Asking questions after an interview: an example guide
Updated 6 September 2023
At the end of an interview, it's common practice for interviewers to ask the interviewee if they have any questions. This is an opportunity for a candidate to be strategic and find out more about the role and company culture. It's also an ideal moment for a candidate to further demonstrate their capabilities and suitability for the role. In this article, we cover why you may wish to ask questions at the end of an interview and give examples of effective end-of-interview questions.
Why you might ask questions after an interview
It's beneficial to ask questions at the end of any job interview. It shows that you're serious about the interview and curious about your potential role. Asking questions also demonstrates that you have taken adequate time to prepare for the meeting and thoughtfully considered the role. When asking questions, make them as personal to the company as possible to reinforce your commitment and to show the research you have done into the role. Questions at the end of an interview are the last impression a recruitment manager has of you, so it's important to make them effective.
Examples of questions to ask at the end of an interview
There are many aspects to consider when asking questions at the end of a job interview. Identify any concerns or queries you have about the company to ensure you know everything about the role. This leaves you prepared to accept a position if the company offers it. You can also select questions that leave a good impression and demonstrate your interest in the company. Examples of effective questions to ask after a job interview include:
Can you tell me more about the daily duties of this role?
This question helps you find out what your daily job would look like. It clears up exactly what your duties and responsibilities would be and summarises the role. It's important to be completely aware of your expectations in the job to make sure it's the right fit and something you want to proceed with if given a job offer. Ask the interviewer to expand on the duties if you require more specific detail. This also shows your interest in the position, which makes a good impression on potential employers.
How has this role evolved as the company has grown?
Asking this question gives you a good idea of what your role and position in the company would look like over a prolonged period. It may help you identify if this is a job that provides you with longevity and stability. For example, question why the role you're applying for is now vacant. If the previous employee left to go to a job elsewhere, it could suggest there are few opportunities for development in the role. Whereas if the previous employee received a promotion, that suggests the company values career development within their team.
What is the corporate culture like?
This question helps to identify the work environment of the role and culture within the team. When pursuing a new job, it's important to reflect on happiness in positions prior and why you enjoyed them. Use this question to ensure the team environment suits your personal style of working and is conducive to productivity. Ask if there are ever any out of work activities or team-building days out. Employers are likely to discuss any employee benefits and rewards they offer with this question, so you also get an idea of how employees are valued in this role.
Are there opportunities for career growth? If so, could you tell me more about that?
Asking an open question regarding future opportunities for progression allows you to find out what your career trajectory could look like if you received an offer for the position you're interviewing for. If longevity within a company is important to you, ensure to ask this open-ended question and prompt interviewers to go into detail about the opportunities on offer for you. This type of question also makes a great impression on potential employers. It suggests that you're a candidate interested in staying with the company long term, which is usually sought after in interview candidates.
What are some examples of challenges that I could face in this position?
Being at the forefront with challenge and conflict questions shows you don't shy away from difficult situations. It demonstrates your willingness to solve issues and problems professionally and shows that you're taking the time to prepare for that in a new role. From a personal point of view, this also helps you to identify any negatives or potential barriers in the role and company that could affect your decision to accept or decline a job offer.
How does this company define success?
This question shows you're a candidate concerned with success and thriving within a new company. Demonstrating yourself as someone who is goal-oriented and has a strong focus on success is appealing to recruitment managers and is a quality that is certain to stand out. This question also determines if your idea of success matches with the companies. Consider if it could meet your goals and aspirations within this role and whether the employer could push you to get the most out of your career. It also shows an eagerness and positivity towards the role.
What is the company ethos regarding customer service?
Every company and business has different approaches to customer service. Depending on their branding and ethos, each company deals with customer service slightly differently and places different levels of importance on it. Ask this question to determine if your values match the company's own. Understanding how a business treats its customers may also dictate how they treat employees.
What's one challenge the company faced this year and how did you overcome it?
Asking this question helps determine the company's overall success and ensures you find stability in a new role. From an employer's point of view, it shows that you're not only concerned with your role but with the entire company. This also gives you an idea of how well the company deals with challenges and if they maintained the value of their employees while doing so. Consider the barrier mentioned and how well the business deals with conflict/resolution.
Are you able to describe the dynamics of the team and department I would work in?
The main reason to ask questions at the end of an interview is to gain more information about the role. This helps you to decide if you would accept a job offer and be happy working in the new job. The team or department you work in is a huge part of any job, so it's important to find out as much information as you can about the team and the environment.
Consider if the team sounds like a group of people you could work well with and if the environment is conducive to happy and productive work life. This question could prompt the interviewer to introduce you to some of the team when interviewed on-site for the role. Use this opportunity to gain insight into the dynamics and work relationships at the company.
Do you have any further questions regarding my experience or qualifications?
Including this question in the closing of your interview ensures that you've cleared up all concerns and enquiries the interviewer may have. It helps to defuse any concerns that may lead the employer to decline you for the position if left unaddressed. For example, if you have qualifications that don't directly relate to the job role, you could reinstate that you're seeking education elsewhere to prepare for this specific role.
When can I expect to hear from you regarding the position?
This question is the most common way to bring an interview to a close. It signifies you have no further questions and your keenness to hear about the role as soon as possible. Typically, an interviewer gives you a timeline of the rest of their interview process and when you're likely to hear from them. This further reinstates your interest in the position and allows you to plan in follow up emails after the interview.
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