Most interviewers will give you an opportunity to ask questions after they’ve finished grilling you, so be prepared to make the most of it. Try to concentrate on issues that are important to you and combine an interest in the company with an interest in the job.
With a wide variety of interview styles and structures, there’s every possibility that everything you want or need to know about the job will have been covered over the course of the interview. There is always more information available though and if you don’t have at least five questions prepared, you’ll come across as passive rather than curious and interested.
Regarding role specific questions, look through the job description to see if there are any areas that you would like more information about. Here are some good examples of the questions you could ask about the role:
- Why has the position become available?
- What are the main objectives and responsibilities of the position?
- How does the company expect these objectives to be met?
- What are the measures used to judge how successful I am in the role?
- What obstacles are commonly encountered in reaching these objectives?
- What is the desired time frame for reaching the objectives?
- What can I expect from you in terms of development and support?
- What aspirations do you have for me at the company?
- Where will the job fit into the team structure?
Good interview preparation should have given you an insight into what it’s like to work for a company, but it’s good to get answers straight from the horse’s mouth in case you’ve misinterpreted anything. These questions are a good place to start:
What’s the best thing about working at your company?
- What is the main thing the organisation expects from its employees?
- How do you build good relationships within teams?
- What is the turnover of staff like throughout the company?
- Are there any plans for expansion?
- How would you describe the company culture and management style?
To show your interest and knowledge of the industry the company operates in, it’s also a good idea to have a question ready regarding a current event or issue in the market. For example, “How do you think the recent merger between your two main competitors will affect the future of the industry?”
How well your interviewer reacts and answers your questions gives you a great insight into the company. The interview isn’t just for them to see if you’re the right fit for the organisation – if you’re confident about your skills and ability to do the job, you should also be making sure they’re the right fit for you.
Generally, it’s not a good idea to ask about pay or benefits, as this can make you seem more interested in what the organisation can do for you, rather than what you can do for them.