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Would You Hire You? Reflecting On Your Medical CV

What is it about looking in the mirror that can be so hard sometimes? Have you ever spent a good 5 or 10 minutes just gazing into the mirror? It’s unsettling because we’re not automatically programmed for self-awareness and criticism.

In the course of your career, it’s useful to look at the tools you have to take the next step, move into the next position, or start earning more. Your interview skills, your LinkedIn profile, networking, and connections you make are all tools you use to manage your career. Naturally, your CV is one of the most important things you need to consider when you’re applying for your next medical job.

As a medical recruiter of over ten years experience, I have seen thousands of healthcare CVs. Some great, some not so great. Many need a lot of work.

So, a helpful activity is to reflect on your CV as if you are an outsider – like a recruiter, locum agency or other hiring manager. When you do this, it’s important to print it out – it makes your CV an object you can place in front of you. Get a highlighter or red pen to mark with.

Approach it clinically, and non-judgementally. Imagine you’re reviewing a patient’s observation chart – you’re looking for keywords, things that stand out, what should/should not be there, and how the information in front of you forms a total picture.

Look for these features in particular:

  • Do you have basic contact details?
  • Is it clearly laid out? Does it flow well?
  • Does the CV follow any specific instructions provided by the employer?
  • Is the CV specific to the job (e.g. if you’re applying for a locum emergency job, will it be the same as applying for a GP training program?)
  • Are there any cliche keywords?
  • Do you have any redundant sections? (that job at McDonalds in 1992 may not be so relevant now)
  • Is your CV on a template provided by the good people at Microsoft or Apple?
  • Are there any spelling or grammatical errors (much more common than you would expect)
  • Will it survive the Goldfish Test?
  • Does the CV give you an overall picture of your career and where you are heading?
  • Would you hire you?

 

So, how did your CV stack up? The most important thing to do after this exercise is to actually implement some changes after you review it.

 

 

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