You did it! You got the job interview, so far so good. At some point the interviewer will ask the dreaded “what questions do you have for me question?” Prepare in advance so that you’re not struck dumb when the time comes. Check out our eGuide
Arche has put together a list of key questions for you to ask in an interview. This is your opportunity to show your interest and enthusiasm for the job and determine if it’s a good fit for you. Not asking the right questions could cost you the job or could land you a job that isn’t for you.
As you progress through the various steps in the hiring process it’s likely that you will have several interviews with different people along the way. This is your chance to get a 360-degree perspective on the job, the company, the team you’ll be working with and your prospective manager.
What Recruiters Want To Know
Recruiters are busy! The recruiter’s job is to source candidate resumes to present to the hiring manager. An initial interview with the recruiter will likely be by phone, think of it as a pre-qualifier. They want to hook you with an amazing job opportunity that they need to fill ASAP and make sure you’re qualified for the job.
Be ready to answer questions on your job history, salary requirements, potential relocation and career goals. More details on questions you are likely to be asked is covered in our eGuide “Questions You’ll Be Asked in an Interview”
What You Need to Ask the Recruiter
Your job right now is to determine if this is even an opportunity you want to pursue. It’s also important to ensure the job actually exists and is approved to hire for. These should be on your list to ask:
+ Why is the position open? Who does the position report to? Where is the position located? Has the position been approved already?
+ How quickly are you looking to fill? How long has the position been open for?
+ What projects, brands or clients will I be working with?
+ What is the salary range for this position?
What Hiring Managers Want to Know
Congrats! If you’re meeting with or speaking to the hiring manager, it means you are on the short list of candidates. Recruiters typically present 4-5 candidates at any one time and will tend to move on to working on other searches during the early stages of the interview process. This is your opportunity to show you are the right person for the job.
Be ready to answer questions around current job responsibilities, career successes, job performance and work style.
What You Need to Ask the Hiring Manager
You should be asking details about the job responsibilities and priorities, training, career development and opportunities for advancement. In addition, it’s important to get a sense of how this person communicates with and manages the team.
Know thyself! If you hate being micromanaged or like a certain amount of face time with your manager then these key questions should be on your list:
+ What are the priorities for this position? How will success be measured?
+ What does the performance review and merit process look like?
+ What are some of the biggest challenges someone in this position would face? What does a typical day look like?
+ What other teams/functions does this position work most closely with?
+ What training or career development is offered? What is the next career step for someone in this position?
+ What communication style works best here? How are projects assigned or managed? How frequently does the team meet?
What the Team Wants to Know
Meeting with people on the team can feel a bit like walking a tightrope. Chances are this interview will have a panel of 2-3 people and they’ll provide feedback to the hiring manager on how you’ll fit in with the current dynamic. Will you blend in or stand out? Is your work style collaborative or more independent?
What You Need to Ask the Team
It’s likely that you’ll be either working within a team directly or cross functionally. It’s critical to learn more about the team dynamics and company culture. Here are the key questions to ask:
+ What’s it like to work here? How would you describe the work environment?
+ How does the team work together? Are there any team events outside of work?
+ What is the schedule like? What excites you about working here?
+ Why did you join the company? What goals or priorities is the company focused on?
Ask about next steps on the timing of making a decision. Be sure to send a thank you note to the hiring manager expressing your continued interest in the position. Call or email the recruiter within 24 hours of the interview and follow up every week to ten days to see where you stand.
+ What should you expect?
+ Is there anyone else you’ll need to meet with?
This article is part of our Job Search series; job search and career advice to help you land your dream job.
Arche helps people architect, navigate and advance their career path with expert advice and tools to support your job search, interview preparation, professional branding, salary negotiations, and career advancement.