Sample Interview Questions for Hiring Staff

This document has been provided to the ICISG by the Cancer Information and Support Service of the Cancer Council Victoria, Australia to serve as an example of a disclaimer statement that might be written by a CIS for use with their clients. All of the information below reflects the particular processes of Cancer Council Victoria, and other organizations are free to adapt or modify it to better reflect their own cultural or organizational needs.

Interview Questions for Cancer Helpline Clinical Nurse Specialists

  • Welcome and introduction to process
  • Please ask any questions during or at the end of the interview.

1). What attracted you to apply for this position?  What appealed to you the most?

2). Can you tell us a little about your work background, as well as bit about the position you’re in now? What do you most and least enjoy?

 3). What kinds of queries would you anticipate receiving via telephone as a Helpline nurse? How do you think such calls would stretch and challenge you?

 4). Can you tell us about a difficult patient scenario you had to manage recently? What was the scenario, how did you manage it and what was the outcome?

 5). Scenario: A patient calls and wants to know about the use of black salve (an alternative therapy) as a cancer treatment. Talk us through how you might approach answering such a question.

 6). Scenario: Your next caller, diagnosed with bowel cancer is a little distressed as their chemo has caused some side effects which you know aren’t uncommon of their particular treatment. They tell you they’re considering stopping the chemo as they never really wanted it and then ask about which oncologist you would recommend if you had bowel cancer as they’re considering a second opinion. What are some of the key things you would address in this call?

 7). You overhear a colleague speaking badly about a senior staff member in a public workspace. What would you do?

 8). What are your career goals?  How does this role align with your overall career goals and how would it compliment the work you intend to continue?

 9). If appointed to this position, what would be your immediate and continuing professional development needs?

 10. )This role can require you to give presentations on our services to different audiences. Can you tell us about your experience with public speaking?

 11). Do you have any questions for us?

Working Conditions Checklist

  • Days of work and hours
  • 3 month standard probationary period
  • Superannuation: The standard 9% superannuation is in addition to the base salary range.
  • Salary packaging explained
  • All staff must respect the confidentiality of Cancer Council information and must sign a confidentiality agreement.


  • Confirm candidate is comfortable salary on offer


  • Are your referees available at the moment? (Check reporting relationship of referees – ie. was the referee a direct supervisor?)


  • If offered the position how soon could you start? What is your notice period?


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