The job interview, that delicate dance between candidate and recruiter, often reaches its climax with the classic question: "Do you have any questions?". You might think that this step is harmless, but think again! This question, sometimes overlooked by some candidates, can really turn the interview to your advantage by showing how much interest you have in the position and the company. To guide you, we asked Emma Freychet, Human Resources Director at Easy Skill, for her advice. She tells us more about what you need to talk about to shine at the end of your interview!
Why asking questions in an interview can make all the difference?
Asking questions shows the recruiter your motivation for the position. It highlights your curiosity about the position and the company, showing your willingness to learn more and your ability to project yourself into the company context. It's important not to dodge this question. If possible, try to ask questions related to the discussions you've had during the interview. You can also try to clarify specific points. If you find it difficult to improvise, prepare your questions in advance. We've put together a list of rarely asked questions, which can both arouse the recruiter's curiosity and give you additional information about the position and the company.
1. Who's the ideal candidate, or how will you know a year from now that you've made the right choice?
This question shows the recruiter that finding the right candidate is no easy task. Indeed, candidates don't always perfectly match all the criteria of a job offer. This question also shows the recruiter that you are aware of the importance of his decision when hiring a new person. It helps you understand the evaluation criteria and the keys to success for the position. What's more, it gives you a better idea of what the employer expects of the candidate. The employer can explain the qualities, skills and characteristics he or she considers important for the position, as well as the company's values, organizational culture and expected results.
2. If it's a replacement, why is the current person leaving the company?
Asking why the person is leaving may seem surprising, but it provides valuable information about the replacement. This question enables you to understand the company's current situation and determine whether the departure of the former employee is due to an internal change, promotion, reorganization or other company-specific factors. It also helps to determine whether the departure is an isolated case, or whether there is a wider turnover within the company. The recruiter's response also enables you to assess the company's maturity in terms of managing departures and transitions.
3. How do employees communicate with each other (Or what communication channels are used within the company?)
Asking this question gives you detailed information about the company's culture, internal communication practices and team dynamics. This will give you a better understanding of the importance attached to internal communication and whether it flows smoothly within the company. You can also find out if there are any planned moments of exchange with all employees. It allows you to understand how employees interact and communicate with each other, which can give an indication of the company's culture and openness to collaboration. It also lets you know whether you're comfortable with different communication styles, and whether you're ready to adapt to the company's working environment.
4. What challenges has the company faced in recent years?
When preparing for an interview, it's common to conduct research to find out about the overall health of the company. Although this information is not always available online, asking this question allows you to gain a better understanding of the company, the different phases it has gone through and the challenges it has faced. It also offers an insight into the internal challenges that may be associated with the position you're applying for. You'll be able to assess the company's ability to adapt and meet these challenges, as well as the opportunities for growth and learning it may have created.
5. How does the company measure employee performance or success?
By asking this question, you can gain valuable insights into the company's culture, approach to performance management and expectations of employees. Evaluation criteria may include achievement of objectives, quality of work, contribution to the team or company, technical skills, etc. In addition, this question helps you understand how the company will provide feedback on your performance (regular review interviews, discussions on objectives and results, competency-based reviews, etc.).
6. Why did you select my application?
The recruiter's question about what particularly interested him or her in your profile is intriguing, but it provides a better understanding of the skills, experience or qualities that were considered assets and influenced the selection decision. The recruiter's response lets you know what specific skills, achievements, relevant experience or personal qualities were deemed crucial to the position. This information is precious, as it can be put to good use in subsequent interviews.
7. How was the last person promoted?
This question provides concrete information on promotion processes and the criteria used by the company to make promotion decisions. The recruiter's answer will enable you to understand how promotions are granted within the company and what are the possible routes to promotion. This will tell you whether there is a defined career plan and clear opportunities for professional growth.
As you can see, it's essential to ask questions during a job interview. Depending on the relevance of the questions you ask, you'll learn more about the company's internal processes, culture and challenges. But above all, it will highlight your curiosity about the position in question, so don't hesitate to ask questions and show the recruiter your interest!
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