At the end of most interviews, candidates are asked: “Do you have any questions for us?”
You may feel it’s best to just state the interview was great and leave it at that.
Is this the best approach?
Asking questions can impress interviewers by showing you’re doing due diligence, testing if the organisation is a right fit for you. They’ll be impressed you’ve thought about questions in advance.
This makes sense given that great recruitment is about matching the best talent with the best job. You can have all the expertise and skills in the world, but if the organisation isn’t right, your placement might not last.
Asking questions at the end of your interview is serious business. Never wing it. Think carefully about what to ask so you don’t stumble of feel awkward. If time permits, cover four topics, which Work it Daily calls the “4Cs”—connect, culture, challenges, close.
Work it Daily has come up with two questions in each of the four categories so you have choice. As expert recruiters we believe these questions are solid. They’re designed to leave a good impression and give you insight into your fit.
These questions connect you with the interviewer.
- How did you come to work here?
The answer tells you what drew the interviewer to the company. Here’s a response that could tick a box for you: “I was drawn to the company for their reputation and policy of promoting within.”
- What do you love most about working here?
This answer tests if the company’s attributes reflect what you care about. Here’s an example: “I respect how the company values work-life balance.”
These questions are about corporate culture and whether the company conducts business in a way you respect. Listen carefully to the answers.
- Who’s your most successful recent hire and why is that person successful in their role?
You might be impressed if the answer is something like: “We engaged xx who’s a great team player. After induction, she hit the road running.” You might not be impressed if the answer is something like: “We hired xx who works 80 plus hours a week without any kind of compensation.”
- Who didn’t succeed as a new hire and why?
This answer can reveal a lot. Here’s an example: “We didn’t hire xx because he didn’t want to work weekends and after hours without time-off-in-lieu.” You might not want to work for a company like this.
These questions test if the company faces the types of challenges you’d like to work on.
- What is the biggest challenge the company will face this year and how will this job help overcome it?
The answer offers perspective and new information. Asking it indicates you’re a team player who wants to support organisational challenges. This type of answer may impress you: “We’re going to roll out new systems to increase efficiencies so staff can concentrate on what they love doing most. Your role supports this.”
This type of answer might not impress: “We’re going to roll out a new system so we can see when staff are on their personal social media and online shopping.”
- How will I measure my performance, so I know I’m having a positive impact?
Asking this shows you’re accountable for your work.
The answer can reveal a lot. It could be a red flag, if the response is something like: “I don’t know how your performance will be measured. We haven’t thought about it.” Do you want to work for such a company?
These questions reveal skills or experience you might be missing and provide information on next steps. They also properly close the interview.
- What additional skills or experience do you feel I need to make me a better fit for this job?
This is a professional way of asking if the interviewer feels you have shortcomings compared to other candidates. The question also gives you a chance to explain skills or experience you might not have touched on, filling gaps.
- What are the next steps in this process?
You’re not asking this to put anyone on the spot. Rather you’re showing you like to be clear with next steps (a strong project management skill).
The answer can also uncover information you can use to follow up post interview. If the interviewer says, for example, that they’ll be in touch with candidates by xx date and you don’t hear from them, you can politely follow up, and with good reason.