As you begin the interview process, you will more than likely face a few types of interviews. You will want to make sure that you are prepared for all types of interviews before going into the process. Some common interviews to expect are: Phone, Skype/Webcam, and In-Person.
A phone interview is typically the first time an organization gets to learn more about you than what is listed on your CV. The phone interview will allow you to talk one on one with a potential employer to see how you interact on the phone and answer their questions. This is a low-cost way for the organization to see if you are a viable candidate to move on to the next round of interviewing. During a phone interview you want to make sure that you are representing yourself in the best way possible.
- Interview in a quiet area — Even though phone interviews are convenient because they do not require travel, they also require you to take the initiative of finding a spot to interview. Make sure that the area or room that you are going to utilize for the interview is quiet. Loud noises can distract you or the interviewer from the conversation. Also try to refrain from being outside during the phone interview because you cannot control the environment.
- Make sure your phone is ready — Many people have stepped away from using a traditional landline telephone, so if you are utilizing a cellphone you want to make sure that it is good to go for the interview. Check the area that you are planning on interviewing to make sure that you have cellular service, so you won't drop the call. You also want to make sure that your phone is charged prior to the interview.
- Get rid of distractions — Once again, since you are not in an office with someone face to face, you must take the responsibility of ridding distractions. Make sure that before the interview starts the television, radio, or any other electronic device is turned off. If you have pets, try to put them in a separate room to avoid you focusing on your pet more than the interview. The interviewer may not be able to see you, but they can still hear background noise and be able to tell if you are not paying attention.
A Skype or a webcam interview is an easy way for an organization to have a "face to face" interview without requiring travel. Scheduling can sometimes be tough between you and the organization, but a webcam interview still allows them to view you during the interview. This allows the organization to see non-verbal communication that they would not be able to see if it was a phone interview.
- Pick the right location — Just like for phone interviews, you want to choose a quiet location, but now you will also be on camera. You want to choose an area that has adequate lighting and try to choose a blank wall. You do not want to interview in front of a wall that has tons of decorations because this may be a distraction to the interviewer(s).
- Dress professionally— Even though you are not meeting with the interviewer(s) face to face, they will still be able to see you through the camera. Even though it may seem like a good idea to dress professionally on top and then wear a comfortable pant or short, avoid doing this. You never know when you may need to get up from the chair to grab a charger or other item. Only being half professionally dressed will send a message to the interviewer that you are not giving your full effort.
- Test out your connection beforehand — There is a chance with any sort of technology that connection may be spotty. Before the interview make sure that you do not need to download any type of software or create an account. You want to do this prior to a few minutes before the interview just in case you run into an issue or it takes a while to start. You should also run a "test" to make sure that you will be able to have a good connection, so your connection does not disconnect or lag and become a nuisance to the interview.
An in-person interview is the one that many imagine when the word interview is brought up. This is the type of interview where you will go into an office and interview with one or more interviewers. These interviews will allow you and the interviewer(s) to see each other face to face and get a better sense of each other. This interview is where the potential employer will ask more in-depth questions to make sure that you are the best candidate for the job. They will ask questions pertaining to your work history, you as a physician, you as a person, and more to make sure that you are a good fit. This is also a chance for you to see the campus and conduct a site visit.
- Be prepared — This interview will be conducted in-person at an office or conference room. This means that you will need to be prepared prior to attending. Make sure that you bring extra copies of your CV, reference letters, and any document(s) promised. You should also bring a notepad and pen to take notes during the interview. Being prepared for the interview will help show the potential employer that you are serious about the position.
- Arrive early — Prior to the interview you will be given the location, date, and time of the interview. Plan on arriving to the interview about 10-15 minutes prior to the start of the interview. It is a good idea that if you are unfamiliar with the area to check Google Maps at the time you would be commuting to see what the estimated travel time is as well as what traffic looks like. Arriving early to the interview gives you a chance to find the interview room, go to the restroom, grab a drink, and get settled. This also helps you avoid arriving late or running around an unknown hospital or office building searching for the correct room.
- Leave on a good note — Before you leave the interview, make sure to leave on a high note by thanking each interviewer individually. Go around the room and thank each person for their time and shake their hand. This is an easy way to leave a good impression prior to leaving.
Looking for more information on interviews? Check out our physician articles!