Consider these chiropractic interview tips and questions when considering joining a practice
Job interviews are a strange interaction that can be extremely stressful. You have two people getting together to try to quickly decide, through a series of chiropractic interview questions, whether they should work together, spending five days a week with each other, after only a few brief meetings.
When you introduce another unique variable, the quirky nature of chiropractic practice, you enter a hiring environment unlike any other industry. Interviews are a bit like trying to decide on marriage after a few rounds of speed dating. It might not be the best approach to deciding on a ¾ long term relationship, but that’s how the world works today.
Chiropractic Interview Questions
So the question then becomes, what are the top five questions you can ask during the interview process to help you assess whether this practice is the best fit for you and your goals?
#1 — How healthy is your business today?
Traditionally, power in chiropractic has favored the owner of the clinic. After all, they have the job offer and the cash available to hire someone.
However, this dynamic has changed dramatically since 2020.
Today in chiropractic, in our practice, we have an average of one associate chiropractor available for every four job openings. This means that an associated doc usually has several tasks to choose from. This competition means that a clinic owner is now being assessed with chiropractic interview questions in a much more thorough way by candidates who have several fantastic options available to them.
A clinic owner’s assessment of the health of his business, the training program he has in place, his operating systems, his job expectations, the benefits he offers and, of course, his salary, will tell you as a candidate how well this company is run.
Please feel free to respectfully ask the owner about any specific details regarding his business operations. It is reasonable and expected for a clinic owner to be open to discussing with you their office’s average monthly collections and overhead (the cost of running the business each month). Ensuring the profit each month is solid will help you gauge whether you are joining a profitable practice with momentum.
You should never hesitate to dive deep into their business operations during the process with your own chiropractic interview questions.
N° 2 — How long have you been looking for an associate doctor?
It’s a bit like selling a house. When a home is for sale in a hot market and multiple people are bidding on the home for sale in a short time, the homeowner has the luxury of choosing from several options.
However, if a house has been on the market for six months and no one has made an offer, and the potential buyer knows about it, this can provide information that the potential buyer can use to their advantage. Knowing if a clinic owner has been looking for a partner for weeks rather than months gives you immediate insight into your bargaining power.
The best way to broach the topic of negotiating a salary is to simply ask, “Is this salary negotiable?” After understanding how long they’ve been searching for a job, asking this question will give you immediate insider information about your bargaining power.
N°3 — How did you determine the salary you offer?
Since the pandemic, we are seeing a dramatic increase in associate salaries because there are so few associates available in today’s market.
Due to the lack of supply of associate physicians available, an owner today simply has to pay more to attract a talented associate physician due to all of the clinical options available to physicians today.
Ask “why is the salary this amount?” will give you an instant insight into the owner’s mindset and expectations. A good rule of thumb to use is that an associate chiropractor should reasonably expect to receive a salary of between 20-30% of the income their work helps generate for the company they work for.
Therefore, understand how much the practice will charge for the services you will provide to patients, as well as the weekly volume of patients you are caring for. This will help you do investigative calculations to see if the office’s income figures add up and if they pay you fairly for the services you will provide.
Remember that there are many other overhead costs of keeping a business open besides your salary. A salary that is 20% of the revenue you generate for the practice may seem a bit low at first, but keep in mind that there are many other expenses involved. These include rent, payment of other staff, advertising, equipment leases and business loans, to name a few of the larger expenses. And, any successful business must generate a healthy profit, otherwise the owner has no incentive to continue operating.
No. 4 — What are your long-term plans for your practice?
There are many reasons why a clinic may need to hire a physician associate. The more clearly you understand why the company is hiring and what is expected of you in the role, the easier it will be for you to assess whether this opportunity fits your long-term personal goals.
“Why are you hiring now? This is an insightful question that you should seek the answer to during the interview process. Does the doctor plan to expand in the future? Do they want more free time, so hire someone to help them? Are they planning to retire or sell the practice? If yes, when?
This knowledge can help you determine which job opportunity matches your own long-term goals.
#5 — How long have each of your current employees worked with you?
This question reveals a lot. Generally speaking, if people are satisfied with their jobs and are fairly compensated, they tend to stay in their jobs for a long time.
If you find that staff turnover in a clinic occurs frequently and the average length of time each employee has been with the company is months, not years, this can give you insight into potential management issues. who are getting ready.
As with everything, there can be many different circumstances. Therefore, be sure to ask direct and probing questions if you find that many employees in the office are newer and haven’t been there very long. Do not hesitate to find out why.
We find that many chiropractic associate candidates are reluctant to ask these kinds of in-depth probing questions during their interviews. This should give you the confidence and insight to dig deeper into the jobs you are considering.
Be fully engaged with your own chiropractic interview questions
A final benefit to asking these five chiropractic interview questions is that nothing impresses an owner more than a fully engaged candidate. It’s impressive when someone cares enough to have researched the business and is interested in helping the business grow and succeed. No one wants to hire someone just interested in collecting a paycheck.
These questions will help you communicate your level of interest and understanding of chiropractic business and will put you far ahead of the rest of the pack.
ALLEN MINOR, DC, graduated from Parker College of Chiropractic in 2003 and has been practicing in Albuquerque, NM since 2003. In 2016, he co-founded Chiro Matchmakers, which has placed thousands of DCs around the world. He is co-author of “The Chiropractic Code”, published in 2014. For more information, visit chiromatchmakers.com.