- Attention to detail helps make a good impression
- Consider what is it that makes you stand out from the crowd and emphasise these points
- Review your social media profile
- Keep the layout simple, consistent, structured and easy to read (use lots of white space).
- Quantify your experience and strengths in objective measurable achievements.
- When listing your achievements, summarise what you have learnt from them.
- Connect your skills, experience, traits and jobs requirements with those the employer is seeking.
- Pay attention to the details (check spelling and grammar).
- Number each page of your CV and ensure your name is on each page.
- Provide the best contact number for you with your email address.
- Customise your CV for each role and employer when possible.
- Some employers have a set format for CVs (do your research before submitting your CV).
- List your:
- career objectives
- career history
- education and training
- roles held including dates, responsibilities and achievements
- professional memberships and qualifications
- prizes, bursaries, awards and scholarships
- publications, research courses, presentations
- special study modules and electives
- relevant work experience
- non relevant work experience and volunteering
- additional skills, achievements and interests
- referee details
- Ensure the information is current and up to date.
- If you trained overseas, include details of the international English language teaching system and the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board.
Don’t undersell yourself but be honest; medicine is a competitive
career and you need to set yourself apart in some way. Consider
what it is about you, your experience and your achievements that
makes you different.
There are certain matters that you must disclose to a potential
employer during a recruitment process (such as certain criminal
convictions). There are other matters that you may be concerned
about disclosing to a potential employer (such as an absence of
months or years during your training or an early pregnancy). If you
have any concerns about what you should and should not disclose,
you should seek advice from your training institution or Avant.
Your cover letter should provide a brief introduction and
summarise the main points you hope will attract the employer.
Specify the role you are applying for and tailor the letter to the
- Explaining why you are interested in the role.
- Outlining how your experience, education, skills and
personal qualities relate to the criteria for that role.
- Emphasising what you could bring to the role that sets you
apart from other applicants.
Many employers now require you to complete and submit an
The points listed above about preparing your CV also apply to
online applications. You should also:
- Check your spelling and grammar carefully (spellcheck is
often not available when completing online forms).
- Ensure you have answered each question.
- Ensure you have attached all relevant documents properly.
- Ideally, print or save a copy of the completed online
application in case you need to refer to it later.
Preparing for interviews
Do your research; about the job and organisation you are applying
for, and the style and format of the interview itself.
These examine both how you think and how you will perform in
specific situations. An example might be a time that you made a
mistake and how you handled it and learnt from it. Think about
examples from your medical school and early career experiences
where you demonstrated a certain behaviour or learnt a pertinent
lesion. Framing your answer around this experience will make it
relevant and interesting.
These test what you have learned from your experience. Be clear
and accurate about your specific personal actions in achieving
the goal being discussed. Describe the situation you faced, the
tasks you performed, the actions you took or decisions you made,
the results you achieved and, perhaps, the lessons you learned.
A good example is an interpersonal conflict question where you
would be expected to mention communication, respect, and
consideration of other people’s point of view.
A clinical scenario
Often you will be given a clinical scenario – remember to cover off
the basics as well as the advanced medical knowledge. Referring
to key principles such as consent, privacy, communication and
good documentation will demonstrate you are safe and thorough.
The person or panel conducting the interview, or if an online
format the person reviewing the recording of the interview,
will usually be a senior medical practitioner who will be asking
themselves “is this a safe doctor who I want on my team?” so think
about how you can demonstrate that you are a team player and
easy to get along with.
Be prepared also to discuss your career goals, and link these to
the job you are applying for. For example, if applying for a training
position, show how your career aspirations align with the role or
the program and rotations offered by the specific hospital.
During the interview
- Remember rapport: greet the interviewer appropriately,
use eye contact and smile.
- Be enthusiastic and authentic.
- Speak clearly and confidently about your experiences and skills.
- Listen carefully to the questions asked and be specific in your
answers (make sure you understand the question before
responding and provide specific examples to help you answer
- Remember this is a patient based industry so ensure you
demonstrate your compassion, empathy, and strong
- Maintain appropriate professionalism with any member of the
interview panel with whom you have a personal relationship.
- Always have a strong statement to close with if given the
opportunity such as ‘is there anything you would like to add to
support your application’.
- Ensure that you understand the next step in the selection
Increasingly employers are using an online platform such as
‘Zoom’ to interview candidates or to shortlist candidates. All of the
key principles apply but also consider:
Location: it is important to find somewhere quiet where you will
not get interrupted and also a background that is neutral like an
office or blank wall.
Lighting: you need front-facing lighting so moving a desk lamp
to sit behind your computer screen is a good idea.
Technology: ensure you are familiar with the platform and test
your equipment before starting the process. If you can do the
interview without a headset this is preferable. Testing beforehand
will assist in establishing the sound quality.
Notes: one good thing about an online interview is you can have
notes to refer to but be careful not to read your answers. If you are
concerned, use dot points rather than full sentences.
Eye contact: consider aligning your camera so your eyes are at
the same height, so you are not looking down constantly with a
Following the interview
If it feels appropriate, you can send the interviewer or hospital
contact a note/email thanking them for their time and restating
your interest in the role is worth considering.
Prospective employers may conduct social media checks as a part
of their assessment of your application. How you appear on your
social media accounts can be used by employers as a measure of
your professionalism. Consider your use of social media and the
privacy settings you have in place to limit access to your social
Ensure your details on LinkedIn and other similar sites are
professional and up- to-date.