Questions To Ask During New Graduate Job Interviews – Going Beyond Salary And Caseload.

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By Natacha Fasel-Murphy  

Whilst studying to become a Speech Pathologist, job interviews can seem a long way away while you’re spending late nights studying and trying to keep up with lectures, tutorials, placements and the general demands of adult life! Very quickly, the last few months of the degree will arrive and you may start thinking about the transition to the workplace.

When preparing for jobs interviews, we often spend a lot of time preparing for questions that might be asked of us. However, it’s equally as important to prepare questions to ask the interviewer. Asking questions during an interview can demonstrate that you have researched the position and are invested in applying for positions which will be a good fit. The questions we ask can also demonstrate our values and what is important to us. Similarly, it is important to apply for positions that are actually going to meet your expectations and needs!

Common questions in job interviews may include salary and leave arrangements and expected caseloads. But what other questions can help find the right fit for the employer and interviewee? Below are some suggestions from a group of new graduate speech pathologists:

  • If the position involves mobile services to homes or schools, is there a central office that clinicians can work from and how often does the team meet face to face?
  • What are the supervision arrangements? Who will be providing supervision and how often?
  • Do new graduates get allocated certain types of clients?
  • Will you be taking over an existing caseload or building a new caseload?
  • Will there be a gradual build up of clients for new graduates?
  • What is the team culture like? Does the team often get together for social activities or eat lunch together?
  • What support is provided for scheduling and administration?
  • Are there certain range of practice areas that you should review and prepare for before the start date?
  • How many clients are clinicians expected to see per day, or if in private practice – how many billable hours are expected in a day or week?
  • How are clinicians resourced if providing mobile services?
  • Is the position a permanent, salaried position? (if that is your expectation)
  • Is there scope to start part-time as an Allied Health Assistant between finishing study certification with Speech Pathology Australia?
  • How many other speech pathologists are on the team and how experienced are they?
  • Has the workplace hired new graduates before?
  • Are there opportunities to explore range of practice areas that are of particular interest?
  • Does the position include a professional development budget?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions and then debrief and brainstorm with your peers after interviews. Good luck and happy interviewing!

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