9 Questions to Ask During Your Job Interview

Job interviews are a two-way street. Although some interviews feel like an interrogation, it should be more of a conversation where you are able to ask questions about the job and the company. Interviewers get to know you, your skills, and how you could fit in the company; meanwhile, you get to know the company’s job and the expectations they have from you.

Asking questions during a job interview gives a good impression on potential employers. It shows that you have done your research and that you are genuinely interested in the position. The best questions to ask are about the responsibilities, the employer, the company, and the people. Here are nine smart questions you can ask during your job interview (which we highly suggest you ask after some pre-interview research)!

What do the day-to-day responsibilities of this role look like?

Job posts often already list down the responsibilities of the role you are applying for. However, the description is usually general. So it is important to ask this question to the hiring manager to learn more about what to expect in your day-to-day work. 

By asking this, you will know the specific skills, strengths, and management abilities you will need to do the work more effectively. Plus, a better look at the tasks-at-hand helps you determine whether or not the job is right for you.

What does success look like in this role, and how do you measure it?

Knowing how a company measures success—of their employees, of their projects, and of the entire company as a whole—is crucial to know how you can do your work more productively. You must understand your key performance indicators (KPIs) to work towards a goal and consider yourself successful in the given job. 

Being familiar with the people who will measure your success (i.e., bosses and team leaders) will also give you an idea of the people you will work with and the people’s expectations in their team. This will give you insight into the qualities that they hope to see in you should you get the job.

Even if you eventually do not join the company, knowing the answer to this question can improve your own professional skills.

What are the biggest challenges for someone in this role?

Many people enter a job without knowing the full picture. Understandably, hiring managers sell you the role by showing you the benefits—and it is easy to be blinded by the good things presented on the surface. So it is best to ask about the challenges you might face in the job when you have the chance.

Getting a clear picture of the possible hardships you may encounter helps you understand the scale of the problems that may come with the job and, more importantly, if you can handle them. 

What is the culture of the company like?

The work is not the only thing you should consider when applying for a job. The company’s culture—the values, attitudes, and goals instilled in its people—is a big factor, as well, because it defines the company’s dynamic. You can ask your interviewer or hiring manager about this, and they will likely talk about how the company and its teams work together. This will give you an idea of how people are aligned towards their goals, how they work towards achieving them, and how these motivations affect their day-to-day interactions.

It would be best if you could ask this question to different people during your interview process. That way, you get a more well-rounded understanding of the culture.

What do you like best about working in the company?

This question can help you build rapport with your interview while at the same time giving you a glimpse of what it feels like to be an employee of the company. You can learn from their experience then relate your work ethic and personality to the type of environment they describe. Getting this perspective of the company can also help you better decide if you are a good fit. 

Be observant. If the interviewer answers this question with enthusiasm, that is a good sign. If they seem off-guarded, then it is important to consider that reaction since it might point to something negative.

What teams and departments will I be working within this role, and how are the leaders like?

Most jobs require you to work with a team, so it is crucial to know how to collaborate with other people. Asking this question can help you learn about the different positions and departments you will be working with and, more importantly, the type of people there. This is crucial information because it tells you how you will fit into the company and what your day-to-day work life will look like.

Are there advancement opportunities in this company? What do they look like?

A good company helps its employees become better; likewise, a good job is one where you can grow. It is a bad sign when a company does not have advancement opportunities (i.e., programs to help its employees hone their skills) such as seminars, education, sponsorships, and the like. So you should ask this question during your interview to see if the company offers such.

This question may also leave a good impression on your interviewer because it shows your eagerness to stay and grow in the role; it also shows that you are thinking long-term and are likely to be a loyal employee to the company.

What made you hire for this role?

Knowing why the position you are applying for opened up can help give context to both the role and the company. Some jobs open because the company is expanding, which can mean that it is financially stable and growing. Meanwhile, some jobs open because it was previously vacated due to someone resigning or being fired. These are some things to consider before joining.

Are there any more questions you would like to ask me?

This question opens up an opportunity for your interviewer to ask questions about your answers in the interview and your qualifications. It helps them know you better; simultaneously, you can address some of their concerns and/or explain yourself if they have some doubts about your fit in the company. 

It is a nicer way of phrasing the question, “Are there any concerns that you have about me concerning this role and the company?” because it stops your interviewer from immediately thinking of the not-so-good things that might cast doubt in your qualifications.

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Jica Simpas is a writer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. She has over two years of writing experience in producing travel and food-related content. She is currently exploring new writing ventures to expand her practice.