What questions to ask a potential employer during an interview?

In general, there are several stages of a job interview. At each of them, you have an opportunity to ask any questions you may have. You should take this opportunity not only to show your interest in the position to the employer but also to make the right decision.

Recruitment agency

Starting your job search at this stage can give you a number of advantages. A recruitment consultant can greatly assist you in preparation for the interview with a prospective employer. You can ask what is important for a certain position and learn about the corporate culture, specifics of business, or the interviewer.

Questions to the employer

Don't expect that everything in a new company will be the same as in your previous job. Make sure that you have all the important information from the list below. It's better to put some questions to a representative of the HR department while others may require attention of your line manager. Don't forget that your aim at the first stages is to show your motivation and prove that you are a perfect fit for the job. It is reasonable to discuss the employment details only after you managed to catch the interest of the employer.

Questions to HR Manager

  • What is the selection process? 
  • What training system is in use in the company? 
  • Is there any travel associated with the job? Where? How often? 
  • Who will be my line manager? 
  • What are the company's values and corporate culture? 
  • Are all payments made in accordance with the Labour Code of the Russian Federation? 
  • If a position requires relocation, which expenses are reimbursed? 
  • What is the company's work schedule? Is overtime expected or accepted?

Questions to future supervisor

At the final interview stages, you should already have got a general idea of these questions, however, discuss them in detail with your future line manager.

  • What's the aim of the position?
  • How is performance assessed? What are the KPIs? 
  • What major objectives are set for the first three months? And for a year? 
  • What are the company's strategic plans? 
  • Does the company plan regional expansion? 
  • How would you describe a successful employee aspiring to this position?

Depending on the situation you may ask the following questions at different stages:

  • Why is this position open in the company?
  • What are the company's structure and hierarchy? Who should report to whom? 
  • What are the prospects for career growth? 
  • What are the main tasks in this position? 
  • What education and development opportunities are offered? 
  • What does the interviewer like most about the company? / Which criteria the interviewer used to choose the company? 
  • What assessment system is in use in the company? 
  • How often is salary reviewed? (Avoid asking the last two questions at the first interview stage).

Salary questions

Job seekers tend to make two common mistakes at an interview: they either ask about remuneration too soon or try to conceal their current salary level in order to get a more beneficial offer. Read details about salary negotiations in our article.

What else to ask

Some things will hardly influence your decision on starting a new job. However, you can clarify the following moments before accepting the offer:

  • Will I work in an open or closed office?
  • What is the name of the position in all official languages of the company? 
  • Ask to introduce you to some of your future colleagues.

It is a must to discuss any long-planned personal travels or other circumstances that will exist during the probationary period or just after it and can prevent you from fulfilling your duties. This will help to develop more trust and understanding.

You should bear in mind that an interview is, above all, a conversation with your future employer. It is important to establish yourself. It is no less important is to understand whether a new job is comfortable for you and matches your goals.

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