From preparation to dress to the interview questions themselves, job interviews can be intimidating. Luckily, we’ve got you covered with the ultimate medical assistant job interview guide.
- Company Research. Begin your job interview preparation by conducting some company research. Learn about what the organization specializes in, their core values and organizational structure.
- The Role. Next, make sure you have a solid understanding of the role you are interviewing for. Learn what kind of patients or doctors you may be working with. Be sure you are familiar with what your responsibilities will be and how your experience will be beneficial to the role. If you have questions about the role prior to the interview, feel free to reach out to your recruiter if you’re working with a staffing agency. They are happy to provide help and guidance throughout the interview process.
- Interview Questions. During the interview preparation process, give some thought on how you want to answer some common interview questions. These questions include, but are not limited to:
- Tell me about yourself.
- Why would you be a good fit for this position?
- Why do you want this position?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- Prepare Questions. Prepare some questions to ask towards the end of the interview such as:
- What are the opportunities for advancement within this role?
- What do you enjoy most about working for the organization?
- What are the organization’s core values and how do you live them out?
- Plan Ahead. Think about how and where your interview will take place. If you’re driving to a new location that you’re unfamiliar with, take a practice drive to the facility a day or two before. This will help get you familiar with the area and figure out what time you’ll need to head to the location the day of the interview. If your interview is being done virtually, make sure to take some time to test out your webcam and computer microphone to avoid any day-of difficulties.
Dress for Success
Presentation is important. Make sure you’re dressed appropriately for your interview. While dress codes can differ according to position and organization that you interview for, it’s always important to look your best. Some organizations prefer candidates to wear business professional clothing such as a suit, but most organizations are comfortable with candidates wearing business casual attire.
Business casual attire includes:
- Slacks, dress pants or a skirt
- Clean, pressed button down shirt or blouse
- Clean, closed toe shoes
- Jackets are not required in business casual settings
Interview dress codes can be tricky, so always feel free to reach out to your staffing recruiter with questions on how to best present yourself during an interview.
Once you’ve done your research, prepared and dressed for success, it’s time for the interview.
- Timeliness is important. Plan to arrive about fifteen minutes early to the interview. If you are doing your interview virtually, logging on about 3-5 minutes early works too.
- Kindness goes a long way. Remember to acknowledge and thank anyone who helps you throughout the interview. This may include parking staff, secretarial staff or simply the interviewer themself.
- First impressions matter. Greet the interviewer with a strong handshake and a smile. Confidence is important, but so is respect.
- Answer questions thoughtfully. No one knows you better than. Take your time answering questions during the interview. While some questions you may have an immediate, prepared answer for, others you may need a minute to think about.
- Adjust your questions as needed. While you’ve most likely prepared questions to ask at the end of the interview, you may need to adjust them depending on how the interview progresses. Be sure to use active listening and be mindful if the interviewer has already answered one of the questions you had prepared.
- Say “Thank You.” At the conclusion of the interview, make sure you say “thank you” and establish when you can expect to hear about next steps in the interview process.
The interview is over, but your work is not quite finished. Post interview follow up is important and can set you apart from other candidates.
- Send a thank you note. It may sound simple or old fashioned, but thank you notes go a long way. A handwritten thank you is an excellent way to show your appreciation and gratitude to an interviewer. If the interview process is moving quickly, you can also opt for sending your thank you note via email. Be sure to make your thank you personal and include something specific about your conversation with the interviewer.
- Follow up with your recruiter. Once the interview is complete, make sure to reach out to your recruiter and let them know how it went. Recruiters can help advocate for you throughout the interview process, so make sure to tell them what questions were asked, how you answered and any additional follow up questions that you might have about the role.
- Stay in touch. Interview processes can move at different paces. Sometimes you receive feedback within a matter of days. Other times, it can take 1-2 weeks. Be patient during this waiting period, but also stay in touch with your recruiter and the hiring manager. Even if you are not chosen for the job, staying in contact with people within the industry is a great way to build your network. You may even be a great fit for another position down the road.
Learn more about careers in Medical Assisting.