Reputable nursing positions will always conduct interviews before accepting a candidate. The interview gives an all-rounded look into the candidate’s academic backgrounds and personalities.
Your job is not done after the interview. Sending a thank you letter is a great way to make an impression and deliver a grand note. You will stand out from the rest of the candidates with this simple step.
Why Should You Send a Thank You Letter After a Nursing Interview?
Interviewers often greet hundreds of interviewees a day. Delivering an impressive presentation may not be enough to be remembered. Sending a thank you letter after a nursing interview shows your gratitude for such an opportunity while reminding the interviewers of your qualities.
The letter inserts your presence in the process, showing your passion and interest in working with them. Interviewers prefer to let in candidates with a particular interest in the company rather than spam-applying to all nursing positions in town.
Besides, you are thanking the interviewers for their invaluable input and insight. They have taken the time to review your work and give feedback. Out of respect, you should reaffirm your appreciation to them. They would want to be recognized for their time and services as well.
Finally, the thank you letter can be a bridge for you to take another chance at asking questions that you forgot in the interview. You can bring up any questions and politely ask them to get back to you.
What Should You Include in the Thank You Letter After a Nursing Interview?
When writing your thank you letter, it is unlikely that you will get the personal email addresses of your interviewers. Therefore, the email will only be sent to the general team handling the enrolment process.
Start with “To whom it may concern” because you don’t know who will be reading it. There is no need to name all your interviewers unless you are confident that you can spell all their names correctly. Getting their names wrong is embarrassing and effectively undermines your candidacy.
Show your gratitude by thanking everyone for their time. You must show how much you appreciate the process and how you have learned from their expertise and advice.
If you can recount a specific inspiring topic that was discussed, it is good to include that. Being specific shows the panel you are not sending the same thank you letter to every school. It shows your effort.
Continue by expressing your admiration for the quality of the workplace and how much you would like to horn your skills here. Choose one or two features you adore about the work structure there and why they are unique to this place.
You can swiftly move on to any questions you may have but keep them simple. You should not ask more than three questions. You want to show interest without looking like you didn’t prepare enough to ask them during the interview.
End by reinforcing your gratitude for this opportunity and that you hope to get a chance to thrive with them. Make sure you put your full name down. There could be several interviewees sharing the same first name or last name.
The entire thank you letter should be precise and short. Keep each paragraph under three sentences. The whole letter should not be more than half a page long.
You are not writing an essay. If you write a lengthy thank you letter, your interviewers will not take the time to read the whole thing.
Keep the tone professional and humble. You should be confident about your qualities without sounding arrogant. Also, be sure to express how much you wish to learn from experts like them.
Check for grammar mistakes and spelling errors. You should not get the details of the nursing program wrong.
What Is a Nursing Interview?
Becoming a nurse is a beautiful dream for many. You are empowered by the vision to help people. But, this occupation is not for everyone. It is hard to tell if you are fit for a job you have never tried. That’s why all major nursing positions will include at least one interview.
Interviewers are usually coordinators, managers, and other senior nurses of the institution. They have enough experience to determine whether a candidate possesses the relevant skills to become a professional nurse.
Aside from accessing your academic levels to see if you have adequate knowledge to pursue further studies, the interviewers will evaluate your personality to judge how well you will excel in this field. They can take your moral values and passion into account.
Candidates must pass the interview round to get a seat in the department. Since nursing jobs can be extremely competitive in some regions, there can be several rounds of interviews.
What is Included in the Nursing Interview?
Depending on how many rounds of interviews the department organizes, they will include different questions. Traditionally, the first round is always about vetting out the authenticity of your application.
Interviewers will ask in-depth questions about your academic results and entrance exams to assess your proficiency in various subjects. You may be asked to show nursing education certificates and relevant documents.
List out all your achievements, placements, and volunteering opportunities thus far and how they have impacted you throughout. Put the most important events on top in case you run out of time.
Through your exchanges and interaction, the interviewers will also access your vision. Aspiring nurses should be passionate about the subject and show an adequate understanding of the work duties and company structure.
A majority of applicants will be rejected in the first round, leaving the high-quality ones for a second round. It is very common for a second-round interview to include a test. The test can be verbal questions asked by your interviewers or a physical exam. The test will rank you against other candidates.
Group discussions and individual sessions are also part of the process. This time, your interviewers will be much stricter in selecting students. You have to demonstrate a strong passion for the school and stand for its values.
Your communication skills are also measured during the group discussion. You have to be able to follow orders and be an excellent team player. The interviewers will give you a more detailed look into the future so you know what you should expect in the coming years.
Sending the thank you letter once is enough. Candidates should not send the thank you letter to every member’s individual email unless they have discussed something specific with that person and they instructed you to do so. Otherwise, over-sending your gratitude can be seen as impatience.
After the interview, you may only be called back if there is any inconsistency in the documents you have submitted. Otherwise, results should only be announced via email.
How to Prepare For a Nursing Interview?
1. Read Through the Website and Job Duties
Each nursing position will have its merits and limitations. It is possible for you to take shifts in certain workplaces. These are the things you should know about before coming in. Some clinics focus more on the candidate’s academic results, while others are interested in your all-rounded profile.
You should read through the whole description so you go into the interview knowing what the job can offer you. Interviewers do not like it when the candidate doesn’t know the basics. Check out the scale of the company, moral values, and main focus of work.
Write every key point on a paper before the interview, so you don’t confuse yourself about the terms, as every hospital is different.
2. Show Interest in the Job
Showing an interest in the subject is more than about wanting job stability and high pay. If you reveal to the panel that you only want to be a nurse because you can get lucrative compensation, there is nothing more you can say to salvage the situation.
You should be able to answer why this industry inspires you and if you agree with the core values. Be passionate about nursing to deliver a touching speech. The interviewers are not here to crush your dream but to see how dedicated you can be.
It would be a big plus if you could share a few industry trends that you look forward to seeing. Discuss some of the problems faced by nurses and how you would want that to change as well to show you have done your research.
3. Be Humble
Medical professionals should remain respectful and humble. Candidates should avoid flashing their top results non-stop. Instead, ask the interviewers about ways to improve your skills. Nursing is a forever-evolving industry. There is something new every day.
Interviewers are sick of arrogant candidates thinking they know everything. It should be a lifelong learning process. Besides, no matter how good you are, these interviewers have probably seen more capable nurses.
4. Ask Questions
Asking questions does not make you look stupid. It means you have given some thought to this nursing program. The questions you ask should be meaningful.
For example, go through the highlights on their website, the number of international opportunities every year, and promotion opportunities.
These questions signal to the panel your preparation and seriousness about working here. You are not applying because it is a safe choice but because you actually want to be a nurse in this specific institution.
Thoughtful questions will impress the panel. Better yet, if you can find problems in the existing place, you can raise them with the interviewers to see how this can be improved.
Nurses should be resourceful and have a sharp eye for details. Candidates that can analyze the work environment and bring solutions are the talents the program needs.
5. Practice Your Speech
Delivering a confident speech is much more convincing than pausing every three seconds. If you can’t convince yourself, you can’t fool the panel.
Practice all the general questions that you expect to hear during the interview, such as a self-introduction, a summary of past work, and expectations for the job.
Practice in front of the mirror every day, so you are comfortable selling your best qualities. For questions you may not be able to anticipate ahead, pause for a few seconds before starting your speech. It gives you time to think so you can talk without stuttering and stopping.
Grab a few of your nursing friends to conduct interviews with each other. Asking each other questions to brainstorm unusual questions that you may encounter. Get help from your school’s student support team if there is any to further polish your speech.
6. Be a Team Player
As much as you want to showcase your personal strength, nursing is a team effort. During the group discussion, everyone should receive roughly the same time relaying their thoughts.
Don’t hoard up the discussion or interrupt other candidates. It will reflect negatively on you even if you have a valid point. You should wait until they have finished to speak up.
A strong candidate should summarize each groupmate’s input to deliver a grand speech. It should include all the constructive points from each member while smoothing out the fluffs.
Using the opportunity to give an introduction or a conclusion is good as you get more chances to speak up without taking up other people’s time.
7. Discuss Your Expected Salary and Benefits
Most job descriptions will not include the exact budget. Sometimes, a salary range is stated. The range can be huge as the employer states the exact compensation will depend on your experience. You should come in with an acceptable salary and benefits in mind.
Your interviewers will ask about your expectations. Justify your answers by comparing your experience, the industrial average, and your specialized skills. Be confident about your demands and non-monetary compensation.
If the panel says your expectations are too high, you should set a negotiation zone. As a responsible candidate, you should not accept whatever they suggest knowing you will reject the job later.
You could be polite and say the offer is slightly lower than your expectations and it would be good for you to have time to consider it. That way, it leaves room for both sides gracefully.
8. Pay Attention to the Interviewers’ Achievements
Through chatting, the interviewers will share with you their past achievements and aspirations for the field. Listen carefully, as these are the things you can include in your thank you letter. Remembering specific things during your exchange that are not listed on their profile is spectacular.
Expand on these topics to hear more about the work environment and be personable. Eventually, interviewers tend to select candidates they can have a good connection. These candidates are well-built for the team.
What Happens After a Nursing Interview?
After the first round of interviews, you will usually hear back within two weeks or the stated period in your invitation letter. Some companies will not notify unsuccessful candidates at all, so you should read through the rules.
Once you have passed the first stage, you will probably be asked to take a test before your second interview or be informed about a test on the day of your second interview. The instructions will let you know the exam format and preparation for it.
Once you have finished the second interview, it’s time for the panel to decide your suitability for the role. In the meantime, you should compare any offers you already have and reason with yourself which job is better.
Even if you don’t have any offer secured, it’s good to think about whether to accept the offer if the salary is lower than your expectations.
When you get an offer, you will be required to give an answer within a certain period, usually a week or two, depending on the urgency of the role. If you fail to reply after the period, the company will automatically retract the offer.
It is polite to reply even if you are rejecting the offer. It alerts the company why you are not satisfied with the terms and if they are happy to raise the offer to meet your demands.
Also, your reply will alert the company of your interest. Perhaps it is not the right time, and they can contact you again in the future for suitable roles.
If you don’t get the offer, you should also take the initiative to thank them for their consideration. Ask the HR manager to keep your file in the database, so you are notified whenever the company has more positions available.
There is quite a lot to come after each nursing interview. Your race is not over until you have the contract in hand.
A thank you letter contains more content than words can show. It sets you apart from other candidates. A killer thank you letter could be just what you are missing to land your dream job. Start sending out a thank you letter after each nursing interview to seize a better chance at being hired.