The Most Common Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

Prepping for an interview can be a daunting experience.

By reaching this point in the hiring process the employer has clearly deemed your listed background and experience as strong enough to fit the role. So, the main aim of an interview is therefore to ensure that you can evidence these claims, that you have strong communication skills and to assess how you might fit within the team in terms of attitude.

An interview offers a unique opportunity to speak about whatever you would like, showcase your abilities, and give an employer every reason you can to consider you for the role. Interview preparation is key. Not only will it help to ensure that you get to say everything that you would like to, but also give you a safety blanket of confidence and calm that will shine through your answers. A huge part of our role as data recruitment specialists revolves around prepping candidates for interviews and helping them prepare answers for some of the most difficult interview questions.

As a result, we have built a catalogue of commonly asked interview questions and have a keen sense of the best way to answer them. We’ve compiled a few to share.

Tell me about yourself.

This question isn’t just an ice breaker, it’s an opportunity for a candidate to really show off softer skills like chronological and succinct communication. If you are asked this question, ensure to talk about your career path for no longer than two minutes, keeping it short and simple.

What is your biggest weakness?

This is a question that strikes fear into even the most confident of interviewees. Resist the temptation to turn it into a positive. i.e., ‘I’m a perfectionist’. Not only will an interviewer see through this, but it may also indicate to a worse weakness that you are choosing not to disclose. This doesn’t call for a huge spiel either, however. Instead try to think of a real-life example where you struggled with something, for instance saying no to a client, and explain what you feel would help you to overcome that weakness going forwards. Showing self-awareness is gold-dust and may also indicate to them where you need support, should you get the job.

What else have you got on the go?

This isn’t a trick question; employers genuinely want to understand what other offers you might have on the table so they can best determine how quickly – or not – they need to run through the recruitment process. If you’re a star candidate, they will want to beat competitors to offer stage. With this question, be honest.

What are you looking for?

Answering this interview question well means speaking about the role you are applying to as specifically as possible. A successful candidate will spin the opportunities the role gives to showcase that it aligns greatly with their goals and ambitions. Try and note down key aspects of the job description and address as many as possible with your own experience.

Why have you applied to work for this organisation?

Of course, this is a great opportunity to highlight what appealed to you about the organisation and then link it back to why you feel you can enhance those parts. But it’s also a chance to show off your research about the organisation. Perhaps you could speak about the clients they have worked with, or a previous campaign or success of theirs. Showing that you have spent time to really dig into the company will do wonders for demonstrating your commitment and interest.

Why are you leaving your current role?

This is one of those questions where the interviewer is less concerned about the response you give and more interested in how you conduct yourself while answering. It’s important to frame your answer in a positive light if possible, emphasising what you will get out of the change or how you feel this new company will better align with your career goals, rather than taking a negative approach that focuses on what your previous/current employer hasn’t been able to offer.

Being nervous about an interview is normal and shows that you care about the role. But there are steps you can take that will put you in the best stead to answer the questions thrown at you as fully as possible.

Our data recruitment consultants know what employers want, and can help you to put your best foot forward, get in touch today.

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