35 Medical Technologist Interview Questions (With Answers)
Medical technologists work in hospitals, outpatient clinics, laboratories or mobile testing units to perform a range of tests to help diagnose conditions and injuries. They may use a variety of medical devices and tools to examine bodily fluids and tissues. Knowing what medical technologist interview questions a hiring manager may ask can help you prepare for your interview for this position. In this article, we list general interview questions, questions that focus on your qualifications or work history and in-depth questions relating to your tasks and provide sample answers.
Medical technologist interview questions
Consider reviewing the following medical technologist interview questions to help you prepare for your interview:
A hiring manager typically asks general questions to gain insight into your work habits, personality, attitude and career goals. Your responses help them decide if you might be a good fit for the position. The following are ten general questions you may answer in your interview:
How do you stay self-motivated in your job?
Describe a time when you weren't successful, what you learnt and how you recovered.
Share your greatest career achievement to date.
Explain why you feel this position is a good fit for you.
What do you see as your professional weaknesses?
Describe a time you received negative feedback from a supervisor. How did you manage it?
Tell us about a time when you exceeded your own expectations.
Explain the safety measures you take to protect yourself, your patients and other employees.
What's your opinion about getting emotionally involved with patients?
If you could choose, do you prefer to work in a team or independently?
Questions about experience and background
An interviewer can learn about your career path by reading your resume. During an interview, they have the opportunity to find out more detail regarding your experience as a medical technologist and your background in the medical field. The following are a selection of questions that you can answer in a way that presents your skills, abilities and experience as a medical professional:
What are the roles of a medical technologist?
Describe a major challenge you faced during your previous role. How did you manage it?
What mindset and strategies are important for performing this job successfully?
What's your strategy for managing days when there's a shortage of staff and a backlog of work?
Explain your process for working with challenging patients.
Describe your daily routine as a medical technologist.
Explain what the patient privacy guidelines are and how they affect your work.
Explain how you contribute to the positive culture of the organisation.
How do you react to seeing a team member stealing from the storeroom?
What distinguishes you from other medical technologists?
Related: Guide to Company Culture
In-depth questions usually relate to the technical aspects of the position. When applying for a medical technologist position, these questions may cover the equipment and techniques you use to perform your duties, and they can vary depending on your work environment and focus. The following are some examples of in-depth questions for a medical technologist:
How do you manage a contaminated tissue sample?
What do you see as future challenges for medical technology?
What forms of technology or medical software have you used to document your work?
Explain your methods for keeping laboratory equipment calibrated.
How do you stay up to date with the latest research, discoveries and technology?
Which equipment are you familiar to work with?
How do you work with a doctor who's impatient when tests take a long time?
Name an anticoagulant available in liquid form.
Under what circumstances would a doctor request a troponin test?
What do you assess with a colorimeter?
Interview questions with sample answers
You can use these sample questions and answers to help you prepare for your interview:
1. What do you consider to be the top three skills of a medical technologist?
An interviewer may ask this question to gain insight into what skills you strive to be competent in. Your answer can also show what your priorities are. Examples of these skills include interpersonal and communication skills to instruct patients properly, a caring and supportive nature to calm anxious patients and attention to detail and observation skills to ensure accurate laboratory tests. You can focus on high safety standards and the capacity to enforce safety protocols to keep patients and other employees safe, and a desire to stay up to date with new technology to provide the best service to patients.
Example answer: ‘In my opinion, communication is my most valuable skill as a medical technologist. Producing images that are clear and useful takes careful positioning of the patient's body, attention to detail and good observation skills. Being able to direct each patient, whether young, old or those who speak different languages, is important to get those images. Secondly, I value the ability to calm anxious patients and help them relax. Part of this includes ensuring I follow safety protocols and communicate these to patients can help them feel more comfortable. The third skill I value is my desire to stay on top of the latest technological developments by studying the latest research papers and undertaking relevant short courses to be more useful in my job.’
2. What do you do if a patient doesn't want to undergo a procedure?
The interviewer may ask this question to assess your people skills and your understanding of patient rights. As a medical technologist, you understand how fundamental accurate tests are for proper diagnosis and treatment. With that in mind, an employer may want to know the approach you take to calm and encourage reluctant patients.
Example answer: ‘There's usually a reason behind a patient's reluctance. When this happens, I calmly ask about their concerns and reflect on the reasons they give. I reassure them and explain the procedure simply to ensure they understand. If they still refuse the procedure, I won't force them.’
3. How do you manage when you have several patients who require more time?
Medical technologists may encounter patients who require more time for laboratory tests. The interviewer can ask this question to check if a candidate knows how to manage patients who may become impatient while waiting. They look for a candidate who can strategically determine patient order and can enforce boundaries with patients while staying calm, respectful and kind.
Example answer: ‘When faced with multiple patients, I assess if there are any in a critical state and prioritise their treatment. Following that, I look for those who may struggle to wait, such as the elderly. I see the rest of the patients in the order they arrived. To keep the patients calm while they wait, I mention the delay briefly without going into detail and thank them for waiting patiently.’
4. Have you ever been in charge of an extensive project? How do you describe your experience? Are you planning to do anything differently if you get the opportunity?
This question reveals your leadership capabilities, creativity, initiative and ability to delegate. How you answer this question is relevant if you hope to take on a management role with the organisation. The hiring manager may look for signs that you're comfortable making decisions, enjoy working with people and can take responsibility.
Example answer: ‘In my previous position, we received funding to double the size of the medical testing department. My supervisor tasked me with selecting new equipment. Rather than rely on my limited knowledge, I met with all the other medical technologists, shared my ideas and listened to their input. This allowed me to make decisions based on many opinions. I also pre-selected new candidates for my supervisor to interview. Within three months, we effectively doubled the size of our operations and the project was a success.’
5. What do you do if the emergency room is full and the laboratory machine isn't working?
An interviewer asks this question to check your ability to stay calm under pressure, your people skills for managing patients and your technical skills to solve problems and diagnose equipment issues. In your answer, aim to highlight your ability to remain calm and reassure those around you. The hiring manager may look for critical thinking and people skills to balance patient needs while managing equipment failure.
Example answer: ‘When the equipment fails, I take a moment to plan. My first action is to let the emergency room medical team know that there's a delay in the results. Then I troubleshoot the equipment. If it's something simple, I correct it myself and resume testing samples and reporting results. If the problem is beyond my ability to solve, I contact the technical department. After that, I check with the patients who are waiting whether they want to reschedule the laboratory test or wait until the equipment is functioning.’
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