Career Development CenterCareer Development CenterDivision of Student AffairsUniversity of Cincinnati

Career Development Center

Questions To Ask In An Interview

Asking a few good questions in a interview can be as important as how you answer an employer's questions.

Remember, asking a few good questions in an interview can be as important as how you answer an employer’s
questions. Your questions can show your interest in the company or position as well as tell the employer about
how you think, your priorities and values. Here are a few tried true examples:

1. Who are your major competitors, and how do they stack up against you in terms of product, market share,
     methods of marketing, and strengths and weakness?

2. In the current economic climate tell me about your plans to adjust and adapt? (this question assumes an
     economic downturn, in a growing economy ask about plans for expansion/growth)

3. What is your highest priority in the next six months, and how could someone like me help?

4. Tell me about a typical day.

5. Tell me about your training program.

6. What are the characteristics of your top people?

7. Where do you see your company going in the next five/ten years?

8. What are the three main qualities you are looking for in a candidate?

9. How do you see me fitting in with your company?

10. If I were to ask your top rep what he/she likes most/least about the company, what type of response would I get?

11. How do I compare with other qualified applicants?

12. Do you have any hesitations about me being successful with your company?

13. What does your interview process entail?

14. What are your personal satisfactions and disappointments since you have been with the firm?

15. What are the firms overall strengths?

16. What career patterns have others who have had this position generally followed?

17. How would my performance be evaluated? How often? By whom?

18. Does your organization encourage its employees to pursue additional education?  What area of study is
       most encouraged?

19. How would you describe the organizational culture (or work environment)?

20. What kinds of assignments might I expect the first six months on the job?

21. Is your company environmentally conscious? In what ways?

22. Is there a lot of team/project work?

23. What kind of skills and experiences would be beneficial to a person in this position?

24. To whom will I report?

25. Will I be working on a team or independently?

26. When will the first job performance evaluation take place?

27. How often will my performance be evaluated?

28. Who will evaluate my performance?

29. What is the next move for a person in this position?

30. What is the average amount of time a person is in his/her position before being promoted?

31. Do most managers have advanced degrees?

32. How old is the facility?

33. How often do you update the equipment?

34. What is the procedure for hiring a new employee?

35. Also consider asking to meet a few current employees.

36. What is the next step in the process? (ask at the end of an interview)

Some areas of questioning to avoid in the first interview:

• Salary and/or benefits. The focus of the interview is on responsibilities of the position and the skills and experience
  you   will bring to the position—not on what the company can or will do for you. Financial negotiations come later.

• Very complex technical questions. Often the interviewer will be from the human resources department and will not be
  able to answer detailed questions about what the position entails. Avoid embarrassing him or her by asking questions
  only a practitioner could answer.

• Whether you will be hired. It’s probably too early to tell!!