When it comes to interviewing for a job, most of your time is probably spent researching the company and practicing how you will respond to different questions. However, don’t overlook the importance of preparing questions for the interviewer as well. There is often time reserved at the end for you to ask questions about the company or position.
It can raise a red flag if you have nothing to ask, or the only questions on your mind are what you’ll be paid, when your benefits kick in, and how much time off you get. Show the employer that you’re serious about wanting to join their company and make it a notable part of your career by asking thoughtful questions. Think about things that aren’t readily available by simply looking at the company website or doing a quick Internet search.
Here are a few questions to get you started:
- What are your expectations for this position over the next 30/60/90 days or within the next year?
Find out what you will be expected to achieve, and how that success will be measured. Are there specific key performance indicators? Project deadlines? Other metrics? The job description provides a basic overview, but what is the real focus of the position going to be?
- Describe a “day in the life” (or week in the life) of this position.
Dig deeper into what you will be doing in the role. The job description may list a lot of responsibilities, but how much time is actually devoted to each area? It’s important to know what the priorities are and how you’ll be spending your days.
- Why are you currently hiring for this position? How long was the previous employee in the role?
Why is the position open now? Did the person before you leave, and after how long? Is it a newly created role that hasn’t existed before or has come about due to restructuring? This type of information can tell you a little more about the business and whether there may be issues with turnover, if the company is growing, or if the previous person was promoted and there are opportunities for advancement.
- What are the biggest challenges you foresee in this role?
Chances are, your job won’t be a walk in the park every day. You’re likely to face challenges or obstacles you must overcome. Is there a lot of competition in the market? Multiple teams you’ll have to collaborate with? Some tough clients? Projects that have stalled? Get a better idea of what you’re walking into.
- Why would you encourage others to work for this company? How has it impacted your career?
Gather some insight about the interviewer’s experiences with the company. What do they view as the most compelling factors for someone to work there? Have they been able to advance in their career, learn new skills, or work on some incredible projects? Find out why they’re excited to come to work each day.
- Do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?
Be open to answering questions and speaking more about why you think you’d be a good fit for the position. There may be an area where you can provide more clarification or demonstrate why their concern wouldn’t be an issue.
- What are the next steps in this process?
Ask about what you can expect next. How long do they anticipate it will be before you hear if you’ve moved on in the interview process or that they are going with a different candidate? This can help you know when to follow up or to continue with your job search. It can also help you better prepare for the next phase of the interview, especially if you need to have anything ready to present or demonstrate your skills.
You may not have time to ask a lot of questions at the end, so prioritize your list and determine what is most important to you to know. Once you’ve gone through the interview, it may have answered some of your questions, so what hasn’t been addressed or will play a critical role in your decision making? The employer has just learned a lot about you, so don’t be afraid to ask questions about them and the company.
Set yourself up for greater success when it comes to your job search by having a polished, professional resume and cover letter to submit and attract a hiring manager’s attention. Make yourself stand out for the right reasons and inspire an employer to want to know more about you and your capabilities. Contact Grammar Chic to get started!