Last week I talked about the two most important things dental employers want in an RDH candidate. I promised this week I would cover things they wish you would put on your dental hygienist resume that you might NOT want included.
I’m not aware of anything illegal about these things they want, but recognize that employers are seeking the easiest path to the best possible candidate. Like you, they have their own interests to look after so don’t take it the wrong way but realize this information could hurt you.
1. Multiple Phone Numbers
Why? So if they can’t reach you at one, they can try another. I am all about simplicity – one phone + one e-mail = less confusion less resume space and less chance you miss their call.
There’s a cool thing called voicemail (or even texting). If they can’t reach you at your only number, they should leave a message. Take it a step further, get a free Google Voice account and give out that number to protect your privacy.
2. Salary Requirements
Dental employers will say, “I need this so I know you are a good fit.” That’s true, but some will use it to low-ball their offer. I say, YOU should have just as much say in knowing if it’s a good fit.
Tell them you are “flexible” then immediately turn the table and ask them what the range is. If they are insistent on a figure, go one of two directions.
(1) Tell them you have researched the industry average and that it’s ____; or
(2) Give a wide range and tell them you are willing to negotiate.
Note: One possible win-win, if they offer something meager, is to agree to that rate, if they agree to a six-month review and adjustment to your rate, provided the review is favorable.
3. Home Address
There’s three reasons they may want this information: (1) If you are close and have transportation issues you still have a shot at getting to work (via a neighbor or mass transit); (2) similarly, if they need you at work sooner than expected or to fill in for someone it can be done more easily; and (3) if you are close, you may already know existing or potential patients thus strengthening new patient marketing and retention efforts.
Unless you live ultra close (a few miles or less), I say leave it off. If it comes down to you and another applicant, the tie-breaker could be who lives closer.
4. All Previous Employers
They want to know everyone you worked for as it may be someone they know – perhaps a trusted colleague they can talk with about you.
If you left a job on a bad note, got fired, or are searching but don’t want the current boss to know, you really need to think about including that information. The dental community is competitive but also tight-knight. If it’s the only job you have to put on your resume then you may just have to roll the dice on including it.
One option is to disclose in your cover letter (in bold) that you would appreciate the confidentiality of your application. To avoid any red flags, include why you are asking for this.