So, you’ve written a CV that will give you the winning edge. You’ve applied for a Vacant Role and you’ve been granted an interview. You’ve reviewed our Interview Tips but what is the one thing that you must be sure to do nearing the end of EVERY interview?

Ask a Question!

Be sure to prepare a minimum of three questions to ask at an interview as chances are some of your questions may be answered during the course of the interview. Not having a question to ask at the end of process can present a poor impression denoting a lack of preparation and/or lack of interest in the role.

The different questions asked tell the interviewer different things about the candidate and also provide the candidate with an opportunity to impress and to glean some additional insights into the role and the culture of the company. Bear in mind that some questions may only apply to interviews for permanent positions within the organisation.

Questions to ask at an Interview

Here are some recommended questions to ask at an interview and what they tell the interviewer. Be careful that you do not ask a question where the answer has been discussed during the course of the interview or where the answer is readily available (on the job specification, on the company website, etc.).
Q1 What are the key milestones to achieve in the first quarter/6 months/year?
This demonstrates to the interviewer that you are visualizing yourself in the role and trying to get a sense of what the top priorities are and what needs to be addressed first. This question indicates that you are target-driven and that you are a person who favours a systematic and methodical approach to work.

Q2 What is the single largest issue/priority item for the department and how would I be in a position to help address this issue?
Similar to the last question, this question situates you in the role and encourages the interviewer to frame their answer in the context of your experience and how you could positively contribute to the team effort. It also shows that you are interested in problem-solving, team work and keen to display initiative.

Q3 Can you tell me about the team and the other departments that this role interacts with?
This question shows an appetite to learn more about the people in the immediate and wider teams – it may give you an opportunity to demonstrate/reinforce your interpersonal and team-based skills from previous positions where you have worked with different teams with varying levels of experience, skills and motivations.

Q4 Do you offer training and development opportunities?
This shows a commitment to up skill and to learn and grow with company. It demonstrates that you are keen to expand and progress and equip yourself with new skills and knowledge to take on additional responsibilities for the company.

Q5 What is the next step in the process?
It is important to ask this question at the end of the interview as it conveys your interest in the role and may give you some insights in to the timelines involved, number of stages in the process, etc.

Upon leaving, be sure to reiterate your interest in the role, thank the interviewer(s) for his/her/their time and say that you look forward to hearing back from them. This displays enthusiasm, confidence and optimism – it is important to finish on a positive note!

What’s the best question you’ve asked / been asked in a job interview?
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