You put a lot of effort into searching for a job, creating an eye-catching resume, and writing a strong cover letter, and now you are preparing for the long-awaited interview. It is important to prepare for the interview, as there are many other candidates vying for the same position. The first interview has a few main purposes. The interviewer is getting a good sense of who you are as a person and as a professional, you are highlighting why you would be a good fit for the position, and you need to stand out over the other applicants.
There are a number of guidelines to follow that can help you be successful in the initial interview. There are general best practices that should always be followed, and then there are tips specifically related to the job you are applying for. The following oncology nurse interview tips will help you make a great first impression and hopefully land you a follow-up interview for more serious consideration for the position.
Oncology Nurse Interview Tips
Demonstrate Your Empathy: Working with cancer patients takes a special type of person, and the interviewer needs to see how you care for others and have a calming effect. Talk about different scenarios in which you demonstrated compassion, both with patients and with their families. Discuss how you handled particular difficult situations and how you communicated them with the effected party. During the interview you want to appear confident but also authentic and thoughtful.
Highlight Your Organization Abilities: Being an oncology nurse calls for strong organizational skills. You are in charge of many different patients who need a variety of treatments and care. In regards to oncology nurse interview tips, you must be able to demonstrate to the hiring manager that you are an extremely organized individual. Discuss situations in which you juggled multiple tasks at once and were able to keep everything working in an orderly fashion. If you have administrative experience, talk about how you kept records straight, and discuss any systems you may have designed and implemented.
Showcase Your Communication Skills: This role calls for great verbal and written communication with members of your health care team, as well as the patients and families. Not only do you need to be able to communicate clearly so that no mistakes are made, you also need to effectively discuss complicated and difficult issues. Give examples of meticulous records that you took, how you communicated sad news to someone, and how you communicated effectively with other teammates to ensure the department ran smoothly.
Discuss Additional Education or Training: While you obviously meet the minimum requirements necessary to apply for this position, it is helpful if you have additional training. If you have achieved a higher nursing designation than is required, definitely share that with the interviewer, as well as how your advanced education can benefit the organization in the long run. Although oncology experience may be required for the position, discuss any other experience you have had, such as with chronic care, critical care, or hematology. Not only will it help you stand out from other candidates, but the additional knowledge you bring to the role may also be a deciding factor when it comes time to choose the winning applicant. Any additional licensure is helpful as well.
Inquire About Opportunities for Advancement: If you are eventually interested in working in a higher level position in the company, this is a good time to diplomatically ask about any potential opportunities. If you have management or supervising experience, this is the time to highlight what you have done and how you would like to make a positive difference in this organization. Asking in a tactful way will let the hiring manager know that not only are you planning on staying with the company over the long-term, but you also have good work ethic and ambition. If extra training or education is needed, make it clear that you are willing to work toward it.
Following these oncology nurse interview tips is a good start toward making a good first impression. If you do well in this initial interview, there is a much greater chance that you will be invited back for a follow-up interview and be the winning candidate.