Updated: Sep 25, 2020
Before freaking out entirely, check out
the most common types of job-interview questions
to get prepared!!
We often consider HR specialists or recruiting managers some sort of gurus, who possess the magical ability to see inside our minds and - based on some unknown and highly sensitive algorythm – decide whether we are suitable to fit their specific and secret requirements or not.
But the case is a lot less complicated than that.
They are neither magicians nor gurus, but they have an effectively designed set of questions with the help of which they want to ensure to hire the brightest, the fittest and the most suitable candidate to join their team.
These questions combine knowledge from the field of psychology, intelligence assessment, emotional aptitude, logical thinking, specific professional background, foreign languages and common sense (aka. józan paraszti ész)
Let’s have a look at some of the most typical types of job-interview questions:
Állásinterjúra felkészítő egy alkalmas kurzus:
Részletek a képre kattintva:
1. The Tell-me-about-yourself question:
The much hated question, which can be the easiest to prepare for! Some candidates believe that this is just the warm-up question while the interviewer is pulling himself together and getting his paper organised... but this is not the case. This question might be crucial for the success of your whole performance at the job interview. Not only your confidence, but also your presentation skills and personal selling power is assessed here. And of course, we all know: first impression counts most!
2. Background interview questions
These questions can cover several areas:
Work-experience – to check whether your past experience is relevant to the position
Education – if your educational background and qualifications meet their requirements
Credential verification – to check if you have been truthful reporting these data and can reflect on them effectively
How could your previous experience contribute to the success of our company?
3. Personality-related questions
These question might be direct or indirect and can be assessed throughout the whole job interview. Direct question may have you list all your positive or negative characteristics, while indirect questions may reoccur later on in the interview in the form of behavioural or situational questions. The point is here: be careful! The tricky recruiting specialist might be assessing your personality when he is asking about your general work experience.
What are three positive things your last boss would say about you?
What are three positive character traits you don't have?
What kind of personality do you work best with and why?
4. Competence-based questions
Competence-based questions can be similar to personality questions but these rather focus on acquired skilled and competencies related to your position. Some core competencies are:
- Communication skills
- Decision making
- Goal orientation
What techniques and tools do you use to keep yourself organized?
If you had to choose one, would you consider yourself a big-picture person or a detail-oriented person?
It is crucial to note that competency questions might also be:
Your interviewer might use these questions to assess how you reacted to a given situation in the past, or how you would behave in a hypothetical situation.
In these cases both your past achievements and personality are evaluated. If you are aware of the reason why your interviewer is asking these questions and what conclusions he will draw from it: you are already a winner!
5. Situational questions:
These types of questions ask the candidate to provide information on how they would deal with job-related situations that are typical of the kinds of circumstances the candidate is likely to encounter on the job. They are designed to gather information on the types of skills and qualifications required to perform in these job-related situations. Often these situations or scenarios are taken directly from the job.
As the team leader of the marketing team, you are faced with a situation where two team members are fighting over who will get credit for an accomplishment, how would you deal with the situation?
Describe how you would handle a situation if you were required to finish multiple tasks by the end of the day, and there was no conceivable way that you could finish them.
6. Behavioural questions
Behaviour-based questions are a prerequisite for an effective job interview. They are always strategical part of a well-structured interview.
These types of questions are based on the premise that past behaviour is often used to predict future behaviour in all areas of life. The questions are directed at obtaining information about the candidate’s past experience and accomplishments in order to make a reliable prediction about how the candidate is likely to perform on the job.
Since behavioural questions are considered one of the best indicators of future job performance they are worth the time to be preparing for.
Can you give me an example of a time when you had to deal with a difficult client?
Can you describe a time when your work was criticized?
7. Job knowledge questions
The goal is to elicit particular answers from the candidate to specific, job related questions. These questions most often deal with the technical or professional knowledge required to effectively perform the duties of the job.
Describe the difference between a business requirement document (BRD) and functional requirement document (FRD).
How do you determine which Business Intelligence (BI) tools to use? Which have you worked with?
8. Case-study questions
At most ACs – Assessment Centres these questions take up a considerable part of the assessment process. The candidates are given detailed situations and figure to come up with a possible solution to a problem or an analysis of a past decision.
Let me show you my favourite: :-)
Case Interview Question: Our client Moldovan Coffins is a high-end coffin maker in the country of Moldova. Moldova, officially the Republic of Moldova, is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe located between Romania to the west and Ukraine to the north, east, and south. Moldova declared itself an independent state with the same boundaries as the Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1991 as part of the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The total population of the country amounted to 4 million (2004 Moldovan census).
The owner of Moldovan Coffins business has seen substantial change in his market in recent years and is contemplating the future of his business. Up until now, he has been in the business of building high-quality, handcrafted coffins largely by hand with a skilled labor force. Recently, however, he has become aware of a new technology that would allow him to build machine-made coffins with much less labor. Should he invest in this new technology? And should he even remain in the coffin-making business in the first place? Why or why not?
9. Brainteaser questions
To show you some nice ones:
What is your favourite animal?
Tell me one thing about yourself you wouldn't want me to know.
If you were a superhero, who would you be? :-)
Most of the time there is no right or wrong answer here. The recruiting specialist wants to see how you react in an unexpected situation and how creative are you to do your best and even to impress your listener.
Well, then why don’t we impress them!! :-)
If you want to get many more interview questions together with your best possible answer to each, do not hesitate to join us on our upcoming Job Interview workshop in English!