The Job Search
Statement of Purpose
• The purpose of these slides is to get you
thinking about the process of seeking a
job. Whether you have already started
this process or will be following fellowship,
your preceptor may be able to help you
with this process. These slides will cover
some of the main components of a job
search you should be considering.
• The Cover Letter
• The Curriculum Vitae
The Cover Letter
• The cover letter should:
– Express your interest in a position
– Summarize your qualifications
– Tie your skill sets to the needs of an employer
– Be targeted to a specific position and
EXAMPLE COVER LETTERS
Dear Ms Smith:
I am writing in response to your recent classified ad for a full-time pediatrician. I am in my final year of pediatric
residency and will be graduating in June 2008. I will be board-eligible and intend to sit for the pediatric board
examination later this fall. I am interested in starting with a practice this summer.
During my pediatric residency, careful listening, vigilance, compassion, and enthusiasm enabled me to excel during my
outpatient and inpatient rotations. Although it is a challenge to provide treatment for children who are more acutely ill or
sometimes chronically ill, the true reward is in watching them heal and improve. Working as a primary care pediatrician
will allow me the chance to continue to play a major role in this process.
I also look forward to teaching and supervising students and residents if the opportunity arises. I am organized and
hardworking, and work excellently as a team player. I hope to join a practice where I can use my current skills and
continue to grow and develop new ones as I gain experience.
My pediatric training at <name of pediatric hospital> has given me diverse exposure to primary, secondary, and tertiary
care pediatric medicine. Because this is a large children’s hospital, I have become comfortable with working in an
environment where one may have to see 20 to 30 patients a day.
I have an interest in asthma management as it pertains to primary care pediatrics. I also love the continuity and the
preventive care aspects of this field. I am fluent in German and can speak conversational Spanish as it pertains to
medical history taking. I am excited about joining a practice and feel that I would a great addition to your team.
Enclosed you will find my CV. Please call me at 888/333-3333 or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are
interested in talking to me further. Thank you for considering me.
Dear Mr. Smith:
I am writing to express my sincere interest in a job opportunity that your practice recently posted on www.PedJobs.org.
I am currently a board-certified pediatrician at a large private practice clinic in southern Washington. I have 4 years of
experience in private practice. I am looking to relocate to your area so that I can be closer to my family.
My primary goal is to join a group practice that will provide me with the opportunity to practice the best standard of care
in pediatrics. I am interested in a practice that will allow me to focus on outpatient pediatric care, especially preventive
medicine. I have experience in inpatient primary care pediatrics as well and look forward to continuing those skills if the
opportunity allows. As a former chief resident, I have a passion for teaching and would welcome the chance to interact
with medical students and residents as well.
I feel it is essential to be a strong advocate for my patients and an active participant in their care. I have served in
various leadership roles at my current practice and hospital and would like to continue to do so in my career. I feel that
by becoming a part of the decision-making process in my practice and hospital, I can make a difference in my local
I currently work 4 days per week and 1 weekend per month, seeing an average of 25 patients per day. I have an on-call
schedule of 1 in 7. Our calls typically include emergency department consultations, phone triage, admitting patients into
the hospital, and attending high-risk and cesarian deliveries. I am fluent in English and skilled in conversational
I strongly believe that your practice has the potential to enable me to achieve all of my goals. I would welcome the
opportunity to speak with you directly. Please contact me if you are interested in setting up an interview. I have
attached a copy of my CV. Please call me at 888/555-5555 or e-mail me at email@example.com. I look forward to
hearing from you. Thank you in advance for your time and consideration.
NAME, MD, FAAP
• Tips on creating a CV:
– Provide an accurate description of the work that you
have done over the course of your training.
– Include titles, names, and dates for each job that you
have had since school.
– List all job duties for each position or training
experience. The positions should be listed in
– Check all grammar and punctuation.
– Be sure that your contact information is included and
up to date.
• Suggested categories on CV:
– Faculty Appointments
– Hospital Appointments
– Professional Society Memberships
– Licensure and certification
– Honors and Awards
– Service and Leadership
– Grant Support
• You obviously will not have all of these categories, so many may be
Five Steps of the Interview
• Get acquainted. Are you compatible?
• Find out about the practice goals, philosophy, lifestyle, and working
• Ask questions about the practice.
– Number of patients seen (per year, per day)
– Staffing ratios
– Income and financial stability
– Partnership opportunities and procedure
– Marketing techniques to gain patients
– Comfort with technology
– Payer mix
• Assess practice and candidate attributes.
• Negotiate a deal
Tips for the Interview
• Dress professionally for this interview. Business attire is most
appropriate, even in a casual practice.
• Bring your CV along as well as any other information about yourself
which you feel would be helpful.
• Make eye contact with your interviewer and listen carefully to the
questions. Be sure that you answer all of the questions completely.
• Talk with the partners and also the staff. If possible, speak with
some of the patients about what they like about the practice.
• As you begin your questions, do not start by discussing salary. It is
better to understand the practice structure and responsibilities
before getting into financial questions.
• If the interview will occur by phone, be sure you schedule this at a
time when there are no disturbances. Be sure that there is no
Questions to Ask on the
• How is the practice organized? Is it a partnership or corporation, or
are the physicians all employed?
• Who makes up the group? Are they all general pediatricians? Are
there family or nurse practitioners? Is everyone working full time?
Who are the actual physicians participating in the call rotation? What
are the responsibilities of each physician who takes calls? What is
the call rotation schedule?
• Are there hospital responsibilities? Do these involve nursery calls or
inpatient admissions? Does the group use area hospitalists?
• What kind of nursing support does each physician have? Will each
doctor have a medical assistant, licensed practical nurse, or
registered nurse, or do they share a pool of nurses?
• How does the office flow? Will each physician have a set of
examination rooms or does everyone use a common set of rooms?
Questions to Ask on the
• What is a typical workday for each physician? How do they schedule
well and follow-up visits versus acute visits?
• Who triages patient phone calls? What is expected of physicians
with regard to returning patient calls?
• What laboratory or radiology support does the group have? If
laboratory tests or radiographs are done within the facility, how does
the practice bill for these?
• What kind of medical record system does the practice have
(electronic versus paper)? Are there plans to convert to an electronic
medical record if paper is still being used? How user-friendly is the
• What is the physician payment rate? What is the basis of this scale
(eg, salary, seniority, productivity, patient load, call load,
Questions to Ask on the
• What benefits are offered to physicians? Do these include health
coverage, malpractice liability, other insurance coverage, and
retirement funds? If transferring from another practice, will the group
offer tail coverage?
• What constitutes terms of separation, termination, and contractual
breach? Are there any restrictive covenants (eg, geographic practice
• Does the practice have any relationship with area hospitals or
• Will you be responsible for any administrative or management
• What will be your clinical duties (eg, calls, coverage)?
• What will your office schedule be? Hospital rounding?
Questions to Ask on the
• Will you need to attend deliveries? Cover the emergency
• Will your schedule include weekends, evenings, or holiday
• Is there a phone triage or answering service at night?
• What office space is available? Staff-provider ratios?
• What expenses are covered by the practice and what are your
personal expenses (eg, licenses, phones or pagers, subscriptions,
• What is the policy on vacations and sick leave?
• What is the policy on personal days and pregnancy or paternity
• Is there a retirement plan? When can you participate?
Last Tips on the Interview
• Be prepared. Questions will be based on your past experience.
Therefore, have specific examples and situations prepared to share.
If this job will be based on seeing patients, be prepared to answer
questions such as, “Tell me about a time when you encountered a
difficult patient who was unhappy with his or her service.”
• Beware of questions that ask for your mistakes or personal failings.
Don’t answer them in a way that will make the employer doubt your
abilities. You can discuss something that was difficult, but end on a
positive note by relating how you managed it.
• Allow time to think of an appropriate answer, even if it requires a few
moments of silence.
• Answer each question concisely, with one example. Let interviewers
ask if they want elaboration or another example.