Killer interview questions to ask employers
In this blog post, we go over killer interview questions to ask employers about the prospective role.
Why is asking questions in your interview important?
Great candidates need to know what the company is doing and how they fit into those plans. Having a chance to ask questions during an interview will make you appear to prospective employers as someone who truly cares and is interested.
Although the interview is about you - you're interviewing the organisation too. When they ask if you have any questions for them, make sure to ask questions that will help you decide whether or not this company and role will be right for you.
Above all, asking the right questions shows your interest in the opportunity rather than just for pay, and can make or break your success.
Unique interview questions to ask employer
Interviewers always ask the same questions and we hear the same answers. If we really want to get a feel for what it's like to work at a company, we should ask questions that you know other employees have been asking for years. Below we go over the best interview questions to ask an employer.
What do I have to do to succeed in this role?
To your boss, you are an investment. For you to be profitable for the company, you will need to generate some value in return
One great way to demonstrate that you’re ready for a position is by explaining why your ability and success will contribute to the company in a way. It’s important to consider these performance indicators and ask about them in your cover letter, so be sure to mention that when you send in your résumé.
Excellent professionals will want to know what truly makes a difference in the organisation and understand that if they help the company to succeed, then this means that their chances of professional success are also increased.
If I was offered this job, what could I do to prepare for it?
It's great to see that you're doing your research. Preparedness is vital, especially during the interview process, so displaying this skill is a great idea. Asking this also provides useful information about the next steps in your job. This is valuable information that you can use if you are successful.
What are the characteristics of someone who would succeed in this role?
This is a great question because it can tell you whether your current knowledge, traits & qualities fit the specific job. It also tells us why this particular role might be an enjoyable or satisfying one to work with.
You want more information on this topic, which is insightful. It also shows that you are dedicated to your work, which is important for any company. If you are successful in landing the job, this may even help you transition into the new role more easily
A similar question to ask would be…
What are you hoping to see from the next person to fill this role that was missing in the last?
This is a great question that many people have never thought of. It can be a valuable insight into what difficulties they might have faced in the past and how they might be solved. For example, you might find out what caused them to leave or decide to quit in the past or learn where their interest is so you can emphasize this when speaking to them.
You should present yourself as someone who cares about succeeding as well as your co-workers. Also, this answer shows that you’re eager to dive into this role and get started. You also want to bring something new to the table and come up with new ideas, rather than following what everyone else is doing.
What’s the first challenge the person you hire will need to tackle?
This shows me that you’ve come in ready to contribute on day one and think things through. Sounds like a perfect fit!
That’s a win-win situation. By showing your interest in the company, you’ll also build trust with them, and show them that you’re motivated to work for them
It’s worth taking the time to find out what the person in the interview believes to be their company's greatest challenge. This will give you a chance to show off your understanding and how eager you are to help them with this specific issue.
What challenges were there for the person who had this role previously?
This is a tough question, but it's worth asking. It should be all right if the interviewer doesn't know that you're going to ask this, as the topic is an indication of character and ethics.
While the interviewer might not expect it, the answer will be telling. If they take a direct, positive stance with an explanation, you should feel pretty good. But if they hesitate without giving much of an answer, you should be alarmed.
Always remember that the interviewer is assessing you just as much as you are assessing them. It's important to spend time before the interview considering what challenges you'll be facing in this role so you can decide if it's something worth pursuing.
How is performance measured for this position?
When you're switching companies, it can be helpful to ask about their processes and how you might be rated on your performance. Changing jobs can cause many to worry about success, as they may not know the networks, procedures & different skills required. When you know how your performance is evaluated among other things, you can better prepare for the future. It's also worth checking to see if the culture of the company is something you would be interested in joining.
How does my potential fit for the role compare to your expectations? Do you have any reservations I can address? Was there anything missing from my resume?
An interview is a great time for you to put your best foot forward and talk about any hesitations the employer might have had about you. In the process, it's also possible to demonstrate that you can take constructive criticism well and are an eager learner – valuable qualities in any new employee. This practice is very valuable even if you don't get the job as it helps you identify your strengths and weaknesses. It can also help provide inspiration for your resume, particularly if you're applying within a specific industry.
Asking your interviewer if they didn't spot anything on your resume is a great opportunity to address any gaps before they make a decision.
What are your expectations of what I should accomplish for the first year here?
Traditional wisdom says you should plan your career 5-10 years ahead. But at least an employer wants to see that you’re planning to be with the company for at least a year or two.
So consider asking about what you can expect in the first year with this company and what could happen in the second year (whether it's promotions, additional responsibilities, etc).
Transparency is one of the best qualities of a good company. They are open with their employees about what is available for them to pursue, the timeline, and the level of responsibility they are looking for in each position.
This question will help you find out how this employer will continue to treat their employees even after the initial training period has passed.
What do you like about your company culture? How can you describe it for a new employee? Or similarly, you could ask, Why do you like working for this company?
The first step is narrowing down a list of potential employers and researching each company thoroughly to know what it’s all about. It’s also useful to gauge from a current employee what they think of the company before you come on board; even if you’ve done your own research on the company, an insider perspective will give you a deeper understanding.
It is no secret that a strong social culture can be a huge advantage for businesses, and this is why you should ask about the company’s structure early on. This shows commitment and dedication to developing your career with the company.
It’s also important to understand other parts of the company. For example, you might want to know what the dress code is or if the people are very formal or laid-back.
What makes the most successful people here different from everyone else?
This will show the hiring manager that you’re thoughtful and different, and also that you want to be a top performer in this position.
This will show them how determined you are and also help differentiate you from other applicants. It's guaranteed to impress.
What is your timeline for making a decision, and when can I hear from you again?
This question shows your eagerness for the role. While also setting your expectations on when you can hear back.
What not to ask interviewers
Many candidates feel that they should ask the interviewer personal questions during an interview. In reality, this may not be a good idea. The interviewer is just trying to get to know you and your value. They don't want to get into a personal conversation about topics that have nothing to do with the job.
You should only ask questions that will help you decide if this is a company you want to work for or not. Not questions that will make them uncomfortable or make them nervous when answering them in front of other people in the room.
While it is important to find out about the salary, it's best not to immediately mention salary in the first interview. Unless instigated by the interviewer, you should wait for the right time when you’ll be able to negotiate terms with HR (or hiring manager).
You don't want to seem like you'd rather go after money than new opportunities.
Extra tips for killer interview questions to ask employers
You have your questions prepared, so here are a few things to do when going confidently into your next interview.
- Bring your questions with you. Select at least 3 from this list above.
- Select the questions which give you the answers you want to find out.
- Bring a notepad and pen so you can make notes throughout the interview.
- Be confident in how you ask your questions
- Note which of your questions have been answered throughout the interview already, in this case, select a new question to ask that you don’t have the answer to.
- When creating your own questions, ask open-ended questions, and provide an opportunity for the hiring manager to explain more and stimulate conversation.
- Research the company prior to your interview date and re-read the job description. Spend some time identifying specific areas of interest where you want more information on.
- Preparation is a crucial part of a good interview. A good way to prepare would be to find out who you'll be going in for interviews with and what their role is beforehand. This will make it easier for you to answer questions and give relevant answers. While demonstrating your professionalism and passion for the role.
Be aware of the time. If the interview has already passed the time outlined, be mindful that your questions should be concise and to the point.
Conclusion- great interview questions to ask employers
The best way to find out about an employer is by asking them questions. Your questions will show how you are curious and engaged. It will also allow you to know if the workplace is right for you.
There are many different types of questions that can be asked in an interview setting. The most popular ones are the killer interview questions to ask employers, which are fairly straightforward and not too personal. These questions should be asked at the end of the interview because they are very generic and have nothing to do with what was discussed in the interview itself.
For more blog posts like this, check out a past post of ours on Drive for Results Interview Questions.