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Companies sometimes use creative questions like “How many golf balls can fit in a school bus?” (an actual question in a Google interview) to identify top talent. Fortunately, qualified candidates can breathe a sigh of relief, as more and more companies are moving away from these mind-bending interview questions.

Nevertheless, some creativity is needed to recruit the best IT talent into your company. Commonly asked questions like “Where will you be five years from now?” no longer reveal as much from candidates as they did many years ago.

Instead, here are five better interview questions to consider:

1. When was the last time you set challenging goals, and what did you do to reach them?

A candidate should have an understanding of what a difficult goal means, which should ideally match with your own definition. More importantly, by asking a candidate to walk you through his/her process of achieving a goal, you can get a glimpse of the thought process they used to get there.

2. Give me a pitch of our company and make me want to buy our product or service.

Instead of using generic “What do we do?” questions, this fresher approach forces candidates to recall the research they’ve done to prepare for the interview and think spontaneously to come up with a pitch.
Some candidates will make better pitches than others will—for instance, sales and marketing candidates might have an easier time than a candidate for internal-facing positions—and there’s nothing wrong with that. This question is not so much about delivery than it is about knowing a candidate’s preparation for the interview and their knowledge of your company’s products/services.

3. How do you think the job you’re applying to now will change in the next five years?

This is a great question to ask if you want to know if a candidate is forward looking. With IT positions changing and evolving frequently, a forward-looking disposition is critical to success. Ask a candidate to predict at least three ways the job they’re applying for will change in the next five years, taking into account changes in business, technology, and innovation.

4. You encounter a roadblock. How would you solve it?

Citing a real problem the candidate will face on the job is a good way to gauge their expertise. This question also presents an opportunity for the candidate to walk you through their problem-solving methodology.

5. What kind of work environment and culture makes you the most productive?

If you need a team player but the interviewee would rather work independently, or isn’t open to anything other than a leadership role, that person will most likely be a poor fit. While this question may seem pretty basic, it allows you to better assess how closely the candidate fits in with the reality of your organization.

Close the gap between your company and the best IT talent with Talon. Our award-winning team of staffing professionals can help find the talent that you need to make your company thrive. Call us at 609-924-8900 or fill out our online form below to get started.

 

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