We have all been there, as the end of the interview looms, you believe it has gone well and your butterflies have all but gone. Just as you start to feel confident and say to yourself ‘for sure this job is mine’… Hold up, wait a minute, what’s that? Yep, it’s THAT ‘end of interview’ question:
“Any questions you want to ask me?”
It is almost guaranteed this will happen, so be prepared! This is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your work ethic, company knowledge and ultimately your interest in the vacancy. Ask questions such as, “What professional development opportunities are available?” or “What are your plans for developing the company in the future?” These types of questions are fine and helps to demonstrate your familiarity with the company.
Once the interview is finished, feel free to ask when a decision is to be expected and what will happen next. Don’t forget to follow up on any promises you made for further information and to say “thank you”, you’ll be surprised how far good manners will get you. This can also be a good time to affirm and express your genuine desire to work there.
Now we know what to say, let’s take a look at what questions you should NEVER ask your interviewer. Stay clear of the following and make a mental note of the alternatives offered;
“What does your company do?”
Asking for information like this is unlikely to impress your interviewer, as you could have easily found with a quick search of the internet. This only serves to demonstrate your lack of interested in the position.
Alternative: “When visiting your website, I noticed you regularly do x and y. Can you tell me more about it?“
“Did I get the job?”
You should never ask this as you will appear over-anxious and it will only achieve to put your potential employer in an awkward situation.
Try asking: “Do I need to prepare anything else to move forward?”, “Are there any further stages to the hiring process?”
“Is there an option to work additional hours or overtime?” or “Can I work Thursdays instead of Fridays?”
Questions like these make it look as if you are only in it for the money and don’t have a genuine interest in working for the company. Instead, demonstrate your eagerness for the position, you’re more likely to impress that way.
A better way to gain the same information would be to ask “What’s a typical day like?”, “What shall I expect should I be successful in gaining this role?” or “How big is the team?” You’ll certainly come away knowing more about what will be expected of you, without looking self-serving.
“How much is the pay?”, “How many days holiday do I get?” or “What benefit schemes do you run?”
By asking questions like these, you only end up looking more interested in money than the role. Any must-have benefits should be voiced early on in this process to avoid wasting your efforts and the interviewer’s time.
There are obviously many ways to get the questions you ask wrong, but do not let this put you off. The worst thing you could do is ask nothing, the trick is to ask engaging questions, ones that demonstrate you care and that you want to work there for the right reasons and not just personal ones.