10 questions you should ask your future SLP employer
You’ve got some job interviews lined up and you’re working on your answers to common speech pathologist interview questions. But what should you ask them? How do you work out whether this is a good place to work?
Obviously they’ll be asking you questions but what should you ask them?
You’ll understandably be very interested in the salary but it’s best not to ask that at this stage. Your goal is to show interest in the position and demonstrate the contribution you could make. Save your salary questions for the next stage when you’re their preferred candidate.
At the end of an interview, you should ask a couple of questions that show you’ve thought about the role. Here are 12 good interview questions to ask an employer.
1. What do you think are the most important qualities for someone to excel in this job?
This can often elicit useful information that’s not in the official job description. Listen out for the words you hear – outgoing, capable, likes a challenge, methodical, organised, bubbly, enthusiastic. Does that person sound like you?
2. Do you provide mentoring to help me grow in the role?
This question shows you’re keen to grow and you’d like to learn from them. It also suggests that they’re going to benefit from a staff member who will perform increasingly well in the role.
3. What SLP approaches do you use here?
This gives you an indication of whether this practice is on top of their game or not. It also shows whether your clinical style aligns with theirs.
4. Do you provide access to CPD?
Many organisations pay lip-service to CPD. You’re looking for an employer that puts their money where their mouth is.
5. What are the challenges in this role?
This helps you assess the employer’s level of self-awareness about their practice. Beware of anyone who makes it sound like every day is wonderful. All jobs have challenges. Some are exhilarating, some are exhausting.
Ideally, you want a job that stretches you but it’s good to know what you’ll be dealing with. Maybe it’s a heavy workload, complex presentations or clients’ expectations. How do they deal with that?
6. Tell me about your patients
If you get the job, you’ll be spending a lot of time working with those clients. A good employer will speak warmly and respectfully about their patients. They’ll talk about their clinical presentations and about their personalities, families and about the challenges they’ve overcome.
7. What’s the likely career path for someone in this role?
You want this job and you’re likely to spend several years doing it. But what comes after it?
It’s good to know whether this job will help you reach your broader career goals. Maybe you want to become a clinical supervisor, a business manager or a practice owner. How would this job help you get there?
Maybe you’re not sure what you want to do yet. Will this job give you good all-round experience that helps you decide?
8. Can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with?
Your colleagues can make or break a job. When you get on well with your colleagues, you’re more likely to feel satisfied and be productive at work.
Use the interview to find out more about the people you’ll be working with. Are they a friendly, social bunch or are they just there to get a job done?
9. What’s a typical day or week like here?
Each place has its own rhythm. Maybe they start with a staff meeting to review today’s cases, maybe there are weekly development meetings or 1:1 mentoring sessions. Or maybe it’s back-to-back clients from the word go.
Maybe everyone finishes early on a Friday or has flexible hours to accommodate other parts of life.
Knowing this helps you envisage what it would be like to work there. Does it sound like a healthy, sustainable rhythm?
10. What are the next steps after this interview?
It’s always good to leave the interview knowing what happens next. It gives you an idea of when you might know the outcome of the interview.
So, what’s it like to work at SpeechEase?
We’ve thought carefully about how to create a positive workplace at SpeechEase. We want our practice to help you grow into a great speech pathologist, able to realise your personal and professional dreams.
We support your professional growth through:
- We do group supervision once a month and individual supervision with a clinical lead at a frequency required for your level of experience as per the Speech Pathology Australia recommendations
- 2 x monthly internal and external inservices focused on topics to develop your transdisciplinary clinical and professional skills
- Personal subscription to Informed SLP so you keep up-to-date with the latest research and evidence.
- A structured 2-year internship program to ensure you are confident and comfortable working with a complex and varied caseload. This includes paid registration at the following courses (if you haven’t already attended):
- Introduction to PODD & Alternate Access
- SOS Approach to Feeding
- Hanen More Than Words
- Introduction to Auslan
- Introduction to PROMPT
- Exciting pathways to continue your professional growth and development after completing your internship with us:
- High income earner – be the best therapist you can be and be rewarded for that financially.
- Clinical leader – learn the skills to be a senior speech pathologist and provide supervision and mentoring.
- Operations leader – learn the skills to manage a clinic from business to marketing to finances.
- Partnership – operate, lead and share in the profits of your own speechease clinic.
- Side hustles – do that extra thing you’ve always dreamt of, create a resource, become a certified presenter in a technique, complete further study.
We’ve created a workplace culture that makes you feel like you’re surrounded by a supportive family. We pay above award wage with bonuses. And we care for your work-life balance by offering flexible working hours, including half-day Fridays.
Like to work with us? Check out our careers page.
All information is general in nature.