking for, and the searches compiled will be looking for official names of qualifications. It might seem obvious, but remarkably it is a mistake a surprising number of people make.
So, now the basics have been covered, what are the key words and terms to use, and when should you use them?
There is a small handful of words which will immediately help your application to stand out amongst others, these include the following:
“Caseload” - Use this term if you are a medical professional who serves patients.
“Training” - Use this word to describe any additional skills or qualifications you may have learnt whilst in employment. It may seem basic, but it helps to highlight extra skills you have developed outwith academic studies.
“Operating Revenue” - The use of this word in place of the term ‘budget’ shows that you have an understanding of the financial terminology used in the medical industry, and therefore an understanding of the financial side of the industry in general. It is a simple and effective phrase that can help you to appear more employable instantly.
“Research” or “Publications” - The inclusion of these terms can be effective in showing additional research tasks that you have undertaken, and that you have an interest in contemporary healthcare trends worldwide. Two features which makes a potential employee look more appealing.
These terms are fairly basic, and easy to use essentials that everyone who wants to have their CV discovered should use, but how would you locate further ‘buzzwords’ which are suitable for your role?
Take at least three job descriptions from adverts, and then list the words which commonly appear across all of them. These will be the most important features that the employers are looking for from their potential employees. Use the advert as a guide for what your CV should include, and focus on speaking about what the employers are looking for, not what you consider to be the most important factors. This will show them that you understand, in detail, what sort of candidate is required for the role.
The use of ‘action verbs’ - a verb that expresses a physical or mental action - is something which should be threaded throughout your resume to ensure it can be found by those searching for the best possible candidates.
But what are the most effective action verbs that you, as medical professionals, should use? The following are the best medical specific examples:
These words, as well as being looked for by employers, will help to show that you are a proactive and forward thinking potential employee. Automatic searches will pick up on these words, and they will increase your chances of being discovered.
However, once you have been found you need to ensure your CV will really stand out when the candidate search has been refined further.
It’s always best to think originally. Typically, people will list their responsibilities. This will not harm your chances of your CV being found, but it’s more important to list real benefits that you will bring to the job and how this has helped your employers in the past. This real-world evidence will show that you are able to bring genuine results to the job, and that you don’t just talk a good game.
Outside medical experience - such as volunteer work or early career shadowing can only be considered as a further benefit - no matter how long ago it was it’s always important to touch on all the previous experience you have built up. In such a competitive industry it could be something as seemingly insignificant as that which plays a big role in you getting the job of your dreams.
Similarly list specialist procedures or equipment which you are trained to use. Every minute detail will increase your chances of being discovered by a computer's search algorithm.
As well as your medical interests and responsibilities ensure that you also touch on your personal interests and hobbies. If you are a keen runner this can show dedication and that you are not afraid of hard work. Team sports will show that you can work effectively in a group, whilst rock climbing can show that you have a strong ability to concentrate when under pressure and think on your feet. A skill that is absolutely crucial ,and very much sought after, especially if you are a trauma or EMT specialist.
No matter how unrelated you may believe it is, make sure you include at least a small amount about your hobbies and interests. You may not realise what this can tell your prospective employers about your personality.
Finally it is crucial when attempting to get your CV recognised and found, that you understand that healthcare is a rapidly changing industry. Constant advancements are always being made and it is important that you demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the most modern techniques. To get the job that you really want you should further ensure that your qualifications are up to date - and be prepared to re-qualify if that would increase your chances of being recognised.
Employers will always search CVs for the latest qualifications, techniques and terminology and so it’s crucial that you include this if you want to get your CV found quickly. It may require a greater deal of additional work or study, but it will be time very well spent if you are planning on applying for a new job soon.
Whilst this post is not an exhaustive piece on how to write a resumé, we hope it has helped to provide an insight into what employers are looking for from prospective staff, and will help to get your CV discovered.
Remember to keep visiting https://www.odysseyrecruitment.com/blog for all the latest healthcare news and trends as well as articles to help you enhance your medical career.