What Questions Should You Ask in a Job Interview?

It’s common for job interviews to end with an opportunity for you to ask questions to your potential employer.

This is the ideal time to show the interviewer your passion for the role, while also learning more about the ins and outs of the position. It’s important that you have a list of questions ready to ask your interviewer as this demonstrates preparation.

In this article, we discuss what questions you should ask in a job interview and provide examples of questions that you can use.

Why Should You Ask Questions in an Interview?

Asking questions in a job interview serves two purposes. Firstly, it provides you with the chance to learn more about the role you’re applying for, including the potential responsibilities and day-to-day.

While you should always do your research, you can’t always learn everything about the position. The interviewer may be able to tell you more about the culture of the business or other specific aspects. 

Secondly, asking questions shows the interviewers that you’re interested in the role and want to know more. Demonstrating a passion for the position helps you create a good first impression with your interviewers and increases your chance of earning the role.

Even if you feel that you’ve learned everything you need to know about the position, still ask questions – it gives the right impression to employers.

What are Good Questions to ask in a Job Interview?

When you’re preparing your questions for the job interview, it’s good to have a selection so that you can choose a few different options. Here are some good example questions:

What do you like about working at the company?

This is a great question to ask as it shows that you’re taking an interest in the interviewer’s opinion while also providing insights into the company culture. Depending on how the employer answers the question, you may be able to determine whether you’d be a good fit for the workplace. This question also shows an interest in the working environment, which may help you find success during the process.

What opportunities for career development is there?

One of the most important things to remember during your career is that you should always be identifying opportunities for progression or development. The answer to this question can help you understand whether the business has a culture of growth and provides training for its employees. This same question also shows that you’re thinking of long-term opportunities within a business and have a focus on your career – two attributes that are good for employers to see.

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Can you tell me more about the team I’ll be working with?

This question can help you understand a number of different things about the role you’re applying for. Firstly, you’ll understand the makeup of the team, whether you can expect a more collaborative or independent working style and the different professions you might be working with on a regular basis.

Asking this question also indicates to an employer that you’re team focused and understand the importance of working collaboratively.

When can I expect to hear back from you?

If you haven’t already discovered when you might hear back, this is a good question to ask. This reinforces your interest in the role and demonstrates that you’re invested in earning the position. For your own benefit, this also provides more clarity around the rest of the process, meaning you’re not left wondering when you might hear back.

What challenges is the business / team facing?

This is a great question if you want to show initiative and the proactive approach that you apply to your work. Aside from giving you an idea of what you might be doing on a day-to-day basis, it also allows you to prepare for the challenges that are raised and give you the opportunity to prepare for them. By knowing about the biggest challenges, you gain more insight into the business and what you might face.

How do you measure performance for this role?

Asking this question is key for two reasons. Firstly, it allows you to get an idea of how you’ll be expected to perform and the key indicators that you’ll have to stack up against. Secondly, it demonstrates to your interviewers that you’re thinking about being proactive and taking the initiative even before you’ve got the role. Consider asking some variation of this question if you can as it’s good for building your understanding while also helping build a good impression.

What Questions Should You Avoid Asking?

While the majority of the questions that you ask in an interview can have a positive effect and show your interest in the role, there are some that can give the wrong impression. These include:

Can I work from home?

This is a circumstantial question but expecting to work from home, particularly if the job description explicitly states that it’s a full-time office-based position can give the wrong impression. If the role you’re applying for has remote elements, then clarifying what that looks like is fine. Remember, the job description is the best way of finding out this type of information and is a good indicator of what to expect from the role.

What does your company do?

It’s better to avoid asking broad questions such as this because it shows that you either haven’t performed your research or you don’t have a good understanding of the wider business. This type of question can easily be answered by visiting an employer’s website beforehand and reading about the business itself.

How quickly can I get promoted?

While exploring career development and opportunities for training can be positive, simply asking
how quickly you can get a promotion or earn a higher salary can give a negative impression. In the majority of cases, many employers will expect questions about promotions and salary increases to happen when you’ve shown an aptitude for the role. Save questions around promotions and pay rises for 1-2-1 meetings or when your role is regularly reviewed.

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