20 Optum Interview Questions and Answers

Prepare for the types of questions you are likely to be asked when interviewing for a position at Optum.

As a leading provider of analytics, technology, and consulting services, Optum is committed to helping health systems improve their performance. If you’re interviewing for a position at Optum, you can expect to be asked questions about your experience with data analysis, your knowledge of the healthcare industry, and your ability to solve complex problems.

To help you prepare for your interview, we’ve compiled a list of sample Optum interview questions and answers. With these questions and answers in hand, you’ll be ready to impress your interviewer and land the job you want.

Optum Interview Process

The interview process at Optum can vary depending on the position you are applying for. However, most positions will require at least one phone screen and one in-person interview. For some positions, there may also be a coding test or other assessment. Overall, the interview process is generally positive, with interviewers being friendly and helpful. However, some candidates have reported waiting for weeks or even months to hear back from Optum after their interviews, which can be frustrating.

1. What is your favorite programming language and why?

This question is a great way to see if you have any experience with the company’s preferred programming language. If they don’t ask this, it can be helpful to research what languages are most commonly used by the company and prepare an answer that shows your familiarity with them.

Example: “My favorite programming language is Python because of its versatility. I’ve found that Python is useful for both data analysis and web development, which makes it easy to use in many different situations. In my last role, I was able to use Python to create a website that tracked patient health records.”

2. How do you think the healthcare industry will change in the next 5 years?

This question can help an interviewer get a sense of your knowledge about the industry and how you might fit in. Use examples from your experience to explain what you think will change, and how you would adapt to those changes.

Example: “I believe that healthcare providers will start using more predictive analytics to make decisions about patient care. In my last role as a data scientist, I helped develop algorithms that predicted which patients were at risk for readmission within 30 days of discharge. We used this information to create targeted interventions for these patients so they could receive better care before being discharged.”

3. How would you test the security of a web application?

The interviewer may ask you a question like this to assess your technical skills and knowledge of the industry. Use examples from previous projects or describe how you would test an application’s security.

Example: “I would first perform a vulnerability scan on the web application to see if there are any issues with its security. I would then run penetration testing, which is when I try to break into the system by using different methods such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting and buffer overflow attacks. After that, I would check for backdoors in the system and look for any other vulnerabilities.”

4. Can you describe a time when you had to work with minimal supervision?

This question can help the interviewer understand how you handle working independently and with minimal guidance. Use your answer to highlight your ability to work on a team, communicate effectively and solve problems without direct supervision.

Example: “In my current role as an IT analyst, I often have to troubleshoot issues that arise in our department without my supervisor’s immediate assistance. For example, when one of our servers went down last month, I had to determine what caused it and resolve the issue myself. After some research, I determined that we needed more memory for the server. I ordered the new memory and resolved the issue within two hours.”

5. Do you have experience working on or leading a team?

This question can help the interviewer determine your leadership skills and how you interact with others. Describe a time when you led a team or helped a group of people work together to achieve a goal.

Example: “In my current role, I lead a team of data analysts who support our organization’s marketing efforts. We meet weekly to discuss new projects and ideas for improving our services. In one instance, we were tasked with creating an online advertising campaign that would increase sales by 10% within six months. My team and I developed several strategies based on our previous experience and implemented them across multiple channels. After three months, we exceeded our goal and increased sales by 15%. The company was so impressed that they asked us to develop similar campaigns for other departments.”

6. Provide an example of a time when you had to solve a problem that was not straightforward, how did you approach it?

This question is an opportunity to show your problem-solving skills and how you approach a challenge. When answering this question, it can be helpful to provide specific details about the steps you took to solve the problem and what the outcome was.

Example: “At my previous job, I had to help develop a new system for tracking patient information. The company wanted to implement a more efficient way of storing data that would allow them to access it from anywhere. This process required me to work with several departments within the organization to determine which software would best suit their needs. After researching different options, we decided on one particular program and began training employees on its use.”

7. Would you be comfortable representing our company as an advocate for improvement in the healthcare system?

This question helps the interviewer determine if you have a passion for helping others and improving healthcare. Your answer should show that you are willing to go above and beyond to help people in need of medical care.

Example: “I am passionate about helping those who can’t afford quality healthcare, so I would be happy to represent Optum as an advocate for improvement in the healthcare system. For example, I recently worked with a hospital that was struggling financially because it had too many patients on Medicaid. We developed a plan to reduce the number of Medicaid patients by offering them free transportation to other hospitals that could better meet their needs.”

8. Describe your experience with designing software.

This question helps the interviewer understand your experience with a specific skill that’s important for this role. Use examples from previous work to show how you’ve used software design skills in the past.

Example: “In my last position, I was responsible for creating and maintaining an internal website where employees could find information about company policies, procedures and resources. I created a content management system so our team of writers and editors could update the site regularly without needing technical assistance. This helped us keep the website up-to-date with current information and provided easy access to information for employees.”

9. If hired, how would you improve patient care within our organization?

This question helps employers understand your commitment to helping others and improving the healthcare industry. Use examples from your experience that show you’re a problem-solver who’s eager to learn new things.

Example: “I would start by learning more about OptumInsight’s services, including how they can help improve patient care. I’d also want to get to know my colleagues so we could work together to solve problems and find solutions for our clients. In my previous role as an analyst, I worked with a team of data scientists to create a predictive analytics model that helped identify patients at risk for hospital readmission within 30 days of discharge. This allowed us to develop targeted interventions to reduce readmissions and save the hospital money.”

10. As a consultant, we often need to travel between client locations, are you prepared to spend weekdays away from home?

Travel is a common part of many consulting jobs, and it’s important to be prepared for the time away from home. Interviewers want to make sure you understand what the job entails and that you’re willing to accept those responsibilities.

Example: “I’m aware that travel is a part of this position, and I am prepared to spend weekdays away from home. In my previous role as an IT consultant, I spent one day per week on-site with clients and the rest of the week working remotely. This allowed me to maintain a consistent work-life balance while still providing quality service.”

11. Which area of health informatics interests you most?

This question helps the interviewer determine if your skills and interests align with those of OptumInsight. Your answer should show that you have a passion for health informatics, but also that you are flexible enough to work in any area of the company.

Example: “I am passionate about data analytics and how it can be used to improve patient care. I believe that collecting and analyzing data is an important first step toward making informed decisions about treatment plans and improving outcomes. In my last role as a data analyst, I helped develop predictive models that improved hospital efficiency by 5%.”

12. Tell me about one of your biggest challenges while working on a project.

This question can help the interviewer understand how you handle challenges and overcome them. Use your answer to highlight a time when you faced a challenge, overcame it and what you learned from that experience.

Example: “One of my biggest challenges was working with a client who had very little knowledge about data analytics. I needed to find ways to explain complex concepts in simple terms so they could understand. In this case, I used visuals and analogies to make sure they understood the information I presented. This helped me build trust with the client and show them how valuable data analytics is for their organization.”

13. We want to make sure you are a good fit for this position, what makes you a good candidate?

This question is a great way to show the interviewer that you have researched their company and are qualified for this role. You can use your answer to highlight any experience or skills that align with what they’re looking for in an employee.

Example: “I am passionate about healthcare, which led me to pursue my degree in nursing. I also have several years of experience working as a nurse, so I understand how important it is to provide quality care to patients. In my previous position, I worked on a team that developed new ways to improve patient outcomes. This experience has given me valuable insight into how technology can be used to make health systems more efficient.”

14. Why should I hire you instead of other candidates?

This question is a great opportunity to show the interviewer that you have done your research on the company and are confident in your ability to succeed. When answering this question, make sure to highlight any skills or experiences that align with what the employer is looking for.

Example: “I am an excellent communicator who can work well with others. I also have extensive experience working as part of a team and collaborating with other professionals to solve complex problems. My analytical skills and attention to detail make me a valuable asset to any organization.”

15. What is your understanding of the current state of the US healthcare system?

The interviewer may ask this question to assess your knowledge of the current state of healthcare in the US. They want to know if you have a strong understanding of how the system works and what challenges it faces. Use your answer to highlight any areas where you think improvements can be made.

Example: “I believe that the US healthcare system is currently facing many challenges, including rising costs, an aging population and a shortage of primary care physicians. I also understand that there are several factors contributing to these issues, such as insurance companies who don’t always cover necessary procedures and patients who don’t take their health seriously enough.”

16. Are you aware of any flaws in the current US healthcare system?

This question is a great way to determine how much you know about the current healthcare system and whether you have any ideas for improvement. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention specific flaws that you’ve noticed in your own experience with the healthcare system or from research.

Example: “I believe one of the biggest flaws in the US healthcare system is the lack of communication between patients and their doctors. I think if more people were aware of what was going on with their health, they would feel empowered to make better decisions about their care. Another flaw I see is the high cost of prescription drugs. If we could find ways to lower the price of these medications, it would help many Americans who are struggling to afford them.”

17. What softwares are you familiar with?

This question is a great way to determine if you have the necessary skills for this role. It’s important that you are familiar with the software OptumInsight uses, so be sure to review their website and job description before your interview.

Example: “I am very familiar with Microsoft Excel, Google Analytics, Tableau, SAS and SPSS. I also have experience using IBM Watson Analytics, which is similar to Tableau.”

18. Give me an example of an issue in healthcare you feel needs addressing.

This question is a great way to see how you approach problems and challenges in the healthcare industry. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention an issue that you have personally experienced or witnessed firsthand.

Example: “I believe there are two major issues in healthcare today. The first is the lack of communication between patients and their doctors. I’ve seen many instances where patients don’t understand what they need to do after leaving the doctor’s office. This leads to them not following through with treatment plans, which can lead to more serious health concerns down the road.

The second issue is the amount of time it takes for patients to receive care. In some cases, it can take weeks or months before a patient receives a diagnosis. I think if we could find ways to improve these two areas, it would help people feel more confident in their healthcare providers.”

19. What is your opinion on data privacy?

OptumInsight is a company that works with sensitive data, so it’s important to show you understand the importance of protecting information. When answering this question, explain how you would ensure privacy and security when working with clients.

Example: “I believe in maintaining the highest level of confidentiality for all my clients. I have worked with many companies who are required by law to keep their client data private, so I am familiar with HIPAA regulations. I also know that there are ways to work with data without violating these rules. For example, I can use aggregate data to provide insights while still keeping individual records confidential.”

20. How much do you know about Optum?

This question is a great way to see how much research you’ve done on the company. Interviewers want to know that you’re interested in working for their organization and have taken the time to learn about it. When answering this question, make sure to include some specific facts about Optum.

Example: “I’m very familiar with Optum because I worked at a hospital where we used OptumInsight to help us improve our patient care. I also read through your website and watched several of your videos online. I was impressed by the work you do and am excited to be part of the team.”


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