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17 Smart Interview Questions to Ask Your Caregiver Candidates

Finding great staff is not easy, especially in a challenging profession such as caregiving. However, it’s important to make an effort to find the suitable candidates. Turnover in the field has become a huge problem. With a turnover rate of 65.2%, most agencies struggle to keep their employees.

However, high turnover rates and many other problems can be prevented with the proper hiring. Hiring the best possible staff also protects your agency's reputation and guarantees client satisfaction.

The hiring process stands or falls on the strength of the interview questions you ask your candidates. Asking the right questions ensures that you will be able to recognize the qualities of the candidates and pick the ones that are the best fit for the position.

How to Organize Your Interview

Organizing your interview in the right way should give you a good overview of your candidate. After that, you will be able to assess whether they would be a good fit for your agency.

To start with, you should ask more general questions, then get more specific as the interview continues. This approach will quickly weed out candidates who are unsuitable for the job.

Asking general questions first will give you an idea of the candidate’s background, education, work experience, communication skills, and character.

This already covers a lot of ground, and once you are done with this portion of the interview, you should have a good idea of whether the candidate is a viable option for the position. Candidates who are not a good fit can be eliminated after this portion of the interview.

If a candidate shows promise, you can ask them more specific questions. These should include hypothetical situations that might occur on the job.

This will give you an opportunity to discover how the candidate thinks and reacts. It’s an invaluable insight into their character, experience, and knowledge.

Finally, talk to them about their needs, terms, and goals. It’s vital that their needs align with what you are willing to offer. This will ensure that they are satisfied on the job.

Mutual satisfaction is a sound basis for long-term employment. A satisfied employee has no reason to go looking elsewhere.

What Questions Should You Ask Your Candidates?

In order from the more general to the specific, here are some examples of questions that will give you the ideal overview of each candidate.

  1. What are the main characteristics that make you a good fit for the position of a caregiver?

  2. What are your career goals and aspirations, and how does working as a caregiver fit in with them?

  3. What makes you feel proud or gives you a sense of accomplishment when you work? Give an example from your work experience so far.

  4. What experience do you have so far working with elderly people, as a caregiver, or in similar roles? Here you can also ask the candidates about their experience working with clients who suffer from any particular conditions, depending on the needs of your business, for instance, caring for clients with diabetes or dementia.

  5. In your previous experience, how have you dealt with stressful situations, challenges, or difficult clients?

  6. In your experience so far, which parts of working with seniors have you found the most challenging, and which ones did you find the most rewarding? Give examples.

  7. What practical skills and training do you have as a caregiver, and what skills are you interested in developing next? Are there any training courses that you are planning to complete in the future?

  8. What qualities would you be looking for in a caregiver if you were hiring one to take care of you or your family member? Name some of the most important qualities and skills that you think a caregiver should have. Have your thoughts on what makes a good caregiver changed from when you were first starting out In this field?

  9. Imagine you were working with a difficult client who often refuses to cooperate, for instance, when they are supposed to take their medication or take a bath. How would you handle them?

  10. Imagine that your client's family member was difficult to communicate with, for instance, rude and aggressive. How would you deal with this issue?

  11. What would you do if you had a disagreement or trouble communicating with your supervisor? Do you think it is ever okay to go against your supervisor’s instructions, and if yes, when?

  12. What would they say if I asked your previous employers to name some of your flaws as an employee?

  13. Can you tell me about a situation in a work setting where you didn’t know what to do or thought you failed? What did you do, and in retrospect, what do you think you should have done? How has that changed what you do now?

  14. How important is feedback to you? How often and in what ways do you prefer to receive feedback from your supervisor?

  15. What is your biggest motivation for doing a good job, and what kind of reward for your work do you appreciate the most?

  16. Are there any things that bothered you in the previous jobs that you hope will be different in this agency?

  17. Do you have any special requirements or requests regarding your schedule, work conditions, or anything else that we should know about?

These questions will provide valuable insight into the candidates’ experience and character through the information they give you and how they communicate.

Bear in mind that with caregiving, personal traits, such as empathy, reliability, patience, and the ability to stay calm under pressure, are much more critical than previous training and experience.

Even candidates who are not yet qualified to work as caregivers are worth taking a chance on if you think they would be a good fit for the job. Many new caregivers complete their training and get the necessary certification while working their first caregiving job.

Cornerstone offers a wide range of fully online caregiver training courses, which can be completed without taking classes in person, or commuting to a training center. This makes Cornerstone’s online courses ideal for training your new employees.


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