Job applications can be exhausting. You spend hours researching the company, crafting a personalized cover letter, tailoring your CV to the role, double-checking that you've covered all keywords, and filling all the online application fields. After all this work, if you're lucky, you'll get to present yourself and fight for an opportunity to join the company you're aiming for. You will have to invest some more time to fully research the company history, organizational structure, company culture, and also looking for the best words to present yourself and land an offer.
But don't forget! By the end of the interview, the hiring manager will likely ask if you have any questions. You should use this as an opportunity to address any doubts, concerns, and to reinforce your interest in the position.
Pay special attention to the message you convey through your questions. Asking obvious questions that you can easily find on the job description or company's website won't play in your favor.
So...what should you ask? I don't have 20 years of recruiting experience but I've already had the chance to participate in several recruitment processes. Here are the questions that positively surprised me, which are also identified as best practice by industry experts.
If you want to...
Showcase that you care about the company environment beyond your day-to-day tasks
How would you describe the company culture?
How would the person in this role contribute to the company's core purpose?
Does the company have any diversity and inclusion programs or resources in place for employees?
Demonstrate you take performance seriously
How do you measure success in this position?
What system do you use to evaluate performance?
What do you expect from the new joiner within the first 30/60 days in the role?
Are there any projects that need to be immediately addressed by the person hired?
Compared to how things are working currently, which changes would you like to see in the team once the position is filled?
Show long-term interest in the company or team
How do you help your team grow professionally?
Address any concerns before it's too late
Is there anything about myself or my profile that makes you doubt my suitability for the position? If so, I'd love to address these concerns.
Are there any further details I can provide that will be helpful to confirm my suitability for the role?
Connect with the hiring manager
Has this company changed your original career path? How?
What's the most interesting project you've worked on at the company?
What is your biggest concern or challenge at the moment?
What do you like best about working here?
As we just discussed, the queries you choose to pose by the end of a professional interview can definitely play in your favor, impact the hiring manager's perception of you as a candidate and provide more information about your goals and aspects you consider important within a company or a role. Have you come across an impressive question that's not on the list above? How does that question help in evaluating the candidate's suitability for the role? Let us know in the comments.
I am not an expert, I just researched this topic from a place of personal interest. If I used incorrect terminology or expressed something incorrectly, please feel free to let me know.
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