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With healthcare careers in high demand, here are some ways to stand out from a pool of applicants before, during, and after an interview to land your dream job.


Dress for the Part

They say that a first impression can last anywhere from a short 3-7 seconds. This could affect the chances of you securing that dream job, so you would want to look your best so you can feel the best. To do so, you want to prepare yourself the day before with a “go-to” interview outfit. Your professional dress code should always look clean and conservative. Regardless of the position, you want to always be dress in professional attire and not scrubs.

Prepping the Day Before

Besides preparing for an appropriate interview outfit, there are a checklist of things that you should do before the big day. Hopefully, you have looked into the employer that you have applied for beforehand. This includes looking over your duties that you will be responsible for, the qualifications for the job, and the company’s goal. This is also a great time to prepare for any questions you have for the company as well. Be sure to bring extra copies of your resume, as the person that may be interviewing you may not be the same person that received your job application. Some other key things that you should bring include non-expired licenses, references, portfolios, a notepad, and pen.

Types of Interview Questions

Especially when it comes to healthcare careers, two of the most common types of questions that an interviewer may ask are those about your experiences or more behavioral type of questions. When asked about your experiences, you want to be as honest as possible. An interviewer may talk about your work history, verifying credentials, your education, or ask about your work ethics. In addition to the more standard interview questions, an interviewer may present to you a more hypothetical situation in the form of a behavioral question. With these questions, the interviewer is evaluating your answers from a hypothetical scenario. It is important to note that before giving an answer, you need to listen to what the interviewer is asking.


Verbal and Nonverbal Communication Skills

Some valuable verbal communication skills to have during an interview would be to listen and mirror the pace of the interviewer. You would want to use appropriate professional language and speak at an appropriate level of volume. Effective nonverbal communication is just as important, and some key things to keep in mind would be professional attire and grooming, good posture, not interrupting, and even eye contact goes a long way. It is very important to feel confident in both your answers and communication skills.

Behaviors to Avoid

If you do not want to be remembered for the wrong reasons during an interview, here are some things that you should be careful of doing. These behaviors include cursing, being too fidgety, going off topic, or being too personal. You also want to be careful of answering “illegal” questions. Such questions are considered discriminatory, and they may be posed in the form of asking about your marital status, number of kids, religion, or whether you have outstanding debt. You may choose to not provide an answer if the interview question is inappropriate.


Ending the Interview

Here are some tips to end an interview with a positive and memorable impression. First, the interviewer may ask if you have any questions for them. It is important to come prepared with questions that you have about the employer. It shows that you have done your research on the employer and position. With it being a two way street, it is your chance to confirm whether the job is a right fit for you. Next, you should not be intimidated to ask the interviewer an approximate timeline when they are going to follow up. Finally, a courteous thing to do the following day is to send a thank you email or letter. Within this note, try to bring up something personal that you and the interviewer talked about during the interview to stand out even more.

Want more information? Check our AAPC’s healthcare job interview tips