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5 Healthcare Resume Tips That'll Get the Attention of Recruiters


Your resume is your most powerful tool when marketing your experience and skills to potential employers. The quality of your resume will cause employers to decide, in a matter of seconds, whether they will contact you for an interview or file your resume away in favor of another candidate. In fact, recruiters spend six seconds on average reviewing an individual resume, according to TheLadders. Make sure healthcare recruiters spend more than six seconds looking at your resume with these five tips.

1. Choose the Appropriate Format – Resume or CV

Both resumes and CVs (curriculum vitae) are used when pursuing healthcare jobs. Typically, a resume is used for non-clinical healthcare professionals seeking roles in functions like management administrative work, or back-office operations.

If you are seeking an academic or scientific role, such as a doctor, scientist or researcher, you should use a CV.

2. Avoid Using These Fonts

Once you have determined which format is best for you, it’s time to put pen to paper (or fingers to a keyboard) and get to work. But first, you must choose a font that is legible and looks professional.

Avoid using any family of connected scripts or flowery fonts, like Zapfino or Lucida Calligraphy. They’re simply too hard to read and don’t convey professionalism.

Absolutely, positively, steer clear of Comic Sans. It should never be used on a resume/CV “unless you are applying for clown college,” said Brian Hoff, creative director of Brian Hoff Design. I assume that if you’re reading this blog, you most certainly are not.

The jury’s still out on Times New Roman. It’s been around for a long time. As such, some recruiters may see it as thoughtless and lazy, while others see it as classic and straightforward.

Typography experts came to a consensus on the winner: Helvetica. “It feels professional, lighthearted, honest,” said Hoff. It is easy on the eye and it’s a universally available font.

For more on the dos and don’ts of font typefaces for resumes, see this Bloomberg article.

3. Include Desired Keywords

Most hospitals, health systems and healthcare organizations use recruitment software that matches keywords in a candidate’s application to keywords in the job description. With this in mind, ResumeEdge recommends using words in your resume/CV that align with those in the description.

For instance, if you serve patients or clients, use “caseload” to demonstrate the number and types of cases you have handled. “Quality control” is an essential component for any healthcare professional’s skill set.

4. Highlight Experiences and Activities Beyond Your Responsibilities

Listing your responsibilities on your resume/CV is a given. Including the benefits and results of your efforts adds another layer of credibility and expertise. Beyond that, volunteer experience and other activities can help you to stand out even more.

ResumeEdge notes that clinical experience is not the only way applicants can demonstrate knowledge of their profession. “Even medical experience outside the field is important because it indicates the motivation and temperament of the applicant. And volunteer work and shadowing experience indicated on your resume is a plus,” according to Donald McCoy, a radiation therapy program chairman.

If you have interests and hobbies that shape you as a person and healthcare professional, consider including those as well. For example, if you are an avid runner and strongly believe in the health benefits of staying fit, this shows that you are a true champion for health and wellness. In addition, the discipline and dedication that it takes to be a runner are traits that are also important for healthcare professionals in their everyday work. Employers take notice of details like these.  

If you have ever participated in competitive team sports, written an article for a publication or given a presentation or speech at an important healthcare event, consider including those activities as well. All of them help you to stand out from other candidates and say something about your character.

5. Demonstrate Relevancy and Expertise in an Ever-Changing Environment

As you know, the healthcare field is rapidly changing. As a healthcare professional, your resume/CV should show that you’re adapting your knowledge and skills to keep up with relevant technologies, policies and practices.

If you’re missing a critical skill to make a job switch or career move, ResumeEdge recommends enrolling in training or a certificate program to obtain that skill. This shows employers that you’re actively engaged with learning new skills and tools to advance your career, which reflects dedication to your profession and enthusiasm for growth.


In short, a well-written resume/CV that showcases your strengths is the first step towards getting your dream job. Following the tips above will increase your chances of getting an interview with that employer you’ve been keeping an eye on for a while. If you need further assistance with your resume/CV, check out our resume writing resources.