According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for ob-gyns is growing faster than average. Besides, by 2028 there will be over 50,000 new job positions created for physicians. The profession is also highly competitive. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects that there will be at least 20 applicants for each of the 55,400 job positions created by 2028. That's why, if you're looking for a position of a physician, you need to make your experience stand out, starting with your CV.
Is There Really a Need for a CV?
Physicians often wonder whether they need a CV or not. And it's a fair question, judging from the statement by the BLS mentioned above, that physicians don't often have to have work experience. If you don't have experience, you might assume there's really nothing to put on a CV.
However, you should see your CV as a tool that serves as your first representation in the eyes of your future employer. A medical CV is used for two main reasons:
- It helps distinguish between candidates who apply for a medical position
- It helps keep and update the record of your professional achievements and skills you've gained
A CV showcases not only your experience as a physician, but also your education, skills, qualifications, and other background information that may influence the ultimate hiring decision.
Suggestions and Tips for Writing a Physician CV
Now, let's move on to the tips that will help you write a physician CV that really stands out.
Follow A Precise Structure
A physician's CV mostly resembles the structure of a basic curriculum vitae. However, there are some specific sections on a physician CV that you won't find on a basic resume.
Here's the full structure of a physician's CV:
- Heading, with your full name with a degree after it (whether it's a Ph.D., MD, etc.). This section should also include your contact information.
- Postgraduate training recorded in reverse chronological order, including fellowships, residencies, and internships with a full description of each program.
- Education should be also listed in reverse chronological order, with the full name of all educational establishments and your degree.
- Occupational experience should include medical as well as non-medical job experience. Here you should also include occupation-related skills, such as working with patient identification programs and other qualifications gained during your previous work experience.
- Licensure and certifications may be combined or listed as separate sections in a physician's CV. Licensure should include all information about your license, what areas it covers, its expiration date, and status. Certifications include all your board certificates, certifications, or examinations that you've taken to support your qualifications.
- Rewards and honors with the dates of receiving them.
- Memberships in professional organizations, for instance, medical societies such as the American Medical Association, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, etc.
- Research and Publications to support your knowledge of academia. If you have many publications, you can put up a list of "Selected Works" and offer to provide additional publications upon request. Research and publications should also be listed in reverse chronological order.
You can also add your list of references to your CV, however, this section is optional, and references can be provided upon request.
In general, this structure of a physician's CV allows the most precise layout of background information and helps you make sure that your CV will get noticed and that all your experience is easily traceable.
Pay Attention to Formatting
Formatting a physician's CV is another important step that cannot be skipped.
When talking about CV formatting, it's important to keep in mind how a CV differs from a resume. "A CV is more detail-oriented than a resume, and this characteristic feature will impact the length and the formatting rules of a CV," says Neightan White, a recruiter at BestEssay Education.
Here are some formatting suggestions to help you:Fonts, margins, and spacing
The focus of proper formatting is making your CV easy to scan and read. For this purpose, you'll want to choose sans-serif fonts (Arial, Helvetica, etc.) that don't have decorative elements and are easier to read than serif fonts. The proper font size is 10-12 pt. Even though it may take several pages, for the sake of readability, it's better to not choose a smaller font size.
Keep your margins at 1-1.5 inches to avoid having too much blank space.
As for the spacing, you should format your physician's CV with section headers and bullet lists to evenly spread the information throughout the document.
Length of the Physician's CV
We've already mentioned that resumes (1-2 pages) are generally shorter than CVs (two pages or more). Since CVs are used for job positions in research, education, and academia, every detail matters, so that's why they're longer.
The more accurate your CV is, the better is its readability. Since every detail matters, it should be double-checked and put in the right section without repeating itself. When formatting your CV, you can score its accuracy and readability by using different online tools:
- Resume Worded–An AI-powered resume checker that scores your CV according to the key criteria that recruiters in your industry are looking for.
- TrustMyPaper–An online hub of professional writers that specialize in writing resumes and CVs for people from different industries, including physicians and nurses.
- GrabMyEssay–An online resource where professional writers can evaluate and score the readability of your CV.
- RezScore–Another great resource to automatically score your CV and evaluate its accuracy.
Don't be afraid to spend some time formatting and proofreading your CV. Since you need to include so much information in your CV to highlight your experience as a physician, every detail matters. It is essential not to skip this step.
Write with A Recipient in Mind
Here's the trick.
Your CV will sound and look more professional if you try to evaluate it from the standpoint of the recipient. Hospitals and other medical institutions hire thousands of physicians a year, and a CV that is illegible and full of mistakes is usually cast aside.
Here, it is important to reiterate the importance of proofreading your resume. And, to avoid any skipped mistakes, it is a good practice to have your CV proofread for you. With the abundance of online tools like Grammarly (proofreads grammar, spelling, punctuation, and style), Studicus (offers proofreading services from professional writers), and Hemingway App (checks readability), you can fully automate the proofreading of your CV. However, it's always good to have a friend read through your resume as well.
Seemingly minor formatting details and grammatical mistakes can negatively impact the hiring decision. And, since the profession of a physician is so competitive, having your CV turned down because of grammatical mistakes is frustrating.
Hiring managers are unanimous when it comes to the correctness of a CV. 77 percent of recruiters claim they immediately disqualify a CV if it has grammatical mistakes or typos. So, write your physician's CV by keeping the recipient in mind and paying attention to the smallest details.
What to Exclude?
Even though a physician's CV should be as detailed as possible, there are some things you should exclude from it:
- Remove the 'CV' or 'Curriculum Vitae' label. It makes your CV look redundant. Some people also make a mistake by adding their names and degrees to these labels.
- Career statements and job objectives at the beginning of the CV also make it look redundant.
- Cover letters should be excluded if they are written to fit all the physician positions you're applying to. A cover letter should be tailored to every employer in particular rather than generalized.
- Personal details aren't usually a good fit for a physician's CV. Skills should only be restricted to those that can be applied to a physician's practice. Interests should also fit a physician's occupation and medical practice only.
- A photo is a weird one, but when it comes to the CV of a medical worker, it depends on an employer. It's better to provide a photo upon request since including one may result in unconscious bias.
Needless to say that in a physician's CV there should be no embellishments and mischaracterizations of the experience, as such tactics can backfire after the person is hired.
As you can see, there are some specifics when it comes to writing a CV for physicians. High attention to detail is needed and precise structure should be observed when it comes to writing a physician's CV.
Hopefully, our tips and suggestions will guide those who are on the hunt for a new job, and will help them create a physician's CV that is worth the attention of every employer.
Article Originally Published on ACOG Career Connection