Interviewing for Your First Nurse Practitioner Job
Years of hard work to become a Nurse Practitioner has paid off and now you have one last challenge: landing your first job. While interviewing can be nerve-wracking, there are things you can do to let interviewers know that you are the best candidate for the job.
To ensure that you are putting your best foot forward on interview day, be sure to follow these basics:
Dress like a seasoned professional.Outfits, hairstyles, and accessories should be polished, neutral, and erring on the conservative side. Your appearance should enhance your best self, not distract with loud colors, styles, and accessories.
Leave your phone in the car.Don't be tempted to take it into the interview as it may end up becoming an unwanted distraction.
Arrive on time and assume the interview starts the moment you walk in the door.It is important to make a great first impression on all the staff members you encounter. Remember, they may end up being your future colleagues.
When it's time to sit down and discuss your qualifications, be prepared to voice your strengths, what you bring to the organization, and why you are a perfect fit for the job by:
Playing up your unique background.It is important to talk about any relevant experiences you gained from training or prior nursing work. Even though this is your first Nurse Practitioner job, that doesn't mean you have no clinical experience. Be sure to clearly explain your skillsets, procedural competencies, and time spent gaining on-the-job know-how while completing your clinical rotations. Don't forget to include any relevant volunteering experience that may help flesh out your work history.
Be sure to explain any time gaps in your CV.Significant and unexplained gaps in work history can create doubt about a candidate, so be sure to explain your situation. Did you take time off to start a family or care for a family member? Explain what caused you to take this time off and what you learned during that time.
When you are concluding an interview, remember to ask about follow-up issues like:
Contacting other Nurse Practitioners in the practice.Ask if you can contact your potential predecessor or any other Nurse Practitioners that work in the organization. The insight gained from these individuals can help you judge what an employer is expecting from their NP's and whether or not the job may be a good fit.
Hiring Timelines.Inquire into what their hiring timeline is and when you should expect to hear from them.
Lastly, be prepared to provide a few references.Ensure that your reference contacts are informed about you and your job hunting status so they can give glowing recommendations.