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Healthcare job interviews - do your research

Amongst all the expert insight on interview technique that's available in print and online, there's one piece of advice that always comes high up on the list of things to do. Do your research.

It doesn't matter whether you’ve applied for a nursing job or allied health job or biomedical scientist job it will pay dividends if you take the time to find out some key information in advance of the big day. Here are our top five tips for your pre-interview fact-finding mission...

1. Find out about your prospective

A simple bit of Googling and browsing news feeds should tell you pretty much everything you need to know, from a hospital's CQC rating to its Equality and Diversity policy. Are there any policies or issues that might be particularly relevant to you, for example the safeguarding policy if you're a community psychiatric nurse or opportunities for personal development if you're an occupational therapist?

2. Think ahead how you fit the job

Re-read the job description and personal specification. Think about how you meet the requirements of the Trust or local authority. For example, if you're a physiotherapist, do you have sufficient knowledge of any key areas of specialisation, such as neurological or cardiorespiratory disorders? If it's a nursing job you're applying for, what are the rotations and how can you demonstrate you are flexible?

3. See the big picture

It's a good idea to make sure you're up to speed on the latest NHS and Department of Health policies and strategies, particularly those which relate specifically to your job. You may be asked to demonstrate the values of the NHS Constitution and how they would apply in your day-to-day work. If you're a radiographer or sonographer, make sure you understand clinical governance and its implications for the imaging department, are aware of your professional and legal responsibilities, and can demonstrate use of reflective practice.

4. Read up on the key players

Find out as much as you can about the interview panel and/or the senior staff you would be working with. Whether it's the Director of Nursing or the Senior Consultant Psychiatrist, once again a bit of Googling should bring up useful information, such as LinkedIn profiles, awards or research papers.

5. Plan your journey

Last but not least, find out exactly where the interview is, how to get there and how long it will take you. It's important be prepared for the journey so that you arrive in good time and in a relaxed frame of mind.

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