What an exciting time it is for those giving thought to becoming a dental assistant – throughout the last several decades it has frequently become known that different professions have boomed at certain periods.
You may recall when word was out that schoolteachers were needed, or x-ray technicians, massage therapists or nurses. It doesn’t take a historian to know that employment surges take place in certain fields from time to time. Wise ones have literally cashed in on such knowledge.
Being aware of growth spurts has enabled many people to realize their niche simply by the attractive offer of reasonably certain employment. That sounds like a win-win. If one is contemplating change; examining the opportunities and weighing the pros and cons, then attention given to statistics on job availability or projections would certainly belong at the very top of the list of considerations.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and its Occupational Outlook Handbook (http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos163.htm#outlook) it is projected that between the years of 2008 to 2018 a whopping 36% increase will take place in dental assisting jobs. This is a tremendously valuable piece of information to have right now because we could very likely be entering into the peak period of that phenomenal leap!
For a person looking for a career change, who likes a lot of variety in their work, both a challenging and gratifying atmosphere, flexibility and making a very respectable income, it is an inspiring time to be in. Ones who choose to seek out dental assistant jobs are in for many rewards that will pay out for a long time to come, through job availability, benefits and a diversity of schedules. (There are many positions available for those seeking both full and part-time positions.)
First Things First
Assuming that you will be among those opting to get ample education and training, of course, that would be the first step. Once that is done, or even nearly done, it’s time to lay your plan for your first dental assistant job, which starts with dental assistant resumes and your dental assistant cover letter.
While resumes focus on your job history specifically, it would behoove you to submit a cover letter with your dental assistant resume. Cover letters have become, not just an accepted part of the application process, but also a customary part, and it serves as an excellent avenue to convey details about yourself that are not traditional as a part of the formal resume.
Your Dental Assistant Resume
(to download an example dental assistant resume, click here)
Obviously, you will want to build a good resume, and truthfully, there are many acceptable formats to choose from. There is a dental assistant resume example provided for you on this page to view and consider. Strive to be thorough, honest, and as exact as possible; the more open you are about job history facts, the better your chances will be for getting an interview.
What that means is that you want potential employers to have ease in finding you and you don’t want them to ever feel that you are trying to withhold any information. Give them the pertinent information you know that they will want so that they can feel comfortable pursuing you for their dental assistant jobs.
So when you build your dental assistant resume begin in the upper left hand corner with your name, the next line your street address, right below that your city, state and zip code. A line for your email address and then a line for your telephone number should immediately follow.
A space needs to go in between that information and the first line of your job history. Whether or not to use an Objective” statement is a controversial; they know you are seeking employment with them, and objective can be covered in the cover letter. You make that call.
Your job history should start with your most current (or present job, if you are employed) and progressively go back in time, so to speak. Some opinions vary on how far back one should go, but it is generally considered smart to shoot for a one-page resume with a size 12 font when possible.
According to your personal circumstances you may need to use a second page and if that’s the case, there is no need to worry; there is no hard and fast rule on that, it’s just that simplicity is often the preference for busy employers.
Once you have listed the name of the most present company and the your start and end date (which is generally sufficient to do month and year, like 10/2007), the next line should be the company’s name, address and phone number.
That should be followed the name the person you personally answered to, so whether it was the owner, boss or a supervisor, name them in that line. Not everybody has a supervisor so it could be the owner. Give the true information. A dental assistant’s resume needs to fit all of the same criteria as any resume.
Dental Assistant Cover Letter
(to download an example dental assistant cover letter, click here)
The dental assistant cover letter is your opportunity to reveal valuable information that enables you to show your enthusiasm about having a dental assistant job, to tout your education, training and readiness. Utilized correctly, it is also the chance to add in some humanness to go along with the formal resume; to give them a glimpse into who you are.
But first, what should a cover letter contain?
As with the resume, a cover letter for a dental assistant job example is provided on this page. The upper left hand corner should display all of your contact information: name, address, email address and phone number. After that, you write a greeting; after all, it is a letter.
Most feel the safest with “To Whom It May Concern” but if somebody has been listed in the job posting to contact, by all means, speak directly to that person. In such case it would be appropriate to write “To Office Coordinator Sheila Smith” or even, “Dear Sheila Smith” is okay. Whichever one you decide on, all words in the greeting should be capitalized because in this case, it is being used as a title.
Write your letter about you. You may start with “My name is Susie Wilson…” or you can go directly to the first line of business, which is telling them how you know of them or their opening. It is simply a piece of information they appreciate having. If they have somebody employed there that you believe is in great standing, and that person told you of the position, that’s a good thing.
So you may say, “Your receptionist, Mary Martin told me of your opening.” If it was an agency, tell them that -they want to know what is working well for them.
If you opted to leave off the objective statement from the resume here is where you go into that, and if you included one, here is where you elaborate.
Notice the second paragraph that begins with the word Dentistry: it let’s the employer know more than that you want to be part of a great, growing company where there is room for advancement. (Everybody wants that.)
It tells your potential employer how eager you are to work with them specifically.
Think about if you were an employer and somebody wrote, “I’m interested in your positions as a dental assistant.” Now think about if you read the next cover letter that said, “It is my understanding that you offer a great work environment for dental assistants” or “your opening sounds like one that would bring me the sort of challenges that my training as a dental assistant has prepared me for.”
If 300 resumes are received for one opening, you need to stand out. Shine! You could say, “I am searching employment with a practice that is reputable in the community, such as yours.”
Yes, that’s right: You have permission to brag. You may not get another chance, and it’s easier for most people to do it in writing other than in face-to-face conversations. You could even forget to say some things you mean to say in an interview, so don’t pass up this chance.
Tell them about all of the awesome education and training you have received. Tell them the college you attended, when you graduated and don’t hesitate to tell your GPA or any other special achievements to make them choose you. Be sure to tell them the degree or certification you received and mention how eager you are to start practicing your new skills in a dental assistant job.
In the final paragraph let them know what you intend to do to follow up with them. Notice the example in the cover letter where the applicant mentions stopping by to introduce his or herself. If you are working with an employment agency you could tell them that you will keep close contact with your agent regarding the position.
If you are applying via email you may want to tell them that you will check back with them periodically. Whatever you say you are going to do, do it! Stay consistent, show them that you will keep your word.
Haven’t Started With Classes Yet?
If you have not yet obtained the education or training to bring you such confidence in applying for dental assistant jobs, don’t spend a minute in despair! Choose to use that energy to get started today by requesting more information from a nearby school.
Whether it is training, a certification, or a degree that feels best for you, there are many fantastic colleges with experts to guide you in how to take advantage of the program that is your perfect fit – don’t put it off, get started now.