New Grad: OR interview advice?

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    Hello! I am graduating with my BSN in May 2011, and I am incredibly excited because I have an interview for a wonderful OR new grad position. The training is for 9 months, and I'm very excited about the opportunity! This will be a panel interview (which I've had for other jobs in the past), but I'm nervous about it because I want it so badly!

    First of all, what types of questions should I ask them? The manager spent thirty minutes the other day telling me all about the program, educational components, types of areas that I would be precepting in, types of schedules, etc. I feel like she already answered most of my questions, and now I can't seem to think of any...

    Second of all, do you have any advice about what qualities they will be looking for that I should emphasize? I'm thinking teamwork skills and communication skills should be important, but is there anything else you can think of!

    Any other words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!
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  3. 12 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    As a supervisor in the OR, I get to participate and conduct plenty of interviews )

    The main thing that I look for is confidence and a TRUE DESIRE to work in the OR. Someone who is outspoken, pays attention, and seems excited for the potential position. We have been getting RN's right out of school who just want to 'try it out' lately... most of them quit within six months of hire, so we want to know that you are serious about this position.

    I really stress confidence. We are leery about hiring quiet people... we want nurses who we know can stick up for themselves in tense situations, and can handle testy coworkers and surgeons. We want nurses who can work as a team, help others, and TAKE INITIATIVE in their learning.

    As for questions YOU should ask, I don't know what the manager has told you about the position. A lot of questions we get is about orientation. A good question that we love to hear... "What do you expect of me as a nurse in the OR? What kind of qualities?" ....that's a gold star

    Any other questions?

    Good Luck!
    Good luck!
  5. 0
    Thanks so much for your advice! This will be very helpful to me, and I really appreciate it!
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    I started out as a new grad in the OR, so good luck to you! I would suggest that before your interview, make sure you know what you are interviewing for. It's not like what you see on tv and it is very different from floor nursing. Many school libraries have Alexander's Care of the Patient in Surgery, the intro is a good section to read. Have you been able to shadow in the OR at all?
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    Yes, I spent two clinical days in the OR and really enjoyed it! I went through the interview last Friday and feel like it went really well! I find out about whether I got the job or not on Monday. I was wondering, though: how was it to start in the OR as a new graduate? Thanks so much for your help!
    theenursejo likes this.
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    Glad to hear that the interview went well! I had orientation for about 6 months. I went through the AORN PeriOp 101 course, which is great since it covers double your CEU's for your license renewal. It literally goes over everything, which is nice. I had a combined orientation, where we started out with observing, and then once we learned something, we got to practice it in the OR which was nice. If you get hired and they have a sim lab, use it! Luckily I started in a really nice environment and everyone was really helpful. It was really overwhelming for me at first (I found that I was mentally tired) but I learned to take it one day at a time. I really loved learning how to scrub. Sending good vibes your way (I hope you get the job!)! I love the OR and hope you do to!
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    Definitely ask how much call you'll be taking and when you start taking call!!! Being on call is not easy especially if you're the only RN in the call team. Get it in writing the length of training and orientation you are getting and whether they will teach you to scrub not just circulate. It is always better for an O.R. Nurse to know how to scrub because then the scrub techs give you more respect..!!
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    I have been a director in the OR for two years now and have trained about 5 new grads. When I am hiring a new grad I look at personality. You have to have a great personality and strong desire to be an OR nurse. You will want to talk to the staff and see if these are people you want to spend a lot of time with. It helps if you have a good sense of humor. You will understand that more later. Good luck.
  11. 0
    Had an interview Thursday and hit pretty much everything ya'll discussed. So excited to possibly be getting my dream OR job right out of nursing school.
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    I am an OR nurse/clinical educator. I have interviewed a lot of students. We tend to hire the ones that have either done their partnerships with us or have a very big interest in the OR.

    Go in to your interview knowing what OR nursing is all about. I would even suggest requesting that you be able to "shadow" for a day. As an educator I have made that suggestion to nursing students that apply. That way you know what it's all about.

    The training period is long and we invest a lot in you, so we like to make sure that this is really and truly what you want. Some students have come to me wanting to work in the OR with the hopes of becoming a CRNA or a PACU nurse. I have to steer them on to another track because being a circulator is not good training to be a CRNA or a PACU nurse. Those nurses need some critical care experience.

    Do some research about the OR and what kinds of cases they do, ask about orientation, ask about what their expectations are.


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