Job interviews for travel nurses can be nerve-wracking. You may be so focused on how to answer the questions you’re asked that you may draw a blank on what to say, and how to act. The trick to succeeding in any interview is to smile, believe in yourself, and ask the right questions when the time comes.
While you can never accurately predict which questions will be asked during the interview, you can prepare a few questions yourself to help the process go more smoothly. Asking your own questions can provide you with invaluable information about the hospital in question, and let you know if the job is indeed the right fit for you.
Here are seven interview questions to ask the next time you’re interviewing for a travel nursing role.
1. Does the Hospital Frequently Use Travel Nurses?
This question can be very telling about the hospital in question. If the facility uses travel nurses often, you can almost guarantee that those professionals’ skills are valued. Your transition and orientation are also likely to be a breeze.
While you’re asking this question, ask if any of the travel nurses the hospital uses ever choose to return, which is a sure sign that the hospital is a good environment to work in.
2. What Shifts are Available and How Are Schedules Created?
You will want to know where and when you are required to work, as well as how scheduling is handled so there are few surprises. Ask about the policy for picking up extra shifts while you’re at it. Having set expectations week in and week out will put less stress on you as you fulfill your travel nursing role.
3. Why is There a Demand for Travel Nurses?
The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled by a general nursing shortage, have caused many hospitals to seek out travel nurses. But don’t assume that the need for travel nurses is due to the pandemic or a shortage of medical professionals. It could be that the hospital experiences high turnover rates. If that’s the case, you’ll want to know why. If others don’t like working at the facility, chances are high that you won’t like it either. Try to understand as best you can what it’s like to be employed at the hospital before you sign a contract.
4. What is the Area Like?
This question isn’t specific to the job, but it is important to ask. More specifically, you can ask about traffic, things to do around the city, available housing, the availability of parking. These lighthearted questions will tell you much about the area you’re set to visit, and help you establish better rapport with the hiring manager.
5. What is the Float Policy?
Floating is a policy that involves sending nurses from their regularly scheduled units to units that are understaffed. Many hospitals expect their travel nurses to float, which is why this question is so important. If the idea of floating makes you nervous, make sure you understand the hospital’s policy fully before accepting the position.
6. What Units Will You be Expected to Float To?
If floating is required, ask about the units you may be expected to work on. What is the nurse-to-patient ratio and are any specialized skills required? You can also ask about the level of support nurses receive from staff and how long the job has been vacant, as well as other expectations. You’ll want to be fully cognizant of any challenges you are likely to face so that you can adequately prepare before you start working.
7. What Charting Systems Does the Hospital Use?
Many hospitals use similar systems and technologies for charting patient information. If you have experience with those processes, this can benefit you during the interview. Make sure you understand how the charting system works before you accept in case you require additional training upon acceptance of the role.
How to Mentally Prepare for A Travel Nursing Interview
Asking plenty of questions can give you insight into the type of hospital environment you may enter. Asking these questions also shows a level of care and involvement, which is sure to impress any hiring manager.
To adequately prepare for your interview, practice asking these questions, and be prepared to give answers to any questions you are asked in return. The questions most often asked of travel nurses include those pertaining to your education and experience, the types of hospitals you’ve worked at in the past, the units you’re most experienced with, your strengths, weaknesses, and career aspirations.
When giving answers to these questions, be confident, enthusiastic, and tell the truth. Do your best to sell yourself and don’t forget to thank the hiring manager for spending time with you in person, on the phone, or via Zoom when the interview is finished.
Get Insight into How to Interview Well for a Travel Nurse Position
When considering travel nursing, it helps to partner with a travel nursing agency who can help you put your best foot forward. Prolink will match you with travel nursing jobs that fit your skills and career goals. You can learn about new opportunities and gain insight into the types of interview questions hiring managers may ask. Most of all, you can almost guarantee that your resume will fall on the right desk, at the right time. Get started by speaking with a dedicated account manager. Call (866)777-3704.