A Medical Device Recruiter’s Practical Guide to Successful CV Writing


To start off, a great tip is to write a CV for the job you are looking for, not one for the job that you already have.

Put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes

Make sure that you have covered all elements of what they would be looking for when making such a hire. Ensuring you cover the skills required in the job description is a good start.

A hiring manager cannot guess what skills make you relevant, what makes you stand out from your peers, or even where in an organisation you would fit. You must spell it all out. Do this by providing concrete, qualified, and quantified examples.

Stand out from the crowd

Just as you would when selling a product; think about your unique selling points and added value, and make sure they are clear from your CV. A candidate who comes across as too generic and does not inspire, is unlikely to progress in the hyper-competitive world of medical devices.

Hiring managers are spending an average of 5 to 7 seconds per CV­, forming opinions about candidates as they scan for relevant keywords and numbers. If these are missing, it is unlikely they will move on to read yours in more detail. For this reason, bear in mind that initially the readability and overall layout of a CV are just as important as, if not even more important than, the actual content.

Make sure your relevance and suitability are clear from the very first glance. Stick to bullet points with keywords and figures, and make sure layout is clean and uniform. Ask yourself if your chosen style (spacing, font etc.) adds to the readability of the CV, or if it detracts from it.

When working with a medical device recruiter, make sure you send them a Word doc version of your CV with very basic formatting. This is so that they can easily upload it on internal systems and/or remove any details as needed, preventing your application from getting delayed.

Test yourself

Look at your CV for seven seconds and ask yourself if you have enough information and incentive to progress your application. Is it clear what you did, and, how this contributed to the overall success of the company you worked for?

Is your relevance for the role immediately clear from merely scanning the CV? Does it provide concrete examples and figures? Does it paint big enough a picture? Can you quickly understand your added value and unique selling points? Do you come across as an energetic individual with an impressive track-record, ready for the next step in their career?

For the purpose of applying for a job in medical devices, a CV should read between 2 to 5 pages at the very longest.

Most effective naming convention is:

First name + Last name, “CV”, Month + Year

The CV should run in chronological order (most recent role first, least recent one last).

Example Sequence:

1. Personal

  • Name
  • Location
  • Contact details

2. Executive Summary*

3. Key Skills*

4. Career History* (most recent job at the top)

  • Company Name + Dates
  • Job Title
  • Division + Territory + Reporting Line
  • Main Tasks & Responsibilities
  • Key Achievements

5. Education   

  • Where
  • Degree + Areas of focus (major, minor etc.)
  • Relevant certificates achieved
  • Relevant additional training

6. Personal Achievements

  • Awards
  • Patents
  • Languages spoken

*Further Thoughts

The Executive Summary

The purpose of the executive summary is to tell the hiring manager who you are, what you have done, and what makes you stand out from other applicants; as well as giving them an idea as to the type of roles you fit into.

This is particularly important as there might be other, confidential, vacancies in the business.

Your Key Skills

This section allows you to highlight the relevant skills you have. Stick to keywords and choose a good mixture of hard and soft skills. The job description is a good place for guidance on key skills the hiring manager will be looking for.

For example: Six Sigma, Intercultural Communication, KOL management, Kaizen, B2B, Change Management, New Product Development, FMCG, Sales Training, ISO13485 etc.

Your Career History

The purpose of this section is to succinctly, and chronologically, tell the reader up where you have been professionally; and hopefully, where this collection of experiences will take you next.

It should include a brief description of each business, focused on information relevant to your own profile, such as medical device products, customer base and services provided. Avoid lengthy descriptions of the inner-workings of the company.

Each role should be detailed in bullet points with clear, quantifiable, fully qualified tasks and achievements. Each time, make sure it is clear what you did, and how this contributed to the overall success of the company.

Examples of meaningful inclusions in this section are: Business functions you were responsible for; Size of the team and P&L managed; Products and Services dealt with; Stakeholders you worked with; Length of the sales cycle; Value of the product or service; Main customers; Sales or account size achieved or increased by; New Products Developed and Launched; Strategies devised and implemented; M&A realised and funding raised; Examples of projects managed.

Since its inception in 2000 Guided Solutions has placed more than 8500 candidates in over 37 countries.

We identify and recruit medical device specialists at all seniority levels, enabling our clients to connect with associate through to board-level talent.

Visit our website to find out more about our comprehensive range of search & selection services or get in touch via +44 1904 72 00 40.