Good Questions to Ask in a Nursing Interview

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Select the ideal nursing candidate with careful interviewing.
Select the ideal nursing candidate with careful interviewing. (Image: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Nurses work on the medical front lines, tending to patients' immediate needs and ensuring that their experiences are as positive as possible. Because these professionals work so closely with patients, selecting the right nursing candidate is vital to overall patient satisfaction and quality patient care. While nothing can fully ensure that you don't make a hiring mistake, posing the right questions at your interview can dramatically reduce the chances that the nurse you select ends up being a less-than-effective patient-care provider.

How Do You Provide High-Quality Patient Care?

Not all patient experiences are created equal. Highly effective nurses can better tend to patient needs and make the overall hospital experience a better one. Ask the nurse how she provides this exceptional care, asking her for specifics to ensure that she fully understands how to do so.

What Do You Consider the Biggest Challenge of Nursing?

Nursing can at times be a difficult job. Ask your candidate to reflect on the challenges inherent to the position by inquiring what he views the biggest challenge to be. To make this question even more telling, follow it up by asking how he overcomes this challenge.

How Important is Continuing Education?

Because the field of nursing is constantly changing, continuing education is often requisite. Some nurses lament the fact that they have to continue to seek educational enrichment throughout their career, but others invite the opportunity to grow as professionals. Determine your candidate’s view by asking for her opinion.

How Do You Deal With Not Getting Along With Others?

Nurses often work cooperatively with other nurses as well as doctors and others who present them with orders. If nurses allow minor disagreements to disrupt these relationships, patients can suffer. To ensure that the nursing candidate is not going to allow personality conflicts to get in the way of patient care, ask him how he copes with these almost unavoidable disagreements.

Why This Position?

Nurses can often select from an assortment of positions. You are likely eager to hire a candidate specifically interested in the position instead of someone who just eager to take the first job that comes along. To ensure that your candidate has some attachment to the position, ask why she wants the position.

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