Midwifery Job Success: Decision Making and Advice!

I am so unbelievably excited to share that I have officially and successfully been shortlisted, interviewed and offered jobs at both of the hospitals in which I applied for. Today I wanted to share my experience, decision making process and a little advice from my end, not dissimilar to my OSCE post last week. I feel like as a young adult, I've had my fair share of interviews throughout my life but I haven't had any for over 3 years, since applying to study Midwifery at the University of Nottingham. 

After being placed at two different hospitals during my university placements, I decided I enjoyed both trusts and would love to work at them both, each for different reasons. I briefly considered applying for a third job, one closer to my mother and her family. In fact, I may have ended up applying if I didn't apply for one job so early on in the process, so I knew I always had that as an option quite early on. In the end, because I had a successful application already, I decided I'd rather be closer to the friends I've made at university and my boyfriend who I sadly couldn't convince to move to Wakefield. 

Back in June, I submitted my first application to Chesterfield Royal Hospital. Chesterfield was my away placement (second year) and I absolutely loved almost the entire time there. I well and truly felt part of the team straight away. I was made to feel so welcome and it was a little family. I think the benefits of a small unit were that everyone knew each other and even external to the maternity team, the entire hospital was lovely. I also really enjoyed the rotational position between the ward and birth centre, which meant skills were always kept up-to-date and diversity between shifts was common. Also, the parking was a huge bonus with it being so affordable and very much available. 

My home placement was Nottingham University Hospitals, where I spent both first and third year. As a first year, I felt very much on the outside, but looking like I do feel like that may have been more of a first year experience, trying to take everything in and understand, rather than a trust issue. This year, with more experience, I feel home and part of the team. I get on really well with everyone, especially the newly qualified midwives, and it's lovely to recognise so many faces. I think the preceptorship package is great and the opportunity to gain more experience in speciality, complex fields is very interesting to me. I also love that it's a teaching hospital and I have more room to grow within the large unit. 

Both interviews ended up being doing on Microsoft Teams due to the Covid-19 situation, and for obvious reasons, it wasn't safe to do it in person. The latter was originally meant to be in person, but due to moving into Tier 3 the day before, I think the right decision was made in the end. I actually find myself preferring online interviews and found it took a lot of pressure away from the event, and saves on travelling too and from the venue. I found both Trusts (two interviewers on each) were so lovely, making me feel very much welcome and eager to have me join the team. I can genuinely say I loved both experiences and thought they overall went really well. My first was so smooth, but the second half of my second went a little downhill in my opinion...luckily the panel didn't agree! 

I found out both results the next working day after the interviews and was overjoyed. I was honoured to be told I scored highly in both (in the top few applicants) and despite originally being in shock, in the end, I decided to go for the option that was closer to my boyfriend. I genuinely think I would be happy at both trusts but at the end of the day, work life is only half of life an so I needed to make the most of my personal life too. 

I'm not going into too much detail in terms of the interviews or application process but if that's something you would be interested in, let me know and I would be happy to write another post in the future, like about specific questions etc. I plan on writing a little advice on the topic at some point, but my biggest advice would be: 

  • Use the support available: your university should prepare a package of support so you can understand the application process; also, make use of the career's department because they were incredible for me; you can also find advice online and speak with practice supervisors or other staff members. 
  • Research the Trust: make sure your application is very specific to the Trust so gain information you can use. 
  • Ring the Trusts: don't be afraid to reach out and call the Trusts you're interested in, to ask specific questions and help prepare your application. 
  • Practice interviewing: most universities offer mock interviews and I would fully recommend making use of these to have a trial run, but also practicing unofficially with friends and family it useful. 
  • Write answers: find a list of as many common questions as you can and write or at least consider answers which you could say, that way, you can feel somewhat prepared for whatever the question may be. 
  • Use interview techniques: there are lots of different techniques out there and your university experience may advise you on specific questions; we used the STAR technique and I found it made a lot of sense. 
If you have your own tips, share them below!