Top 10 interview questions to ask as a candidate that will set you apart

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If you’re looking for interview questions to ask, it means you landed a job interview! CONGRATULATIONS!

If you’ve read my 5 tips on how to ace a job interview, you’ll know that the last tip to acing your job interview is having insightful questions to ask back. At the end of the interview, the worst thing you can when they ask you if you have any questions is to say “no”.

You should have prepared some interview questions to ask back, whether it be interview questions to ask HR or interview questions to ask directly with a hiring manager.

After all, an interview should be a two way process where you are also interviewing the company to see if it would be a good fit for you too! After all, this is where you will be spending the majority of your day!

To help you get your ideas flowing, here are 10 interview question to ask back:

Top 10 interview questions to ask as a candidate that will set you apart

Make a personal connection with the interviewer

In your interview questions to ask, you want to be memorable to whoever is interviewing you. Some questions you can ask to accomplish this are below:

  • “What aspect of working for this company is your favorite?”
  • “If you could change one thing about the company, what would it be?”
  • “What about the company has kept you here?”

Assess the hiring manager

Remember that you are interviewing them as well. An interview is a two way street. In your interview questions to ask, find out if the hiring manager is someone you would like to be your boss. Having a great boss is one of the biggest factors in your career success and trajectory.

  • “What is your management style?”
  • “What is the average tenure of the people on your team?”
  • “Why is this position available?”

Assess the culture of the company

In addition to determining if the hiring manager would be a good boss, your interview questions to ask should assess the culture of the company.

Ask how long the people at this company have been working there. If employees have been only working there for 1-2 years, it may be an indication that employees are not happy and are leaving.

You can also use employee reviews on websites such as glassdoor or indeed to get a sense of company culture and ask for clarification or further insights in your interview.

However, take this with a grain of salt as companies may be able to pay to have reviews removed.

  • “How long have you been at this company?”
  • “How long have you been in this role?”
  • “What programs/benefits are available to develop the employees?”

Assess the future of the company

Find out about the future of the company as much as you can. It would suck to get a job only to have the company shut down in 6 months. This will also help you determine your growth potential at the company.

  • “Where do you see the company in 3 years?”
  • “Are you expecting any big changes to the company in the near future?”
  • “What is the biggest achievement this department/company has made?”

What does the hiring manager want?

Determine what the hiring manager is looking for in an indirect way. If you can, use some of your insights gained here in the examples you use to answer some interview questions with the STAR method

Related: 5 tips to ace a job interview

  • “What qualities are required for someone to excel at this position”
  • “What separates someone who is adequate and someone who is exceptional for this position?”
  • “What would you say is the most challenging part of the job?”

What are the expectations?

In addition, determine the expectations of the role and what your work/life balance will be.

  • “What would someone need to accomplish in the first 3/6/12 months to be successful?”
  • “What would a typical work day/week look like?”
  • “What support would I have for resources or training?/What is the onboarding process like?”

Demonstrate you’ve done your research

Your interview questions to ask should be insightful to demonstrate that you did some research. This will demonstrate your proactive attitude and work ethic.

Most companies will have their own website. Take a look around and come up with a specific question. Large companies will have recent updates covered on a news site.

  • “How will this merger/acquisition affect the structure of the company?”
  • “What are your expectations for this new product launch?”

Gain personal experience and insights

These are proactive question to ask in case you do not get this role at this specific company. After every interview, you should gain some experience or insights to help you succeed at your next interview.

These questions can help you do better to eventually be successful at an interview and get that coveted job! Practice!

  • “What advice would you have for someone trying to get this role?”

Address any gaps or weaknesses

Address any gaps or weaknesses in your answer or resume. Do not leave the interviewer doubting you.

This is especially important if you have no experience. If they answer that your lack of experiences is your weakness, this is your opportunity to address how you plan to address this weakness if given the job!

  • “Is there anything about my resume/background that concerns you?
  • “Did any of my answers raise any flags for you?”

Leave the interview well informed

Lastly, leave the interview being well informed of what will happen next. This will prevent you from going crazy over unknowns.

  • “What is the next step of the interview process?”
  • “When should I expect to hear from you?”
  • “When do you expect to fill this position?”

These are 10 interview questions to ask back that will set you apart from the other candidates as it will show you came prepared!

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