Everyone knows that when preparing for a job interview you must be prepared to answer some difficult questions. But what a lot of interviewees forget is that you need to ask the interviewer some questions too.
It’s easy to be pre-occupied with preparing for an interview. You are naturally going to be nervous and will be thinking of the best ways to answer questions that you might be asked.
But interviewers are often very impressed with an interviewee, not just because of their CV template, but if they have taken time to research their company and have some interesting questions to ask about the organisation and the role.
Asking insightful questions during an interview will demonstrate:
- You are well prepared
- You are interested in the role
- You are keen to progress within the company
- You are dedicated
When Should You Ask Questions?
Obviously there are appropriate times to ask questions – don’t interrupt the interviewer as they might be disgruntled by this. Often the best time is at the end of the interview. The interviewer will usually ask you if you have any questions before you go and it’s the perfect time to reply. There will be some points throughout the interview that you can ask questions too and create conversation but you will need to decide for yourself whether you think it’s appropriate or not.
You shouldn’t be asking questions that have an answer in the job title, the job advert or that are glaringly obvious. Here are some ideas of questions you should not be asking:
Are we almost finished?
What’s the salary?
When will the salary increase?
So the hours are 9-5 and I can leave at 5 on the dot?
What do you expect from me as an employee?
You need to be thinking outside of the box and asking questions that other candidates might not be asking. This will help you to stand out. Here are some ideas of questions you should be asking:
What is the company culture like?
What is the company ethos?
What do you look for in an employee?
What are the progression opportunities here?
What would I need to do to be one of your best employees?
What attracted you to the company? (if they are the Managing Director why not ask ‘What made you want to start up this company?’)
Always leave the interview asking ‘What’s the next stage in the process?’ This will re-iterate to the interviewer that you are keen to work in the position and it will give you some clarity.
But remember, although questions are important, do not dominate the conversation.