Whether a phlebotomist just starting out, or one who has been around for a while but looking to get hired at a new company, it is not always an easy thing to find your first job in phlebotomy. Most states don’t require licensing in order to be hired as a phlebotomist, but there are certain requirements needed in all states, such as:
* Be at least 18 years old.
* Possess either a diploma from high school or a GED.
* Have all vaccinations, especially Hepatitis, up to date.
* Be certified currently in CPR, having either certification or a card.
If you are just starting out as a fresh phlebotomist and have not had any other on-the-job experience yet, the companies that you’ve worked for already will need to vouch for your skill in keeping calm in stressful, high-demand scenarios, and how well you communicate to others. If you can, try to get a reference from a previous employer, in writing, that will stress these criteria to your candidate employer.
After filling out either an application or a resume, you will want to divulge any awards, recognition and promotions that you’ve received over the years, especially those that illustrate your problem solving skills, as these will convey your ability to perform your phlebotomist jobs. Another helpful listing would come from your school, where they indicate your hours of experience in the areas of CPR, training in general medical, the human body and psychology.
After securing an interview, be sure to dress according to standards, keeping in mind that most places will accept the business casual look. Otherwise go for the business professional look. If you wear jewelry, tone it down. Hair should be well kept and not covering your face, and nails should be cleaned and cut short. Perfume should be light, if at all. Keep in mind that your potential employer is viewing you in light of representing their company to patients. Many people are allergic to perfumed scents, particularly patients with cancer. Nail polish is also not a good thing to wear. It is best, especially if you are applying and interviewing at hospitals, to leave perfume and polish at home.
Phlebotomists with experience who just want to get a better role would do well to attend some advance training courses. Look to your Human Resources representative where you work for ideas on what continuing education would be most beneficial for your goals. A lot of times experienced phlebotomists just want a fresh environment to work in, so transferring from a general setting at a hospital back into the lab would need an updated resume, along with a stellar recommendation from those currently supervising them, along with being prepared to learn some new more progressive phlebotomy techniques.
If you don’t have a phlebotomy certificate, zero in on obtaining one. A lot more employers are insisting on new phlebotomists having one. In addition to this trend, at least 3 states have certification as a standard requirement. Ask area hospitals what they require beforehand.
Being certified allows others to view you as a professional right off the bat. Employers look at certification has a way of minimizing the risk of hiring you. As you enter the field and look to progressing through the career field into higher paying areas of employment, then certification turns into a must have. This is because several employers are needing what you have experienced in the real world rather than what you learned in a text book or from a lecture. With enough real world experience you can go ahead and take the certification test. There are quite a few online tutorials that will aid your preparation when you take your test.
Look at the American Hospital Directory when you are ready to assemble a list of clinics and hospitals in your area that you can target for employment. Get in touch with their Human Resources representative to inquire about whether they are hiring any phlebotomists. In addition, go to their websites to see if any such jobs are posted. Ask the Red Cross if they are hiring. Another good source of jobs are the blood banks. There is a directory serving the Red Cross locations across the United States, and these will show you contact information and website addresses. Use these to determine the process to apply there. You can also look to medical labs that run independently, as they often need to employ phlebotomists.
You can go to classified job boards and ad sites as well. Places like Career Builder, NationJob, Indeed, Yahoo and Monster are good places to begin these types of searches, although there are hundreds of job boards on the internet. You can even look to the online versions of your local newspapers as well.
If you are completely fresh, having never been employed working in phlebotomy, nor been trained at all, then it is a good idea to enroll in a phlebotomy training class. You’ll find courses like these in local community colleges and vocational schools in your area. You’ll want to also go through a certification course, as this will let you apply for financial aid at the federal level. Some of the courses that you will need are physiology and anatomy, CPR, techniques for obtaining blood samples, lab safety, behaving in a professional manner, as well as both ethical and legal matters. These classes will also give you a lot of training of a hands-on nature.
Find job boards related to the phlebotomy profession and post your resume to all of them. While there, look to see if there are any job openings for phlebotomists near where you live. Peruse the ads in your local newspaper, at the big job boards and any websites that deal with the human resources sections of nursing centers, labs, treatment facilities, and hospitals, to see if they are hiring phlebotomists. Also, in your search, don’t rule out veterinary clinics, as they will also need phlebotomists.