Please enjoy this guest post, written by Tricia Hussung at Concordia University, St. Paul
A job interview can be one of the most intimidating hurdles involved with securing a new position as a nursing professional. However, being prepared can help calm your nerves and make you stand out as a strong candidate. Here are some frequently asked nursing interview questions and answers to help you feel relaxed and ready to make a great first impression.
What do you feel you contribute to your patients’ care?
Discuss your strategies for patient care and advocacy here. Because interaction with patients is a major part of any nursing career, employers are looking for individuals who have excellent bedside manner. As is the case with most interview questions, specific examples are always beneficial. Talk about how you listen to patients and provide comfort as part of their medical care.
What are your salary requirements?
Do research so that you are asking for a realistic amount and aren’t pricing yourself out of the market. It’s also a good idea to keep your experience level in mind. Try to find out beforehand what the pay grade is at the company and stress that it’s negotiable. If they want specifics, provide a ballpark figure.
What motivates you to be a nurse?
This question gives you the chance to prove that you’re passionate about what you do. Show that you’re motivated by ideals and a desire to help others, rather than things like money. Be specific and talk about past experiences that have motivated and inspired you.
Why are you leaving your current nursing job?
It’s important to be truthful but diplomatic when this question comes up. Don’t throw your previous employer under the bus because it makes you seem ungrateful. Some examples include wanting to move to another region, learn new skills or focus on a different clinical area. Talk about the new opportunities that this position will give you, rather than dwelling on negative aspects of your current job.
What do you find most challenging and rewarding about your work as a nurse?
It’s important to stay positive, even when you’re discussing the more challenging aspects of nursing. Talk about real experiences you’ve had in the past that have challenged you, but be sure to explain how you overcame or dealt a difficult situation. This question also gives you a chance to talk about your passion for nursing. Whether patient interaction, helping with the recovery process or some other aspect of nursing is what you find most rewarding, discuss your feelings and provide specific details of a rewarding situation you’ve encountered with a patient or family in the past.
Give an example of a major nursing care problem and how you addressed it.
Try to keep any anecdotes relevant to the workplace, rather than discussing personal details. Define the problem in a straightforward way, identify options and explain the solution you went with. Highlight any personal or professional skills that helped you handle the situation effectively.
Where do you see yourself as a nurse in five years?
You want your future employer to know that you are motivated and career-focused, so now is the time to explain why you are committed to nursing. Discuss new skills you want to acquire and any specific workplace goals you may have.
How has your nursing training and experience prepared you for this position?
When the interviewer asks this question, they’re looking to see whether you are qualified for the open position. Talk about any relevant experience you have, both during clinicals and in previous jobs. You can also discuss any relevant research projects you’ve worked on. If you don’t have much on-the-job experience that relates, it’s a good idea to mention coursework you’ve completed that prepares you for the role— just be sure to express your interest in expanding your experience to a new nursing area.
Nursing at CSP
No matter what kind of nursing jobs you’re interested in, earning a bachelor’s degree is a great way to stand out among other applicants. Concordia University, St. Paul offers an online degree designed for working RNs like you who are ready to advance their career and increase their earning potential. Build on your previous experience and become a leader in the field with our online RN to BS in Nursing program.