Linda Hertz Group

My Medical Device Sales Career

Building a Medical Sales Resume that will be Found!

A Resume today needs to be built in a “web data base” friendly way so it can be found by recruiters or Human Resources when sorting through those massive resume data bases! I continually sort through resume coaching books and Google around trying to find a good reference for our Job Seekers to go to as they build their resumes.

Well, I never found one, so I decided to make it my topic on this posting. If someone out there has a good source for what I am about to say, please share it with us! If you want your resume to be found by a recruiter, I am about to reveal our secrets!

Writing a solid resume in the medical sales or sales management world has always centered upon presenting your work experience married to your sales performance. That has been central to a well written and concise resume for years. That was truly all you had to worry about in the early to mid 90’s AND trying to find a way to get “your paper” to stand out in a pile of other paper resumes on the hiring manager or HR Managers desk! For those of us that go back that far, that meant buying real heavy and high quality paper linen stock to publish your resume upon (everyone had to go to the printer of course to get this done) and to have your resume stand out from the rest of the crowd.

Is your resume being constructed with the new way to have it stand out in “the crowd”? It better be, because “the crowd” is a whole lot bigger now thanks to Job Boards!

To give you an example of how big “the crowd” is on large Job Boards, let’s take a look at Career Builder:

Career Builder is now boasting that it has 24 million resumes in their data base and 15 thousand new ones a day! So guess what, recruiters and hiring companies have to sift and sort through those millions to find your resume (if you have put it into their data base).

So how do we do it, how could we possibly find your resume? Through Boolean Logic! Boolean, Boolean and Boolean and I bet you never heard of it, right? Think of it as the broth of your resume, not to be confused with the Bouillon your grandmother used to make soup with…..or whatever they did with those nasty little cubes. To understand Boolean Logic and to maximize your resume in a very credible way without abusing it, will give your resume the zing it may need.

Simply put, Boolean Logic is a fancy way we find your resume by applying “key word” search and sometimes whole phrases for the background and sales performance we are looking for in a given search on any major Job Board; For example, if I am looking for a top pharmaceutical sales person who has won top awards, I may put into the search link; “pharmaceutical sales, presidents awards, awards” (formulas are more complicated, but this will help paint the picture for you). After I put in that phrase in the resume search box and hit the enter button, I receive the resumes with the highest match to my phrase at the top of the list. There are ways to enhance key word search on your resume as long as the content is accurate, truthful and reflect a well written resume. Let me share with you the obvious.

The first area of enhancing your resume is in how you write your awards, I see this all the time on a resume; Someone who is a repeat Presidents Awards Sales Performer puts this on their resume:

“Presidents Award 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007″

Well that is concise, but when I put in that search string to find that resume it will come up with a low ranking..Presidents Award (the words) are only mentioned once. So my hottest tip: if you have multiple awards, list them out for each year you won it like this:

Multiple Year “Presidents Award” Performer

  • 2007 Presidents Award
  • 2006 Presidents Award
  • 2005 Presidents Award
  • 2004 Presidents Award
  • 2003 Presidents Award

A resume having this multiple times will get you to the top IF you have the performance. No awards? No worries, find something else that is a stand out on your resume; exceeded quota multiple years? Follow the same example


Consistent “Over Quota” Performer

  • 2007 Exceeded Quota
  • 2006 Exceeded Quota
  • 2005 Exceeded Quota

Another area to address in your resume is if you have Business to Business sales background in your current or past positions. Make sure you state “business to business”, that is often a key word search we use in addition to “copier and sales”, “wine sales” and etc.,.

Don’t construct your resume for key word search only, your background and performance has to back up your keywords. I saw a resume recently where the person really had a weak resume but boy, did he know how to bull…oops, I mean boolean! This person wrote: “2007 Presidents Award Ranking 120 out of 130, 2006 Presidents Award Ranking 110 out of 135″….he did not get called.

I also had a laugh at a recent college graduate resume that I found as I was doing my key phrase search for a top pharmaceutical sales person. On his resume he put:

“I really want to be a pharmaceutical representative, a pharmaceutical representative who can win top awards. My sisters husband is a pharmaceutical representative who won the Presidents Award last year with his pharmaceutical company and I know I could win that Presidents Award if given the chance.”

I believe he also knew how to develop websites for key word search! He did not get a call back either by the way but I appreciate the fact he knew one of the ways we search for people!

All this said, remember, accurately and correctly placed Key Words in your resume can enhance your resume’s ability to float to the top and be found in a resume data base BUT, the only way you are going to be called, is if the key words you use truly reflect your credentials, experience and performance accurately!

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Tags: resume, resumes


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Comment by Linda Hertz on May 29, 2010 at 9:48am
You are welcome Ridge, thanks for taking advice from an old gal!
Comment by Ridge Andrews on May 27, 2010 at 1:38pm
Linda, thanks for giving this old guy some great advice!!!!!!!


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