Entry-level interview questions

Interview Questions

This section contains entry-level interview questions and pieces of advice that will guide you during your interview process. Plus, you can also find tips and tricks on how to have the best interview experience and some red flags to look out for, in your applicants.

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When hiring young applicants or fresh grads, you can use these sample entry-level interview questions.

Interviewing young applicants and new grads might be difficult due to their lack of professional experience. And therefore, Identifying their skills can be challenging due to the lack of this experience. However, specific entry-level interview questions can assist you in determining their competence.

Examine the following when interviewing entry-level candidates:

  • Communication skills: the way they present themselves and their short and long-term goals.
  • Time-management skills: how they handled deadlines in the past, such as in college or co-op/internship/volunteer placements.
  • Problem-solving skills: how they would approach and handle any future issues at work (using hypothetical scenarios).

Here are some examples of interview questions for entry-level candidates:

Examples of questions asked in entry-level interviews:

  • Why did you decide to pursue your undergraduate program?
  • Would you ever think about going back to school? What are you interested in learning more about?
  • How do you believe your education has prepared you for the difficulties you may encounter at work?
  • What motivated you to apply for this job? Was there anything in particular about the job description or organization that caught your eye?
  • What would you say to a client on the phone if you were unsure of how to respond to their inquiries?
  • Describe a situation (from college or an internship, for example) when you collaborated with a team or a group to achieve a goal.
  • How did you plan your time when you had a variety of projects and assignments to finish on short notice?
  • What knowledge or abilities you would like to acquire during your first year at the job?
  • What sort of tasks did you perform throughout your internship? What role did you play, What difficulties did you encounter and what did you learn?
  • What would you do if your manager gave you a task to do that you had no idea how to approach?
  • Assume I’m a potential customer and you’re trying to sell me X item. What questions would you pose to ascertain my needs, and how would you approach trying to persuade me to purchase the item?
  • Describe a time when you got unfavourable advice or feedback from an instructor or a supervisor. What was your reaction?

How to evaluate entry-level applicants during interviews:

  • Younger applicants and fresh grads might not be accustomed to formal interview situations. Introduce yourself first, then go into detail on the interview process and the different ways you will support them during the interview. This will help your applicants become more comfortable and relaxed during this process.
  • Instead of focusing on behavioural questions, consider situational ones. Ask about possible scenarios for measuring a candidate’s ability to handle professional situations even if they have no prior experience.
  • Give value to extracurricular activities, internships, and volunteer work. such types of previous experiences showcase a candidate’s interactions in a team environment and can indicate what they will bring to your team and organization.
  • Candidates at the entry level are not always inexperienced. They might be experts seeking to shift careers. Determine what drives them to pursue a career in another sector. 
  • To assess candidates more effectively, incorporate an assignment into your hiring interview process. This is especially helpful when candidates don’t have a full portfolio of experience yet. Additionally, you’ll learn some useful interview-related talking points.

Red flags

  • Their career goals are different. Junior candidates may find it difficult to locate jobs in their areas of expertise. If you notice that their career objectives don’t align with yours, it can introduce difficulty for any long-term retention plans you may have.
  • They are cocky and full of themselves. Employees in lower-level roles frequently need guidance and instruction from more experienced colleagues. A “know-it-all” mentality can stop people from growing professionally.
  • They are not competent. Junior applicants shouldn’t be penalized too severely if they don’t come to your interviews well-prepared. However, any signs or behaviours of unprofessionalism, such as being late or missing the interview without letting you know in advance, are big red flags for unprofessionalism.
  • They are unmotivated. Entry-level workers frequently approach both easy and difficult tasks with enthusiasm and a “can do” attitude. Candidates that seem disinterested and don’t ask follow-up questions might not be interested in your position or organization.

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