Welcome to the 3rd part of a 7-part career guide for junior doctors written by Dr Abhijit Pal (PGY2) with Dr Emma McCahon (Clinical Director of Critical Care Program at Children’s Hospital, Westmead, and Clinical Lead of LEAP, a leadership program for junior doctors run by HETI).
How do I write a CV?
Make it stand out of the hundreds of CVs that recruiters get.
Ensure it is clear and succinct.
Common mistakes in CV writing
- Too much information (don’t put in your Year 7 activities)
- Too long (keep it under 4 pages, to an extent the shorter the better)
- Unreadable font, small font, and poor formatting
- Not including great information (e.g. university medal)
Tips for CV writing
- Write a targeted CV (don’t include all information, only that which is relevant to the job you are applying for)
- Keep it chronological (most recent activities first)
- Sections – qualifications, employment, research, teaching, quality improvement, leadership, professional development, extracurricular activities (this is why it helps to plan early!)
- Extracurricular activities
- Don’t write “watching sunsets, reading books”.
- Write relevant activities that have relevance to your job – for example, weekend sport, community organisations (activities which have transferable skills such as teamwork, leadership)
- Photo – an area of controversy, some CV readers like to put a name to a face others frown upon it
- Talk to your senior clinicians about whether they think it’s a good idea
- Most people do not have a photograph on their CV, if in doubt play it safe
- Career statements are a way of standing out
- A short paragraph at the start of the CV about where you are going with your career can be effective if you have a particular intent (e.g. I want to become a rural physician to serve the community I grew up in.)