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You’ve graduated from Antigua College International, passed your certifications, and may already have work experience. You’re qualified. Now, you need to convince someone else not only of your qualifications but that you’re the best candidate for the nursing position.
Nursing jobs are competitive, but if you’ve already put your best foot forward with your nursing resume and cover letter, eventually you’ll start getting some calls.
In this post, we’ll talk about interview preparation, the five types of interviews to consider, and common nurse job interview questions with strategies on how to answer them. We’ll also talk about what not to do in your nurse job interview, as well as follow-up etiquette.
In the days leading up to your interview, the best thing you can do is get prepared. This means doing your research, compiling your materials, and practicing for the conversation.
Getting ahead isn’t just a smart way to stay organized—it also helps minimize stress on the day of the interview. Be almost ready to walk out the door at least a day in advance. Here’s what you can do ahead of time:
Showing up with knowledge about the job, the organization, and the department will demonstrate that you take the opportunity seriously. You might even want to dig a little deeper into the history or current endeavors at the company or facility. This will give you something to ask questions about when it’s your turn. Here are some common research questions to prepare in advance:
This might seem obvious, but it’s important. Dressing and conducting yourself professionally is a baseline expectation for any prospective employee. Don’t wear scrubs or a lab jacket to your interview; do show up put together and polished, and make sure you tick all the boxes:
The STAR Method is a structural manner of responding to a behavioral-based question (such as “How would you handle a situation where [XYZ]?”). The acronym stands for:
If you follow this formula in answering some of the more in-depth questions that may come up in your interview, you’ll be able to avoid rambling or getting caught with a partial or vague answer. Speak through your response to each question in the STAR order. It will help you give a complete, organized response.
Always have a few extra copies of your interview portfolio printed out and on hand, in case your interviewer requests them. Your interview portfolio should include the following:
Some of the above may not apply to you. Bring what is relevant and make sure it’s typed up and printed in matching fonts and styles on the same type of paper. Carry a pen and notepad in your portfolio in case you need it. If you don’t already have an interview portfolio, consider reaching out to your career services office for assistance in compiling one.