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Clinician Resources / Professional Development / Nailing Physician Job Interviews on Zoom The Ultimate Cheat Sheet

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Healthcare employers are increasingly opting for Zoom interviews to source physician candidates from a wider pool and to adhere to Covid-19 physical distancing norms. While recruiters can gain a wholesome understanding of a candidate's personality in traditional direct interviews, Zoom interviews can be restrictive in terms of the scope to read body language and other non-verbal cues. Zoom interviews also provide employers the time and opportunity to screen more number of candidates for a role. Physician residents and others who are looking for physician opportunities must therefore be prepared to ace their MD job interviews on Zoom to make it through to signing the offer letter/contract.

Here is a quick cheat sheet for you to nail your Zoom interview:

Preparation before the Interview:

Be Well-Dressed:

We've mentioned this in our previous blogs as well. Never sit for a video interview dressed only from the waist up. According to a 2015 study, the clothes you wear can greatly influence cognition and decision-making. Being fully dressed in formals can subconsciously make you feel powerful and the confidence will reflect in your interaction during the interview. Besides, if you're not dressed for your interview from your waist down, you might make a bad impression if you had to get up during the interview for some reason.

If you're a male physician, make sure you suit up. Wear a well-fitting, black, navy blue or grey suit. Select a tie that looks classy and avoid ties with characters, themes or unusual patterns altogether. Go for blue or red tone ties, as they are likely to help the interviewer perceive you positively.  

Female physicians, on the other hand, can wear a well-fitting, well-pressed suit with pants or a skirt, based on their convenience. The jewelry must be minimal, as you need the interviewer to focus on you and your skills only.

As a physician, you'll also need to wear a clean and polished look to let them know that you pay attention to detail and can care for yourself.  

Set Up the Background:

Find a quiet space, free of distractions,for your MD job interview on Zoom. Make sure that the background is neat,uncluttered and neutral. Set up your laptop and webcam such that there is a good 3 feet distance between you and the wall to avoid image flattening. Position the camera between you and the light, such that both are faced towards you, so your face is clearly visible on video. Let your family or housemates know that you are not to be disturbed during the said time, to avoid any interruptions.

Test Zoom:

Ensure that you are familiar with Zoom beforehand. Download it ahead of time and play with its features. You could have a mock MD job interview with family or friends to see how it goes and avoid any last minute surprises during the interview.

During the Interview:

Be Careful with Your Tone

Don't raise your voice while talking, as it might create distortions at the other end. It might also give the interviewer an odd impression about you. Be calm and speak in your normal tone of voice.You can also speak in the same pitch and tone of voice as the interviewer to establish rapport.

Stay Energetic:

As a physician, you are going to be working closely with other healthcare workers and patients, often leading medical teams. So, it is important that you exude energy and positivity through the video during your interview. There are some quick hacks to come across as energetic to people during a video call.

  • Sit straight. Don't slouch.
  • Use hand gestures while talking.
  • Smile.
  • Look into the camera while talking, not your screen.
  • Use choice words that signal energy and optimism. For example, instead of saying, Provided high-quality day to day clinic health care services to patients', you could say, proactively examined patients for acute conditions or concerns and provided high-quality diagnosis and treatment to patients on a daily basis.' Notice the difference between the two statements? The use of the word proactively' at the start of the sentence and the level of detail that went into the nature of duties can make the interviewer sit up to you.
  • When the interviewer is talking, use non-verbal cues to show that you are listening.  

Keep Your Prompts Ready:

Video interviews allow you another luxury that face-to-face interviews don't afford. You can plan your prompts ahead of time. Be smart and strategic about where you keep them. Write them down on post-its and stick them around the screen or camera at your eye level.

Remember to Pause:

If the interview is meant for a senior physician role, there may be multiple members on the panel during the call. Signal delays and device changes can lead to one person talking over the other. So, remember to pause for each question before you answer. This will also give you extra time to collect your thoughts together.

Close Strongly:

There's no way you can close the interview with a handshake during a Zoom call. So, ensure that you make note of your interviewer's name. If there's a panel, note down all their names. While closing, thank them individually by their name,communicate next steps with clarity and let them know that you appreciate the opportunity.

You can easily land the MD job of your choice with some thought and preparation, as mentioned above. If you liked this article, subscribe to our blogs to receive alerts on our content.

You might also be interested to read our article on salary negotiation tips for physicians.

Post by Bhairavi KS
November 18, 2021


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