How to Write an Alternative Healthcare ResumeOct 19, 2021
How to Write an Alternative Healthcare Resume
I’m so excited to share my tips from over 1500 students on how to write a resume that stands out for careers in utilization review, ergonomics, sales and consulting, care coordinator and health informatics roles to name a few!
Step 1: Organizing your resume
I know this step may be basic but I want to cover every step of the resume process with you.
The chronical format is the format I most typically recommend. In this format, you resume looks like the one below has your name and header, followed by an objective statement, I like to do a skills section with keywords next, then experience, education and additional training, and other sections if you feel it is relevant.
The top of your resume should include your name, phone number, location, email address and LinkedIn profile URL.
But one thing often left out of most resume tips is that you should also put your professional designation too! For example, Emma Shapiro PT,DPT and not Emma Shapiro. This way they will know right away what profession you are.
What to do if you have 20 plus years of experience?
I get this question a lot! I actually have several answers. So if you have 20 years of experience but it was within say 4 jobs, I recommend putting all 4 jobs down. But if you had maybe 8 jobs, then that is a lot to put on a resume - so in this case, I recommend you highlight your most recent jobs and then have a section underneath that simply states the names and dates of your previous positions.
But if you have any position that is really relevant to your application, then I still suggest you put it in your resume as it could help differentiate you from other applicants.
Step 2: Writing an objective statement
The biggest issue I often see on resumes is that there are not written uniquely for that job. Many people are using their same old resume! That may work for a clinical position but to get a role that’s not directly in patient care, you have to show how your work can carry over.
And one way to show that is through an objective statement. This is the first statement, often about 3 sentences, that summarizes you, your desire for the position, and why you are a great fit for the role!
One thing often left out of other resume guides is that I highly recommend you add the position title and employer within this statement too!
Step 3: Writing work experience that actually matters
This is one of the most important steps - and that is to take your clinical resume and edit it. You can keep your contact information, education, and work titles the same. But under each work experience, think about 3-5 bullet points per job that answers the following from the job post you are applying to:
- Answers the qualifications
- Answers the objectives
Take the bullet points from the job post to give you inspiration for your own bullet points. For example, many non clinical healthcare roles want customer service, communication, leadership, teamwork, independence to name a few general key trends we see. So from this you could highlight mentoring assistants or staff, creating unique programs at your facility, leading interdisciplinary team meetings or patient/family conferences.
Now within specific jobs like utilization review or health informatics, there are specific key needs like the ability to understand medical necessity, chart auditing, organizing medical data to name a few. So then from these key objectives, you can create bullet points under you job experience that highlight these skills, such as how you perform chart audits and speak to insurance companies at your work, how you use your strong sense of medical necessity to do perform safe discharges for patients within the skilled nursing or acute rehabilitation units.
The more specific you make these key sentences the better. If you can add numbers, descriptors, settings, then the better both for your recruiter as well as for the applicant tracking system.
Step 4: Go above and beyond with an additional education section
Alternative careers like Utilization Review, Skilled Inpatient Coordinator, Pre-Service Coordinator and many others are VERY competitive. As I’ve said above, it’s not enough to hand in your clinical resume. You need to really show that you have the passion and the skills for the role.
But here is a top secret - these jobs are so competitive, that they have people applying that no nothing about the actual role. Recruiters and hiring managers want someone who has invested time to learn what the role is, what a day in that role entails, and that they can honestly say that want that role and have longevity in that role. It costs thousands of dollars to hire a replacement employee and so they DO NOT want to do that.
One key way to show you are committed to the alternative career role you desire, is to take extra education in that career idea. Take extra CEU classes, extra certifications, do shadowing with a manager or per diem at another facility. All of these things really prove that you are committed to this non clinical role and will help you stand out in the application.
Step 5: Follow the applicant tracking system rules
First, what is the applicant tracking system? Aka ATS, it is software that helps automate the recruitment process. Some examples of ATS systems are Taleo, Resumator, Smart Recruiters to name a few.
When you click on an application, in the URL you can potentially briefly see which ATS system your desired employer is using.
But these systems quickly read your resume and scan for your information, work history, and skills. They are quickly scanning and looking primarily for the key words that your employer has set up. If your resume matches these key words, then the ATS says you are good to continue on to the process of a human person reading your resume.
Here are some top tips to create a non clinical resume that beats the ATS:
1. Focus on the job posting!
The job posting is the piece of the puzzle that has all the answers. Scan the job posting and take all the relevant key words that match your skills and expertise and sprinkle them throughout your resume. Some key words may be in your objective statement, some in your work experience bullets and some in your skills section. But the more you have these key words, the more the ATS will rank you as a great candidate!
2. Keep things neat and standardized
I know we want to make your resume standout by making it beautiful but the computer systems scanning your resume may not understand that. So use basic fonts like Ariel or Times Roman or Calibri, use basic sizes, and use a basic word document layout.
3. Save your resume as a PDF!
I know that may seem common sense but just incase, save your resume as a PDF and submit it in that format. This will avoid any formatting errors.
4. Do not use abbreviations.
As clinicians, we often us PT or OT or SLP but this may not be well received by the ATS. As much as you can, use standardized or traditional and non abbreviated language.
Is that it? Yep! But it’s not just about passing the ATS. You have to stand out. So work hard to really push the limits with how your skills translate over to a non clinical or alternative healthcare career.
If you are interested in getting help with positions in Utilization Review, Pre Service Coordinator, Care Coordinator Roles we have a program that walks you through how to get these positions, it also includes 2 hours of CEU credits as well as a FREE resume review and edits! You can learn more about the Utilization Review Course here.
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