The Questions You MUST Ask in an Interview

You have researched the company and the position you are interviewing for, you have studied how not to blow the interview, and you have prepared your answers to common interview questions – all of which is important, but in reality it’s the bare minimum. If you want to stand out from the crowd you must ask great questions, thereby demonstrating your interest and connecting with the interviewer on a personal level and determining if it’s even the job you want!  

Ultimately a job interview is a two-way street. Of course, your primary objective of the interview is to be offered the job. However, if you reach this objective and you don’t have your own questions answered, you won’t know if the position is really a good fit for you.

Our recruiters have put together a list of questions that will help you understand both the company and the position you’re applying for more fully, as well as show the interviewer you are a thoughtful candidate and a human being!

Do not feel the need to ask all of these questions in the first interview – you don’t want to overwhelm the interviewer. Some of the questions may even be answered naturally in the interview or within the job description, but you may want to have a few of these written down (not on your phone) so that you don’t forget when the opportunity arises.

Questions about the position

1. What would you like this person to accomplish in the first 3, 6, and 12 months?

2. What are the qualities of other people who were successful in this position?

3. How would you describe the group’s chemistry and working relationship?

4. How would you describe a typical day in this position?

5. How much travel is normally expected?

6. Why is the position currently open? Is this a new position or did the previous employee leave? Why?

7. Outside the core group, who else would I work with?

8. What do you feel will be the greatest challenge the first 6 months?

Questions about advancement and training

9. What is the opportunity for growth/career progression?

10. How often are performance reviews given?

11. How does the company sponsor professional training programs?

12. What kind of training programs do the employees participate in each year?

Questions about the company

13. According to the research I’ve done, your top three competitors are ABC, XYZ, and 123. How do you feel this company is differentiating itself?

14. How are you positioned (strategically)in your market-space?

15. What are the barriers (if any) to your success in their market-space?

16. What new product lines/services are planned or have been announced recently?

Personal questions for the interviewer

These questions will give you valuable insight into the company and help you connect to the interviewer personally.

17. How long have you been with XXX?

18. What is your background?  Where have you worked for previously?

19. What do you like best about XXX?  What keeps you here?

20. What do you like least about XXX?

21. What has been your biggest challenge while at XXX?

22. What one thing would you change about your position or XXX?

Final Questions

23. How many people are being interviewed for this position?

24. Is there anything missing from my background that you feel may prevent me from doing the job?

25. When should I follow-up with you?