You should feel confident going into your travel therapy interview! From taking advantage of the information your staffing company has to offer, to following up after a rewarding interview, you have everything you need to be successful. Relieve some of your nervousness with these four ways to prep for your travel therapy interview.
Use Your Travel Therapy Agency
One of the best resources travel physical therapists and travel occupational therapists have at their fingertips is their travel therapy agency. Use your travel recruiter’s knowledge of the hospital, inpatient or outpatient facility, school system, or home health network to take your interview to the next level.
Along with assisting you in your research of potential employer’s company culture and the travel therapy job requirements, your recruiter will also act as your career coach. They will guide you through the process of editing your resume and can schedule mock interviews to ensure you are well-prepared for your first travel therapy position. Use these mock interviews to see how your skills will translate into this travel therapy contract and to practice referencing the needs of the client when discussing your work history.
Understand What Travel Therapy Is
To have a successful travel therapy interview, you need to know how travel therapy jobs differ from other contract and permanent PT, OT, and SLP placements. To become a travel physical therapist, travel occupational therapist, or travel speech pathologist, you must be able to quickly adjust to change while accepting new colleagues, management, and patient types.
During your travel therapy interview, highlight not only your dedication to the industry and your field, but your ability to prioritize tasks, process patients with little guidance, and adapt to any environment. If you can speak to specific examples of your ability to accommodate change and how this will benefit your future employer, the better your interview will be!
Create an Ideal Interview Setting
The top perk of traveling therapy jobs is getting to move from destination to destination with flexibility and stability. However, this also means that many of the facilities you will interview with will be miles away from your current location. While some travel therapy job interviews are face-to-face, many will be via phone, or, thanks to technology, via video chat like Skype.
It doesn’t matter if you are standing in front of your future manager, or you’re 3,000 miles away on a computer in your bedroom, you must dress professionally! Whether on the phone or a Skype call, dressing up can alter your demeanor and help you feel confident.
Your clothing is not the only thing that should appear professional. Remember that the camera you’re using for your travel therapy interview can also show what is behind and around you as well. Be sure to tidy the room that is appearing behind you, organize your notes and questions in a clean format beside you, and place a light in front of you to look your best.
Prepare to Give and Receive Questions
Now that you have prepared with information from your recruiter, and you are familiar with how your work history and personality mesh with the needs of a travel therapy employer, it’s time to get ready for the interview questions. Here are some common questions you may receive:
- Why do you want to be a travel therapist?
- Can you describe a situation in which you handled a difficult patient or situation?
- What kind of management style do you work with best?
- What is one thing you would change about your last position or facility?
- How are you staying current with the PT, OT, or SLP profession?
Your travel therapy interview is also for you, the candidate. The essential information for the travel therapy jobs you’re interested in will come from your recruiter. Enter your interview prepared with questions about your potential employer’s culture, processes, and policies. Be sure to stay away from questions regarding pay, vacation time, etc. as it will give the client the sense that you’re not committed to the work at hand. Here are some sample questions you may want to include, and some that your recruiter may be able to answer for you:
- Why are you looking to bring in travel PTs, OTs, or SLPs?
- What are your productivity standards? How do you document or measure this?
- How many patients will I see daily?
- What kind of onboarding or orientation would be available to me?
- Can you describe the culture of the unit/management?
- How many therapists are on your team, and what is the breakdown of PTs, OTs, SLPs?
- What types of equipment and resources will be available to me?
Now that you’ve gathered your work history, the information about the facility, and your list of questions, you will be the most prepared candidate for your travel therapy interview! All you need to do now is enlist a travel therapy company to help you find your dream job.
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