During an interview, not only is the prospective employer asking you questions in order to see if you are a good fit for their company and position, but you must be certain to ascertain if the job is a good fit for you by asking questions about the company, your position, and your boss.
Additionally, if you do not have smart and insightful questions, the perception your employer might give is that you either vastly underprepared or are simply uninterested in the position.
Towards the end of the interview, you are typically prompted with an opportunity to ask questions. For that reason, you should be armed with at least two questions. This will show that you are interested in the position, that you have done your homework, and you have the drive to successfully excel at your role. I would also like to mention that asking questions in your job interview helps you put together a great thank you email to send out after the interview.
It’s best to steer clear of ‘yes or no’ questions because those tend to be too broad and challenging to answer. If you are trying to make a good impression, it’s best not to stump the interviewer.
If you are not sure what questions to ask in a job interview, here are a few proven examples of good interview questions:
1. Can you elaborate on the day-to-day responsibilities of this job?
This is your opportunity to learn about all that could reasonably be expected from the job so you can choose whether it’s the right choice for you. By getting familiar with the everyday undertakings, you will acquire an understanding of what aptitudes and qualities are required and bring up questions regarding any subjects that were not addressed during the interview.
2. What are the most important qualities for someone to excel in this role?
A lot of times this can question can be illuminating, revealing information that may not have been obtained during the interview. It can go a long way of elaborating on the expectations of the role and the overall culture of the company, helping you show the potential employer that you are a good fit for their company’s culture.
3. What are this role’s expectations in the first month, 2 months, or year?
This question can let you in on what the employer will be expecting of you in this position, and how fast they will expect you to grow into the role.
4. Can you describe the company’s culture?
It is important to gauge the culture and dynamics within a company to ensure that it will be an environment that you are comfortable working in.
5. Where do you see the company headed in the next 5 years?
If you plan to stay with the company for an extended period of time, it is best to make sure that the company is going to continue growing so that you and your career can grow along with it.
6. Who is your top competitor and why?
While coming into the interview you should already have a good idea about the company’s competitors, it still helps to ask the question to get some more insight from the people who have a very informed perspective on the matter.
7. What are the biggest opportunities facing the company at the moment?
The answer to this question will not only help you gauge what opportunities you may be able to help the company with but also helps to establish where the company’s focus will be over the next few months.
8. What are the biggest challenges facing the company at the moment?
This question can not only educate you about the industry’s trends and issues but can help you identify an area where your particular skill set can be useful in helping the company out.
9. What do you like best about working for this company?
For extra insight into the company’s culture, you can tap into the interviewer’s personal views based on their experience with the company.
10. What is the typical career path of someone in this role?
This question will help you assess how the promotional structure and career advancement works in this company. The employer will see you as being interested in growing with the company, as long as the question does not come off as too self-serving, like asking when you can expect promotions or raises.
11. How would you compare me to the other candidates you have interviewed for the position so far?
If you ask this question, make sure you assess the risk of doing so. If you are not sure how the interview is going, you might be putting the interviewer in an awkward predicament. But, if the interview is clearly going well, and you have built up a strong rapport, you can use this question to alleviate any concerns the employer may have and assure them that you are the right choice for the position.
12. What are the next steps in the interview process?
When you ask this question it will show that you are eager to move forward with the process and help you get an idea of the hiring timeline. Knowing that information, you will be better informed and will know when to follow up with the employer.
It isn’t advised to ask about benefits or salary at this point. When you are in the final steps of the interview process, you can negotiate these terms with the hiring manager or a representative from human resources.