Medical Assistants are one of the fastest growing healthcare careers and there is a lot of competition for these job openings. So how you represent yourself on your resume is a prime opportunity for an employer to choose you for an interview over someone else.
Most current medical assistants, students and new graduates from a medical assistant training program can easily become nervous, flustered and unsure when it comes to writing an effective resume to apply for the numerous medical assistant jobs. Regardless, here are the most important elements that a job-seeking medical assistant should incorporate when constructing their resume:
While it may be tempting to create a resume a little out of the ordinary to catch attention, remember the medical field is made up of professionals. It’s best to stick to white, grey or crème resume paper and a standard, plain black font. Resist using bold graphics, colored papers or papers with designs on them. Remember that you’re presenting yourself as a professional and need to be taken seriously.
Name and Contact Information
Make your name and contact information easy to find at the top of your resume. Include your address, phone number and e-mail address.
When you apply for a position, you have something in mind – something that tells you this is a great position for you, or that the company just might be one you want to stay with for a very long time. So start your resume with a strong objective that demonstrates your knowledge of a particular organization or that of a specific medical assistant job opening.
What do you aspire to or what role do you want to play within an organization? The objective section on your resume should succinctly express your reasons for applying. To obtain a position as a medical assistant in pediatrics to meet my career goal of working with children, or To apply my versatile and competent medical skills in family practice with a reputable medical facility that offers career growth, are a couple of examples.
Education is an important component in the job requirements for a medical assistant. List all the programs you’ve finished, ensuring you’ve included attendance dates and any honors or special recognitions.
If you have a certification such as Certified Medial Assistant (CMA) or perhaps Registered Medical Assistant (RMA), make sure to list these credentials.
Due to the constant updates and changes in the medical field, continuing education is vital for your career search or advancement. With extra training and education listed on your resume, you will definitely have an advantage over other people.
For most people, except for new graduates, this is the part that employers will ask questions about the most. Work history should be listed in reverse chronological order. That is, the most recent experience is listed first. Detail your achievements and responsibilities for each position in bullet form. Put more information on the most recent work experience in your medical assistant resume, making sure to also include employer name and dates employed.
Medical assistants are employed within numerous environments. There’s a difference between working in small practices and large ones, as well as working in hospitals, clinics or ambulatory care centers. Be sure to specify the type of medical facilities you are experienced with.
If you haven’t had much experience in a professional setting, highlight positions you’ve held as a medical volunteer. This may give prospective employers more confidence in your abilities.
Include clinical skills that apply to a medical assistant job such as: preparing patients, taking of medical histories, ability to take vital signs, preparing medication and treatments, basic first aid, CPR, infection control knowledge and assisting physicians with exams.
Stress administrative skills that you are experienced with. Some of these may include: general secretarial skills, including typing and transcription, answering telephones and making appointments, bookkeeping, computer expertise, particularly with medical office applications, medical coding, billing and insurance knowledge.
If you never worked in a medical office but have developed transferable skills in another similar job where you had to be responsible, punctual, organized, efficient and maintain a positive and professional disposition, had to greet people, keep them safe, make them comfortable, or address specific concerns (e.g. customer services department) don’t think it isn’t important to mention these only because it didn’t take place in a medical office setting. Quite the opposite – it is important and does count toward the expectations that many employers have when narrowing down the most qualified job candidate from many applications they receive.
Provide 2 or 3 professional references. These can be past employers, teachers or people you’ve met through volunteer work.
References from healthcare providers or facilities are best.
Include references right on your resume if you believe they will help you, or simply write “References Available Upon Request.” If you state that they are available, have a references sheet ready when you turn in your resume.
Your resume will change over time as your professional career and education evolves. A resume is not something you create once and then forget about.
Update your resume at least once a year, reflecting any changes or additions. It’s always a great idea to have a current resume on hand; you never know when just the right job opportunity will come along!
Add information such as completed internships, certifications, specialized training courses, continuing education programs or other relevant job experience.
Keep your resume at 1 or 2 pages.
Check carefully for grammatical errors.
Ask for assistance from a career counselor. Most schools have a department or designated personnel to help students write a resume and refine job seeking skills.
Ask another person to look over your resume for you, preferably someone in healthcare or recruitment, and ask for any advice they may have.
Save your resume as a PDF so you can attach within an email and lessen the possibility of having it garbled due to different word processing programs or versions of the software.
Always remember to be honest and stick to the facts, showing employers why they need you on board.
Looking for a medical assistant job can be a bit difficult or challenging. Just remember that your resume is a marketing tool and employers will use it to decide if they want to interview you for the job. If you are well-prepared and you have an impressive resume, then you won’t have a hard time obtaining an ideal job!