I want to discuss about HR Interview Questions and Answer.
As a candidate, here you are supposed to give a brief introduction, answer a few HR interview questions and answers about your job role or career and in the end, discuss salary, perks, benefits, deductions, company rules and regulations, conditions etc.
Getting nervous is perfectly human, but how to ensure that the answers that you are about to give are smart enough and will lead to selection? To help you, we have gathered some of the most frequently asked HR round questions and answers.
The job selection process comprises
- A written test
- A group discussion
- Personal interview with a panel
- Technical/Role-specific interview (this might take place before the personal interview sometimes)
- HR interview
Once the first four rounds are done, your HR round comes into the picture. Following are frequently asked questions in common/HR interview rounds :
1. Tell me something about yourself in brief.
This is one of the most frequently asked questions during an HR round interview. Your answer has to be short, crisp and to the point. Here are some possible high-impact answers to help you leave a great impression.
Thank you, Sir/Ma’am for this opportunity. I am from XYZ City and belong to a nuclear family. My father is a Central Government Employee and my mother is a Vice Principal at a private school. My younger sister will appear her CBSE 10th board this year. We are a very close-knit family. On an individual front, I perceive myself as a confident, conscientious and hardworking individual. I carry out any task assigned to me without hesitation, provided the instructions are clear. In the case of doubts, I never hesitate to put forth my questions. I have always been a fast learner, and I love to keep up my process of learning to figure out better ways of solving problems. Moreover, I love to compete with my own past performances than competing with my peers, as I believe that improvement is always better than perfection!
Well, I am a confident, hardworking and a very professional individual. I have always carried out all the tasks assigned to me without hesitation, provided the instructions from my Reporting Managers or seniors were clear. I have also been a good mentor to my juniors and never hesitate to guide them. On the other hand, I am a creative person and I love to test my boundaries. In order to do so, I keep pushing myself to think out of the box!
Don’t make the mistake of sharing too much personal information in any of your HR interview questions and answers round. You will not be left with enough time to sell your experience and relevant technical skills.
2. Describe who you are. or Tell me about your background.
Answer 1: I am a B. Tech in Computer Science/B. Com in Economics. I also have an MBA or I have completed a certification course in Digital Marketing from ABC Academy.
3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
This is a very common question asked by HR personnel to candidates. Remember that interviewers these days hardly ever get impressed by flowery responses. So be careful while tackling this one.
I have several strengths namely – I am patient, committed, honest and self-motivated. I am the biggest dreamer I have ever come across! I forgive easily and hate to keep grudges in my heart. My greatest weakness is that I don’t like getting interrupted when I am seriously into something.
I am a perfectionist and that is my main weakness, which I also think is my strength.
4. What is your greatest fear?
Don’t simply talk about your weaknesses, your interviewer genuinely wants you to talk about your loopholes! Try to resist the urge to give him/her more points to reject you. Answer diplomatically.
I work too hard sometimes and care too much about my work. I take my tasks back home and work even during the weekends. You can call me a workaholic, but my family always points out that this is not right. Slowly and steadily I am realizing that speed and working smartly are the key. So, I have begun to reach out to my colleagues for ready-to-use workarounds so that I can give more time to my family.
5. Did you ever have a conflict with your current/previous boss or professor?
Answer: I was managing the creation of our new company presentation, flyers, standees, brochure, and emailers. My team had to meet a very tight deadline because everything had to be delivered on time. I was in charge of the deliverables and had to manage all my team members which included Marketing, Sales, Graphic Design, Events and Product Management. My designer was very talented, but he, unfortunately, missed a deadline. When I approached him about the same, he started bad-mouthing me. I was taken aback but explained my reasoning again. Eventually, we decided to speak to our AVP about how important and time-consuming this project was. The AVP agreed and ended up assigning other designing projects to another graphic designer. This took pressure off my team and then we focused on our priority. Later my designer apologized for the blow-up and his behavior. He also thanked me for my help.
6. What do your friends/co-workers say about you?
Answer: Since I like to build strong professional relationships with my teammates, most of them have become great friends. We have been spending eight hours a day, five days a week for several years now. So, I am sure that whatever they say, will be realistic and not made up. One thing that they will surely mention about me is my love for food! The rest is up to you to find out.
7. Explain the difference between group and team. Are you a team player?
Answer: Yes, I am. Though I am currently in an IC (individual contributor) role, I like working with others as personally, I am social and outgoing. I like to nurture and build team spirit. At least once a month we go for team lunch or host team parties and generally, I am in charge of the fiancés from the pool fund. In case there is no budget left in some month, I ensure a potluck lunch. Being a senior in the team, I keep my eyes and ears open to understand the needs of all the others, especially my juniors and freshers. We help each other focus on what really matters, instead of getting bogged down with irrelevant pressure. My strong communication skills help me coordinate between different team members and resolve further issues.
8. What is the difference between hard work and smart work?
Answer: Hard work is delivering work on time with more effort and smart work is delivering work on time, with lesser effort. I feel that is the basic difference. Most of the times, in the corporate world, I feel a combination of both is needed to attain excellence.
9. Where do you see yourself 3 years from now? or Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Answer: I see myself working for a reputed organization, at a strategic position with budgeting power, good remuneration, and minimal interference.
10. Give an example of a time you had to respond to an unhappy manager/ customer/ colleague/ professor/ friend.
Answer: Personally, I am not too fond of conflicts. I don’t like it when people are mean, so I try to avoid conflicts and tongue-lashing as far as possible. In case such a situation arises, I let my seniors or professors handle it. I cannot recollect the exact situation right now, but that’s what I have done in the past.
11. How quickly do you adapt to new technology?
Answer: I can adapt quickly to new circumstances. Since I am clear about my job role and I am mentally prepared to take up challenges, I feel I have the capacity to learn fast and apply my new knowledge. During my student life, I had to clear new papers and projects in every semester and thoroughly enjoyed doing it. Similarly, I will enjoy picking up new technologies in my professional life as well.
12. Are you open to take risks? or Do you like experimenting?
Answer 1: It is always good to venture into new waters and new technologies. I am a very adaptive person and my diligence helps me pick up new stuff quickly. Experimenting or taking risks can yield both good and bad results, but the exercise in itself is a great learning experience. Such experiences generate experts and I want to become an SME or a JAVA subject matter expert someday.
13. What motivates you?
Answer 1: I love public speaking. Preparing a presentation and talking about it in front of an audience, and then getting back to them with answers in the question and answer round, motivates me! The whole experience is so thrilling. As a Sales Rep, I think building a connection with my audience is useful, inspiring and exciting.
14. What are your hobbies? or What are you passionate about?
You can talk about your own passion here. This is a commonly asked question in all ‘HR interview questions and answers’ lists.
15. What has been your greatest failure?
16. Are you an organized person?
Answer 1: Yes, I am quite organized. I keep all my documents, certificates and files labeled and sorted. The labels are such that I can retrieve anything that I need instantly, in seconds. I also have a very clean desktop in my computer.
Answer 1: Organization comes naturally to me. My desk, folders, software files, clothes, kitchen and everything else is always well arranged, sorted and neatly kept. Thanks to my spouse and mom for instilling this skill as a habit in me.
17. Can you describe your time management skills?
Answer 1: I make a to-do list with timelines and stick to this until any further revision of schedule is announced. That’s how I manage time.
18. Are you reliable? or Can I trust you with responsibilities?
Answer 1: Yes, I am a reliable person. I like helping my friends and family, whenever I get a chance. Be it an emotional boost or a financial aid, I am always around for them.
Answer 2: Yes, I am not only reliable but also a very dependable person. If a task is assigned to me, it will be dutifully handled and completed within the stipulated deadline.
19. What are the three things that are most important for you in a job?
Answer 1: Honesty, loyalty, and determination to achieve my team’s target.
Answer 2: Professionalism, growth and a healthy work-life balance are important.
20. What was the toughest decision you ever had to make?
Answer 1: When I was asked to step in as a temporary team leader for the first time, I still remember how I missed a couple of key communications from the manager. This pushed our deadlines back by 2 weeks. It was a great lesson and since then, I always make it a point to focus on the big-picture, instead of looking at smaller projects.
21. How do you work under pressure? Can you handle the pressure?
Answer : Working under pressure is what I have done a lot during my college days. I have realized that I can actually work well under pressure. It is the pressure factor that brings out maximum efficiency in me.
22. Are you willing to relocate or travel?
Freshers, do not say ‘YES!’ at once. This will only show your desperation to be a part of the company. Answer carefully like this. (This is an important tip for your HR interview questions and answers).
Answer : I would definitely consider it. If the opportunity given to me is appropriate, rewarding and feasible, I don’t think I will have any issues with the relocation or traveling involved.
23. What do you know about us or our company?
24. How long do you think you will work for us after we hire you?
Answer: I believe in long hauls. I have been with 2 organizations in the past, and my stints have lasted for 5+ years. Being an experienced professional in the IT sector, I have done my homework and believe this company will surely offer a best-in-class working environment and a rewarding career. I plan to stay for a long time here, or at least for as long as my services will be valued and required.
25. Are you applying for other jobs? Do you have any other offer in hand?
Do not get intimidated with this HR interview question and answer. You can be open about the other offer or keep it private, depending on how happy you are with it. HR recruiters generally ask this to understand your demand in the market. They also want to know that by the time they interview you and reach the offer stage, you would have already accepted another one.
Play safe with this answer while you face your HR interview questions and answers round. If you have an offer letter already, keep it a secret till the salary negotiation stage comes up. There, you can negotiate your remunerations on the basis of your current drawn package and also the offer letter that you have.
In case this strategy conflicts with your personal theories and beliefs.
Answer: I’ve been talking to ABC company for the past 15 days, but it is not final yet. I am interested in working with them, but I’m still not sure. Is there something you know about company ABC that you can share with me?
26. Why should we hire you? or Why should I hire you?
Most freshers might treat this as a challenging question. Remember that it’s not some sort of a blow to your ego, but a stress test which you can pass smoothly with a powerful answer.
Answer: Sir/mam, I have great communication skills, desired experience and the requisite skill set for this job role.I have been in this field for X years. I have got several to pick up skills, for example in my previous organization, I have completed an internal certification on SAP and supply chain management process. I have successfully executed projects right from inception to delivery. I must add that today I am sitting here because I strongly believe this is the right place to extend my skills. This might be excellent for my future and for the growth of this esteemed organization as well.
27. Do you have a good work ethic?
With this question, the interviewer is judging if you are disciplined and structured in your work. To answer this question, you must communicate your ability to maintain your work schedule without compromising on its quality.
Answer: In my X years of professional experience, I have rarely missed a deadline. Barring extraordinary circumstances, I am usually able to stick to my writing schedule without compromising on quality. Besides that, I get long well with people which helps in maintaining a good work environment.
28. How do you deal with feedback and criticism?
The purpose of this question is to test your attitude toward feedback and criticism. In answering this question, you need to indicate that although you are confident about your work, you are not stubborn. Show that you are flexible and willing to make changes and modifications, when necessary.
Answer: I have learnt that it is best to take criticism positively. Feedback and criticism help one to look at things from a different perspective, which results in a better understanding of the situation. It ultimately helps one gain useful insights into one’s strengths and weaknesses.
29. Your interview is more or less coming to an end when the interviewer asks you, “Do you have any questions for me?”
Never say “no” as this is perhaps the worst response ever given by any interview candidate! Remember that interviews are not integrations but are business conversations where both the parties should ask and respond to questions. Coming back to the situation, the best answer for a fresher is as follows:
Answer: Yes, I do!
This is probably your very first chance during the interview, to ask a question.
It will also show that you do take interest in the organization.
Make a general list of five questions about the company and ask them to your interviewer, after all other HR interview questions and answers are over.
Answer 2: How has your journey been so far in this organization? What excites you the most about working here? How long does it ideally take a person to prove their caliber here? Where is the organization headed in the next years? What are the next steps of this interview?
In case you already know everything about your potential employer, you can ask the interviewer a direct question like:
Answer 3: Can you tell me something about yourself?
In the end, try to throw in an enthusiastic conversation ender like:
Answer 4: It was great talking to you!
30. What is more important to you: the money or the work?
This is a very tricky question. The work should always be more important than the money. This frame of mind is good for you(at least at the time of interview).
Answer 1: Money is always important, but the work is most important for me.
Answer 2: Work is more important for me. Working just for money may not be fulfilled if I don’t feel satisfied with my job. My work makes me stay productive, and money would naturally come along well.
31. What do you know about this organization?
32. Why did you leave your last job?
You should be very careful with this question. Avoid trashing other employers and making a statement like “I need more money”. Instead of this, you can say that:
Answer: Sir, it’s a career move. I have learned a lot from my last job, but now I am looking for new challenges to broaden my horizons and to gain a new skill-set.
It will be helpful for HR Interview.