Top 5 Tricky Questions at a Nursing Interview

8 Apr 2021 Anne Marie Fogarty

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Most of us have been there, sweaty palms, racing heart, and ever hopeful that this is the job for us. Then the question you have been hoping will not come up suddenly comes from the interviewer’s mouth, and you are like a rabbit hit by headlights!

Being prepared helps you feel relaxed. Also, having a good concept of the more challenging questions will help you be ready with rock-solid answers that will leave the interviewer wanting to sign you up before you leave the board room.

Read on and find out how you can beat the most challenging interview question and bag that job.


  1. Tell me about yourself

Demonstrate that you have the traits of a good employee. Tell them details about your personality, professional experiences and career goals.

They might want to know why you choose to become a nurse – the interviewer wants to see your career choice motivation. Are you in it for the right reasons, are you a nurse because you want to help people, or is it a passing fancy?

Hint – Focus on your strengths, but do not oversell yourself. You do not want to appear overconfident.

  1. Tell me all you know about the organisation.

Research, research and oh yeah, research!

This is a difficult one, and there is no easy way out. You must be prepared, know the company inside out. Talk about relevant company points concerning the role you are auditioning for.

  1. Why should I hire you?

Now, turn that question around and tell them why they cannot afford to be without you. Be confident, sell what you can bring to the company. Everyone wants to work with amicable and friendly people who are, yes, sure about themselves yet humble. Explain how your skills will match the role and how you are a good fit in their company.

  1. What are your weaknesses?

This is tough, on the one hand, you want to be humble and not appear like your super-human, on the other hand, you do not want them to be aware of flaws that would hinder your job prospects.

Hint – One weakness the interviewer might accept is how dedicated you are to your profession and how you are trying to balance your work-life better as you are very committed to your career.

  1. What are your salary expectations?

Not everyone is comfortable talking about money, but they have asked you, so it is open for discussion. Appear flexible and ready to negotiate without selling yourself short.

Towards the end of the interview, you will often be asked if you have any questions for the interviewers.

Always try to ask a few questions about the job and the company; it shows them you are genuinely interested.

  • Ask about the details of the position
  • You can ask about the usual nurse-patient ratios
  • Length of the probation
  • Continued educational opportunities for employees.

Tip – Always speak well about your former employers; the interviewers will one day be your past employer, and so how you talk about others might well explain how you will talk about them one day!

Always be yourself, be friendly, professional, mannerly and wear a smile!


The trick to a good interview is to feel relaxed. Do the research before and have your answers and any questions prepared. Know the company and the role well. Do not wait to be surprised on the day but if you do get a question that you have not prepared for, try not to panic. There is always a bit of nerves expected, and most interviewers understand this. Answer as best you can and remember a smile makes up for a lot.

Now that you are ready for the interview, let’s get the job. Why not contact us today – we have multiple exciting nursing roles available across the UK.




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