Questions You Should NOT Ask Your Interview at Interview

Posted on Friday, April 24, 2020 by The InterviewerNo comments

At our London recruitment agency, one of the most frequent pre-interview questions we are asked is ‘What questions should I ask?’ We all tend to focus on what you should ask – you want to know what will make you seem interested and keen to work for this employer. At the same time, it’s also useful to be aware of the questions that you should avoid where possible. To help you avoid an interview faux-pas, we’ve made a list of the questions you should NOT ask at interview.

  1. ‘What’s the salary and what are the benefits?’

    If the interviewer is interested in you, they’ll likely steer the conversation towards your current and potential salary. As an employer, they will also volunteer information about benefits. It’s fine to lap up this information when it’s offered. However, to ask the question directly can make you seem motivated by little more than money. If don’t live up to expectations at the offer stage the salary and benefits, then you can get assistance from your recruitment agency with regards to negotiating changes.

  2. ‘Who are your customers, clients or competitors?’

    If the answer to a question can be found on the company’s website, don’t ask it. Instead, try and come up with something more original. If you ask this sort of question, you expose your lack of research at best, your laziness at worst. When preparing for an interview, write down the questions you think you’ll ask. Now fire up the internet and see whether you can find the answer for yourself.

  3. ‘Do you check references?’

    Always assume that in this day and age, a company will check your references. If you aren’t happy for that to be done, you need to choose a different referee. Asking this question will make it look like you’ve got something to hide.

  4. ‘Can I do different hours from those advertised?’

    Recruiting, and specifically interviewing, takes time and effort. The interviewer won’t be happy if they feel they’ve got you there on false pretences. The time to discover whether there is any flexibility in the role is before you apply. Ask your recruitment agency or phone the recruiting manager. Usually, if flexibility is possible, this will be listed in the job advertisement.

  5. ‘What can you do for my career?’ or ‘How long until I get promoted?’

You should be able to find out about career paths within the organisation without asking. LinkedIn can be useful for this. However, if you do ask, you demonstrate that you’re more focused on personal gain than what you can bring to the business. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, as they’re a fantastic way of showing that you’re genuinely interested in the position and in working for that company. Just take care to avoid common mistakes.

We can help you feel prepared and equipped for your interview. Give us a call on 020 7870 7177.


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Our expert recruiters can help you find permanent and temporary jobs in London.

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