6 Tips to Make a Good First Impression at an Interview

First impressions, various studies have said are made early, sometimes in as little as a minute. And a negative impression can be hard to change. A good first impression will carry you through the interview process.

Here are 6 easy tips to make a good impression:

  1. Look good – dress professional and appropriate for the job. Go light on cologne or perfume. Your appearance is an easy way to make a good first impression.
  2. Be on Time – arrive 10-15 minutes before your interview. Being late gives the impression that you’re unreliable and not organized.
  3. Smile – first things first, look happy to be there (even if you’re nervous). It’s a positive first step. And don’t forget to smile during the interview.
  4. A good handshake – a firm handshake still matters and is a way to show confidence. Practice, if yours is a bit wimpy or too strong.
  5. Eye contact – having good eye contact lets them know that you’re paying attention, showing you’re comfortable and sincere.
  6. Be prepared – know the company from your research, reread the job description and prep yourself for the potential questions you might be asked.

Making a good first impression is the first step. Starting out confident will help you through the interview process.


View our current Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant jobs


Happy Mother’s Day!



On May 9, 1914, President Wilson issued a proclamation for the first national Mother’s Day holiday to celebrate America’s mothers.


 AVA Search Group wishes you a Happy Mother’s Day!


National Nurses Week – May 6 – 12

Nurses Week

It’s a time for all us to give thanks to our unsung heroes. They do so much and don’t get enough recognition. So celebrate the nurses in your life.



Just saying thank you reminds them how much they mean to us. Nurses make our lives better. Can you imagine being in the hospital without nurses?



A Gallup poll in December 2018 rated Nurses the highest in honesty and ethics, for the 17th year!  That is something to celebrate.

Free Food and discounts for National Nurses Week

USA Today has a great article listing all the places you can receive free food and discounts just for being one our nation’s nurses.


National Nurses Week!

Nurses Week started in 1953 and was first celebrated in 1954 with the goal of focusing on the people who do so much to care for us.

nurse practitioner week

The last day of Nurse Week, May 12th is Florence Nightingale’s birthday. She is the founder of modern day nursing. A favorite quote of hers is: “I attribute my success to this – I never gave or took any excuse.”


International Nurses Day is May 12th.



Nurses are very important to our lives, so this week take the time to thank a nurse for what they do. They deserve it!


“Live life when you have it. Life is a splendid gift-there is nothing small about it.” – Florence Nightingale





Be More Productive with Optimism

Approaching your day with optimism can increase your connections with people, keep your spirits upbeat, increase your chances at success and make setbacks and issues easier to handle. Being optimist makes your life better. Optimists are healthier, cope better and studies have found they may live longer too.


“For myself I am an optimist – it does not seem to be much use to be anything else.”

– Winston Churchill


Five optimism tips to a more productive, happy life:


Find an optimist – make friends with them and learn how they do it. Optimists are upbeat and supportive. Their positive thought process guides their actions and their life. Being around them will help you learn to alter the way you think and do things. Watch and listen. See how they handle disappointment and problems. A positive outlook can make all the difference.


Stay away from the negative people and your own negative thoughts – We all have people who find something wrong with everything. It’s hard to be positive around someone who is always complaining. Limit your time with them.  The same goes for your negative thoughts. When you feel them coming on, stop yourself and instead focus on a more positive thought. It won’t happen overnight but regular practice can help you get in the habit of being more positive. It can make a real difference.


Glass Half Full –Seeing the world with an attitude that your glass is half full makes you happier. Expecting good things can lead you to take actions that actually make good things happen for you. If you only expect bad things, guess what? You don’t do anything and nothing good happens. Glass half full is the way to go!



Tune into your feelings – what makes you feel good? If you’re feeling positive, what happened to make you feel that way? Get in the habit of starting each day with a positive thought or quote. It can be as simple as ‘Thank you’.


Be satisfied with where you are now – it’s good to strive to be better. But focusing on what’s wrong won’t get you to a better place. Focus on what’s good about you, your job, your life and move forward from there.


“Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.”– Dalai Lama XIV


View our current Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant jobs


Happy Easter

We wish you and your family a Happy Easter!



Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant Tips for Faster Credentialing


You’re finished with interviews and have signed your offer letter. Congratulations on your new job! Your last step – credentialing.



It is a systematic, paperwork intensive procedure to ensure quality professionals are added to the staff.  Essentially, it’s a long rigorous process of verifying your history, education and work experience so you can work at the hospital/practice.


Each time you start a new job and move forward in your career, you have to get credentialed again. It feels like it takes forever and there always seems to be just one more bit of information needed. In general credentialing can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, though sometimes it can take longer. Requirements vary by facility but the goal is the same.


Being organized is the key to faster credentialing:


It’s important that you are organized and have the required documents ready so it doesn’t take longer than necessary.


Have all your documents stored in electronic form for fast and easy submission.  Take the time to scan and create clear, legible electronic copies of all your required files for credentialing. You can also use services like Dropbox, Google docs and share your documentation with the facility. Remember to back up your files. In addition, having paper copies is never a bad idea, just in case.


It’s a good idea, that when you start interviewing to review all your documents so you’re not scrambling once you’re hired and the credentialing process gets underway.


Once you receive the packet for credentialing – Don’t put it off! Set up time and get it all done. It’s important that all forms and documents are completed fully and that they are thorough. Mistakes or missing information slows down the process.

Also it’s important to be honest and upfront with malpractice, license or criminal issues.

What’s included in a credentialing packet:

Application – you will be required to complete an application (online or paper). Make sure that it’s completed thoroughly. It’s a good idea to keep copies of applications to use as a reference in the future. Having past applications will keep your information up to date as your career progresses.


Education – have copies of your diplomas and transcripts available for undergraduate, masters, doctorate and any residency/fellowships. This will save time so that the credentialing team does not have to contact your schools.


State Licenses and Board Certifications – you’ll need all your current PA, RN, NP state licenses. In addition, you’ll need whatever national certifications you have ready to send when requested. Make sure they are all up to date.


References – a list of professional references will be required. You will need managers/directors or doctors who have supervised your work and speak to its quality. Having another provider as a reference can be good as well. Be sure you have their phone (office and cell), email address and physical address. Check them prior to submitting for accuracy.


Other items that can be required during credentialing:

  • National Practitioner Identifier (NPI) Number
  • DEA / Controlled Substance Registration
  • CPR / BLS / ACLS / PALS as required by the hospital or practice
  • Continuing Medical Education Certificates
  • Certificates of Professional Liability Insurance if required
  • Copy of Driver’s License and Social Security Card
  • Copy of your CV/Resume
  • Immunization Records
  • Fingerprinting
  • Background Checks


Finally, it’s important to stay in regular contact with the Credentialing Department to check on the process and make sure they don’t need any additional paperwork. Also if they call you, call them back as quickly as possible to avoid delays.


Good luck on your new job.


See our current openings


New Graduate Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants Job Hunting Tips

Best way for New Graduates to find your first Nurse Practitioner or Physician Assistant job


Congratulations, you’re graduated and are a newly certified Advanced Practice Provider. Being a new graduate is exciting and you’re ready to get started. But finding your first job can be a challenge.

Your job hunt can feel like a Catch 22 – to get a good job you need experience but you need the job to get the experience.


So what can you do as a new graduate to find your first job?

First Job Basics:

Make sure your resume is well formatted and up to date. Be sure to list your clinical rotations and a sentence or two on what duties and any procedures you performed. Check and update your social media accounts. And if you don’t have a LinkedIn Profile, create one as more healthcare employers use them to locate potential candidates.


Job Hunting Tips:


START EARLY – start your search while you’re still in school, the last three months or so. And do well in school. It’s always a plus to note a high GPA or an award, etc. on your resume.


BE FLEXIBLE – you might not get your first choice or the specialty you dreamed of when you graduated. For example – getting a job in the ER is difficult without experience. Also consider working a less desirable shift (nights, etc.) to get your foot in the door.


CONSIDER RELOCATION – if you can, open your searches to areas fifty to one hundred miles out of your area. This can increase your chances of finding a new NP and PA job. Smaller cities or even rural locations can offer opportunities and a willingness to train new graduates. You may need to relocate to get the experience you need.


SOMETHING DIFFERENT? – try other settings in addition to searching hospital and physician practices jobs. There are other types of positions that might consider new grads like corporations, prisons/jails, retail clinics, cruise ships, etc. And don’t forget the government and military bases.


DON’T FORGET THE NHSC (NATIONAL HEALTH SERVICE CORPS) PROGRAM – offering loan repayment, many of these locations are in mostly rural areas can be more open to new graduates.


STAY POSITIVE – it can be discouraging but keep at it and send your resume and short, well written cover letter. Don’t be shy and ask your clinical sites if they are looking or know of another practice/doctor that might need an Advanced Practice Provider.


Don’t give up! Be confident in what you can offer. You worked hard and you can do this too.


Check out our current openings here, a few will consider new graduates!



How to Make Your Productivity Soar

Finding ways to make your productivity soar is something we are all looking for. Getting more done in the same twenty-four hours is the goal.

Follow these productivity tips and achieve more:

Figure out your best time of the day – You need to figure out what time of the day you are at your best. For me it’s the morning, so I work on my more difficult tasks earlier in the day. If you work better later in the day, save your tougher tasks for that time. You will have more success and see your productivity increase by doing the hard stuff when you’re at your best and most alert. On the reverse, don’t waste your best time doing mundane things like emails, etc. Use your most alert time to be more creative and productive.


Stop multi-tasking – Our brains don’t like multitasking and we need to stop.

There are countless studies proving that it actually affects our IQ! Giving up multitasking will make you more productive. Trying to do two or three things at once means you’re getting very little done. Multitasking wastes time. It’s faster to work and concentrate on one thing, finish it and then start another. Your brain will thank you.


Work in blocks – People who work in time blocks tend to be more productive researchers have found. It’s easier to focus and get your work done. Choose a time frame of 30 or 50 minutes and do one task and see the difference.


Take a break – Most of us sit at our desks and forget to take a break. Ten or fifteen minutes away from your desk will re-energize you and boost your productivity. Breaks improve your concentration. Talk to friend, take a walk or enjoy a cup of tea, something other than working for a few minutes can make a difference in the level and quality of your work.


Take care of yourself – Exercise, getting enough sleep and healthy eating habits are all important to helping with our productivity. If you’re well rested and eating healthy brain food you’re in better shape to meet your challenges. Also being upbeat, optimistic are solid ways to take care of yourself. If you’re feeling good and are healthy, being productive is easier to accomplish.



Visit to our career center to see our job listings.


4 Ways to Accelerate Your Job Search

The first quarter of 2019 is almost over, have you started your job search yet? Advanced Practice Providers are in demand, making this is a good time to leverage your clinical experience and find a position that meets your career goals.


Here are 4 tips to get your job search started:


Take a look at your resume – if you haven’t done so yet – refresh and update your resume. It’s the first thing a potential employer sees and it needs to be good and show off what you bring to a discussion. As a mentioned in a post last year, you have less than ten seconds to make an impression with your resume. It’s important that they see your clinical and work accomplishments. Don’t just list skills; note what you’ve accomplished in your work. Create more than one resume if you’re looking for a variety of positions that will showcase the required skills.


Update your LinkedIn Profile – first if you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, create one. It’s important. More practices and hospitals are reviewing them and using LinkedIn for recruiting. Be sure your profile is updated with your most recent jobs and experience. I recently checked a profile and it was missing experience from the past five years. Your profile summary should be filled with information including your qualifications, clinical specialties background and experience; keep it short and concise. Your profile needs to tell who you are as a Provider. Also, join groups and don’t be afraid to respond to questions that show off your expertise.


Actual Search – be sure that your job search targeted on what you really want. If you’re not getting enough responses, you might to evaluate what type of jobs you’re searching for. Don’t just use job search engines, expand your search and visit individual company sites, blogs, and local smaller businesses that might be what you’re looking for. And sometimes there are clinical jobs outside of common settings, explore those possibilities as well.


Networking – most people forget to ask people they know. Networking can unearth job openings which are not online. Many jobs are filled through networking. Don’t be afraid to ask your contacts and let people know you’re looking.


These easy tips can help your job search go smoothly.


Visit to our career center to see our job listings.


What Should You do After Your Interview

You have finished your interview and you think it went well. What’s next?

Here are 8 things you should do after your interview:

Understand their process – Before you leave ask about their timeline and the decision process and find out who you need to follow up with.


Get business cards – Be sure you get the cards of each person you met.


Don’t call your friends or family in the elevator – you don’t know everyone in the company and just might say the wrong thing and ruin your chances. Wait until you’re in your car.


Reflect on how you did – honestly assess the interview and how you felt you answered the questions. Gauge the reactions of the interviewers. Is there something you missed, could have said better or need to clarify? Recommend that you write down your thoughts and important details you discussed.


Did you like the job?  After meeting people in the company and getting a better sense of the job duties and the people you would be working with, is this the job you want and is it the right fit for you?


Thank you note to seal the deal  – you would be surprised how many people do not write follow up thank you notes. You can send an email or handwritten note, whichever you choose it needs to be sent the same day of the interview. Be sure to personalize each note and cover something unique from the interview and why you are the right person for the job. See our thank you note blog post for more tips on this important step.


Follow-up – be proactive and follow up. Email or call 3- 5 business days after the interview. Make the contact brief – you’re just checking in to find out how the process is going. Be polite, professional. This  keeps you in their mind.


Have Patience – waiting to hear back can feel like forever and is stressful. Your instinct might be to call daily or keep emailing. Don’t. It’s a process and it takes time.


These tips will help you stand out and will improve your chances of moving forward in the process. However, no matter how great this job might be, it’s not yours yet so you need to keep up your job hunt while you wait to see if the offer comes through.


Visit to our career center to see our job listings.