ER Tech interview tips for an unexperienced EMT?


Forum Ride Along
Hi folks,

It's been quite a few years since I obtained my NREMT cert and state license. They are still active, but I remember very little of what I learned in the course and for the NREMT.

That said, I applied for an open ER Tech position and was invited to interview. It was clear on my resume that I had a license only (no experience)

How much of a disadvantage does this put me with regards to the job and the interview? Any interview tips? What are some responsibilities that I'll have to face on the job?



Forum Ride Along
I tried the ER Tech job while still working as an EMT-B at a 911 agency. Thought I would gain some additional skills. Job was primarily CNA functions. Wiping up messes, hooking patient up for vitals, cleaning beds, cleaning equipment. On your feet for 12 hours straight running from room to room cleaning up patients and equipment. Lasted two days. Prefer the 911 ambulance much better. This may not be the norm but what I experienced.


Forum Deputy Chief
Just like the ambulance, ER tech jobs vary greatly by hospital/location. In my area, it is usually competitive, pays better than the ambulance for EMT, but usually they are paramedics who are glorified bed cleaners, do compressions, vitals, and do 12-leads. They do not practice to scope. No blood draws, IVs, medication push, even though they are generally paramedics.

Most interview questions whether ambulance or ER are not going to have a great deal of clinical questions. It's what everyone tunnel visions on, especially if they have no prior interview experience for EMT or paramedic positions. They are going to be stereotypical interviews that are in the medical setting, but they aren't generally looking for clinical answers. Almost interview starts with "Tell us about yourself.", "Why do you want to work for us?", and ends with "Do you have any questions for us?" The focus is going to be on safety, customer service, team work, dealing with stress, communication, ethics, etc. An example question might be "You and a nurse are attending to a patient. While you put the patient on the monitor, you see the nurse going through the patient's belongings and put a patient's medication in her pocket. What do you do?" Another example is "You and your co-workers are working on a cardiac arrest. A nurse starts an IV and puts the exposed needle in between the patient's legs. What do you do?" Those are the type of scenarios you might. Seems clinical-ish, but not really. Every company usually ask questions covering each category (safety, customer service, etc), just ask it in different ways. They might give you a fake scenario. They might ask you your thoughts about it "What is good customer service?" They might ask you for specific experience "Tell us a time you saw an unsafe situation. What did you do about it?" So think about your experience with those. Those experiences do not have to be clinical, but can be something in school, at home, a non clinical job, etc.. Show them that you can apply prior experience (even if not from a job) and that you'll fit in and be able to do the job without too much hand holding.

Just be honest, listen carefully to the questions, show that you're eager to learn, and that you're the right person for the job.

Good luck!


Forum Lieutenant
It's been quite a few years since I obtained my NREMT cert and state license. They are still active, but I remember very little of what I learned in the course and for the NREMT.
How did you keep your license valid without taking a refresher class and passing the skills test every two years? Here in Cali you have to at least do that to stay licensed. And I thought you had to be actively working as an EMT in order to renew your NREMT every two years. I only kept it up for a few renewal cycles, but I always had to have my employer sign the renewal form, IIRC.

  1. What are the renewal criteria for an EMT?

In order to renew an EMT certification prior to expiration, you must submit proof of either 24 hours of approved EMS continuing education (CE) or an approved 24 hour refresher course certificate taken within the past two years. A link to approved CE courses in California can be found on the EMT page of the EMS Authority’s website. A refresher course must be through an approved training program. Additionally, EMTs are to complete the EMT Skills Competency Verification Form EMSA-SCV (01-17). If you wish to apply for EMT certification renewal or need further clarification on what qualifies as approved CE, or assistance finding an approved skills verifier, contact a local EMS agency.