Part of showing your interest in a nursing job is to give out nursing interview questions to ask employer representatives conducting the interview. As with other job interviews, a typical nursing job interview consists of three main parts. And in this article, you’ll learn the different nursing interview questions to ask employers.
The first part is the interview opening, where the interviewer welcomes you and highlights the interview’s key points and objectives. The second portion is the interview proper, where they will ask you questions regarding your qualifications, characteristics, and situational questions to see how you react to different scenarios.
The final part of the interview is the interview closing, where the interviewer asks if you have any questions for them and informs you on the next steps of the application process. Unfortunately, many job applicants make the mistake of saying “no,” eager to end the interview. However, it is vital to seize this opportunity and prepare nursing interview questions to ask employers.
Why ask questions during an interview?
There are several reasons why it is essential to prepare nursing interview questions to ask employers. These are the reason why:
- It demonstrates your interest in the job. It gives off the impression that you genuinely want it because you want to know more about the company, the position, and the nature of the work. A job applicant who is genuinely interested in the job will create a good impression because an eager applicant will most likely be someone who does better and tries harder at the position.
- Asking the right questions will show that you’ve done your research. Again, this is another way of showing the interviewer that you are genuinely interested in the job. However, for this to be effective, you need to make sure that you really did your research and that your questions are relevant to the job and department or ward.
- It shows that you’re smart. As with any job position, intelligence is a valuable trait to have. Nurses need to be intelligent enough to handle the responsibilities of the work. Asking thoughtful questions will instantly place you at the top of the list of applicants to consider for the job.
Nursing interview questions to ask an employer
What kind of qualities are you looking for in a nurse?
This question shows that you are concerned about what the organization wants from its team members. Different hospitals or medical establishments value specific nursing skills from their employees. For example, some value integrity over all others, while others value communication or teamwork more than anything else. Knowing what qualities they are looking for in a nurse will be helpful for you in the long term once you start your career, as you can focus on working on these qualities to better fit in with the organization.
What medical records system do you use?
There are a wide variety of medical record-keeping systems that it is unlikely that you’ve tried them all. This is especially true if this is about to be your first job. Knowing about the medical record system that they use will allow you to familiarize yourself with the system so that you at least have an idea of how it works and how it looks when you start your first day.
What training and orientation do you provide?
Hospitals usually provide essential training and orientation to their staff when they get on board. However, the extent of this training will vary depending on the hospital and its resources. Knowing how much training and the types of orientation you can expect to receive will give you an idea of how much support you can expect in your early days.
Will there be mentorship and support available?
Hospitals not only conduct training for newly hired nurses but also offer ongoing medical education for all medical staff. Again, just as onboarding support, this will vary depending on the hospital itself. Knowing roughly how much mentorship and support the hospital offers will give you an idea of how much the organization values the professional growth of its members. It also shows the interviewer that you are interested in career growth and development.
What challenges do your nurses currently deal with?
Apart from the good things, you must also become aware of the realities that nurses have to face within the unit or department that you’re applying for. For example, is there a staff shortage? Is the turnover rate high? Are the patients usually difficult?
Knowing what common challenges the employer is willing to admit will give you a realistic view of what it would be like once you are hired. It will also give you the chance to better prepare yourself before going on duty.
What things can I do to succeed in the unit?
This question is helpful for nurses who want to really do well in the job. It will give you an idea of the best practices that other nurses are doing in order to be promoted or receive recognition. Asking this question will also provide the interviewer the impression that you sincerely want to do well in the job and that you are potential leadership material.
What advice would you give to new nurses in your unit?
Any experienced nurse has had their green days. It is part of the career to experience being the “new guy” in the unit. Being in this position is inevitable, but it would help lessen the discomfort and the awkwardness if you know what to do as a new nurse in the unit. Do they expect you to jump right in and immerse yourself in the experience? Or do they prefer that you hang back and observe before doing any procedures?
Receiving advice about the start of employment will allow you to at least fit in seamlessly with the unit, even if you’re the youngling. It will also give you a hint on which aspects of the work you should focus on.
Who will I report to?
Having an insight about who you will report to helps determine the chain of command of the institution. You’ll know more about the functions of the head nurse, Director of Nursing, and Chief Nursing Officer. When you inquire about the chain of command, you get a glimpse of how they function, understanding the work procedure before you even work.
How is performance measured?
Performance reviews are usually set in a given period. Showing your interest in how you can succeed demonstrates the dedication to succeed. Also, finding out the answer to this will provide you with an idea of their criteria. This will help you assess if you can fit in seamlessly and have a meaningful career at the place.
What kind of shifts do you provide?
There are different shifts offered in various institutions. Some provide full shifts, half-shift; some require eight-hour shifts or strict 12-hour shifts. Getting an idea about their existing shifts will help you prepare. After all, you need to know how the shifts will affect your time outside work.
What’s the overtime policy?
Asking this question will help you know their perspective towards working overtime—if they prioritize nurses’ work-life balance. You will also know the policy about when they start counting the overtime hours served.
Are there any on-call requirements?
Some hospitals and institutions require their nurses to be on-call for particular days or times. This is an important thing to consider before you accept the job offer. You must dive deep into their on-call policies and their corresponding compensation.
Do you require weekend rotations?
Most nurses work on the weekend on a scheduled basis. You may be assigned to work on weekends, so it’s better to know if you can accommodate such a setup. Knowing this will help you plan ahead how your schedule will look like when you get the job.
Do you share the satisfaction scores of patients and employees?
When you know how the patient and the staff perceive your work, you will know what to improve on your service. This also reflects the culture of the organization towards transparency. Having an idea about this aspect can help you decide whether you’ll proceed with the application or consider your other options.
These are among the most common nursing interview questions to ask employers. Keep these in mind, and surely, you’ll land the nursing post you’ve been waiting for.
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