18 Second Interview Questions To Ask An Employer

Another milestone and you have successfully completed your second interview.  Your task or presentation is complete and hopefully, you have had a chance to meet more members of the team, however briefly.  Current restrictions permitting, you will have been able to look around the site and get a feel for the work environment.  Back in the interview room comes the final question “do you have any questions for us?”

This is another chance to use the interview to create a good impression with the prospective employer.  It gives you some control over the direction of the questioning.  As ever, it is worth being prepared, but don’t give the impression of being over prepared, as if you had gained nothing from the time the organisation has spent with you.  So, try and have some questions that are directly relevant to the interview, meetings and/or tour of the facilities you have just had. For example:

  • Has X, who I met, carried out this role permanently or have they been looking after it until a new appointment is made?
  • I noticed some building work as we were walking through, is this to accommodate a new Division or a new way of working?

The second interview is also your chance to learn more detail about the company, its values and its style.  They would not reveal commercially sensitive or confidential information but should expect and respond to general questions about the direction the company is going in.   The type of detail in the answers would reflect the function and seniority of the role.

The company:

  • What would you say are the company’s values? How is this reflected in the corporate culture?
  • Is the organisation looking to develop a particular service, product or market?
  • Has the organisation restructured recently? Was this to develop new openings or address the problems of a shrinking market?
  • What is the biggest opportunity facing the organisation?
  • What is the biggest threat to the company’s future?
  • What has been the most successful launch of a product or service in the last 5 years?
  • What do you enjoy most about working here?

The role:

  • Has the role changed as a result of the pandemic?
  • How is performance evaluated?
  • What is likely to be the most challenging aspect of this role?
  • What are the biggest obstacles to success in the role?
  • Is the role changing with the new appointment, i.e. are the responsibilities different for the new post-holder?
  • Is the person appointed joining an experienced team who have worked together for a long time?
  • Is the team newly formed?
  • What is expected from the person appointed to the role and how will performance be judged?

‘Housekeeping’ questions

  • If I were to get the role, when would you like me to start? (Make sure you know your notice period)
  • I am very interested in working with this company. If I were unsuccessful in this role, could I apply for another role with you?
  • What is the work pattern, is there the opportunity to work flexi-time?

Terms and Conditions

If you have reached the end of the second interview without discussion of terms and conditions, now is the time to ask when it will be discussed.  Be prepared to have the discussion; know your current salary, commission, holiday allowance etc and know what you are prepared to accept, particularly if there is a balance between salary, commission and bonus. However, ideally, this would be a conversation in its own right rather than be bolted on at the end of the interview.

If on the way home, you remember the key question that you forgot to ask, don’t panic.  It is always a good approach to email the recruiter after the interview stressing your interest and having one further good question will work very well then.

Good luck and keep positive!


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