Five Questions To Ask Your Interviewer In 2022

Stemming from the continued effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the climate crisis, and now the cost of living crisis, the Great Resignation is still a critical issue across numerous industries. Led principally by Generations Y and Z, employees have left their posts in droves for various reasons, from personal to political.

With the tech skills gap a particularly hot topic that businesses are scrambling to solve, applicants have arguably never had more potential leverage in conversations with prospective employers. Preparing a thoughtful, even challenging set of questions to ask at interview is a great way to signal that you’re looking for a workplace to really invest in and to take the next steps in your career. Asking tough questions at interview will demonstrate that you’re weighing up whether you should work for them, which projects confidence and self-worth. So long as your attitude isn’t lax or overly entitled, these characteristics are very likely to impress.

So what are some of the more interesting questions to ask? It’s impossible to be exhaustive in the space you have at interview, but here are some good questions you can prepare.

Ask about flexible working and management style

One major positive for employees through the pandemic has been the experience of flexible and hybrid working. We know that in addition to its popularity with employees, the option to work remotely brings less stress and more focus. Ask your interviewer if the company supports hybrid working and how they handle it from a managerial standpoint. Whether you’re someone that prefers a fluid working style or someone who needs more structure, that’s hopefully a conversation they’ll be equipped to have with you.

Ask specific questions about the role

This will depend on the role you’re interviewing for, of course, but asking clarifying questions around the parameters and responsibilities of the job will help give you a clearer picture of what the work will look and feel like. This can also be a way of making space to elaborate on how you would apply your skill set to the role as well as initiatives you might like to suggest. Don’t give away all your best ideas at interview, but gesture towards them with intention.

What opportunities are there for progression and development?

This question will give you an immediate sense of how much an employer is planning to invest in you as a possible new hire. If they’re able to offer you an answer detailing a clear trajectory with opportunities for training and upskilling, you’ll feel more confident that they’re not just looking to quickly plug a gap in their workforce with no afterthought.

Where do you see the company in the next five years?

If you’re looking to join a thriving organisation, this question should yield some useful insights. You should get a good idea of a company’s momentum from the energy with which your interviewer responds to this question. A big sigh before they answer is definitely not what you want.

How would you characterise the company’s culture? What would you say needs work?

No workplace is perfect and an employer attempting to project a blissfully tranquil image of a workplace culture could be a red flag. Look for honest, self-reflective answers that don’t shy away from acknowledging a work-in-progress. You’ll also learn a great deal from whether or not they volunteer information on accessibility and inclusion.

Now, you won’t necessarily be able to ask all of these questions during your interview. Take whatever time they give you towards the end of the interview and use your intuition to prioritise the questions which feel most important to you. Think about which questions will follow up nicely from earlier parts of the conversation as this will show that you’re actively engaged and really present. Good questions can go a long way to impressing your interviewer as well as helping you figure out if it’s a role you want to pursue. Go well and don’t hesitate to ask further questions once that offer comes in!