Participating in the interview process for a position can be an exciting, informative, and a true educational experience if you prepare for the event correctly. Many mangers and Human Resources professionals will generally agree that there are some very important Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to the questions that a candidate should or should not ask during the interview process. You should be an active participant in the interview and engage the interviewer in an open discussion regarding the position and the company as a whole. A little research online can go a long way to assist you in the development of some questions. Most companies have an “About Us” section on their site that contains the company background, vision, and motto. Remember that your list of questions should be limited to no more than 10, as the interviewer has most likely scheduled a certain amount of time for each interview. In addition, being too aggressive and asking too many questions may make the interviewer feel like they are part of an interrogation rather than a relaxing open discussion.Do’s
- Ask questions about the company’s overall culture. Are they traditional and adhere to a strict dress code? What is the management style of the department? What is the general philosophy of the CEO or Owner of the company regarding their operations?
- Ask about the size and volume of business. How many locations are there? How many employees overall? How many employees in the department? What is the volume of business the company does each month, annually?
- Ask about the functionality of the current department’s procedures. Are their current methods successful? Does the department or company have any challenges that would need to be addressed by the person filling this position?
- Ask about the job description. What are some specific job duties performed in this role? What amount of time is approximately spent on each task? ***This is vital in determining whether or not you believe you would even want the position. What if 80% of the time is spent on something you really would not enjoy doing?
- Ask for an approximate timeline for making a decision and the start date for the position.
- Ask about vacation time, how many sick days allowed, any kind of disability or FMLA leave. This is a HUGE red flag to many interviewers that you plan to take an excessive amount of time off sometime in the near future.
- Ask about why the last person left the position. The last person may have left for numerous reasons and the interviewer may not legally be allowed to discuss it.
- Ask about the salary before the interviewer addresses it. Most likely the salary range will be posted with the job announcement or the interviewer will discuss it at the end of the interview.