The Interview Question you need to ask Dental Assistants

by | Apr 8, 2024 | Dental Assistant, Dental Job, Hiring, Temporary Hire | 0 comments

Finding qualified dental staff continues to be a challenge and finding Dental Assistants who last and are passionate about what they do can feel like finding a needle in a haystack.

Challenging but not impossible.

Adding even one interview question to your screening process can help you weed out the mediocre assistants and lead you to uncover fantastic candidates & your next new hire!

You can use this interview question at any point in the interview process, whether that be a phone, formal or working interview.

This question comes in two-parts, but what it reveals about the dental assistant will tell you right away if they are going to be dedicated, reliable and if they will genuinely care about your patients and your team.  

And this question can also be asked at any time in their career whether they are right out of school or have been a dental assistant for 30+ years.

Ready to hear it?

Ask the candidate: “What is your favorite dental procedure to assist in?”

Once they provide their answer respond with: “Walk me through that procedure from start to finish.”  

And then be quiet and listen.

The average assistants will say: “We use these instruments, it takes this long, and the patient leaves with this.”

The amazing dental assistants will provide you with their personal experience including details, for example they may respond with something like this:  “FirstI set the tray up according to procedure, I explain to the patient that we will be doing ABC, the doctor will be handling XYZ and I will assist accordingly.  When done the patient should feel like this and I will make sure the patient understands all the post-op instructions and they have everything that they need.  I will then walk the patient up to the front to make sure the front desk team checks the patient out correctly. Proper expectations are always set that we will follow up with the patient at a certain time.”

Someone truly excited about the procedure will not only elaborate to impress but you will see their excitement in their non-verbal cues.  If they are leaning forward, using their hands and the volume of their voice increases you have an excellent candidate on your hands!  

Your next step should be to schedule the working interview or simply just hire them quickly! Finding top talent in today’s job market is more competitive than ever!

Need help finding dental assistants to interview?  Check out these Hiring Tips!


Holli Perez

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