Career advice

Inside...BBR Optometry

Senior optometrist, owner and chairman of BBR Optometry, Nick Rumney, on what his Hereford-based independent looks for in new employees

The BBR Optometry team at the AOP Awards

How can prospective employees apply for a position at BBR Optometry?

We rarely advertise. We have used vacancy listings on websites, and we have used an agency in the past, but not for around five years or so now. Therefore, the simple answer is: if you are interested in working at BBR Optometry, get in touch, ask, we’ll keep your CV on file.

What is the internal process after an application is made?

The directors, clinical lead optometrist and practice manager will review the CVs. We will always write back to candidates and keep their CV on file until a vacancy arises.

What is the interview process? 

It’s an individual process. Some candidates might be asked to present to the senior team about their vision of optometry and their career aspirations. Some might be asked to work for a day on a truncated list to see how they communicate with staff and patients.

What makes a CV standout? 

A vision and an aspiration. Musical multiples doesn’t cut it with us I’m afraid. There needs to be a strong sense of purpose and solid opinions; don’t tell us what you think we want to hear.

What are you looking for in a cover letter and why? 

The basics; polite, articulate, well laid out and correctly spelt. You have an education, so please use it. Humour also helps. 

How should a candidate best prepare for an interview? 

Again, it really comes down to the basics. Turn up on time, take pride in your appearance, and smile.

"It's an individual process. Some candidates might be asked to present to the senior team about their vision of optometry and their career aspirations"

What three interview tips would you give a candidate? 

  • Don’t arrive late clutching a bag of chips
  • Google is there, so use it. Also, ask us about things that aren’t on our website
  • Expect to speak more than we do.

What are your interview ‘pet peeves’? 

Nothing amazes us anymore about potential employees. From those who are stunningly competent and articulate at a young age, to those who should have stopped doing optometry in year one, we have experienced it all. This was a direct email that we received from one potential candidate in the past: “Thank you for showing me around your practice last Thursday. Unfortunately, I do not feel I would fit into your practice, you need someone very thorough and conscientious and I'm afraid that's not my style. I hope you find the optom you are looking for soon.”

Sum up your ideal candidate in three words…

Passionate, visionary and a person you can imagine people following.