Metallic biomaterials such as stainless steel and Co-based alloys are corrosion resistant and possess excellent mechanical properties and hence can be used in load-bearing implants for human tissue repair. However, these materials are bioinert and some of them can cause concerns over their long-term implantation as they release cytotoxic metal ions to surrounding body tissues. Forming a bioactive coating on implantable metals combats these problems and makes these materials very attractive for medical applications. This paper gives an overview of our research work over the past decade on using a number of surface modification techniques (plasma spraying, spraying-and-sintering, ion beam assisted deposition, biomimetic deposition, etc.) to improve the osteoconductivity of metallic biomaterials (Ti, Ti-6Al-4V and NiTi SMA).