Why Personalize Your Resume?
Sep. 21, 2016
When it comes to searching for health care careers, it’s important to try and get every edge you can when applying for a job. A big part of that is personalizing your résumé for each and every position for which you apply. In today’s competitive job world, which includes health care careers, you no longer can rely on a cookie-cutter approach to the résumé.
“Generic resumes don’t work,” said Natalia Ragnoli, Graduate Employment Specialist at Concorde’s campus in Miramar, Fla. “To stand out from the piles of applications, you need to customize your résumé for the job you want. This is the first impression the employer has about you.
“The more time we invest on building a good résumé, the more possibilities we have of being called for an interview.”
Each and every résumé must be specific to that unique job opportunity.
Making the resume stand out
“Submitting the same résumé for every position can’t possibly meet each employer’s individual requirements,” said Michael Chacon, Graduate Employment Specialist at Concorde’s campus in San Bernardino, Calif. “Every employer is different and is looking for key words that your résumé might not have. For that reason, it’s a great idea to personalize to the employer’s needs before applying. It’s also a great practice to have more than one résumé for different positions.”
Alex Nguyen, Graduate Employment Specialist for Concorde’s campus in Portland, Ore., said, “For example, if you are applying to become a Medical Assistant, by searching for the positions of employment, there will be many MA opportunities but with different duties in differentiated work environments. The information that is submitted for review may determine if the person is to become a candidate for interviewing. So, it is important to highlight important information for the reviewer to notice them immediately.”
Another big reason for personalizing the résumé is simple. You want it to stand out.
“I always suggest the student bold their name and make the font size just a bit bigger than the rest of the header, to help it stand out,” said Paula Barron, Graduate Employment Specialist at Concorde’s campus in San Antonio, Texas.
Different strokes for different parts of the country
Where you are applying for work is sometimes an important factor in what you want to put on a résumé. For instance, Barron said, because of the large Latino population in San Antonio, it’s important to be bilingual.
“I tell students to mention it in their objective statement and put it in bold so it will stand out,” she said. “Something like, ‘Seeking position as a Bilingual Physical Therapist Assistant.’ They need to make sure they gear their résumé toward whatever field they are going to school for – Respiratory Therapy, Physical Therapist Assistant, Surgical Technologist, etc.
“To be sure, under education, state the current school they are attending, dates attended, what program they are enrolled in and what degree they received or will receive. List the skills they learned from that program and list clinical rotations, where they did them and what skills they did at each.”
Detail all experience in health care careers
Barron said she recommends listing the last three jobs on a résumé, especially if it includes experience in the field in which they are applying. It’s also important, she said, to list any memberships and certifications they have that relates to the field they for which they are applying.
“I tell my students to try and keep it to one page,” Barron said of the resume. “If it goes into two, that is still OK, but not any longer. They can even put a simple border around the résumé that will also draw attention to it. Just a simple one-line border around the whole résumé, nothing wild or crazy.”