Congratulations, you got invited to an interview! If – after digesting the initial excitement – you feel daunted by the prospect, don’t worry.
Preparation is the key to making it over the line – especially if you’re nervous. Practising interview questions and answers can alleviate your worries ahead of the event. After all, you don’t want hesitation or stuttering to hold you back from the next stage.
Let’s look at the most common interview questions and how to nail them!
1. Where do you see yourself in five years?
If you’re interviewing for a permanent position, you’ll want to use this question to highlight the possible impacts you’ll make on the business. Consider how you’ll progress in the role and further your personal development. You’re less likely to be asked this question if it’s a temporary position – but it’s a good idea to prepare what to say if asked about your plans.
2. What are your salary expectations?
Discussing money can be awkward – but researching the numbers before can ensure you answer this question with confidence. After all, you don’t want to sell yourself short – but you also don’t want to ask for a salary range that the company cannot afford.
Consider a realistic figure backed up by previous experience and industry competitors.
You may be offered a fixed hourly rate rather than an annual salary. Do the maths so you can look at it against your potential working hours.
3.Why do you want to work for this company?
A lack of knowledge or interest in the company is a red flag to the employer – and one of the top reasons candidates fail job interviews. It shows a lack of preparation and care. Whether you relate to the company’s values or you’re passionate about the role itself, this is your chance to show off all your pre-interview homework.
And even if it’s not your dream job, there’s still likely a reason you applied for this specific role (and not just for the money). For example, you could’ve heard about their charity work or a ground-breaking project you’re eager to be a part of.
4. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Describing your strengths and weaknesses might be one of the most nerve-wracking parts of an interview. On the one hand, you don’t want to sound boastful. And when it comes to explaining your weaknesses, you want to show that you’re self-aware, and improving.
The best way to answer this question is to use examples. For instance, think of a time when you faced a challenge and your strengths helped you overcome it. Then, consider when you might have felt held back by your weaknesses – what did you learn from it, and how did you overcome it?
5. When have you faced challenges and how did you overcome them?
Identify a moment during your working life where you were presented with a challenge, and explain what skills you deployed to overcome it. Make sure you demonstrate the skills that meet the job description.
6. What is your greatest achievement?
Although you might be tempted to reuse your example of your strengths, it’s a good idea to vary your answers. And it’s a chance to further showcase your skills that directly relate to the job role. Consider an achievement from your previous work experience and explain how this will help you flourish in the new position.
If you can’t think of a professional achievement, you might opt for something from your personal life. Just make sure you link it back to the skills and characteristics the employer is looking for.
7. Can you describe a situation where you worked as part of a team?
No matter where you work or the role, hiring managers are always looking for candidates who can demonstrate strong teamwork skills. Highlight a time when you played an integral part in the team – this means being collaborative, efficient, and communicating well to produce good results. While it might be tempting to say you took the lead, the employer is looking for someone with active listening skills and an ability to work with others.
8. Why are you leaving your current role?
You need to tread the fine line between enthusiasm for the new job and positivity about your former (or current) employer. If your contract is coming to an end for natural reasons, then it’s easy to explain. But if you’re leaving for negative reasons, suggest you’re keen for new opportunities and challenges.
9. Why should we hire you?
This is your chance to stand out from the competition and highlight your ability to do the job with your skills, experience, and qualifications. Remember that hiring managers are specifically looking for character traits that directly link to the job description, so tailor your answer accordingly.
10. Do you have any questions?
An interview should be a two-way street – you’re assessing the employer and the workplace just as much as they’re checking you out. So, always prepare your own questions.
Not only does it show your genuine interest, but it’s a chance to iron out queries you may have – especially if the role is overseas. It’s a good idea to have at least three questions ready in case they answer one or two earlier in the interview.
Get support from the experts at WRS
At WRS, we don’t just help candidates find new roles. We support them throughout the entire hiring process and beyond. Our team knows what to expect when you walk into an interview, and we’ll spend time running through potential questions to help you prepare.
Want to know more? Visit our website today.