Whether you’re a brand new dental hygiene graduate who just received your license in the mail or you’ve been temping for a while, there’s a chance you’ve had your eye out for that “forever” dream practice to spend the rest of your career at. It’s a great office atmosphere, the other team members have been there for years, and your vision fits their practice philosophy perfectly.
Now that you’ve landed an interview, how can you be sure to set yourself apart from the rest of the competition?
Arrive 10-15 Minutes Early
To be early for an interview is to be on time; to be on time is to be late. Make sure you’re not late by planning your commute a day or two before. Plan parking in advance, so you’re not running behind. It’s better to arrive extra early and wait in your car than it is to be pulling up two minutes before your scheduled interview. Because dental offices need to run on time, every time, it’s vital that their staff do as well. Being even a minute late will almost always deter an employer from offering you the dental hygiene job.
Pay Attention to the Details
Dress appropriately for your interview. If you’re not sure what to wear, choose something like a nice blouse with dress slacks, a knee-length skirt, or a suit. It’s best to stick with closed toe shoes, limited jewelry, and modest makeup. Make sure your nails are well groomed, hair is pulled back, and avoid wearing perfume. You should be following all of the grooming rules you had in hygiene school but be dressed in business/church/informal dress attire.
Ask Questions About the Practice
Do your research about the practice before you arrive. Read through their website to learn more about when it was established, the dentists who work there, and any services that they highlight. Make a list of 2-3 things to ask about during your interview. Not only does this step prevent you from appearing disinterested, but also shows that you’re interviewing them too when it comes to selecting the right place to work (meaning you’re in it for the long haul.) You don’t want it to appear that you’re only applying for the position because you need a hygiene job…you want it to be your forever dental practice!
Have a Professional Comb Through Your Resume
As hygienists, it’s harder than usual to get your resume to look much different from other RDHs in the field. If you’re using a dental staffing agency or website to submit your resume (and thus convert it into generic text) you need to pay careful attention to:
- Grammatical errors
- Certifications and training
- Experience with specific equipment and/or software
- Listing equipment that you’re comfortable using
- Unnecessary “fluff”
- Recommendations and referrals by others in the field
If it doesn’t add value or quality to your resume, leave it out.
Ask for a Trial Run
One of the best ways to make sure a dental office is the right “fit,” is to have a working interview or to ask to temp in the practice for a few days, first. Being hands-on and seeing how things flow each day will help you get a true feel for whether or not it’s a place you want to work at for years to come.
At Kwikly, we make it easy for dentists and dental staff to skip the hiring agencies or staffing firms and book working interviews right from the start. Our online dental staffing network allows hygienists to find the perfect dental practice, and vice versa. Join today!