7 Effective Medical Cover Letter Tips (Plus Guidelines)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 29 June 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Medical professionals focus on restoring the health and well-being of their patients by specialising in different areas or systems of the human body. They may diagnose, treat or seek to prevent disease and infections, perform operations or treat other illnesses and injuries. If you're a medical professional seeking a new position, these tips may help you craft a powerful cover letter to complement your resume. In this article, we discuss seven medical cover letter tips that relate to structure, content, layout and tone to help you write yours effectively.

Related: Is a Cover Letter Necessary?

7 medical cover letter tips

Medical cover letter tips can help you craft a compelling cover letter that catches the attention of a hiring manager. A cover letter follows a standard format but offers you opportunities to let your suitability for the position show through clearly. The following tips may be useful to you as you compose your cover letter:

1. Structure your cover letter to be effective

An engaging cover letter typically consists of these sections:

A header that includes contact information

A header commonly mirrors the personal information included on your resume as the two documents go together as part of your application materials. Information to consider including is your full name and surname, degree or certification, phone number, email address, city, state and postcode. Below the contact details, date your letter and list the company name you're applying to. Following that, it's preferable to address your letter to the hiring manager or the person conducting the interviews by name. If you're unable to find a specific person, you can simply address it to, Dear hiring manager.

A first paragraph that focuses on the organisation

In the introductory paragraph, you can express your eagerness for the position, including the title of the position and the name of the company. To introduce yourself, consider including why you're applying for the position and how it fits in with your personal career goals. This is a good place to mention what draws you to the organisation and why you want to work there. For example, they may make use of advanced medical technology that you want to understand for the benefit of your patients.

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A second paragraph that focuses on the candidate

The body of your letter can expand on your most relevant qualifications and experiences from a slightly different angle to the content on your resume. You can use this paragraph to highlight why you may be a good match for the organisation with one or two achievements to support your statement. Backing up your accomplishments with facts and examples where possible can help you make a good impression on the hiring manager. If there's a gap in your career history or a significant career transition, you may mention it here.

A third paragraph that expresses gratitude

Expressing gratitude for the opportunity to apply for the position or the hiring manager's time for considering your application are good ways to conclude your cover letter. You may summarise your qualification and reiterate your interest in the position. Include a call to action like, I look forward to hearing from you. You might mention when you'd be available to start work, which is typically determined by the notice period required by your current position. You can add the method of contact you prefer in the last paragraph of the body of your cover letter.

A closing and signature to finish the letter

To end your medical cover letter, you can opt for a simple, professional closing such as Sincerely, Best regards, Yours truly or Respectfully. If you're working in a strictly digital environment, you can opt for an electronic signature. The other option for signing your cover letter is to create a scanned digital version of your signature that you insert at the end and can reuse whenever you need.

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2. Highlight your understanding of the key elements of working in a medical position

As a medical professional, your expertise extends beyond knowing about the human body and its ailments. When writing your cover letter, you can include references to all the areas that are vital to being a successful medical practitioner, such as:

  • Medical knowledge: All the knowledge you gather through your studies and practical experience gained through working and learning from other senior medical professionals contribute to your ability to function in a knowledgeable and efficient way. Focusing on the medical aspects that directly relate to the medical field you're applying to work in can help show that you have the expertise the job requires.

  • Administrative tasks: Doctors typically manage administrative paperwork, including regulations and staying up-to-date and compliant with the latest privacy laws. Reflecting an ability to manage administrative tasks efficiently and successfully can help position you as a favourable candidate.

  • Patient skills: Bedside manner and communication skills can play a significant role in setting patients at ease and building relationships with them that facilitate the ease of treatment. As a medical professional, alluding to your compassion and empathy with patients on your cover page can give you an advantage.

  • Teamwork focus: Medical professionals seldom operate in isolation, but typically work as a unit to provide comprehensive care to meet the medical needs of their patients. Including your ability to work as a team player with other medical colleagues can be a useful inclusion in your cover letter.

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3. Include relevant stories from your experience

Referring to one or two stories from your working experience helps create a strongly relatable impression of the value you may add to the institution you're applying to. Aiming to pick events that connect with the position you're applying for can show how your experiences align closely with the new position and help highlight your suitability.

As many jobs in the medical field apply to working closely with patients to improve their quality of life, you can allow your passionate commitment to your vocation to come through.

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4. Offer details beyond your resume content

A cover letter offers you the opportunity to fill in more details beyond some of the point-form information presented on your resume. Pick out experience or accomplishments most relevant to the position and expand on those in your cover letter to position yourself as a good candidate for the job. An effective way to expand on information is to link it with specific facts or outcomes that demonstrate your point.

For example, if the resume states, implemented a new admission process your cover letter may say, as part of my goal to better serve patients, I implemented a new admission process that shortened the average admission time by more than half. Our overall patient ratings increased by 68% with many patients commenting on the efficient intake experience.

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5. Convey your personality professionally

Writing a medical cover letter the way you naturally speak may make your letter more memorable for a hiring manager, as reading your letter may give them a strong sense of your personality and values. Writing in a conversational yet professional tone can imbue your words with an authenticity that may resonate with those who read them.

One way to do this is to imagine you're speaking the words you're writing to someone sitting in the same room. If your written words sound close to your normal speech, your letter is likely to carry your warmth and temperament.

Related: 12 In-Demand Medical Careers (With Duties and Salaries)

6. Aim for a clean layout

Presenting a hiring manager with a cover letter that's beautifully laid out and easy to read can help them focus on the content without distraction. Consider using the same fonts, margins and line spacing in your cover letter as you did on your resume. Writing your cover letter to match your resume in this way helps create cohesion between the two documents, as they're both part of your application package.

To keep it simple for the employer to reach you, check that the contact details on both pages are the same. Aiming for a brief but richly detailed cover letter offers you the best chance of securing an interview. The average length of a cover letter to aim for is approximately 300 words.

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7. Cover letter checks

Once your cover letter is complete, it's worth checking through carefully for errors. Presenting an error-free cover letter with your resume can be an indication of your fine attention to detail and the level of care that you apply to your work.

Checks can include spelling, grammar and accuracy of the content. Letting a trusted colleague or other healthcare professional proofread your work can help ensure no errors go unnoticed.

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