Interview the Interviewer, what questions you should ask!

So maybe you are looking for a new job, or maybe your fresh out of school, either way you are sending out resumes like crazy looking for that "unicorn practice". They read your resume among the many others on their desk. They give you a call to come in for an interview, you get there and they ask do you have any questions? Are you prepared to answer? Do you want to stand out from the others? Do you even know what to ask? Maybe your fresh out of school and you don't know what to ask? Or maybe you have some experience under your belt and you have a few that you typically ask. I have compiled my top favorite questions to ask to insure that you are taking the job you really want and in hopes that you have found your "unicorn practice".

Some of these they may answer while they are interviewing you but if they don't its important to know this information before accepting a position.


1. What are they days and hours you will be working? I always recommend getting this in writing and having both of you sign and keep a copy of so there is no confusion.

2. How much time is given per recall patient? Periodontal Maintenance? Scaling and Root Planning? New Patients?

3. Who sees New Patients first? Hygienist or Doctor?

4. Is blood pressure taken at every visit?

5. How do I notify the doctor if I need an exam?

6. What is their perio protocol?

7. What kind of ultrasonic scaler is available?

8. What brand of instrument do they use? Ask to see a set to make sure you are comfortable with what they have. If you are not ask if they are willing to order a few instruments that you like to add to your kits? Also not a bad idea to ask about sharpening? Are you expected to sharpen your own? Or do they send out instruments to be sharpened. How often are instruments replaced? What about cavitron tips?

9. How do they handle late patients? Are you expected to still see the patient if it is past the 10-15 minuet mark?

10. How are cancellations handled? Will you be expected to clock out if a patient no shows or cancels last minuet?

11.Who is in charge of scheduling recalls?

12. Are they Paperless? What software system do they use? Dentrix, Opendent, Eaglesoft etc?

13. What kind of x-rays do they use, PSP plates, film, digital censors?

14. Do they pay for uniforms or do you have a uniform allowance each year? Do you have to wear a certain brand and or color?

15. What benefits do the offer? Medical? Dental?PTO/Vacation? Sick Days? Personal Days? Paid Holidays? 401K/Retirement?

16. Do they give you a Continuing Education allowance each year? How much?

17. What is your starting salary? Do they give raises?

18. Do they do yearly reviews?

19. Do they have any kind of bonus system in place?

20. Do you have any kind of production goals?

21. Are you expected to sell a certain amount of products each month? Example, prevident tooth paste or perioguard mouth rinse, or sonicare toothbrushes?

22. Ask to see their office policy manual.

23. What was the reason they are looking for a new staff member, did they retire, did they quit? How long were they there for? What is the average length of employment of your current staff?


Finally at the end I have found if you really want to stand out ask them, based on what we have discussed today, what strengths of mine do you see benefiting the team? Yes, it is a rough question but it forces them to look at the positive aspects they see in you while you are there and also gives them the opportunity to give you feedback.


Its important to look at all aspects of the office to see if it fits your wants and needs for a job. Everyone's values are going to be different and therefore some of these questions may not be important to you. Pick maybe 5-10 of these questions that are very important to you and ask them at the initial interview. If you are asked back for a working interview then some of the other questions that you want to know but may not be deal breakers you could ask at that time.


I would love to hear what other questions you ask at an interview?



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