Locum doctors – how to sell yourself in your CV

I have been recruiting individuals fora variety of placements for a number of years now, and in that time I have been able to identify and ascertain exactly what employers want to see in their prospective candidates.  I wanted to take this opportunity to pass some of this knowledge on to you.

The first thing a potential employer sees from you is your CV.  It is important to note that it’s probably not just your CV, but hundreds of CV’s. In fact, for every locum or permanent job that needs to be filled at least five CV’s are sent by each consultant. So, do the maths – if a client places a job with three different agencies, which they will, that is a minimum of 15 CV’s being sent over for the job that you want.

So how do you make your CV stand out?

Assume that everybody knows nothing and go straight into idiot mode!  

You know what you can do and what is associated with the job you do, unfortunately a future employer may not. Nowadays a lot of the HSS departments have been merged and crossed over and amalgamated, so the Histology Manager may be ultimately responsible for the running of the Mortuary, or the Pathology Manager may be responsible for the Phlebotomy department, which can cause confusion.

Whilst the manager may be in charge overall, they may not have done the job that you do, so therefore don’t assume that they know what you do and what you are capable of.   Assuming that they know what you do could lose you the position, as you didn’t sell yourself as succinctly as you could have done.

CV example test

Below are two examples of CV’s – both technologists are equally qualified if you were an employer who would be your first choice?

Remember the more detail that you put down, the more chance you have of getting ahead of everyone else.  It could just be a case of you leaving out one word and thinking “they must know that I can do that” that loses you that assignment. Some department heads are looking for ‘key words’ in CV’s and if you haven’t put them down, that is all it takes, for you to become a second choice.

Example 1


Personal Details

Name:                     Candidate 1                                            

School:                    1980 – 1984            

ABC School

College:   1988-1989

                                ABC College

Qualifications: Certificate in Anatomical Pathology Technology                          Pass

Previous Employment

July ‘84 – November ’85: Youth Training Scheme at Freshco

November ’85 – July 2012: The ******* Hospital Bereavement Services Manager

August 1996 – September 1996 Locum in UK

February 2000 – present: Funeral Director driver (various companies)

April 4th 2012 –   June14th   2013: Self-employed multi- drop driver courier

June 17th 2013 –   present –Temp driving agency

August 2013 – present Locum Anatomical Pathology Technician

References:  available on request




Example 2

Name:                                Candidate 2

Education                                ABC School

                                                1972 – 1977


Qualifications                         GSE

  • English, Maths, History, Biology, Physics

Professional                            1978 – 1997 Royal Air Force

Professional                            1997 – 1998 XYZ Hospital

Experience                              Hospital Porter

  • General Portering duties. It was during this time that I showed an interest in the workings of the mortuary, and was successful in applying and getting a trainee position in the mortuary.

Professional                            1998 – 2007 XYZ Hospital,

Experience                              Anatomical Pathology Technician

  • During my time in the mortuary I was involved with Hatfield and Potters Bar rail crash, I was part of the British team sent to South East Asia post Tsunami, and one of the Technical Coordinators for the temporary mortuary, post London bombings. I am one of three Mortuary technicians to have been trained in the full DVI process from body recovery to temporary mortuary set up. I facilitate on the Home Office Approved National DVI Course held at Dundee University. I finished my time at XYZ Hospital as Senior Anatomical Pathology Technician.

Professional                            2007 – 2008

Experience                              Volume Crime Scene Examiner

  • I Left the world of mortuary work to pursue a career in crime investigation to further my interest in forensic science and investigation.

Professional                            2008 – 2011

Experience                              Locum Mortuary Technician

Professional                            2011 – 2012 RST Hospital,

Experience                              Senior Mortuary Technician

2      I secured the position of Senior Mortuary Technician at XYZ Hospital on a fixed term contract to enable the training of staff and run a busy county mortuary and introduce protocols.

Professional                            2012 – 2013 XYZ Hospital

Experience                              Senior Mortuary Technician

3      I was contacted by my old trust and asked if I would like to come back on a fixed term contract to help oversee the centralization of services and mortuary refurbishment whilst still maintaining a coronial service.

Professional                            2013 – Present

Experience                              Locum Forensic Mortuary Technician

4      Since leaving XYZ Hospital I have been working as a full time locum and continue to do so in all roles within the mortuary environment from Technician to Locum Mortuary Manager.

Specialization                          Forensic Case Work

I specialize in Forensic Case Work, High Risk Autopsy’s and reconstruction of disrupted deceased. Also recently I have become involved in paediatric post mortems.

Accreditations                         RIPH Certificate with credit in Anatomical Pathology Technology,                                      May 2003.                                                                                                                                                                              RIPH Diploma in Anatomical Pathology Technology, May 2004.                                                                                Associate of the RIPH July 2003.                                                                                                                                                                       VRC Registration 2008          




NHS Trusts & City Mortuaries


ABC Hospital

DEF Hospital

GHI Hospital

JLK Forensic Mortuary

MNO Hospital

PQR Hospital

STU Public Mortuary

VWX Hospital

YZ City Mortuary


Working with your Recruitment Consultant

You also want your consultant to push your CV above and beyond others and keep you in work. Make sure that you communicate with them regularly, always informing them of:

  1. Your availability
  2. The pay rate you require
  3. Areas that you are prepared to work

The more flexible you are the better. Your consultant will do everything they can to find you the ‘perfect placement’ but in this economic climate that is not always possible initially. They say that one good turn deserves another, when the chips are down a slightly lesser pay rate or a position 20 miles further than you wanted to commute is better than not working.

To sum up, if you only want to work at the hospital at the end of your road for £1000 per hour and another locum is happy to travel anywhere as long as accommodation can be provided and is willing to take a slightly lesser pay rate, which locum do you think is likely to be in continuous employment?

Look after your consultant by being flexible and they will look after you. It is in everybody’s best interest to place you in a position that you want, in a location that you want at a pay rate that makes you feel valued. Work with your consultant and they will do their best for you.

[testimonial name=”By Karen Krimgotlz” who=”Sales Consultant at Total Assist” imagelinks=”http://totalassist.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Karen-e1404902640228.jpg” vertical=”no”]”I have worked in Medical recruitment for over 10 years, specialising in both the HSS and AHP sectors. I have, over the years, built up good relationships with both clients and candidates. I understand their needs and more importantly have gained their trust. I have experience in both locum and permanent positions so please call me on 01708 388066.”[/testimonial]


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