Preparing to head into a job interview? Nervous? Of course you are. Fully prepared? Probably not. If you haven’t thought about some interview questions to ask an employer at the end of the interview, you are not going to be the top candidate shortlisted for the job. But don’t worry. I’ve got you covered.
Right here I am going to provide you with a list of interview questions to ask an employer. These questions will make you look prepared, interested and intelligent. That goes a long way towards being seen as the best candidate for the job.
Why do I need to ask questions during a job interview?
Prospective employers love to interview candidates who have a genuine interest in the role they are being interviewed for. Interviewers also love proactive candidates who prepare well.
By asking questions at interview you demonstrate both of these things. Asking questions shows you haven’t just rocked up to the interview with your fingers crossed and a “I’m just going to wing it” approach.
When should I ask questions during the interview?
The best time to ask your questions is at the end of the interview. You might head into the interview with say 3 or 4 questions. By the end of the interview you could have a couple more questions that pop up as a result of your discussion with the interviewer.
What sorts of questions should I ask an employer?
Thanks for asking! There are no rules about the amount or type of questions you should ask at the end of the interview. This will depend entirely on the job you are applying for. Let’s say you are applying for a casual job at a local cafe. This kind of position might warrant just a question or two at the end of the interview.
If instead you are heading into a senior executive position, you are more likely to have in depth questions that you want to ask.
The sorts of questions you might ask could relate to:
- The physical work environment
- Company culture
- Leadership and management style at the company
- Specific aspects of the role being interviewed for
- The recruitment process
- Entitlements and benefits
There really are no wrong questions to ask, although I recommend steering clear of asking any questions that could make your interviewer uncomfortable in any way.
Sample questions to ask an employer at interview
Here is a comprehensive list of good interview questions to ask an employer at interview. I strongly encourage you to pick just a few of these questions. You do not want the interviewer to feel as though you are interrogating them.
The role being interviewed for
- Do you think all elements of the role are outlined accurately in the job description?
- Are there any other duties I should be aware of?
- What do you think the most challenging part of this role would be for me?
- What would you say are the key skills I would use most often in this role?
- Can you describe the culture of the team I would be working with as part of this role?
- Is this a newly created position or has someone left the role?
- What is the leadership style like of the person I would be reporting to?
- What are the next steps in the recruitment process?
- Will there be another interview round?
- If I am shortlisted further, who will I meet with next?
- Will there be a chance to meet with the team I would be working with before you make an offer?
- How long do you think the recruitment process will take altogether?
- What do you enjoy most about working here?
- How long have you worked here and have you been promoted during that time (you are trying to get a sense for whether the company supports internal promotions)?
- Do people tend to socialise together as well as work together?
- How would you describe the culture here?
Training and Benefits
- What sort of training would I be offered if I was in this role?
- Is training facilitated by people within the company or are there external training opportunities offered as well?
- Do you have a mentoring or coaching program in place? If so, how does that work?
- What are the core components of the salary for this role (ie base salary, health benefits etc)?
- What is the usual process for performance appraisal and review?
- How often are salaries reviewed? What is the process for that?
These are not the only good interview questions to ask an employer. When you are preparing for your interview, note down any other questions you might like to ask that are specific to the company and role.
If you end up with a long list, you will need to prioritise your questions. Asking too many questions will become tedious for your interviewer. Remember, if the interview process includes more than one interview, you are likely to be able to ask across those interviews.
What if we run out of time?
Job interviews notoriously run out of time. You might need to get back to the office or your interviewer has meetings to race off too. This means it is sometimes difficult to ask questions at the end of the interview.
Consider referencing with your interviewer that you have a few questions. Ask whether it would be OK for you to email those questions through. That way you can follow up with a thank you email and pose of couple of intelligent questions at the same time. As long as you execute this well, you will stay front of mind with the interviewer for all the right reasons.
So there you have it folks. Here’s hoping the sample questions above provide enough inspiration for you to confidently ask questions at the end of your next job interview. If this is not something you would normally do, challenge yourself to give it a go.
Remember, the job interview is as much about you working out whether the company and role is right for you, as it is about the company determining if you are right for them.
Going to your next interview with a list of questions to ask the employer will create a highly professional and engaged impression.
Wishing you the best of luck as you continue to search for your next career move. You never know, this next job interview could be the one!
Further Reading and Resources
The art of asking questions – why you MUST ask questions at interviews
Unique interview questions to ask in an interview that get you noticed