Thanks to an aging population of seniors who outnumber and are outliving previous generations, rewarding healthcare career opportunities will keep outpacing the average job market growth in the near future. To better your chances of success when the best job stakes are high, an exceptional healthcare resume is vital.
Confidently set yourself apart from other qualified applicants with ideas and inspiration from Resume.io. We’ve developed more than 300 occupation-specific resume guides and resume samples to help you make the next career move that’s right for you.
This healthcare resume writing guide, along with the corresponding resume example will cover the following topics:
- Role of healthcare providers and the job market outlook
- General writing tips for a healthcare resume
- The best format for structuring your healthcare resume
- Advice on each resume section: header, summary, work history, education and skills
- Professional resume layout and design hints.
What does a healthcare provider do?
In its broadest sense, healthcare (sometimes spelled “health care” as two words) is a vast category of occupations aimed at maintaining or improving human health and well-being. Healthcare is delivered by practitioners and support workers in a wide range of specialized fields including medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, midwifery, nursing, optometry, audiology, psychology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, chiropractic, medical lab technology and athletic training, among many.
Salary and job outlook
Although annual income figures vary significantly among specific healthcare occupations, some broad comparisons with non-healthcare workforces can be made.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage in May 2020 for healthcare practitioners and technical occupations, such as registered nurses, physicians and surgeons and dental hygienists, was $69,870. This is notably higher than the $41,950 median annual wage for all occupations. Based on different criteria and source data, Payscale recently reported a higher annual average — $76,152, from a survey of 2,135 healthcare jobs — while $57,535 was the Glassdoor average for just 267 jobs.
The BLS outlook for healthcare occupations is vibrant, with the number of jobs projected to increase by 15%from 2019 to 2029. This growth rate, accounting for some 2.4 million new healthcare jobs, is much faster than the average for all other occupations. The greater future demand for healthcare services is attributed mainly to aging population demographics.
How to write a healthcare resume
What your healthcare resume will likely have in common with those submitted by other job applicants is the structure. It should fit on a single page and include all of these elements:
- Employment history section
- Education section
- Skills section
Thought and care should go into an eye-pleasing header design that clearly identifies who your resume belongs to, your occupation and contact information. It might also include social media links and a photo. For tips, see the guide chapter on resume layout and design.
Before elaborating on how to write the summary, employment history, education and skills sections, one at a time, here is some general advice for ensuring your resume scores high on all counts, and is actually read in the first place.
Every job application requires a new version of your healthcare resume. Forget about using exactly the same resume more than once, or any approach that involves copying and pasting generic content. Customize the information, language and tone to what each specific job requires and what the employer needs from the healthcare worker being hired.
How do you know how? Start by scrutinizing the job requirements as listed for the posted vacancy, focusing on specific duties and essential skills. Then research the hiring organization thoroughly, including the job setting and workplace culture.
Optimize your healthcare resume wording by closely matching the job requirement terminology used in the career ad posting. At the same time, try to sound original and authentic, with resume wording that no other candidates will use exactly the same way. Be creative in choosing language that sets you apart, mixed in with keywords and buzzwords that hiring managers expect to see.
Expect your healthcare resume to be screened by automated applicant tracking systems (ATS) software. Most large organizations, including healthcare facilities, rely on this recruiting technology to screen through dozens or hundreds of applications for any given job. Only resumes that rank high enough for keywords reflecting job requirements will pass through the ATS filter for review by human recruiters. Optimize your resume accordingly with the right keywords throughout.
Choosing the best resume format for healthcare
The most commonly used, failsafe chronological resume format is ideal for structuring most healthcare resumes. It provides the most straightforward overview of your career highlights in the employment history section.
But if the healthcare position you’re pursuing would be a radical departure, or your job background has not followed a linear path of employee positions, you might want to consider a combination resume as an alternative resume format. This structure starts with a skills or experience section to highlight all your best qualities before continuing to a work history section where you can place previous positions.
Resume summary example
Your healthcare resume summary (sometimes called “profile” or “personal statement”) occupies a compact space but plays a conspicuously important purpose. It’s your initial expression of confidence to recruiters that you are well-qualified to put the well-being of patients above all else in this healthcare role.
Consistent with the summary’s up-front prominence on the page, your most relevant career highlights and personal attributes should instantly resonate with what this employer needs and values. All the details will follow in later resume sections, while your summary hits the high notes of who you are and what you’ve accomplished. It takes finesse to do this effectively in just two or three sentences, which need not even be complete sentences.
Making the most out of every limited word requires concise and precise language. Use descriptive and dynamic action verbs, and modifiers sparingly for added impact. Strive for an authentic tone that’s energetic and self-assured but not arrogant.
Below is a healthcare resume example summary you can customize.
Dedicated Healthcare Administrator with experience coordinating hospital staff and departments to ensure the highest level of functionality and productivity. Adept in working with patient records, medical billing, and all aspects of healthcare administration in a fast-paced environment. Committed to utilizing my strengths and experience working in healthcare systems to support smooth administrative processes.
Employment history sample
Even if the employment history section of your healthcare resume is clear-cut, you might need to be selective in deciding how much detail to include or omit.
In most instances, healthcare job applicants will require and have previous work experience to list here, sometimes extensive and possibly specialized. It’s usually a matter of listing each employer and job title by date and location, in reverse chronological order.
Regardless of your healthcare occupation or job background, always follow this universally applicable resume-writing guideline: to impress the hiring managers who evaluate your resume, find out what this employer needs and then show you can deliver that. This means the employment history section of your healthcare resume should focus on the most directly relevant accomplishments. That’s because the hiring organization is interested in your potential contributions as a future employee, rather than your past job titles and duties.
There’s a knack for distilling your accomplishments down to one-liners for the employment history section of your healthcare resume.
- Each result should be measurable, if possible backed by facts or figures showing quality of health or care outcomes, cost savings or efficiency improvements.
- Break each achievement into three parts:
- Action verb
- Specific task completed
- Quantifiable outcome benefiting the organization
Below is a healthcare employment history resume sample you can use while writing your own.
Healthcare Administrator at Norwalk Hospital, Norwalk
April 2018 - July 2021
- Served as a liaison between patients and medical professionals.
- Provided efficient and timely administrative support to ensure the smooth running of the office.
- Aimed to provide the highest level of customer service by remaining organized, punctual, and accurate.
- Provided direct support to the Chief Financial Officer by handling correspondence and schedules.
- Oversaw and executed new employee orientation activities.
- Responded to complex inquiries and issues, using excellent judgment and decision-making skills.
Office Assistant at Soundview Medical Associates, Norwalk
February 2013 - April 2018
- Served as an enthusiastic and supportive Office Assistant in this busy medical practices.
- Acted as a friendly and helpful first-point-of-contact for patients.
- Worked to maintain accurate and detailed information for patient records.
- Utilized automated systems to expedite patient scheduling, registration processes, and check-in processes.
- Worked collaboratively with other office professionals to ensure productivity and efficiency.
Healthcare resume education example
For many healthcare occupations, the resume education section is vitally relevant and not necessarily straightforward. In addition to college degrees, which are listed in reverse chronological order, from highest to lowest level, there may be professional certifications and/or licensing credentials that also belong here, depending on the healthcare job role.
Most healthcare professionals are likely familiar with the formal educational requirements that employers require and expect to see on the resumes of qualified job applicants for specific positions. For suggestions on how to present this information, we recommend checking out these and other specific resume examples and writing guides in the medical category: doctor, nurse, occupational therapist, pharmacist, and respiratory therapist.
Your education listing should include scholastic awards or other special achievements and honors. Professional memberships are also worth noting if they demonstrate your commitment to continuous learning.
Unless you are applying for a position with no requirement for college degrees, or other specific post-secondary education, do not make mention of your high school.
Below is the education section from a healthcare resume example.
Bachelor of Arts in Communications, Rutgers University, Newark
September 2009 - May 2013
High School Diploma, Fort Lee High School, Fort Lee
September 2005 - May 2009
CV skills example
Being selective is a skill in itself when creating a healthcare CV skills list that hits the right mark. Undoubtedly your list could be much longer than what space allows for, so deciding what to exclude may be harder than expected.
Take your cues from the job requirements listed in the ad posting. Our earlier general writing advice stressed the importance of using keywords from that same source. The skills section is the most obvious place to incorporate keywords, at the same time helping to ATS-proof your CV so it reaches a human recruiter.
Strive for the most relevant mix of hard skills and soft skills on your healthcare resume list. Especially in jobs involving direct interactions with patients and their loved ones, communication and interpersonal skills are naturally going to be high on the employer’s wish list.
Also strive for originality by avoiding clichéd skill jargon. Add your own twist to vague or overused phrases. Describe exactly what a “detail-oriented team player” looks like in a healthcare scenario that the employer can envision.
Check out a healthcare resume sample for the skills section below.
- Ability to Multitask
- Attention to Detail
- Medical Knowledge
- Effective Time Management
- Knowledge of Office Systems
- Healthcare Administration and Operations
Resume layout and design
Your healthcare resume should look like you care about getting this job, just as you would want to look your best during a face-to-face interview.
Strive for a visual impact that’s eye-catching in the most professionally polished, reader-friendly sense of the word. Go leaner with unbroken text blocks by amplifying your page margins, line spacing and overall white space for proportion and balance.
Most of the creativity in resume layout and design lies in the font style and size, text formatting and color splashes. Choose carefully when aligning your resume’s graphic style with the employer’s own visual brand, taking clues from its web pages and printed materials.
Resume.io’s builder tool saves time and uncertainty when it comes to layout and design. Browse our collection of job-winning resume templates in four style categories: Modern, Creative, Simple and Professional. Pick your favorite, download and replace with your own text. It’s that easy.
Key takeaways for a healthcare resume
- An aging, longer-living generation of seniors is driving the rapid growth in healthcare job opportunities over the next decade.
- Gain a competitive edge for winning the best healthcare jobs with an outstanding resume that showcases your strongest suits.
- Pinpointing what the prospective employer needs and values most is how you strategically target your healthcare resume in relatable terms. This also helps in matching keywords to pass through the automated ATS filter.
- Highlight your most relevant hard and soft skills, along with accomplishments with measurable benefits you can replicate if hired.
- Your healthcare resume should look like you care about landing a job-winning interview. Leave the layout and design decisions up to the Resume.io experts, by using our online resume builder and a field-tested template.
Other related resume examples from the same industry
- Lactation Consultant
- Marriage and Family Therapist
- Health Care Administration
- Dental Receptionist
- Nursing Student
- Nursing Home
- Behavioral Therapist
- Art Therapist
- Child Psychologist
- Medical Support Assistant
- Medical Social Worker
- Pharmacy Technician
- Physician Assistant
- Clinic Coordinator
- Medical Receptionist
- Physical Therapist
- Pharmaceutical Sales Representative
- Medical Science Liaison
- Dental Assistant