Top 3 interview questions to ask your applicants

Interviewing is the most crucial moment in the recruitment process. It gives both candidates and employers an opportunity to learn more about one another, and establish whether they are the right fit for the role in question. Here we discuss the top 3 interview questions to ask your applicants in 2021. 

What are the most effective interview questions?

Here are our picks of the most effective interview questions for 2021. By putting these to your candidates, you gain the opportunity to learn more about their skill set, and personality – promoting positive hiring decisions.

#1 – ‘What do you anticipate to be the biggest challenge you may face in this role?’

A key indicator of applicant compatibility is the presence of any conscious weaknesses, or areas for possible improvement. When a candidate is transparent about these, it gives you the opportunity to plan an effective training plan if they should be successful in their                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                application. 


This transparency also highlights the applicant’s realistic approach to their work; the ability to recognise their weaknesses as well as their strengths is a sign of focused talent, rather than overambition. 

#2 ‘What achievements are you most proud of so far in your career?’

We all find it difficult to recognise our achievements. However, doing so is crucial to maintaining drive and ambition in our careers. Asking applicants about their achievements helps to further highlight their strengths. If these line up with your expectations for an ideal candidate, then you may have found the right fit!


A sense of self confidence is important for career success; if a candidate displays this through recognition of their achievements, it is a sign that they have the ambition necessary to thrive in their career.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

#3 ‘What made you want to join our company?’

Establishing what attracted candidates to your company is a great way to review your employer brand strategy, as well as evaluating their compatibility with your workforce culture. In asking this question, you can identify particular benefits/brand qualities that stand out to candidates – enabling you to focus more on these in future hiring campaigns.


You can also evaluate a candidate’s view on your core company values to assess whether they are the right fit for your team. If, for example, your culture is based around teamwork, and your candidate prefers independent working, it may be a sign that they are not the best fit for the job.

In summary

Interviews are a crucial part of the hiring process; they give both candidates and employers an opportunity to assess compatibility for the role in question. In order to get the most out of your interview strategy, it’s crucial to consider the questions you put to each candidate. By asking about their perceived challenges, proudest achievements, and view towards your company culture, you can effectively assess whether an applicant is the right fit for your team.


Interviews are also a fantastic opportunity to review your employer brand strategy; a crucial asset in attracting the best talent. Asking candidates why they applied to your company in particular can highlight key strengths in your employer brand, and also show any areas that may need extra focus. 

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