What to ask on a job interview

One of the toughest questions that you are likely to face during a job interview is the question: "Have you got any questions for us?"

On the face of it, this should be an easy question: your chance to learn more about the role and get the more detailed information you need about the position that wasn't specified on the job spec.

But this isn't just a session for you to gather information - you are still being assessed and the panel are using all your responses, including questions, to decide whether you are a suitable candidate for the vacancy. In fact, what you asked now is arguably more important than any of your previous answers - and because it's usually the last question asked, it's what sticks in employers' minds when they are looking back at your performance.

Your questions should therefore be viewed as an extension of the interview. Don't waste this opportunity asking the practical questions (no matter how much you want to know!) like how does the bonus structure work, what are the working hours and will you be required to work overtime. These questions do little to illustrate your enthusiasm for the role and suggest that you're only interested in the money or benefits. If you need an answer to these questions, ask for an employee handbook to read over in your own time.

Instead, ask questions that demonstrate interest and understanding - for example, what are the main aims of this job, how do this position fit in with other company activities and how do they expect this role to change in the next five years.


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