What Should I Highlight on My Dental Assistant Resume?

dental assistant interview
dental assistant interview

What Should I Highlight on My Dental Assistant Resume?

You’ve got the training, the skills, and the passion to be a great dental assistant. Now all you need is the perfect dental assistant job. The good news is that you’ve found a couple of job postings that might fit the bill. So what’s your next move? You need to build your dental assistant resume.

Here’s what you need to do to create the perfect resume.

List Your Dental Assistant Skills on Your Resume

Take a good hard look at the job posting. How do your skills match what they’re looking for? Highlight all the areas where your skills line up with their needs. And make sure those are right up top and easy for the hiring manager to find. Next, consider close matches.

For example, maybe your resume boasts that you have fine attention to detail. But the job posting is looking for a Dental Assistant who can offer “efficient and precise” chairside assistance. Wait, you can do that! Even if you hadn’t called it by the same name, you will now. Adjust your vocabulary to match theirs. This strategy is important to appeal to the person conducting the interview. But it’s even more important if the dental practice uses an applicant tracking system. Lots of companies use computer programs to filter out job candidates who don’t have the right keyword in their resumes. You don’t want to lose out on a good job because you used the wrong word.

Tip: consider bullet points to list your dental assisting skills.

Describe Your Dental Assisting Education

Believe it or not, not everyone goes to dental assisting school. Because you did, you can stand out from the competition. Be sure to highlight your dental assisting training. List the school you attended and the date of your completion. If your resume is a little thin, you can even include relevant coursework so employers will know what you know.

Add Dental Assisting Certifications and Accomplishments

If you’ve gone above and beyond, make sure to include examples of your achievements on your resume. Have you been certified through the Dental Assisting National Board? Be sure to include it on your resume. Do you have your Dental Assisting Expanded Functions certification? Proudly add it in. Are you First Aid and CPR certified? Include those since they show you can handle patient care. Have you earned recognition at your school or workplace? Highlight those, as well.

Include Dental Assistant and Other Work Experience

Even more important than what you learn in the classroom and labs at school is any real-world experience you’ve had. You want to mention any relevant roles, as well as the years of experience you have in those roles.

Dental Assisting Externships

Have you gone on a dental assistant externship? Make sure you include it on your resume under experience. List out your responsibilities. Again, this is where you want to call out any dental procedures or other tasks that relate to the job to which you apply. Take advantage of similarities wherever you can.

Other Jobs You Already Had in a Dental Office

Maybe you discovered your love of the dental profession when you helped your local dentist after school and on weekends. Or maybe this next job isn’t your first as a professional dental assistant. Include all relevant positions you’ve held; the more responsibility the better.

What to Do if You Have No Dental Assistant Experience

There are important soft skills you’ll need as a dental assistant. But did you know you may already possess them? And you’ve probably had jobs where you’ve put them to use. If you’ve worked in food service, you know all about customer service and good communication. If you’ve worked in retail, you probably know how to organize inventory. And if you’re a parent, that job may have helped you hone other important skills like kindness, compassion, and caring for others.

Did you know that if you earn your dental assisting diploma from YTI Career Institute, you’ll have access to our career services team? We can teach you how to write a resume and cover letter for your jobs. We’ll also introduce you to networking events and show you how to conduct a thorough job search. Fill out the form on this page to learn more about YTI Career Institute and our dental assisting program.