Common HR Interview Questions with Answers | Job Preparation

HR professionals go beyond the conventional skill oriented interview due to their insightful approach. HR teams filter candidates who would suit the job profile best. The nature of their questions is simple yet strategic and deliberate. Thus it is essential that you prepare for the HR round. Here we enlist the frequent HR interview questions and how to answer them for which you must prepare.

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HR Interview Questions Phase 1

Generally for initiating conversation and make the candidate comfortable while getting to know them and how are they as a professional candidate. It is really important to answer following questions in hr round to make that first impression. This phase gives you the ability to take the interview in a direction you want

Tell me about yourself

  • The question gives a sense of the candidate to the HR, puts forth the first impression and directs the questions that need to be addressed further.
  • Tell about your previous positions, roles, contributions. Your areas of strength and why this job position suits you.
  • Refrain from sharing personal information.
  • Share insight an your past experience on the project or the position that you are applying for.

Why are you leaving your present job?

  • Retain to not complain about your previous employer or the job. Elaborate on why this job transition lies in your best interest, how you can contribute to the firm and how can you grow from this position.
  • Talk about the opportunities that you look forward to and how you intend to learn.
  • Show gratitude for your past employer. For instance, you may answer

You have switched jobs/ jumped ship frequently. Why?

  • The question is directed to experienced professionals who have switched more than a couple of jobs in a rather short period.
  • Focus on your ability to adapt, experience and insight gained from the job changes, your growth and development in your profession.

Why do you want to work for this company?

  • Show a willingness to work for the firm.
  • Show your knowledge about the company and the position.
  • Relate your experience and expertise that would be of value to the firm
  • Demonstrate your knowledge about your employer’s vision, purpose, and work.

What would you consider your strengths and weaknesses?

This is a particularly popular question that often comes up.

  • Talk more about your strengths than the weaknesses.
  • Talk about your weakness and how you can improve upon it.
  • Strengths are not the same as your interests and neither are weaknesses a dislike for something.
  • Make a precise comment with the clarity of thought. For instance, don’t mention contradictory strengths and weakness that shows a degree of ignorance.
  • Talk about multi tasking, problem solving, decision making skills in terms of strengths.

HR Interview Questions Phase 2

If you have made it to this round, congratulations. Next round or phase is to know if you’re a good fit for the role and the company. You should prepare before your hr round to answer the questions which are directly retelated to the job

Why should we hire you?

This is a sort of question where it is required of the candidate to sell herself.

  • Mention your strengths, expertise in the field, accomplishments.
  • Demonstrate your quick learning ability and adaptability.
  • Evidence example of how you contributed to your past company in terms of revenue, value, and brand.
  • Try not to portray your self-interest and also do not tend to contest or compare with other candidates.

Tell about an instance in the past of a conflict with a coworker and how you resolved it.

  • Keep aside personal conflicts and talk about a professional situation wherein you confronted disagreement with a coworker.
  • The question intends to expand upon your problem-solving techniques and methods.
  • Focus on how you resolved a conflict, what changes you brought forth to avoid future conflict and emphasis upon the strategy you deployed in order to do so.

How would your current manager describe you?

  • It would be inappropriate and to get into a self-congratulatory talk.
  • The question wants your honest response on the kind of feedback you have received in the past.
  • Quote from your last performance review and mention the qualities your manager highlighted about you.
  • You may also highlight how your current manager helped you improve upon after the feedback you were given.

What is your ideal workplace or company?

  • Answer what you look for in a work environment rather than you name a list of companies you wish you worked for.
  • Address the growth, learning, and knowledge you wish to acquire a then talk about the kind of firm that you believe will provide that.

Describe your ability to work under pressure

Through this question, the HR professional is basically trying to figure out how prepared you are for the particular position that you are applying for.

  • Look for a past experience of yours where you worked under immense pressure and acted on the matter accordingly.
  • Focus on the strategies you deploy.
  • Show your awareness about the kind of pressure that can come up in taking up the position you are applying for.

Describe your management skills

  • Give precise details on how you strategist your work. However, be concise in your response.
  • For instance, you may explain how your flexibility, adaptability help you ensure how you manage to achieve your goal.
  • Talk about your sense of punctuality, regularity etc.

Do you have any serious medical condition?

Since the question specifies a ‘serious health conditions do not elaborate on your response if your medical condition is rather benign.

  • Give the details, the risk, the impact it can cause or causes to your work life.
  • Depression, anxiety, mental health conditions should also be addressed as they can have a serious influence on one’s work life.
  • Most importantly focus on how you have managed to mitigate your problem and the measures you have undertaken to improvise on your condition.

HR Interview Questions Phase 3

You’ve made it to the semi-final round of questions, these hr interview questions are to know how would you add value to the workplace and the culture. Your work ethics. you professional goals and motivations etc.

How do you feel about work extra shifts?

  • It may happen that the nature of your position requires extra hours of work. State your convenience and inconveniences with extra hours clearly to avoid miscommunication.

Are you open to experimenting and undertaking risks?

  • Give a reasonable answer that shows your innovative attitude. However, mention that you retain your past mistakes in mind before undertaking a new venture or something rather less familiar.
  • You could narrate past experiences wherein a risky or rather experimental approach led to a favorable result.

How would you improve our current product or service?

  • The HR professional wants to know whether you could contribute to their company in an innovative way.
  • Can you be a quick thinker with reforming ideas
  • Do not focus on the shortcomings of the company’s current service. Focus on your methods that can improvise.

Depending upon the role and position, this question can get particularly specific.

How long would you expect to work should you be hired for this job?

Through this question, the HR professional basically wants to know whether the candidate put up with the work or not. 

  • Show a willingness to work for as long as the company requires your service an expertise.
  • Focus on how much opportunity lies in this work and how you intend to attain that for as long as possible.

Would you like to ask any questions?

  • Do not refrain from asking anything. Such a question makes the interview more interactive and less interrogative.
  • Ask about the growth prospects, specificity of the product or service, company’s vision.
  • Pick up from a topic that was addressed earlier, this shows that you had been paying attention and are keen about the job.

Are you comfortable working in a team?

The role or position you apply for may involve engagements with teams. Your attitude towards teamwork could determine your suitability for the job.

  • Be affirmative about working in teams because chances are it is inevitable.
  • Focus on your ability to generate a holistic, productive rapport with your colleagues.
  • You may give examples of your past job wherein you handled projects with teams.

HR Interview Questions Phase 4 | The Negotiation

This round is about negotiating salary and other specifics. The key here is to tell the hr how much value you can add to the company and also you should not hesitate to ask ‘how working with them will benefit you’ or ‘why you should join their company’. Know about their culture, policies etc. Don’t hesitate to ask questions. If you’ve made it to this hr interview questions round you’re already the right candidate for them.

You do not have all the experience for this position or How do you compensate for your lack of experience for this position?

  • Both questions direct towards how can you compensate for the lack of prerequisite of the position.
  • Focus on your ability to innovate, adapt, quickly respond to new challenges.
  • If it is a major lack of skill mention the measures you have undertaken to attain that necessary skill.

Have you ever fired anyone in the past? How would you go about doing so should the need arise?

  • The two things this question intend to obtain if you are your emotional quotient and decision making skills. Can you make tough choices? How firm are you in your actions and how do you handle your colleagues?
  • Focus on the interest of the company and how firing a particular candidate would lie in the interest of the firm
  • Keep your focus on how your priority would be the work, the project and how you wouldn’t compromise with it in the face of an incapable worker.

Have you ever committed a mistake at work?

  • Every person at some point makes some mistakes. So before you answer this question, analyze the magnitude of your error and the impact it had upon your work.
  • Narrate an insightful experience and focus on what you did to correct that mistake and the lesson you learned from it.
  • Also talk about the lessons you apply to avoid making such mistakes now.

Would you be happy to relocate should the need arise?

Depending on the nature of the position you are applying for, the question may or may not come as a surprise.

  • State your convenience or incontinence over the matter clearly to avoid miscommunication.
  • If you are prepared for relocation or anticipated this subject, show an affirmative attitude towards it.

Discuss the most daunting situation you confronted in your previous job.

  • Discuss the stressful situation you managed to overcome and maintain a positive attitude while answering the question.
  • Focus on the demanding and challenging nature of the work and how you carried it out. This will leave the impression that you can handle stressful situations and also handle challenges.

Can you work independently?

  • Show an affirmation for working independently but don’t oversell the idea as that may give the impression that you can’t work with teams.
  • Focus on the creative methods you may include should you work without teams or supervision.

Do you plan on undertaking further studies?

  • Be honest about the matter. If you are involved in distance learning, or interested in further studies, mention it.
  • You may also talk about the certifications and online learning forums you have undertaken to increase your knowledge.
  • The purpose of the question is to know whether you are a constant learner or not.

Tell us about your accomplishments in the past year.

  • The aim of the question is to know how productive, valuable and goal oriented you are.
  • Focus on your professional achievements only.
  • Mention the projects you carried out, your contributions to your previous firm.
  • Talk about the positive feedback you received from your superiors and colleagues

You stayed too long in your last job. Why so?

  • The purpose of the question is to understand your motivation behind pursuing this role or position in particular.
  • Talk about the growth and insight you attained from your previous job.
  • Mention the promotions and benefits of your last job.
  • Also, highlight the cause for your sudden interest in this position from your last job. Be particular to mention what you intend to gain and learn from this job.

What kind of a salary are you looking for?

  • It is advised that you come prepared for this question.
  • Know the maximum and minimum  salary that is offered for this position.
  • Ask the HR about the salary that is offered by the company and then accordingly mention your additional work experience that makes you suitable for a hike.

How quickly do you adapt to new technology?

  • It is important that you show adaptability towards emerging technology because most jobs are increasingly becoming tech oriented.
  • Talk about your previous experience with technological changes and additions in your work and how you inculcated it in your workspace.
  • You may also mention your awareness of various technologies and technical insight related to the position that you are applying for.

What motivates you?

The question is aimed to gain insight on your feeling about the work you do.

  • Talk about the aspects of your job particularly that motivate you to do more and grow.
  • Mention the motivation behind applying for this job.
  • Talk about the  macro level purpose that your work fulfills and how that influences you to go on.

How to do a follow up post interview?