How to Rehab Your Therapy Résumé


Whether or not you are actively searching for a new therapy job—we have a lot of those, if you are, though—keeping your résumé current just in case is always a good idea. Here are some tips to make sure your therapy résumé is in top shape.

Start with the Basics

Just like your patients, you have to walk before you run. Start with a clean, modern layout that breaks your information into easily identifiable sections, so the hiring manager, recruiter, or other important person whose hands your résumé falls into can easy see your selling points—and this is about selling yourself.

Some great examples of templates we love can be found here, here, and here. Be sure to use clean, easy-to-read fonts (side note: it is never appropriate to use Comic Sans), and always save a copy of your résumé as a .PDF file to retain formatting.

Objective: Ditch the “Objective”

Since you are selling yourself, you need to identify your personal brand, and put that at the top of your résumé in a professional summary, instead of an outdated “objective”. Your objective is to get the job—that’s already clear.

Start with your personal brand statement—a good trick for this is: a few words describing your strengths + who you are + your experience + your unique expertise. For example: An empathetic, tech-savvy Doctor of Physical Therapy, who has served the pediatric population for five years, with a special focus on treating those with Autism spectrum disorder.

Follow your personal brand statement with a professional summary. Highlight your expertise level and education accomplishments, if they are impressive enough to include here—such as a high GPA or special honors, and use strong action words (pioneered, increased, managed, achieved, generated, conceptualized, collaborated, and so on) to further drive your value.

School Them On Your Schooling

Education is a big selling point for therapy professionals—and, obviously, for us, since we’re mentioning it again. Your education, continuing education, and other certifications are your core, and recruiters and hiring companies are interested in them. Any schooling and training you have completed and completed well should be placed in its own section, and, if formatting allows, placed above your clinical experience.

Focus on Your Accomplishments

Don’t just bullet point your responsibilities in your previous roles, focus on what you have accomplished—maybe even brag a little.

List your experience in reverse chronological order, meaning your most recent role at the top, and expand on the points you touched on in your professional summary. This is a good place to get in some keywords (which will help your résumé get through the automated process of screening candidates and into the hands of an actual human, mind you) and talk about populations you’ve treated, modalities you’ve used, EHR you’re familiar with, and so on.

You can even include volunteer experience here, if it bolsters your brand.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

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