IT Employment

Questions to ask at the end of an interview

Interviewers inevitably ask if you have any questions at the end of the interview. Here are a few suggestions.

Whenever I've interviewed for a job, I always hate the inevitable question by the interview at the end: "Do you have any questions?" I always hated it because it felt like some kind of test. And, in reality, it is a test.

The interviewer has already seen your skill set in your resume before he or she even called you in for the interview. The interview is more of the place to show your personality and your attitude about working. What you don't want to do is ask a bunch of superfluous questions just to show you're interested or interesting. Keep the number of questions at the end to two. And don't kid yourself in thinking that an interviewer can't pick up on the disingenuous.

The best thing to do is ask questions at different points in the interview, just to drill down on anything the interviewer has mentioned. If the interviewer mentions social media, for example, ask how the company uses social media. (Don't overdo it, though, because it's also easy to tell when somebody is faking an interest just to look good.)

So what do you ask? Here are some questions that would be appropriate to ask at the end of the interview, if you haven't already:

What do you like about working here? You're not just expressing a personal interest in the interviewer, but the answer can give you great insight into the company. What skills do I need to have most to help the team? This lets you hone in on which of your skills are most valuable, but also shows that you understand it's about the team and not just you. As my manager, where would you like to see me after my first three to six months on the job? The answer to this question will give you an idea of how ambitious this manager plans to be for this job. Also, it implies that you are want to work with the manager and not just get your foot in the door and become a renegade.

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

14 comments
Sunny Puddle
Sunny Puddle

This was posted on the morning I was going to an interview and I used 2 of these in my interview. Thank you! One question elicited a good response was "What skill do I need most to help the team or perform well?" Interviewer really engaged with that question/response.

hramat
hramat

Don't take this one wrong but no employer is seeing you somewhere else than on the position where he recruited you. First three to six months you are just getting used to environment and getting skills which are company specific. The question is very ambitious (careeristic). At the end your future depends on your performance in the company but this will be evaluated in longer time scale (1-3 years).

munnazz
munnazz

Any queries from you?

DavidPowell
DavidPowell

While normally we 'hone our skills' (develop or sharpen them), I think here we are "homing in" - targeting - particular skills.

siriventi
siriventi

Here it is: Well we have been discussing on various facets about my fitment. I Liked the possibility your presented.Do you have any more clarifications from me to take a favorable decision on my candidature?

blauridsen
blauridsen

After starting this position, what activity could I take responsibility for that is important and be completed within __ weeks, for which I would be entirely accountable? This shows being proactive and exhibits an intention to be immediately productive and responsible. When asked, often an interview continues and shifts toward performing a first and interesting assignment, who would also work on it, and what would be accomplished.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Get them to talk, and make it into a conversation being my strategy. My usual last question is always something along the lines, have you any concerns about my suitability, Have I said anything that caused you a concern etc. I try not to leave them with an issue, they wished they's asked, or cleared up.

WishtobeIT
WishtobeIT

What if you are interviewing WITHIN your own company and the panal is made up of at least one person that knows you--not on a personal level. In this case, the panal are two managers within our agency, but in another office and the third person is my supervisor's manager. What types of questions should one ask in this scenario?

step1ventures
step1ventures

I used to ask, "It's a year after I've started. We're sitting at my review, and you say, 'I'm so happy with what you have done over the past year, because...' How would you finish the sentence?" I often got a lot of stammering. Maybe the problem is that the question seemed to assume I would get a raise in a year for good performance. How presumptuous. Or the hiring manager had no idea what they wanted in a year. Typical business planning. I thought it showed I wanted to actually stay there. Silly me; commitment and loyalty mean nothing.

Slayer_
Slayer_

I gotta keep these handy.

mkficalora
mkficalora

If you are interested in the Job there is one more question you should ask. I am looking forward to being the next xyz at abc, what is the next step? (...what do I need to do to make that happen?...how do you want to procede?

tim.cole
tim.cole

I'll be using these in an interview later this week. Thank you

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

justifiable arrogance, would justify that question. Asking me it as an interviewer, it would be don't call us, we'll call you time.

inouyde
inouyde

Ask how many other candidates they have to get through and any estimate on when a decision will be made.