Top Dental Interview Questions for 2020

Hiring in the field of dentistry is just as challenging as hiring in the field of academics, science, or other doctorate required industries. Even if a candidate walks in with a good resume and a degree under their belt, you might not be able to decipher if they’re a quality candidate or not.

Knowing the right interview questions to ask your dental candidates can significantly speed up the process to not only finding the right professional but helping to ensure that you don’t spend the entire day coming up with interview questions for yourself or your medical staff.

These interview questions serve as a guide to help you hire the four most common types of professionals found within a dental practice. A dental assistant, dental receptionist, dental hygienist, and dentist. Be sure to customize these questions and include those that are applicable to your practice in particular. This could be a special soft skill or hard skill that you feel strongly about. Or a requirement which dictates what the practice needs.

Answers to each of these interview questions should be written down and reviewed at a later date. Ideally, each answer should show you insight into the employees previous work history, personal experience, and more. If it fails to provide you that insight, the answer might be a “failed” one. Don’t expect each interviewer’s answers to be similar in description or length. Openly accept all answers and don’t have a predetermined mindset on what the answer should entail.

Dental Assistant Interview Questions

When hiring a dental assistant, here are the best interview questions you can ask them and why.

This interview question shows their attentiveness and their background.

How would you prepare an examination room?

This interview question can reveal more about their work history, performance, and expertise.

How have you assisted with procedures in the past?

Can show their ability to multitask and comprehension of what’s required to treat patients.

Do you have any administrative experience that you should tell us about?

Tests their competencies and ensures they have the proper soft skills for the job; like working with Microsoft or other administrative software..

How do you handle conflicts with customers, coworkers, or your dentist?

Tests their ability to drive customer service, customer support, and satisfaction.

What are some ways you could increase efficiency for us in the office?

Tests their background and work history.

Dental Receptionist Interview Questions

What would you do if there was a dental emergency but the practice was busy?

This can demonstrate the candidates ability to problem-solve and reveals more about their previous work history.

How do you handle an agitated patient who has been waiting a long time?

Shows customer service and satisfaction abilities.

What do you do if the dentist called in sick but the appointments are lined up for the day already?

Demonstrates industry knowledge and ability to be adaptable in emergency situations.

Dental Hygienist Interview Questions

What are the ways you go about assessing a patient’s oral health?

Shows their previous work history and reveals more of their industry expertise.

How do you handle conflicts with a dentist or coworker?

Shows interpersonal skills and ability to work alongside other doctors.

How would you try to help unmotivated patients to learn more about oral health?

Shows their ability to motivate patients and drive customer satisfaction by providing them optimal care and assistance.

How do you run diagnostic tests?

Reveals their job expectations and core competencies.

Dentist Interview Questions

How do you help patients to feel more secure about your recommendations?

Demonstrates their people skills and ability to influence others.

What is the most challenging producere you have performed?

Shows technical skills, ability to handle stress, and shows their previous work history.

What advice would you give to patients about oral health?

Demonstrates their job knowledge and ability to perform.

How do you manage your employees?

Reveals their management experience and soft skills required to run a practice.

How do you handle conflicts with employees?

Reveals their management experience and soft skills required to run a practice.

What are the duties you expect to handle and duties you expect the administrative staff to handle?

Reveals their management experience and soft skills required to run a practice.

Before you interview

Before you interview, decide on what your interview process looks like. Sit down with the rest of your staff and draw some conclusions on what they feel the job requires. This may be different than what was put into the job posting or job advertisement. That’s okay. A job description is technically an internal document used to reference what the job requires. It’s absolutely okay to have a job description that is only used between the employees to decipher what you’re looking for in an ideal candidate.

Make sure your staff clearly understands the interview process. And questions that they can’t ask, like about race, religion, gender, marital status, and much more. Be sure each party is interviewing has read through the state and federal guidelines for conducting interviews. Then proceed to conduct the interviews.

Evaluating a good candidate

After asking these interview questions, a step remains. How do you evaluate a good candidate from a poor one? The best way to do this is to have multiple employees interview each candidate. Provide them parts of these interview questions to ask. Agree upon each of the employees trying to test the candidate for one of their skills. Is it communication skills that are required? Management skills? Or other. Consider the needs of the practice and start your assessments from there.

Ensure that the candidate is showing signs that they have strong professionalism and experience. Did they send you a thank you email after the interview? Did they follow-up with you about questions that you had about their work history? Were they articulate in their interview answers, keeping them short?

These are all strong signs that your candidate has the professionalism required for the job. Be sure to decide rather quickly whether or not the candidate will move onto the next round of interviews or be offered a position. This can be helpful for your team as well the candidate to be more upfront quickly.