So you got past the first hurdle of the recruitment process, your CV got into the right hands and you’ve been called back for an interview. Now you are confronted with the most daunting part of the recruitment process. Fortunately for us there are heaps of useful content online to help us get through it and come out with the job. Here is my list of the top 5 interview questions that are almost guaranteed to come up.
Question 1: Why Do You Want This Job?
This is perhaps the most obvious question you will encounter. To answer this question the employer is looking for you to demonstrate that you have researched the company, and then tie in your own experience and skills to why you are suited to this job.
A good idea would be to hone in on something that the company prides itself on e.g. their training.
Question 2: Have You Got Any Questions?
Again this may be an obvious one, but this is an important moment in your interview. It’s generally your last opportunity to make a lasting impression on your interviewer. Take a little time before the interview to think up some questions, keep them brief and stay away from areas such as holiday and pensions.
Keep the questions short but this is your last chance to make yourself memorable so make the most of it e.g. what is a typical career path in this job function?
If the interviewer answers your questions during the interview don’t panic, a good response would be “I had some questions with regards to your appraisal system, but we went over those earlier and you have covered everything I needed to know.”
Question 3: Describe a Situation in Which You Lead a Team.
Ok so this isn’t technically a question but it’s something you can expect none the less. Most employers will be looking for someone who can effectively manage as most graduates will be in a position which will involve people management. To fulfill this you will need to display that you can plan, organise, guide and motivate the work of others around you.
To effectively answer the question you need to outline the situation, your role and the task the group was tasked with. Describe the problems you encountered, how you dealt with them and what the result was, perhaps most important is what you learned from this experience.
Question 4: What Are Your Weaknesses?
In my opinion it’s best to stay away from the highly cliché response of a positive disguised as a weakness. This has been done so often that it has almost lost all meaning (even if it is true). Your best option now is to choose a weakness that you have been working hard to improve. This shows you have the ability to critique yourself and use this knowledge to improve upon it.
Another answer to stay well clear of is “I have no weakness.” If I was interviewing someone and they said that I would immediately identify that as a weakness. Arrogance, lacking self awareness and untruthfulness are not the best traits to show off in an interview.
5. What Do You Expect to be Doing in 5 Years Time?
Do not whatever you do give some general wishy washy answer like “I would like to grow and develop my skill as far as I am able to.” The interviewer has probably heard this hundreds of times. This is another great opportunity for you to show off that you have researched the company, what career routes are open to you within the organization. Try to be specific without tying yourself down to one particular route. Show that you have at least some idea of where your ambitions are.
This article was written by Joe Symons on behalf of the STR Group, the leading recruiter for technical, health and professional sectors.