Physical Therapist Job Search Tips

A physical therapist job search can help you land the job of your dreams if you are well versed on where to look.

What Is a PT?

A practicing physical therapist's role is typically to help someone who has injured him- or herself in an accident, who is recovering mobility after an illness or whose movements are for some other medical reason hindered during his or her everyday routine.

What You Need

In order to practice as a physical therapist, the individual must have a post-bachelor’s degree from an accredited physical therapy program. In addition, all states require the person to pass national and state examinations before practicing as a physical therapist. Some states also require individuals to hold internships or to volunteer in a hospital or patient care setting before entering a full-time position as a physical therapist. Some states require that the physical therapist complete continuing education classes while he or she is working as a full- or part-time physical therapist.

Where to Work

Physical therapists can work in various settings, such as clinics, hospitals, chiropractic and other medical offices, nursing home facilities and outpatient care centers, to name a few.

Here are some tips when searching for a position and a career as a physical therapist.

Hospital Setting

If you want to practice as a physical therapist at a hospital, start by submitting an application online at the particular hospital’s website. You can also send your CV or résumé directly to the human resources department or the rehabilitation department.

Medical Offices

Medical offices in your community are also places where physical therapists are sometimes needed. Depending on the type of medicine practiced, there is usually some need for a physical therapist to help patients with their courses of rehabilitation. Drive around the neighborhood where you want to work and write down names and addresses of the doctors listed on signs. Drop off your resume and a cover letter, introducing yourself and your qualifications, as well as what type of job you are looking for.

Chiropractors

Chiropractic offices are common places for physical therapists to work after they have been accredited. Ask your own chiropractor, if you have one, whether he or she is aware of any openings for a physical therapist. You can also check your local phone book listings for chiropractic clinics in your neighborhood. Either cold call or send an introductory letter about yourself.

Nursing Home Centers

Whether it’s a large or small nursing home, such an establishment tends to hire physical therapists to help with elderly patients. If you have the patience for and/or interest in geriatric medicine, this might be the place for you. Contact local nursing centers or senior care assisted-living locations for job openings. Go in and talk directly with the director of the center and introduce yourself or make an appointment with her or him.

Professional Schools

After graduating or obtaining accreditation from the school where you receive your PT certification, check bulletin boards or ask fellow students about job openings.

Web Search

You can also check online medical job sites for openings in the PT field or browse through your local newspaper's classified section on a regular basis for open job listings. You can also place an ad stating that you are looking for a job as a PT and what you have to offer a practice, clinic or hospital. You might get picked up by a recruiter or someone directly from the office that is looking to fill a PT position.