75 Unique Interview Questions To Ask Employers

unique interview questions to ask

By Mike Simpson

When you’re interviewing for a job, having unique interview questions to ask employers isn’t a bad idea. Not only can they help you stand out from the competition, but they give you a chance to gather some powerful insights about the company, its culture, the job, and so much more.

But coming up with killer interview questions to ask employers isn’t easy, especially on the fly. That’s why it’s best to prepare in advance, ensuring you can toss out great questions as soon as the moment arrives.

Luckily, we’ve got your back. If you’re trying to create a list of questions to ask employers during an interview, here’s what you need to know.

Questions to Ask

Alright, before we dig into our list of unique interview questions to ask employers, let’s take a quick step back and talk about what these questions are for and why they matter. That way, you can approach this critical interview preparation step with the right mindset.

First, it’s critical to understand that when the hiring manager asks if you have any questions for them, saying “yes” is essential. In most cases, stating that you don’t have any questions works against you. The hiring manager may assume that you aren’t overly interested in the role or falsely believe that you know everything about it already.

While it’s normal for candidates to worry that asking questions hurts them, that isn’t typically the case. The hiring manager doesn’t assume that you know all of the ins and outs of the company or role. Instead, they expect you to only have a solid foundation based on what’s listed in the job ad and is accessible online.

By asking questions that let you dig deeper, you’re showing that you want to learn more. That makes you seem excited about the opportunity and that you’re engaged in the process. After all, you wouldn’t take the time if something about the position and company didn’t spark your curiosity.

Ultimately, demonstrating your enthusiasm is always a good idea. Since passionate workers are more likely to reach their full potential, highlighting your excitement whenever possible helps you stand apart from the 87.7 percent of professionals who aren’t passionate about the work.

Plus, asking questions demonstrates that you don’t think you know everything there is to find out about the job. Since 76 percent of hiring managers won’t hire candidates that seem arrogant, your inquisitiveness can work in your favor.

Additionally, these questions are a chance to find out details you haven’t gathered yet. You can learn more about what it’s like to work in the role, how you mesh with the company’s culture, and nearly anything else about the job you haven’t discovered yet. Almost every topic you’re curious about when it comes to the role is fair game.

MIKE'S TIP: Along with pay, one subject a candidate shouldn’t discuss that often catches job seekers by surprise is paid time off. By talking about spending time away from work during the interview, it makes the hiring manager question your priorities, commitment, and interest in the role. Generally speaking, it’s best to leave this topic alone until it’s time to negotiate a job offer.

We’ve already taken a deep dive into the top questions to ask in an interview. However, those aren’t the only ones you should have ready.

When you choose questions to ask employers during an interview, mixing a few unique ones in can take things up a notch. When you ask something insightful and a bit unexpected, it’s another way you can set yourself a part of other candidates.

Ideally, you want a reasonably comprehensive list of unique interview questions to ask employers. Why? Because the hiring manager is going to cover a lot of information during the meeting, and you don’t want to ask a question that’s already been answered along the way. If you do that, it seems like you weren’t paying attention. That’s no good.

Plus, when you have a slew of good interview questions to ask an employer, you can make use of the Tailoring Method. You can choose the ones that are most relevant to the situation, role, and hiring manager, ensuring you make an excellent impression.

75 Unique Interview Questions to Ask Employers

Here’s the moment you’ve been waiting for: a list of killer interview questions to ask employers. Generally speaking, you’ll only get a chance to ask up to five questions during most interviews. Otherwise, the odds that your meeting would run over its allotted time are pretty high.

However, while you certainly don’t need to make use of every option below, by checking them all out, you can find the ones that best fit your situation. Additionally, you can curate a solid list of questions you may want to ask, allowing you to adjust the ones you actually discuss based on how the interview unfolds.

Here are 75 unique interview questions to ask employers, divided by primary topic or purpose.

Hiring Manager’s Needs and Perspective

    1. What’s one thing you’d like the new hire to bring to the role or team?
    2. Is there anything missing from the current team that you hope the new hire will bring to the table?
    3. What does success look like in this role and at the company?
    4. Which aspect of my resume most caught your attention?
    5. What would success in this role look like during the first 90 days?
    6. Do you currently have any concerns about the team as it stands?
    7. During the new hire’s first year, what is the most important thing that you hope they’ll accomplish?
    8. How do you envision this role changing over the next three years?
    9. Has your role changed since you’ve been with the company?
    10. Do you feel that the company supports your professional goals?
    11. What did you do prior to accepting your current position?
    12. What about the company’s future most excites you? What most concerns you?
    13. Is there anything about working here that’s entirely different from any workplace you’ve had in the past?
    14. Did you encounter anything unexpected after starting with the company?
    15. If you could change one thing about this company, department, or team, what would it be and why?
    16. How well do you think the company lives up to its values?
    17. Where did you envision your career heading before accepting this role, and has your vision changed since working here?

Job Duties and Responsibilities

    1. What aspect of this job is the most challenging? Why?
    2. Are there any major projects on the horizon that this position could assist with?
    3. What is the first problem you’d like the new hire to tackle?
    4. Can you describe a typical day in this role?
    5. Is there anything a selected hire shouldn’t do while working in this position?
    6. Do you have any examples of projects this role would handle that you could share with me?
    7. Are there any duties or responsibilities not mentioned in the job ad that make up a significant part of the workload?
    8. Will the responsibilities that are associated with this position change over time?
    9. Does this role consistently engage with other departments or teams? If so, which ones and to achieve what goals?
    10. Can you tell me about the employees working in positions that will report to the new hire?
    11. Do you anticipate that the new hire will require training to be in the role, or are you expecting them to hit the ground running?
    12. How will the new hire need to communicate and collaborate with the position’s manager or supervisor?

Success in the Position

    1. What do successful people in this role have in common?
    2. Are there any skills not listed in the job ad that would increase the new hire’s odds of success?
    3. Have past hires failed in this position? If so, what led to the issues?
    4. If someone held this position previously, what was their biggest success in the role?
    5. After mastering this role, what opportunities for growth and development will be available to the selected candidate?
    6. What metrics will the company use to gauge my success in the role?
    7. How does this role help the company achieve its broader goals?
    8. Who supervises this role? Who else is in the leadership chain associated with this position?
    9. Will the new hire be assigned a mentor, buddy, or guide to assist them as they acclimate to the company and position?
    10. When conflicts arise in the team, how are they typically handled?
    11. How will the company set the new hire up for success?

Team and Company Culture

    1. What prompted you to accept the job offer for the position you hold currently?
    2. How would you describe your management and leadership style?
    3. After working in this role, what came next for the past hires in this position?
    4. How often do internal promotions occur in this team and at the company in general?
    5. How are performance reviews handled here?
    6. Can you tell me about your best experience working at this company?
    7. Does the team, department, or company gather together outside of work hours?
    8. How do the company’s values impact its operating approach?
    9. How often does this position experience turnover?
    10. Can you describe the current team or department dynamic?
    11. Would you describe the company’s workforce as diverse? Why or why not?
    12. Could you tell me about the company’s broader leadership style?
    13. How would you describe the physical work environment?
    14. Is this workplace more collaborative, or do employees tend to work independently?
    15. If you had to describe the team’s culture in one word, what word would you choose? What about for the company?
    16. Does your team have its own motto or mission statement?
    17. What percentage of the company’s employees have been with the company for at least five years?
    18. How has the company’s culture changed over the past five years (or since you’ve been hired)?
    19. Does the company currently have any diversity and inclusion initiatives? If so, how long have they been in place, and how much progress toward those goals has been made?

Company Position, Operation, and Success

    1. What differentiates this company’s products and services from competitors?
    2. Are there currently any plans to increase market share by targeting new audiences?
    3. How quickly is the company growing?
    4. Who are your top hiring competitors? How do you ensure people choose opportunities here over those?
    5. Is the team or department hindered by budgetary constraints?
    6. Is outsourcing commonly used at this company?
    7. What steps does the company take to ensure transparency?
    8. Will the company, department, or team be expanding in the near future?
    9. What’s the overall turnover rate for the company?
    10. How does the company determine its success?
    11. What emerging trends or technologies represent the biggest opportunities for spurring growth? Which ones are most likely to hinder growth?
    12. Was the company ever unable to capitalize on an opportunity due to staffing issues or budgetary constraints?

Hiring Process

    1. Can you outline the rest of the hiring process for me?
    2. Will I have a chance to meet with other team members, supervisors, or managers during the interview process?
    3. Is there anything that we have or haven’t discussed that prevents me from being the top candidate for this position?
    4. What is the expected start date for the candidate selected to fill this role?

Putting It All Together

Ultimately, all 75 of the unique interview questions to ask employers above can be great options. They help you learn more details about the job itself, the hiring manager’s perspective, the company’s position, the organization’s culture, and so much more.

Consider which are most relevant to the role, company, and situation, and keep them in your back pocket for your next meeting with a hiring manager. That way, you’ll always have a few killer interview questions to ask employers ready to go.

Good luck!

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About The Author

Mike Simpson

Co-Founder and CEO of TheInterviewGuys.com. Mike is a job interview and career expert and the head writer at TheInterviewGuys.com. His advice and insights have been shared and featured by publications such as Forbes, Entrepreneur, CNBC and more as well as educational institutions such as the University of Michigan, Penn State, Northeastern and others. Learn more about The Interview Guys on our About Us page.