The questions you ask during an interview can be just as important and revealing as the ones you are answering. Getting this right can be the difference between you and your competition and likewise help you decide if you want to work at the company yourself.
You’ve built up a rapport, you’ve explained your experience and history and tackled the difficult questions thrown at you. Now the ball is in your court to ask those vital questions. We’ve listed some questions that you may consider asking at this point.
1. Where do you think the company is headed in the next 5 years?
This shows you care about where the company is going which in turn indicates how long you are likely to stay for. Employers don’t want to make a hire for the short term (unless it’s a contact role), so longevity is something you want to put across.
2. What do you think is the best thing about working for this company?
Showing the employer you value their opinion in their own company engages them on a personal level. A great rapport builder which you can also have a bit of fun with. This question also draws on their own experiences within the organisation which can be vital in your own decision making.
3. Could you describe the culture of the company?
Being the right “Cultural fit” in a company can be the difference between short term employment and going the long haul. If it’s a highly corporate office and you’re looking for something a bit more laid back, it’s best you know sooner rather than later and decide accordingly whether you would accept an offer of employment.
4. What are the biggest challenges the company is facing right now?
The challenges an organisation is facing are likely the reason they are looking to recruit – to solve that challenge. Recognising this shows initiative and gives you the opportunity to explain how you personally would face that challenge.
5. What is the company/team structure?
This question shows you are thinking about the wider scope of the team and not just the role. It highlights that you want to understand more about how the company is built.
6. Is this a replacement or new role?
Leading on from the last question, finding out the history of the position means you are looking at the wider picture and how you fit into it. You could use the answer to this question to build on your own experience of going into replacement or new roles in the past and how you dealt with this.
7. What would the first 6 months of my time look like here?
You are already thinking about what being in the role will look like not just getting past the interview. This shows it’s not just about landing the job for you, it’s being in the job that counts. It will also help to set the scene and manage your own expectations of how your immediate working future will look. You can ask about projects you’ll be working on, programmes you will be using and who you will be working with.
8. Do you offer training and progression opportunities?
Another way of indicating you’re in it for the long haul is asking about progression opportunities within the the company. This can also include asking about training that is available to you and what this can lead to in the wider business.
9. Do you have any questions or concerns that I can help to relieve any doubt about my suitability for the role to put me in the lead for the position?
This one speaks for itself. Some people see it as a bit of a cheeky one to ask but said in the right way you can gain the respect of the interviewer while alleviating any of their concerns. It gives you a final opportunity to sell yourself and your strengths as a candidate.
10. What are the next steps in the interview process?
For your own peace of mind and preparation it is good to be informed of the next stages. Will there be a second interview, how soon will you hear back etc. If you don’t get time to ask this one your Recruitment Consultant will have information on the next stage so don’t worry. They will also be on hand to answer any questions you may have forgotten during the interview process.
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