A travel nurse is no stranger to phone interviews. Interviews for travel nurses are frequent and can range anywhere from a quick, 10-minute conversation to a 1-hour, full-fledged, formal interview. Regardless of the length or detail, most facilities are generally looking for the same information.
Past Facility Information. Your resume needs to stay current and accurately reflect your experience. Include as much information as possible to better sell yourself. If you worked at a teaching facility that had a nurse-to-patient ratio of 1:4 and 35 beds on the unit, you need to include that on your resume. This allows the client to better understand where you come from and what you’re used to when it comes to patient care.
The interviewer will have reviewed your profile before calling you, so the more detailed you are, the more they have to discuss with you which creates a better and more in-depth conversation about your nursing experience.
Up-to-Date Skills Checklists. Facilities read through these and look for specific skills that their units require. Keeping your skills checklist up-to-date will provide a great representation of what you have to offer. If you have the skills, they will most likely bring them up in the interview and discuss them further.
When you ask to be presented to a facility do a quick Google search. Where is the town located? How big is the facility? How big is the unit? What is the patient population? If you can’t find all of this on the website, these are great questions to ask in the interview and shows you are engaged in the process.
Almost every interviewer will ask, “do you have any questions for me?” Your answer should always be “YES!” Be prepared with your interview questions and show them you are engaged. Print several copies of your questions and have them available wherever you are.
Time off, block scheduling, shift preferences, etc. These are all important things to discuss in an interview. The facility needs to know these things up front so they can assess their needs and make sure they are able to accommodate your requests.
Typically, when managers are calling to interview you, they have already gathered a stack of 15-30 profiles and start making calls down the line. If you don’t answer, they will likely leave a message and move on through the stack. If the next candidate answers, they may interview and be offered the position before you have even had the opportunity to call them back. It’s heart wrenching when this happens. Obviously, you can’t be available all the time, but it is so important to call back ASAP.
Be yourself! It sounds so simple but it really is the greatest advantage you have in an interview. Be positive, be thorough, and be willing to talk and to listen. Most importantly, RELAX and be confident!