Questions To Ask at an Interview

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 17 January 2023

Published 20 May 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

At the end of most interviews, the interviewer will ask you if you have any questions for the interview panel. This is a great opportunity for you to learn more about the position and show the interviewer that you're genuinely interested in the job. You should have a list of questions to ask prepared before you go into an interview. In this article, we discuss why it's important to ask questions at an interview, give some examples of great questions to ask and what questions you should avoid.

Related: How to Prepare for an Interview

Why is it important to ask questions at an interview?

There are two main reasons why it's important to ask questions at the end of an interview. First, it's your opportunity to learn more about the position and the hiring company. Even if you did your research on the job and company, you may still have questions and this is your chance to find out more. A job interview is just as much about you finding out whether the job is right for you, as it is the employer deciding if you're right for the job. Second, it shows the interviewers that you're genuinely interested in the job, have done your research and want to know more. This will help you leave a great impression on the interviewers and might increase your chances of getting the job.

You should always try to ask a few questions at the end of an interview. Otherwise, the interviewer may get the impression that you're not interested in the job. Even if there isn't anything more you want to know, asking two or three questions gives the interviewer a good impression of genuine interest in the job.

Related: Job Interview Tips: How to Make a Great Impression

Great questions to ask at an interview

When you're preparing for an interview, it's good to have a selection of questions to ask the interviewer ready in advance. That way, if you don't have any specific questions about the job that you want to know more about, you still have some questions to ask the interviewer to demonstrate your interest.

Here are some examples of great questions to ask at an interview:

When will I hear back from you?

If the interviewer hasn't already told you, this is a great question to ask because it lets the interviewer know that you're actively interested in hearing back from them about the job. It's also good to know when to expect a response so that you aren't left anxiously awaiting a response, not knowing when it will come.

What do you like about working at this company?

This is a good question because it gives you an idea of the type of environment you might be working in if you get the job. It can give you an idea of the culture of the company and shows the employer that you're conscious of the work environment. If you're not sure about the working environment of the job, the interviewer's response can give you a better idea of whether this is a good place to work or not. An evasive response might be something to be wary of.

How is performance measured for this position?

Variations of this question are great because they let you know the type of performance indicators the management will be looking at for the role. This can give you a better idea of whether you're capable of doing the job, especially if you were unsure whether your skills are a good fit or not. It also lets the employer know that you're proactive about understanding and meeting performance targets, even before you get the job.

If I was offered this job, what could I do to prepare for it?

This question shows the interviewer that you're proactive and organised. It lets them know that you're willing to put in the extra effort to be ready for the job, and won't just show up on the first day unprepared. It also gives you a head start, if you're successful in getting the job.

Why is this position open?

This question can provide you with valuable information about the role. Depending on the interviewer's answer, it can let you know a number of different things. It lets you know if the position is new or already existed. It can let you know why the last person left, whether it was by promotion, leaving the company, or being let go. They might not get into specifics but their answer can help inform you whether this is the right position for you or not. For example, if the last person in the role was promoted, it shows you that there's a chance for upward progression within the organisation.

What are the biggest challenges I would face in this position?

This is another great question for showing the interviewer that you're proactive about the job and want to know more about the types of challenges you'll face in the role. It also gives you a better idea of the work you'll be doing which can help you decide if this is the right job for you. By knowing about the biggest challenges faced in the job, you'll be able to better prepare yourself to face them, if you get the job.

What opportunities for growth/training/progression are available in this position?

When advancing your career, you should always be looking for opportunities to grow and progress. The answer to this question will give you insight into whether the hiring company has a culture of promoting growth and training among its employees. It will also give you insights into the opportunities available to you as you progress within the company. This question is great because it also shows the employer that you're career-focused and interested in career development.

Can you tell me more about the team I'll be working with?

This question is useful because it can give you more insight into the position and the types of people you'll be working with on a daily basis. It can also give you more insight into the amount of collaboration required as part of the role and how much independent work you could be doing. By asking about the team you'll be working with, you can show the interviewer that you're conscious about the environment you'll be working in and how you can integrate into the team. It can also indicate that you're team-focused and want to fit in well.

Can you tell me about my direct supervisor and their management style?

If the direct supervisor for the position isn't on the interview panel, this question is a great way to learn more about them and their management style. If they are on the panel, you can still ask them about their management style. This question can give you a better idea of the type of management you'll be working under and whether it will be suitable for you. If the interviewer is unable to give you a detailed answer, it may indicate that the management has not put much emphasis on integrating effective management styles into the business or that it's not something they have thought much about.

Related: What to Wear to an Interview

Questions to avoid during an interview

Most of the time, any questions you have will be well-received by the interviewers. They'll show your interest and that you're proactive about the job. However, some questions can give the interviewer the wrong idea, even if your intentions are genuine.

Here are some questions to avoid asking at an interview:

What is the salary for this position?

Some job descriptions don't include salary information or may just state that the salary is "competitive". It's natural to want to know about the compensation for a position, as this is an important part of work. However, you should avoid asking it during an interview because it gives the impression to the interviewer that you're only interested in the salary. Instead, save questions about salary for when you've received an offer. This way you will be able to negotiate.

Related: What are your total compensation expectations? (And answers)

What benefits are there with this position?

Like the last question about salary, this question can give the wrong impression to the interviewer by making them think you're only interested in the perks that come with the job. Instead, save these questions until you receive an offer. This way you'll be in a position to negotiate about the perks of the job.

What does your company do? / What would I do in this role?

Questions like this are best avoided because they let the interviewer know that you've not done your research. Instead, make sure you do your research before you get to an interview so that you don't have to ask questions like these.

Related: Avoid asking your interviewer these questions (with topics)

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