Resumes state what you want to do and why you're good at it.

That statement should clearly define the difference between a resume and a CV. CV's are historical, chronological listings of places and positions.

Resume's are forward looking documents that use the value of your past accomplishments to present you as the right fit for the job you want.

Components of a Resume

  • Contact information
  • Position or Career statement
  • Core Competencies
  • Accomplishments
  • Education
  • Chronology of Employment
  • Memberships, etc... that may be pertinent

Contact Information

Name and MD/DO/DDS/DVM, mailing address, best contact phone that will always be answered in a business-like fashion (with a business-like voice mail message) and your email address. Make your email address simple, i.e. I often recommend acquiring both a cell phone and a new email address specifically for your job hunt. The separate phone does two things. One it allows for a job hunting message, i.e. nothing cutesy, and two use it only for job hunting and when it rings you know it's about business. Concerning your email. Don't have an email address that sends a message other than that you're a physician. "" isn't going to cut it, even if you're applying to Halliburton. Nor is If one of these is your email address, I apologize. I tried to use similar to, but not exact matches to what has shown up in my inbox.

Position/Career Statement

Recruiters and others argue about the value of these statement, a short paragraph at the top of your resume that say, "I am highly skilled in... etc..." I find them helpful for physicians in seeking career change because once others see comma MD/DO/etc... after your name they may be confused about where you'll fit. This tells them.

Core Competencies

Simply put, core competencies are categories, usually three to five, into which your accomplishment will fit. They should represent career areas in which you are interested, skills you want to use and value areas you can offer an employer.


List three to five preferably measurable accomplishment to illustrate or support each core competency. Also, unless specifically relevant to the jobs you're hunting, omit past companies and dates from your accomplishments. For example, Established QA committee in a community hospital that led to a 20 percent reduction in post operative infection rates. NOT: At St. Albans Community Hospital, in 1984, Established QA committee in a community hospital that led to a 20 percent reduction in post operative infection rates.

WHY - First, is being at St. Albans... germane to your future job? Second, even if it is, someone may be familiar with St. Albans QA program and think it not that great... Finally, by specifying what you did in 1984 some may as if you still know how - or what have you done since.

TIP- the more core competencies the fewer accomplishments to illustrate each, the fewer core competencies the more accomplishments.

TIP: Contact info, Position/Career Statement, Core Competencies and Accomplishments should be the first page of your resume


List colleges. List your year of completion, not the range. Skip residency, fellowship, etc... unless they speak directly to job qualification, duties or responsibilities.

Chronology of Employment

List the organization, its city and state, your job title and the dates of employment. Keep it simple. Remember, it's unlikely your past employment will create an immediate link to your next job. Use your core competencies and accomplishments to list and illustrate those links.

Memberships and other...

Being an AMA member may be important if you're applying to be a medical director at Pfizer. It may not be important if you're applying as a consultant on process delivery for Boston Consulting Group...

Make a decision what is relevant, may be considered impressive, etc....

Lastly, try to keep your resume on two pages.