I am returning to this forum after almost 6 months. I was last here in June-July when I passed my PLAB2 exam. I just landed the Charing Cross Rotation and would be happy to share some tips which might be useful to fellow applicants.
I see a few posts alluding to shortlistings for interviews. Well I know its a very frustrating process but trust me theres still light at the end of the tunnel, and Im speaking very realistically. During the past few weeks a number of colleagues, looking for jobs, have come to me requesting help with their CVs. Im very surprised at the quality of the CVs. Most CVs I have come across are very shoddy and extremely unprofessional and more like a statement of facts about your past. A few tips here:
1) Please try and have your details on your cover page and no personal contact details on the CV thereafter. The CV should be well headed and should be very focused, at least in terms of "career objective" et al. Make sure you include a well defined Research INterest in your career objective and try and include some kind of Audit experience or Review of Literature in your CV which might support the same.
2) CVs are shortlisted for interviews on a point system. The four major categories for awarding points are: Experience, qualifications, research and teaching. So please make sure that these 4 categories are very clearly mentioned in your CV. Even if you dont have any formal teching experience, try and mention "informal teaching/supervision" offered to paramedical/nursing staff during your past experience.
3) Make sure you write a good Statement of Purpose when applying for jobs and include it with your CV. If you have a good SOP, trust me it adds a lot of weight to your CV. I was talking to a few consultants and SpRs who are currently involved in shortlisting CVs for interviews and they all said that they almost invariably shortlisted most CVs with a good SOP.
4) Be smart in your applications. Try and assess what are the employers looking anf try and tweak your CV for the job. For example, a 6 month non training post in the perphery would be looking for experience and skill rather than a well defined research interest etc. Good multi-cultural interpersona skills are a plus in applying for places like Bradford etc
5) Try and be very specefic in mentioning your skills and attributes when applying. I applied for a few rotations only and after a few useless applications I kinda sensed what the Trusts were looking for and put in exactly that in my CV. As a result I got shortlisted in most major rotations with a strike rate of almost 90%.
Lastly, just in case youre wondering, in terms of qualifications I am only an MBBS and showed 4 yrs GP (rural) experience from India. So when I say that good representation is important, I speak from experience.
I am submitting this post to give a few pointers and try and help my colleagues. My above mentioned criticism is meant to be constructive and would be a shame if its construed for anything else.
Lastly I see a few posts on "racism" or discrimination. Well, all I can say is, stop behaving like a babe in the woods. Being from India and Pakistan or even parts of Africa, we all knew the nature of the society here. However, having said that, I would say that yes there is quite a lot of occult diabolism doing the ranks here, but then quite a lot of the consultants are of overseas orogin as well. And by the way, my personal experience has been that most asian consultants here are most "racist" than their caucasian counterparts.
At the end of the day, if youre good at what you do and know how to hold your own, youll surely be able to rise above the apparent discrimination.
So cheer up, have faith in God and go full steam ahead.
Note: Originally Posted at http://www.rxpgonline.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=1176