Medical CV

With competition high in all parts of the employment market, getting your Medical CV right requires application of the skills that you learnt and now deploy to get into the Medical profession: guidance, planning, and application. Although you may be a good doctor, consultant or nurse, your chances of employment depend on what your Medical CV says about you.

Medical CV

In Professional CV Writing terms, the Medical CV is a Technical CV: employers will only engage you once you have proven that you have the right qualifications first, before they will read the rest of your job application. So before you apply for any jobs, make sure that your qualifications and professional memberships are up to the required status. Secondly, as a technical professional position you can never, ever lie on your CV: simply, it will at least hinder if not end your career. Thirdly, as a technical profession, your best opportunities for employment are most often gained through networking, so have a clear idea of what type of position that you want next, and who therefore is the manager or director within that target department.

Medical CV Templates

While in many areas of Professional CV Writing, CV Templates can result in you looking just like the next job applicant, in Medical CV Writing, your CV Format needs to conform to the basic principles of all Technical CV's: show that you have the required qualifications and professional endorsements within the first half page. Hence the Medical CV Layout should proceed and include as follow:

  • Personal Profile
  • Key qualifications and endorsements
  • Reverse chronological order of last three positions/five years of employment
  • List of key qualifications/papers
  • Other details

Often with senior medical staff, there are a long list of both research and published medical material, and a series of conference attendances which are key to showing that qualifications and area knowledge are kept up to date. While the core information listed above can fit onto a standard 2page CV format, these publications and qualifications should be listed on separate sheets of paper.

Medical CV Layout

As with any CV Writing these days, never use the same CV to apply for multiple jobs. Make sure that you customise your CV to each job application, by reading the job advert and confirming in your CV and Cover Letter that you have the required skills, qualifications and experiences.

Start with a personal statement, which positions you as the answer to that employers solution: I am, I do/deliver, I seek. Its the last section which requires wholly customising for each job application, in communicating why this job makes sense in your career path development.

Secondly, create what is starting to be called a keywords section, but in actual fact is a key issues for that employer focus. If you have read the job advert, and noted down the required combination of skills, qualifications and experiences (clinical proficiency and competence), then simply see this section as a worded "tick sheet" to show that you have that required combination. So if they want a staff nurse with experience of A&E, state "A&E staff nurse with 3 years experience;" if they want a cardiothroacic surgeon with experience in the latest techniques, state "lead cardiothroacic surgeon with experience in XYZ." This is the first place where you can also confirm you current status, stating your registered status with your professional body, eg: are your registered, have you passed your PLAB test, if so to what stage? The whole idea of this section is for the reader to say to themselves, within the first half page of your CV, that you pass the required basic job description requirements.

Medical CV Employment

Thirdly comes the employment history. Written up in reverse chronological order, employers will focus mainly on the last three to five years of experience, but it is more common in the Medical CV to include everything since graduation. So keep your focus on the last five years, and only include relevant positions to that job.

All positional write-ups should be in a STAR format (Situation, Task, Action, Result), focusing primarily on the major achievements that you have made within that position, over the responsibilities of that job. Referencing is highly important, and while in most CV Formats it should be left out, in the Medical CV junior grades have the option of inserting the fact that they worked under a particularly well-known consultant.

One thing that is key in the Medical CV is the completeness of your employment time line. Technical CV's require a high degree of authenticity and resultant trust, so be honest if you have a large employment gap in your work history. Gaps for examinations are common (state what and where), as are travel within the medical industry, and in the current economic climate unemployment is not a reason that a well qualified candidate would not be interviewed.

Other Medical CV experiences

A simplified qualifications section of your main and highest academic qualifications and certifications should be included on your main two page CV, while the full list of should be placed in reverse chronological order on a separate sheet.

This same format can be applied to your major clinical competencies and experiences, again with a full version listed on a separate sheet. For instance, the fact that you have specialised in the past five years should be wholly relevant to that job application and within your main CV, where as your early ward or GP work can be placed on the full experience sheet.

Publications and research, particularly for specialist and high ranking clinic roles, are an essential inclusion in any Medical CV. Published research work, whether you lead it or were part of a team, as well as books and lecture talks can be included. The key issue with this section is relevance, but again the most relevant pieces to that job should be included in your main Medical CV, while all publications and papers can be held in a separate sheet. Also, don't forget mentions in any key publications.

Your membership status within your professional body should be stated in your key issues section, but membership of wider interest or specialist teams within a professional body should be included.

NHS campaigns and audits

As the health service has become more campaign led, often employers look for key skills in either creation, liaison, role out, or management of projects and interfaces with other core NHS bodies and the Department of Health. The same can be applied to local initiatives, but these should be covered in your core employment record.

In such cases, again using the STAR format, note where the initiative came from and why you got involved/what role that you played. Was this role part of your day job role, or were you seconded onto the team for a specific skills, and if so what was it? Again, doing your day job is not the key issue, but the outcome is, for instance were your quicker/faster/more efficient at implementing your local solution? If so, was this improved way rolled back into the national programme, which could have been lead by a body such as NICE

Medical Job References

References are far easier to obtain and collect within the medical profession for the prospective employer than in many other professions and industries, mainly because once authorised to obtain and authenticate such details for one part of the medical profession, accessing such information on others is virtually automatic.

Hence, once you decide to seek an alternative position, I suggest that you start to line up your references before you start writing your Medical CV and start applying for jobs. Also, be aware of what information that you include on your Medical CV, and to whom that you have sent it. While HR teams and personnel within the NHS will have access to systems to allow your authentication, recruiters and outside agencies will not have direct access. Leaving too much information on your Medical CV could allow its to be used for purposes for someone to either steal your identity to undertake medical work, or simply steal your identity for criminal activity such as fraud or credit theft. Hence don't include your basic personal identity numbers (national insurance number, passport number, etc), or professional medical body identities (ie, GMC registration number).

Medical CV checks

Once you have drafted your CV, before you send it, get at least three people to read it through and suggest changes/improvements; do this at least twice before you send your job application.

Good Luck!

Ian R McAllister is the founder of a UK group focused on recruitment and employment in skills-short professional employment sectors, presently covering IT, telecoms and project management. The group also provides professional candidate information and services via a series of online resources, including the Professional CV and Executive CV services

Published At: Medical CV

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