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Are you looking for a job as a CRA, Clinical Site Coordinator (CSC), or project manager? You are CRA, SSC or project manager and you want to change job? Maybe you are looking for your first job? The first contact with a company involves sending your resume and a cover letter. Companies often receive many resume and if you apply for a small company, this one will not necessarily have a human resources in charge. Consequently, your resume must be  clear and readable to put the odds in your favor! Today we’ll give you the answers to the questions you may wonder to write your resume.

My resume, what do I put in?

Group the information into different parts: professional experience, training, skills… The recruiter must find what he is looking for from a first glance. Key elements should be visible and the information must be easily identified by the recruiter.

Do not forget to indicate your contact details: home address, phone number on which you are easily reachable, functional e-mail address. Advice: use an e-mail containing your first name and Last name, avoid pseudonyms. Mention if you have the B Driving license, it can be helpful for the CRA profession.

If you begin in working life, you can put everything: summer jobs, odd jobs, social life, internships … The goal is to show the recruiter that you have working life experience and that you will be able to adapt to company life.

You already have considerable experiences in the professional world, be selective. Indeed, you may have had summer jobs or student job, or experiences that are not related to the profession of clinical research, it is useless to mention them all if you think it is not irrelevant. This unnecessarily encumber your resume. You can, for example, indicate on a line that you worked from 2000 to 2010 as a laboratory technician in companies X, Y and Z. This prevents unnecessary lines and free up space for the really important information of your resume.

How to detail my past experiences?

Remember the purpose of your CV: to present your skills. If you are applying for a job offer, analyze the request. The company is looking for a CRA for the monitoring? Put forward your experiences in this area without obscuring your other experiences in the field of clinical research. If you send your resume in an open application, find out about the company, does it have a specialty? If not, detail all your relevant experience.

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Let’s start with the dates: preferably indicate the months and years. This will allow the recruiter to get a better idea of your experience. Beware; it is useless to hide short experiences and periods of unemployment by only indicating years. The recruiter will not be fooled.

Then indicate the position that you held: CRA, SSC, project manager… Beware, positions can vary from one structure to another, a CRA in a CRO will not be the same as in a hospital, hence the need to detail the actions you have performed. This must be clear and that the recruiter understands immediately what you have done: regulatory submissions, team management, data entry in CRF, help to the investigator, monitoring, budget monitoring… The recruiter is looking for someone to do certain tasks, so he needs to know if you have already done this type of activity in the past. Also, some structures have specific requirements (experience in a given pathology, number of centers…); the recruiter needs to know this information right away. Avoid yourself unnecessary meeting in detailing your previous posts, including the following:

If you research a position of CRA monitor:

  • Diseases,
  • Types followed studies  (epidemiological, Phase 1-4, on medication, DM…)
  • Number of monitored patients,
  • Number of monitoring center,
  • In France or abroad,
  • National or international studies,
  • Types of CRF,

You research a project manager position:

  • Number of managed studies
  • National or international studies,
  • Types of managed studies (epidemiological, Phase 1-4, on medication, DM…)
  • Number of centers,
  • Number and staff positions that you have managed (CRAs, CSCs, Associates…)
  • Number of subcontractor you have managed,
  • Types of clients (institutional promoter, lab promoter, CRO…)
  • Diseases,

If you look for a SSC position:

  • Diseases,
  • Number of studies managed
  • Types of studies followed (epidemiological, Phase 1-4, on medication, DM…)
  • Number of patients,
  • National or international studies,
  • Types of CRF,

Do not forget to indicate the structure in which you worked. A tip, specify the type of structure if it is not well known: CRO, laboratory, hospital, cooperative group … This will save time to your recruiter.

How to fill the training part?

The training part comes after your professional experience part. Always mention the training dates, the title of your training and the structure in which you got it. The recruiter will check if you have completed successfully training in the field of clinical research with your background (scientific studies …). However, if you already have experience in clinical research, that part will be obscured by your years of experience.

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Finally, think to indicate the relevant training you have completed during your professional life: training on a new law, training on GCP, language training…

Do you have to make an « Additional information » part?

Yes you do. It is in this part that you will indicate the following:

  • Language Level. Avoid indicating « good level ». It means nothing. It is better to indicate your skills in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). They decompose at different levels from A1 to C2. If you did not pass test to define your language level, you can do a self-assessment here.
    If you have passed the TOEIC, obviously indicate it. Here you can find a correlation grid between the TOEIC and European levels, it may be appropriate to indicate both.
  • Computer skills. Detail here the different software you have met during your professional life: CRF, CTMS, hospital programs (medical records management) databases…
  • Finally, indicate one or two hobbies or passions. Do not detail yourself too much on these extra-professional activities even if this can be a plus if the recruiter hesitates between similar resumes. This can be a commitment to an association, volunteering, sports, travel…

And if I get « blanks » on my resume?

No need to makeup to hide these holes. A good recruiter will flush them out. Maternity leave, holidays abroad, gap year …: the most important is to know explaining these workless periods. For this indicate what this period brought to you and how you optimized your time. You can value a year traveling for a language and interpersonal skills improving goal …

How to submit my resume?

First, put a title in it. No, « Resume » is not a satisfactory title, you must indicate the position you are looking for. This will allow the hiring manager to see from first glance the position you are seeking. This time-saving will be quite positive for you! Be specifc: clinical research associate, project manager, clinical site coordinator…

For the picture, there are several camps; you can choose which one you prefer. However, a photo can create a first link with the recruiter: he will remember you easier and recognize you easily if you have to meet him during an interview.

Beware; if you decide to put a picture, you have to insert a professional photo and not a personal photo. The photo must not serve you, if you do not have a satisfactory photo, it is better not to put one. Pay attention to several points:

  • The photo must be of good quality. Beware of pixels!
  • The background should be neutral: preferably a flat, white or colored.
  • Your appearance should be neat
  • Smile! 🙂
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If you send your resume electronically, print it before sending. First, it will allow you to read it with a fresh eye and flush out any errors, and it will also allow you to assure yourself that the dimensions of your resume are adequate. Your recruiter may print to study; he must be able to do it as easily as he can 🙂

Finally, favor a format readable by all computers. Your interlocutor does not necessarily have the same word processor as you. Put your resume in PDF format, so that you will be relax as everyone can read your resume and nobody can change your layout by mistake.

One last tip?

Spelling mistakes are to be avoided. Reread your CV several times, with a clear and relaxed head and have someone else reread it to be sure.

If you put all of these into practice, you will put all your chances on your side when sending your CV to employers. Target your researches, adapt your resume to fit the application, make a cover letter, and everything should be fine, the next step will be the telephone interview. Moreover, you will find an article to help you here.

And you, what do you put in your resume? Share your experience in the comments.
You have sent your CV to a company, come and tell us if it worked!

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