Interviews – a necessary evil? | Selection Partners | Executive Recruitment, Melbourne

Interviews – a necessary evil?

Sometimes, even HR struggle when they are on the other side of the interview table.  Interviews are stressful, not many of us enjoy the experience, but they are unfortunately a necessary evil.

Whilst many people prepare for questions they might be asked, they often neglect preparing for questions to ask.

This is a critical mistake in your job search process, as asking good questions at an interview demonstrates:

Selection Partners - Interviews – a necessary evil?
  • You are genuinely engaged in the conversation
  • You are interested in the company and the role
  • You are enthusiastic about the role and happy to let the interviewer know it
  • You are knowledgeable about the company – this is where your pre-interview research becomes important
  • You have come prepared and are serious about the role


The right type of questions can also provide valuable insights about the organisations culture and values, what success looks like and the challenges in the role.  The information you gain during an interview is vital to inform your decision to accept a job offer should one be forthcoming.

Below are some tips from my experience as an interview and career coach.  I recommend considering your questions from 3 aspects. 

1. Questions that provide additional or valuable information about the organisation you are interviewing with

For example:

  • What are the challenges facing the organisation/industry?  – Helps you understand the environment the organisation operates in.
  • Who are your key competitors and what are your strategies to combat them?  – Helps you understand who the organisation competes with.
  • How will the work I would be doing contribute to the organisations strategy? – Creates a link regarding the purpose of the role.


 2. Questions to uncover what is important for the hiring manager.

This could include questions such as:

  • What do you like most about working for this company? Why? – Helps you understand their values and if they align with yours.
  • How do you see this position evolving in the next 2-3 years? – Helps you understand the potential for the role and how you may use your skills.
  • How did you get your start? – Gives insight into their career progression.
  • What keeps you up at night? – Gives insight into their concerns.
  • What do I need to do in this role to make your life easier – Gives insight into what they really want. They are also likely to talk about what they don’t want


3. Questions about the role.

This could include questions such as:

  • How has the role come about? – Gives insight if the role is new or due to a promotion/resignation.
  • What are the first priorities for this role? – Gives insight as to what to focus on to gain success/make a good impression.
  • What are the challenges of the role? Why? – Gives insight as to what you will be facing.
  • Is there any more information you need clarified to make hiring me an easier decision? – Creates an opportunity for you to provide any further information to support your application.


Happy interviewing!!  Feel free to visit us at or contact us on 03 9832 8100 should you require any assistance to ensure you are well prepared for your next interview. Also check out our job search advice tool on

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