Common Candidate Interview Questions

Use this guide to prepare to answer some of the most common candidate interview questions.

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Candidate questions: Why you need to be prepared

The end of an interview is the perfect time to open up for candidate questions. 

And there’s a million reasons why you want to. Here are just a few: 

  • Discover their interests: You’ll learn what candidates find most interesting about the role/company.
  • See how well-prepared they are: If a candidate’s thought hard about some awesome questions, you can be sure they’re engaged and organized.  
  • Boost your brand: If they ask questions about your company, this is your chance to sell, sell, sell.  

Common candidate interview questions

  • What are the next steps in your hiring process?
  • When (and how) will we next connect?
  • Why is this role open?
  • Have you spotted any concerns in my application?
  • What’s the best thing about working here?
  • What does the team look like?
  • Who will I work most closely with?
  • What do you expect me to accomplish in the first 3/6/12 months?
  • What were the biggest challenges in your latest launch/campaign/project? How do you measure success in similar projects?
  • What learning and development opportunities do you offer?

How to ace your responses to candidate interview questions

  • Choose the right interview panel: Having recruiters and hiring managers on board will help you answer questions from both sides. If that’s not possible, be prepared to answer candidates’ questions even if they’re not your field of expertise
  • Be prepared: Make sure you have all the info you need before the interview.  
  • Be transparent and honest: If there are things you shouldn’t disclose, be open about why you can’t answer at this point. Likewise, if you don’t know the answer just let them know you’ll get back to them later. 
  • Coordinate with the team: Hiring is a team effort so make sure all team members know how to consistently respond to candidates’ questions—they could ask them at any point in the hiring process.

Candidates’ interview questions to watch

  • They have no questions: Don’t judge too harshly if they don’t have anything to ask, you might have covered their questions during the interview. But if candidates rush, are unprepared or seem indifferent, they might not be interested in the role.
  • They ask obvious questions: Candidates should be familiar with the company basics so if they ask about things like what products you sell, you’ve got yourself a red flag.
  • They’re too eager about benefits: If candidates ask about compensation and benefits too early on, they might not have their priorities straight.
  • They’re unprofessional: Look for pro candidates who can ace small talk at the beginning and end. Asking personal questions are red flags.

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