RESUME GUIDE: MEDICAL BILLING AND CODING
How to Prepare an Effective Resume Introduction A resume is a formal summary of your education, experiences, and skills. It should be simple, logical, and brief. A personalized cover letter introducing you to the potential employer, identifying the position you are applying for, and indicating how you learned of the opening, should accompany a resume if requested.
Points to Consider: During initial screening processes, your resume may be looked at for as little as fifteen seconds. Therefore, it is important to follow these guidelines: • Be Brief: In most cases, your resume should be only one page long. As a general rule, an additional page can be added for each additional degree and/or seven years experience. • Be Conservative: Stylistic gimmicks (bullets, symbols, indenting, bold type) can be used effectively, but should not be overused. • Be Logical: Prioritize and arrange your information knowing that we read left to right, top to bottom. Also, be sure that the information you present flows smoothly and sensibly. Arrange the categories to reflect your strengths. • Be Conscious of Image: Resumes should be visually appealing, printed on white resume or bond paper only, and should never contain typographical or grammatical errors. • Be Consistent: Make sure to keep the same format and style throughout your document. • Be Powerful: Emphasize your skills by using strong past-tense action verbs. Statements, which demonstrate results, will most effectively highlight your skills and abilities. Resume Construction
Format and Layout Your experiences can be categorized in a number of ways. Select a format and layout that presents your qualifications as effectively as possible. Always keep in mind the reader of your resume and target your resume toward that person. Look at your resume through the eyes of the employer. Would you hire you based on the information presented? Format: Chronological: The most traditional format. A categorical listing of information in reverse order of occurrence allows the potential employer to quickly scan for pertinent information regarding your experience. This format is the most popular and excellent for demonstrating employment history.
Functional/Targeted: This format emphasizes your capabilities, skills, and accomplishments rather than job titles. The functional format is most effective if you are changing fields or seeking a different emphasis in your career.
Combination: This format combines the best features of the previous two. Experiences are listed in chronological order but organized under skills or topical headings. Because the combination resume allows you to highlight significant experiences without necessarily placing your most current experience first, it is popular with students and recent graduates. Layout: Font: A simple, easy-to-read font is best. Use either a serif type (Times or Palatino) or a sans serif type (Arial or Helvetica) in a readable size (no smaller than 10 point, no larger than 14 point for your name only). It is best to be conservative. Choose one typeface and format style and stick to it. Consistency is key! Avoid italicized text and underlined words.
Margins: Half-inch margins for top, bottom, right, and left are preferred. Use margin adjustments to create a symmetrical and appealing resume.
Bullets: The bullet function works wonderfully to aid the eye in quickly scanning for specific skills and accomplishments. Keep it conservative -solid circles and squares are best.
Bold/Capitalization: Use these techniques to emphasize consistency and to provide a visually attractive document. It is more appealing to read a document with some variation, but too much is distracting.
Design: These tips will make your resume easier to read and/or scan into an employer's database. Use white or off-white paper. Use 8-1/2 x 11-inch paper. Unless you have considerable experience, you don't need two pages. Outline your achievements briefly and concisely. Print on one side of the paper. Do not fold or staple your resume. If you must mail your resume, put it in a large envelope.
Proofreading and Editing Have your resume and cover letter critiqued by several people. Do not be afraid to delete unnecessary words, sentences, and paragraphs. Make the appropriate changes and show the revisions. A good resume is always a work in progress. At least three revisions are usually needed to produce a solid product. The Career Services Staff is an excellent resource for resume reviews! Printing Your Resume and Cover Letter Your resume and cover letter should be word-processed on white resume paper available at any office product store. Mail the resume and cover letter in an 8x11 manila envelope. Unless your writing is extremely neat and easy to read, type your envelopes. Address it with the full name and title.
Follow Up Calling to check on your status or to verify that your resume and cover letter have been received may show the employer that you are motivated and very interested in the position. However, it is important to make good decisions concerning the degree of follow up. If, for example, 200 people apply for a position and 25% of them call, that is 50 calls for an already busy individual! In addition, calling if the employer has specifically requested no phone calls can be interpreted as not being able to follow simple instructions. Your best judgment should guide you on this subject. If you have specific questions about a unique situation, consult the Career Services staff for advice on how to proceed. Submitting Scannable and On-line/E-Mail Resumes Many companies and organizations now have two additional tools in their application and screening process- electronically sent resumes and scanning. While these tools can make submitting/receiving resumes easier for both parties, they create additional issues for you.
Points to Consider: • Deviations from the instructions for submitting a resume on-line can immediately eliminate you as a candidate. • Electronic scanning systems search for "key words" that match you to the job. If you don't use the right words, the hiring person won't even see your resume. Be sure to target your resume to the job description. Use their words. • Computers read differently than people do. Techniques that create an appealing resume to the eye can be confusing to the electronic eye. Use minimal symbols and bullets, one font and one font size, and white paper.
Resume Template HEADING/CONTACT INFORMATION • Name, address (street address, city, state and zip code) • Telephone (and area code), • E-mail address (if applicable), website • Make sure an employer can contact you or your answering machine by using a professional sounding message at the number you have indicated. If necessary, include both your current and permanent address and phone on the resume. OBJECTIVE OR SUMMARY An objective tells potential employers the sort of work you're hoping to do. • Be specific about the job you want. For example: To obtain a technical position utilizing my professional skills in leadership, communication and teamwork. • Tailor your objective to each employer you target/every job you seek. SKILLS AND QUALIFICATION A staff member at your Career Services office can advise you on the information to include in this part of your resume. You will want to add: • Special skills that are key to getting the position you are applying for • Leadership experience in volunteer organizations, and community involvement • Participation in extracurricular activities (must be current) EDUCATION • Name of institutions attended, city and state where school is located • Degree awarded: major and/or minor Date degree to be awarded • GPA, if 3.5 or above • Course titles, if employer requests them or if they substitute for lack of work experience EXPERIENCE • Position title, organization name • City and state where organization is located, dates of service • Description of skills used
Within this section include paid employment, internships and/or volunteer experiences that support your objective. Describe your experiences using short phrases beginning with past tense verbs. See the Action Words Section. Do not use the first-person (pronoun "I" or "my") on a resume. Quantify your experience wherever possible. (Example: Managed a $5000 budget, supervised 15 people). A common way of presenting your experience is in reverse chronological order (most recent to least recent). You can also put group related experiences together under special titles: RELEVANT EXPERIENCE, VOLUNTEER EXPERIENCE or LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE AWARDS & HONORS (if applicable) • Award title and organization, purpose awarded for, date awarded
MEMBERSHIPS/AFFILIATIONS/VOLUNTEER (if applicable) • Position title, organization name, city, state • Dates of participation/membership • Description of skills used in position Highlight activities and affiliations in which you have been active and developed your skills. Use past-tense action verbs as in the EXPERIENCE section. Caution: Personal information has the potential to be used in a discriminatory way and can weaken a resume. Do not include marital status, age, ethnicity, religion, place of birth or citizenship.
Resume Rules Do's • • • • • • • • • • • Don'ts • • • • • •
Do think of the employer's needs when composing a resume. Target your resume to be relevant to the employer and the position.
Do include your name, address, telephone number (including area code) and email address (if used daily). Do emphasize your skills and accomplishments.
Do use action words and quantitative descriptions; show the results of your work and how well you did your job. Do use reverse chronological order for experience and education (present jobs/education first). Do proofread your resume. Then have a Career Services Staff member proofread your resume. Do use quality bond or resume paper. (Available at any office supply store)
Do keep your resume as concise as possible. Limit your resume to one page unless you are extensively experienced. See Career Services if you have questions. Do use fonts for organizations of information and visual appeal. Do use past tense of your action verbs.
Do provide specific examples of how previous employers have benefited from your performance. Don't use abbreviations, except for state abbreviations. Don't use the personal pronouns "I" or "We".
Don't include personal information such as age, race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, or marital status. Don't over exaggerate your qualifications.
Don't use graphics, more than one font, creative fonts or colored paper. Don't use serif fonts if an employer may scan your resume.
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NAME ADDRESS PHONE NUMBER EMAIL
OBJECTIVE:___________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Looking for a medical billing and coding specialist position with ABC Healthcare utilizing skills and experience in code punching, reconciling insurance and resolving account related concerns. SKILLS: • Highly skilled in translating codes into insurance company’ preferred coding systems • Able to perform charge review, claim submission, claim follow-up, payment posting and patient statements • In depth knowledge of preparing appropriate claim documents • Proficient in assigning appropriate medical codes to diagnosis and services • First-hand experience with clients of different cultures and socioeconomic backgrounds • Track record of building a strong client base by promoting the health benefits of massage therapy • Well versed in completing required documentation in line with policies and standards • Evaluated patient records for suitability, completeness, and correctness of health data • Recorded data electronically for collection, storage, analysis, recovery, and reporting • Arranged and maintained data for medical databases and registries • Prepared financial statements and billing procedures • Handled all kinds of insurance claims, including private, Medicare and insurance fraud • Collected payment for healthcare services provided • Completed insurance and other claim forms • Utilized classification software to assign clinical codes for reimbursement and data analysis • Protected patients’ healthiness information for privacy • Prepared, keyed in, edited, and proofread health check records • Interviewed patients with the aim of completing forms, documents and case histories EDUCATION:______________________________________________________________________________________________________ Southern California Health Institute- North Hollywood, CA Certified Medical Billing and Coder Expected: June 2016 • GPA: 3.8 Awards & Achievements: • Dean’s List & Highest Honors for academic achievement EMPLOYMENT HISTORY:_______________________________________________________________________________________ ITT-Technical Institute - Torrance, CA February 2014-Present Student Worker • Interact with students and help them gain more insight to current jobs in their field. • Assist in maintaining all student files in alphabetical order. • Support in operating fax and copy machine.