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Tips for the Physician Job Interview

By the time you reach the interview stage of your physician job search, you will already have been given all of the specific data about your prospective employer, such as annual patient volumes, anticipated schedules, and rate of pay. Similarly, your prospective employer will know quite a bit about your background and training, thanks to a coordinated effort between you and your KPS Physician Staffing recruiter.

Now it’s time for you to talk with the people responsible for the hiring decision, both on the phone and in person. Your KPS recruiter will prepare you so thoroughly for these encounters that you will enter them energized and confident you’ll make a great impression.

Great Preparation Leads to Great Confidence

While common sense will tell you that matters such as personal appearance, courtesy and showing up on time are important, perhaps the single greatest key to interviewing success is preparation to ask pertinent questions which reveal your in-depth knowledge of the medical facility or practice group. You should also be prepared to answer questions in a way that illuminates the advantages you offer these physician employers.

The first step toward that preparation is drilling down even deeper into the specifics of the medical facility or physician group before the interview. This is the kind of in-depth study which will signal to the interviewer you are serious about the position. Your physician recruiter will supply everything you need to develop this kind of knowledge.

Connect Your Strengths to the Employers Needs

The goal of this research is to connect your specific strengths to the employer’s specific needs, particularly in areas such as professional credentials and references, practice styles, personality characteristics, interpersonal skills and long-term goals. Don’t be afraid to discuss your non-clinically-related skills and interests which might conceivably benefit the employer such as foreign language proficiency, computer expertise, public speaking ability or even an unusual hobby. Even if the interviewer doesn’t have a specific need for these skills, they will give him a more comprehensive picture of who you are as an individual and help to build personal rapport.

During the interview you should be able to articulate “benefit” statements which present your strengths as the solution to the hiring manager’s physician jobs needs. Remember: in the eyes of the interviewer, it’s all about what you can offer the hospital or group.

Examples include:

  • I’m cross-trained in ________ and ________, and available to work varied hours so I can give you the flexibility you need to fill a variety of shifts.
  • I’m certified in ________ and comfortable teaching it to other staff members, if you feel that would be a benefit for you.
  • I am a very detail-oriented so all my records will be easily understood by JCAHCO examiners and other staff members.

The most comfortable way to incorporate these benefit statements into the interview is to match them with the specific attributes of the medical job as they come up naturally in the conversation.

Anticipating Questions During The Physician Job Interview 

Be prepared to answer questions with your own personal experiences. This shows you can apply clinical skills to high-pressure, real-world situations. Choose stories which highlight a variety of clinical situations, the more complex the better. Tell these stories in a matter-of-fact manner, neither under-playing or exaggerating your role in a successful outcome.

Let the interviewer guide the conversation. However, if it seems appropriate, begin to ask your own questions at the earliest possible moment. This is where it will become obvious you have done your homework and have come to gather even more information, not make an on-the-spot decision about taking that particular physician job. This “information-gathering” goal will be respected by the interviewer, who is, after all, doing exactly the same thing.

Contact Your KPS Recruiter After The Interview

As soon as practical, contact your KPS Physician Staffing recruiter after the interview to discuss how it went and what your impression is of the facility or practice and the people you met there. Begin to work through your response should an offer be extended.