Finding a job as a sterile processing technician can be stressful and competitive, but you can prepare ahead of time with some insight into the interview questions.
Sterile processing technician interview questions may range from queries about:
- how you perform under pressure,
- to your understanding of job duties,
- and how well you work within a team, among others.
Since the sterile processing technician is responsible for sterilization, preparation, decontamination, and infection control, the job can be stressful.
Thus, interviewers will ask questions that can give them insight into whether or not you have the motivation and consistency to follow through with the job.
A sterile processing technician also has a crucial role in a surgical environment.
The interviewer will ask questions to gauge your understanding of how your position affects the surgical process.
This guide will explore topics like this and the possible questions you will likely be asked in your interview.
Pay attention as we share some example interview questions and answers. And always remember to make your interview answers unique to your skills and experiences.
These Q&As below should inspire you as you prepare for your sterile processing technician interview. Stick around to the end to get interview prep tips.
Sterile Processing Technician Interview Questions and Answers
The following five interview questions are commonly asked, as they target specific expertise and skill sets that candidates should possess.
Remember that other run-of-the-mill interview questions may be asked regarding strengths, weaknesses, education, and past medical experiences.
1. How would you approach a colleague who was not following protocol?
The sterile processing technician’s job is to follow sterilization procedures and prepare all equipment for surgery.
However, surgeons and other professionals in the operating room also have safety protocols to follow.
See also: OR Nurse Interview Questions
The interviewer may ask this question in your interview to learn about your accountability and reliability.
They want to know that you are the kind of technician who is not afraid to confront situations to maximize the safety of the patient and the hospital.
They also want to know that you can do so in a respectful manner that would make you a good team member.
If I noticed that a colleague wasn’t properly disinfecting, storing, or following other safety protocols, I would talk with them.
By referencing the hospital’s safety guidebook and speaking respectfully, I would make the conversation a collaboration for improvement rather than a correction.
See also: Why Do You Want to Be a Sterile Processing Tech
2. How would you describe your multitasking abilities?
The job of a sterile processing technician is fast-paced, with various duties that must be completed to specific standards every time.
You will be expected to complete these duties, sometimes in a time crunch.
And sometimes, the responsibilities go beyond sterilization to include transporting and distributing medical equipment.
This requires some level of multitasking skills, and when you answer the question, you should point out specific examples of times when you multitasked.
I pride myself on my multitasking skills, which I have practiced for the past two years at X General Hospital.
In the past, I would be responsible for sterilization duties, records maintenance, and equipment distribution – often all in the same workday.
As a sterile processing technician, I aim to bring those skills into the workplace to create a well-oiled surgical environment.
See also: Sterile Processing Manager Interview Questions
3. Explain the most important parts of being a sterile processing technician in a few sentences.
A long list of job duties comes with this job, so employers will look to see that you aren’t rusty.
They want to know that you are prepared to do any of the tasks associated with the job at a moment’s notice.
And they want to see that you are ready to do any of those tasks correctly without further training.
Therefore, your answer should be as accurate and specific as possible, showing off your expertise in the field.
A sterile processing technician has a variety of duties ranging from upholding safety protocol to sterilizing equipment, organizing, keeping records, delivering equipment, collecting used equipment for sterilization, and preparing tools.
The job also requires thoughtful attention to detail regarding testing, monitoring, and maintaining sterilization equipment.
A sterile processing technician must be able to multitask, work well under pressure, and collaborate in a team environment.
See also: Orthodontic Assistant Interview Questions
4. How would our surgical team benefit from hiring you?
It may be difficult to brag about yourself in an interview, but explaining the perks of hiring you is essential.
Answering this question is an opportunity to highlight your unique skills that other candidates may not have.
It’s also an opportunity to speak on your ability to work with colleagues respectfully and efficiently (teamwork).
I have worked in medical team-based environments for several years.
My experience working with colleagues has molded me into an excellent communicator and a worker who can anticipate the needs of those around me in time-sensitive situations.
See also: Sterile Processing Educator Interview Questions
5. Have you ever worked in a surgical environment before?
The sterile processing technician is directly responsible for distributing clean tools to surgeons.
See also: Plastic Surgery Nurse Interview Questions
This is your chance to highlight any experiences in which you took on these roles or assisted a surgeon in any way.
My last medical job was not as a sterile processing technician, but the job did involve duties related to the surgical department.
I was responsible for surgery scheduling while I shadowed and trained with a sterile processing technician and versed myself in the responsibilities of the job.
See also: Sterile Processing Supervisor Interview Questions
How to Prepare for Sterile Processing Technician Job Interview Questions?
To prepare for your interview, you might try the following:
- Research the hospital you are interviewing with to understand its values and mission.
- Consider multiple possible answers to common questions.
- Be prepared to speak on any weaknesses you might possess.
- Rehearse your answers out loud beforehand.
- Avoid caffeine before the interview.
Conclusion: Interview Questions for Sterile Processing Technicians
Sterile processing technician interview questions target the candidate’s firsthand experience, knowledge of job duties, ability to work under pressure, and more.
Review the above sample questions as you prepare for your interview.
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