So, you finished your accredited CMA program, now to find your first job! Congrats! All of that hard work is paying off and you can officially call yourself a recent graduate. You are now ready to enter the workforce as a brand-new medical assistant, but where do you start? While the job search process may seem a little overwhelming at first, rest assured there are plenty of resources available to help you successfully land your first medical assistant position.
In order to officially become a certified medical assistant, you must graduate from an accredited medical assistant training program. With today’s job market becoming more competitive, finding a job as a medical assistant may be difficult without certification. Many employers will only hire certified medical assistants, so making the decision to become certified is critical before starting the job search.
Externships are an excellent opportunity to gain more experience in the healthcare field. In addition to gaining valuable on the job training and experience, they’re also a good way to network and establish professional connections that could eventually lead to a job offer.
Many medical assisting training programs include externship participation as a part of their curriculum or graduation requirements, but if not, it never hurts to put the word out that you’re a recent graduate interested in this type of learning opportunity.
If participating in an externship isn’t possible, consider gaining experience by volunteering. This can be done by contacting local physician practices, hospitals, clinics, or anywhere medical assistants are present to inquire if you can volunteer in their facility. While volunteers may be prohibited from performing any actual patient procedures or duties, they can still observe, learn, take notes, and gain valuable knowledge and experience.
Entry Level Experience
For the recent graduate who has the passion and desire but lacks the experience necessary by an employer to work as a CMA, accepting an entry level position with the option for advancement might be the best route to getting their foot in the door and gaining employment. While some employers insist that they require their CMA’s to have a certain amount of work experience, they may still consider recent grads for entry-level positions. These positions may include working in the office performing clerical duties, or as an assistant to a more experienced CMA in the back office helping with patient care and treatment. Entry level positions are a good opportunity to demonstrate your ability and dedication to the profession, eventually leading to a more permanent, higher paying medical assistant position with more responsibilities.
When it comes to your job search, be proactive by starting as soon as possible. Make sure your resume is up to date, as well as your online job profiles, as most job searches begin online. Don’t be afraid to search for different types of job opportunities, as the possibilities are truly endless for a CMA. Medical assisting is one of the fastest growing careers, with a wide range of work environment options, so take full advantage by searching for creative opportunities, in addition to traditional, entry level positions.
Closing Remarks: Stay Positive
While finding your first job as a new CMA might seem a little overwhelming at first, remember to stay positive. You made it this far, so don’t give up on your dream now. The right CMA job is out there, just waiting for you to grab it, so get out there and start searching. You’ve got this!
If you need help finding an accredited medical assisting training program, contact Athena Career Academy and speak with our admissions team. We are here to answer all of your questions and help you enroll!