15 Hard Skills Interview Questions and Answers

15 Hard Skills Interview Questions and Answers        

Hard skills are the technical capabilities that allow you to work in a specific industry. For lawyers, it is proficiency in law; for physicians, it is knowledge and skill relating to the body; for accountants it is expertise in handling and allocating money, etc. You should be prepared for this type of questions before setting foot in an interview room. Here are 15 of the most popular and the answers you should give.

Why did you choose this industry?

If you are in the I.T industry, for example, say how the person you admired most as a child made it seem cool to be adept with computers or how your parents got you a computer as a kid and roused your interest. The key is to let your deep passion and resolve to work in your industry of choice shine through.

Describe yourself/tell us about yourself?

Share your strong suits giving three scenarios that best encapsulate them. Ideally, they should be in your resume, and you should take the question as an opportunity to delve into the issues at depth. Do not go off on tangents or digress. Be concise bearing in mind that it is a sales pitch where you are selling yourself.

How did you learn about the position?

Mention a referral by a known professional and be very specific if you take this route by sharing the name and position of he/she who referred you. If you learned of the position by other means, say so but highlight that you asked an employee, or a professional in the firm concerning your suitability for the job.

How much do you know concerning this company?

This question tests your preparedness and whether you did your homework. Tell the panelists the company’s goals, targets, projects its working on, etc., especially those that are aligned with the position you are interviewing for.

What do you think about what we do?

Show your predisposition towards the company and subtly complement the firm. Highlight projects that were a big win such as a high stakes case that the firm won thereby protecting an innocent if you are a lawyer, for instance.

What are your strengths?

Here, you get the opportunity to anecdotally showcase your standout attributes. Your experience, achievements, skills, and experience are all a must-mention. Try to perceive what the recruiter is after pertaining to the position to customize your answer accordingly. Paint yourself as the solution to the employer’s problem.

How was your previous boss?

Give a good review and do not say anything malicious. You could say that he/she was very specific and driven; a perfectionist of sorts, and a very supportive person who pushed you to greater heights by helping you grow.

Why did you leave your last job?

You felt you had grown enough at your last job and it was time to look for and capitalize on another opportunity that would increase the breadth of your capabilities. Play up the fact that you see this job as the perfect fit to take your skills to the next level.

What is your weakness?

Highlight a challenge that is not very serious but one that you are working hard to improve at. For instance, you could say that you find public speaking challenging but that you have found a coach to help you out. Avoid technical weaknesses or saying you have no weaknesses. This question calls into question your self-awareness.

Where will you be in 5 years?

Having a better understanding of how the industry works, you see yourself in a managerial position discharging your duties with the prudence of experience and a passion for achievement that will hopefully enable you to etch your name into the company’s hall of fame. Also, say it like you mean it.

Which is the biggest technical challenge that you have dealt with?

Get into the details of a complex technical problem you successfully solved. Show your understanding of technical subject matters and strive to impress the panelists with your know-how. Do not be afraid of using jargon but remember to be concise.

What salary do you expect?

The recruiters want to see if you have genuine interest in the job or more money. Say that you are more concerned about the actual job and how it will satisfy all your needs and then mention a salary range that factors in your costs of living. To be safe, ask around regarding the average salary range of the company’s professionals.

Why have you been unemployed for long?

Explain what you have been doing with your time out of employment if you have not had a job for a while. Working for a non-profit, volunteering, public speaking, freelancing, blogging, personal projects and the like.

Have you ever changed careers/why?

You felt that the previous career was not the best fit for your talents and your heart was not into what you were doing. It demanded a lot to change careers but you did it for peace of mind, satisfaction, and the chance to contribute wholly to a cause you believe in.

Do you have any questions?

Ask how it is like working in the company, future projects the company wants to pursue, or some other question in that line. The idea is to play is safe. However, do not fail to take advantage of the invitation to ask questions.

Interviews are all about preparation. Therefore, do not stop here as the above questions, though popular, are not exhaustive. That said, the best source of information on what to expect in an interview is someone on the inside.

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