Probably the most challenging part of searching for a dental hygiene job is waiting to hear the outcome after an interview. This week I have a few tips of things you can do, while you wait it out.
Mentally Move On
My biggest piece of advice is to finish your interview, make note of some things you would do different in the next interview, do some of the things I mention further down in this article, then move on as though you won’t get it. I know it sounds deflating when you are so hopeful and excited to get an offer, but sometimes employers can really drag their feet on decisions like this.
Sometimes it’s for legitimate reasons, often tied to some sort of uncertainty within their office and completely un-related to you or the position itself. Or, it could also be that they want to take their time and interview lots of people.
The thing is, you will usually never know why they are taking forever to contact you. And the more you think about it the less confident and more anxious you become – which has an adverse impact on your job search. So keep searching for jobs, keep sending out resumes, keep networking… in general keep busy!
Thank You Note
I’ve written about this several times, so I won’t go into a lot of detail (if you want more on it click here). Always, always, always send a thank you note following your job interviews. It’s professional and it gives you a leg up because most won’t do it.
It also makes you more memorable and, if you aren’t their first choice, you will be an easy second choice if the first hygienist they offer the job to passes for a different job/offer. There are even some scenarios where the employer hires someone, they quickly don’t work out, and the second choice gets hired.
I’ve also written in the past about a post-interview summary document. This is very similar to your resume, except that it’s more brief and highlights things you learned from your interview. Things they seemed to want to emphasize or things you noticed about the office (equipment or culture) that make you think you are a great fit.
You have to be very careful about this – there’s an acceptable timing associated with it that you can’t violate or you risk sounding annoyed or desperate (or both).
Hopefully, in the interview, you learned of the time-frame for their decision – if they don’t offer it up ask them before leaving. Always wait for that length of time before you call, but also add an additional three business days for good measure. Then it’s safe to call them.
When you call, in a very professional tone, inform them that you are checking in on the status of the open dental hygiene position. After you receive their response, thank them for their time and hang up. They won’t tell you anything more than they are able so there’s no point in trying to sell yourself further or pry more details out of them.
Some Additional Things
I’ve heard many tales of interesting things people have done following an interview to get the job – everything from bringing cookies to the office to renting a billboard with the person’s name and picture on it within view of the office.
Some things seem crazy and others more practical, but a lot of them have worked! So think outside the box and calibrate your risk meter as to whether you feel it’s worth it or not and act accordingly.
Just keep it tasteful and professional – avoid any levels of creepiness – and hopefully your wait for a great dental hygiene job will be short.