Ask Focused Interview Questions
Once youve established some rapport with the interviewee, focus your questions on the positions most critical skills and knowledge. The questions you ask should help determine whether a candidates qualifications, experience, workplace preferences, cultural fit, and salary requirements align with the position and your organization.
There are certain things that are must-haves for you to make any hiring decision. After starting off with the ice-breakers discussed earlier, youll want to ask questions that reveal deal-breakers. Do they have a bachelors degree? What are their salary expectation? Have they worked in a B2B sales environment for at least three years? Are they willing to travel two days each week.?
If the candidate doesnt pass muster with those initial screening questions , gracefully end the phone interview. For candidates who answered the questions satisfactorily, you can move on to the behavioral-based interview questions that delve deeper into the way the job seeker has used critical skills in past positions.
Knowing the typical problems presented by each of the jobs deliverables, youll ask candidates how they do their work to anticipate and prevent those problems from arising and how they solve them when they do arise. These types of questions go beyond skills and experience and get at the heart of how they conduct themselves at work.
Questions To Ask Potential Tenants
Part 5 of our Landlords guide to Tenant Screening.
This is a critical point in the process of finding the right tenant.
Earlier in the tenant screening checklist, we discussed how increasing the number of applicants will increase your chances of finding the one.
Lets take a minute to pull yourself out of your landlord shoes and into the parental shoes in the video below.
When trying to find the right tenant, you can save yourself a lot of time by knowing what questions to ask potential tenants.
Save time for both you and the interested caller by conducting a pre-showing interview that reveals whether you are right for each other.
You can also introduce a Pre-screening survey via Google forms into your process to automatically weed out some applicants .
In this comic Trimming the Fat Laura explains to her son why she conducts these Pre-Screening interviews over the phone.
After answering the callers questions about the rental property, mention that you have a few questions of your own that will help them determine whether the rental property is a good fit for them.
It also gives you a chance to see whether the caller meets your initial criteria for screening.
Top Phone Interview Questions To Ask Your Interviewer
After you apply for a job and if the recruiter and/or hiring manager believes that you are right for the position, they may respond with a request for a phone interview. Employers use phone interviews to help them decide which applicants they should invite for an in-person interview.
Before a phone interview, you should prepare both your answers common interview questions and your own questions to ask. These questions will demonstrate your enthusiasm for the company and help you learn if the role is a good fit.
Below, youll find tips for choosing the right phone interview questions, plus seven powerful questions you can ask at the end of your interview to leave a lasting impression.
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What Is Your Current And Expected Salary
- It’s a quick filter, in two ways. If an applicant is making well above what you offer, you shouldn’t move forward with them. People almost never go backward on salary, and when they do, they rarely work out in the long term.
- It tells you how senior they are. For example, a software developer making $100k and one making $150k are fundamentally different candidates.
- It tells you how you should interview them. A candidate at $100k would fail the $150k candidate interview, and the $100k candidate interview would be too easy for the $150k candidate.
- You will get some important data. If, after interviewing several candidates for a position, you find that all of them are making more than what you’re offering, you will know that you need to rethink your offer.
If you decide to ask the salary question, make it the first one out of the gate – they’ll be more likely to give a good answer.
Tip: If they won’t give an expected salary at first, come back to it. It’s a crucial piece of information, because if there is no way to get a financial fit for the candidate, it will be hard to get them to accept the job, and you’ll end up wasting a lot of time.
Be Prepared To Discuss
The call isnt only about candidates answering your phone screening questions. Its also a great opportunity for you to clarify details about the position and the hiring process. Make sure that, by the end of the call, candidates understand fully what the role is about as well as what the next steps are. If youre a recruiter, this means youll have to spend some time talking to the hiring managers so that youll be ready to give a clear explanation of the role.
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Easily collaborate with hiring teams to evaluate applicants, gather fair and consistent feedback, check for unconscious bias, and decide whos the best fit, all in one system.
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How Does This Company Measure Performance And Determine Salary Increases
Similarly, you should ask how a company measures performance so that you know the key performance indicators you should look out for, Woodruff-Santos says. Some companies have quarterly reviews while others do biannually and some just do once a year, and its worthwhile to know how often youll have an opportunity to discuss your growth and progress.
Many companies no longer rely on annual performance reviews to measure performance and also have metrics for salary increases, Salemi adds.
Ask how annual salary increases are determined and when, Salemi tells SELF. If you start a position in November and salaries are adjusted every January 1 for the new fiscal year, then you are probably starting during the annual salary review process and likely wont get an increase until the following January, so its key to ask about timing.
Tips For Successful Phone Screen Interviews
Since you may not know when to expect the telephone interview, it is critical that you do not wait to prepare for the interview until you have the interview scheduled. You have to accomplish your goal selling yourself, your skills, your experience, and your value with only the words that come out of your mouth now.
You have just three assets for a phone screen your attitude, your voice, and your preparation! What can you do to have the best opportunity for success?
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The Dos And Donts Of Phone Interviewing
- DONT take the call in a car, outside, or anywhere noisy
- DO answer the phone with a professional tone Hello this is
- DONT smoke or chew gum during the call
- DO take notes and have your own notes handy prior to the call
- DONT take a long time to answer the questions
- DO allow the interviewer to interrupt you and ask follow-up questions
- DONT forget to prepare questions to ask the interviewer and write down new ones as youre talking
- DO prep for the dreaded salary question ahead of time in a mock interview
- DONT talk too quickly. Breath and make sure to enunciate
- DO make sure youre distraction-free to so you can focus and listen. You can scrub your counters later.
- DONT forget to send a post-interview thank-you note
Begin Preparing For A Second Interview
You never know when youll be asked to come in for another round of interviews, so youll want to be ready at a moments notice. Research more to find information not readily available on the company site about company milestones, award-winning projects or recent initiatives that you can work into the interview.
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How Is Your Job Search Going So Far
Employers ask this in a phone interview to get a sense of how things are going for you overall, how much other companies are interested, and even how soon you might have job offers .
The one thing you dont want to do with your answer is sound like youre completely struggling to find a job.
If you arent getting many interviews or if you just started taking phone interviews, you can always say: Im just beginning to take interviews, but its going well so far.
If you have had a few interviews but they didnt go well, you can say that you havent found the right fit yet. So for example, you might say, Ive had a couple of phone interviews so far but havent found a great fit yet.
Things are going well so far. Im just beginning to take phone interviews, and Im still very early in my job search. I expect to have some face-to-face interviews soon.
Screening Interviews: Everything You Need To Know
A screening interview is a great opportunity to set yourself apart from other candidates and impress an interviewer. Even in a brief phone interview, you can emphasize your genuine interest in a position as well as your enthusiasm for an organization and the value you could bring to a position. Successfully preparing for a screening interview takes time and research. In this article, we discuss questions you should be prepared to answer during the screening interview along with tips to ensure youre prepared.
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Interview Questions To Ask To Get To Know A Candidate
Conducting an interview has turned into a strategic chess game of tricky questions and insightful answers. But it does not have to be that way.
Knowing what interview questions to ask in a way that benefits your company and the candidate can actually be a lot more engaging, selfless and comfortable.
After all, as an interviewer and company representative, you have a gift to give someone whos currently in transition or otherwise looking to assume broader responsibilities in their career. Your recruiting knowledge, wisdom and insights can go a long way to evaluate a candidates potential fit within your organisation, and to inspire individuals to grow and develop in their careers.
As soon as you begin to see the gift that the interview process holds for both you and the candidate, you will realise that it poses an opportunity not only to assess but to give backand that is the true ah-ha moment of conducting an interview.
Do You Have Any Questions For Me
With this question, the interviewer genuinely wants to offer you the chance to get your questions and concerns addressed. Because after all, youre interviewing them as much as theyre interviewing you!
But the questions you ask also give them insight into your values and expertiseso make sure theyre thoughtful and tailored to the role, company, and person youre speaking with.
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Does Your Company Track Diversity And Pay Equity Among Different Races Or Gender Groups
Woodruff-Santos recommends saving this question for your first official interview, whether its with the hiring manager or with someone from human resources, rather than a screening phone call with a recruiter. As a career expert who is especially passionate about advocating for women of color, this is one of her favorite questions to ask.
At this stage in my career, where Im coming in at a senior level, I feel like I can be more direct without having any social penalties in an interview process than someone whos entry-level, Woodruff-Santos says. But if youre interviewing for an entry- or mid-level role and are feeling nervous about broaching this topic , she suggests expressing how excited you are about not only the role itself, then noting that youre looking for opportunities specifically at a company that values diversity in various ways. After that, you can ask about the companys demographic breakdowns and what they do to support workers of different identities. According to Woodruff-Santos, that information speaks volumes about the company as a whole.
So does the hiring manager or HR representatives response. If they act defensive, refuse to answer, or change the subject, thats a sign that they likely are not transparent with employees, Salemi says. It can also tell you a lot about how they treat issues of diversity and equity as a whole, Woodruff-Santos adds.
Fourth Prepare A Few Questions Of Your Own
Its a good idea to ask about the company culture, the team dynamic, or the role you are interviewing for. You can also inquire about the next steps of the hiring process. When your interviewer asks if you have questions, youll be able to show that you want to know more about your future environment.
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New Job Requirements & Responsibilities
Questions about the available position allow employers to gauge your qualifications for, interest in, and plans for your potential new role.
Common questions in this category include:
- Are you still interested in this position?
- Why do you want this job?
- What relevant experience for this position do you have?
- What attracts you about this position and our organization?
- The requirements for this position include x, y, and z. Briefly describe how you meet each of these requirements.
- What is your biggest professional accomplishment, and how do you think it pertains to this position?
What Skills From Your Previous Experience Make You The Right Fit For This Position
Though the screening interview is preliminary, you want to assess their skill set and abilities. Specific experience from other jobs can be used to measure their ability to fulfill the duties of the position theyre interviewing for.
The key word: specific. Generic responses dont demonstrate their ability to apply skills from their resume to the demands of the position.
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Work Environment Related Questions
During the screening process by understanding how people prefer their work environment can learn how well they would integrate into your workforce.
You may understand a bit about their previous environments if you know the company they used to work. But it also helps to ask what type of setting they prefer and what theyve experienced.
A few Pre-screening interview questions that can help you get a good feeling of a candidates work expectations are:
- What type of manager style works best for you?
- In what work environment would you thrive?
- What does an ideal workday look like for you?
Do Your Research In Advance
Know as much as you can about the employer and the opportunity before the interview, just as you would for an in-person interview:
- Re-read the job posting, and make notes of where you meet or exceed the requirements .
- Review the organizations website to see what they do, where they are, and the latest news they may have posted.
- Look for a LinkedIn Company Profile to see what information they post, as well as other job openings they might have.
- Google the company and the product/service names. See for more ideas.
- Check a site like Glassdoor.com to see the job interview questions commonly asked by this employer as well as the salary ranges and employee reviews.
- Based on your company research, have questions to ask if the opportunity arises or you risk looking uninterested and unprepared .
This research will help you to succeed in the face-to-face interview later, hopefully. It should also help you to determine if you really want to work for this employer.
For more pre-interview research ideas , read The Winning Difference: Pre-Interview Preparation.
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Can You Tell Me About The Benefits Package And Any Other Company Perks
These simple questions are fair game to ask HR from the get-go, Woodruff-Santos says. Its best to save them for HR rather than the hiring manager because theyll know the ins and outs of how things like the retirement plan works, and oftentimes, they might have a handbook that outlines whats offered.
Knowing the entire benefits packageincluding salary, retirement account options and employer contributions, health insurance, and any other perks such as a fitness reimbursementwill help you get the full picture and make it easier to figure out if its the right fit for you. Salemi recommends taking a close look at health insurance optionsspecifically, what your out-of-pocket expenses could be on the offered plans. Its helpful to have that info if youre comparing offers from two different companies and are trying to figure out which is more financially desirable.
End The Call Effectively
If the interviewer is bringing the call to an end without discussing the next steps, speak up! Express your enthusiasm for moving forward, saying something like this:
Thank you for your time today. Ive enjoyed speaking with you, learning more about this opportunity, and I would be very happy to discuss more about it in person.
Ask if email is the best method for staying in touch .
If an in-person interview is not scheduled at the end of the call, find out when and how you can follow up with the employer.
Be sure to ask for contact information of the person, or people, who will be your contact.
But First: Why Are Phone Interviews A Thing
Phone interviews are, as you can imagine, convenient. As former recruiter and Muse career coach Angela Smith points out, If there are a lot of candidates and youre just trying to narrow down who to bring in for an in-person interview, sometimes a phone interview can be super helpful. Especially if someone lives out of state, it saves the hiring manager from having to pay for the person to fly in and interview in the flesh .
What are they looking for in that phone call? Usually its very high level: Theyre screening for risks, theyre trying to validate your qualifications, and they want to see if youre a fit, says Muse career coach Tina Wascovich. In other words, she says, Who are you, what do you know about us, why do you want to work here?
Of course, its entirely possible youll get asked very specific questions that are unique to the job or your field. But more often than notand usually in addition to those behavioral or technical questionsyoull get asked the following in a phone interview: