How Will You Spend the 1st 90 Days in Your New Job?

(Post originally appeared on HealthcareIT Today)

This question comes up more often than not during interviews, and it’s important for candidates to not only understand the question, but be able to N-A-I-L the answer without hesitation. I’ve seen some answers that were nicely thought-out and…well, some that were really pretty… interesting. ‘Awful’ might be a better way to put it. Companies want to evaluate your experience, education, and skill set to find out if you’re going to fit in with their culture, and once they’ve gone round 3rd base with your candidacy, they’ll want to see how you think on your feet. Plain and simple. No need to fear the reaper – with the right preparation you will do fine.

The fight for talent in our space is fierce, and it’s going to get much more competitive as the weeks and months continue. Many of our clients aren’t just asking candidates the ’90 day’ question – they’re asking that final round of candidates to give the management team a presentation on exactly how they’ll spend their first few months on board. These presentations, while scary to some, are a great barometer on how you present to an audience, handle pressure, and think on your feet.

Knowing a candidate will be able to hit the ground running is top of mind for the hiring manager. They need productive teams, so each new team-member needs to be “up and at ‘em” from day one. Let’s face it: in the HCIT marketplace there are very few companies with a multi-national and/or multi-billion dollar status. In the HCI Top 100 (HCIT companies ranked by revenue), there’s a – fairly telling – HUGE revenue cliff after the top 10 or 15 companies. What does this mean, exactly? Most of the companies in this space are made up with early stage or start-up companies and have little to no training or on-boarding. That means it’s critical to find people that can scale with little or no day-to-day hand-holding. They all want skilled, ready-to-go-to-work talent!

The next time the ’90 day’ question comes up, make sure you are prepared with an answer that speaks to your conviction and passion. It could make the difference between receiving an offer… or not.

Go get ‘em!