Must-Ask Interview Questions for Graduates

Must-Ask Interview Questions for Graduates

Conducting a job interview is often regarded as a simple process. Graduate candidates meet with a potential employer who asks them a few questions and then the most qualified person gets the offer - easy as pie. However, in addition to finding someone competent, employers also need to assess the candidate's character and outlook questions to ensure a perfect company fit. To achieve this, ask questions that are work and non-work-related to better understand the person on a professional and personal level. Asking different questions can enlighten you about a graduate's resilience and their ability to handle a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous) work environment.

When looking for skilled graduates to hire, you need to be aware of the post-pandemic shift in the workplace and how a promising candidate has responded to this shift. When working in a hybrid or remote environment, how do you ensure that the candidate has what it takes to remain motivated if they are not in the office? Ask the right questions in the job interview. 

Below is a list of recommended graduate interview questions 

1. Tell me something about yourself that others may not know about you. 

This question can be an icebreaker of sorts, as it is sure to catch the candidate off guard and provide insight into their personality. It will force them to shift their thoughts away from the pre-rehearsed answers that they may have prepared for the interview.

2. What interests you most about this position? 

Knowing which aspects of the job the graduate is most interested in will allow you to gauge whether the candidate is best suited for the role. Sometimes, candidates apply for a job based on the minor or less significant parts of the job. For example, if the candidate expresses an interest in the writing aspect of the position but writing won't be a regular requirement, although one of the duties, then this candidate might not be the best fit.

3. What one skill makes you the most qualified for this job and why?

As a follow-up to the previous question, this one will establish the candidate's professional strengths and whether these strengths, coupled with their soft skills, will work well with the core function of the role. Prompt the graduate candidate to elaborate on the skills they mention and ask for examples of where the skills were in action and the outcomes achieved. 

4. What soft skills do you identify with the most? 

Asking candidates to identify their soft skills is an excellent way to see where their percieved strengths lie and which areas of the job they gravitate towards. Gone are the days when interviewers request an interviewee to list their strengths and weaknesses. It’s better to investigate through a line of questioning to see where they may fit best. List soft skills such as leadership, interpersonal skills, organisational skills, enthusiasm, tenacity, hard work ethic, and more when asking this question. 

5. Which subjects did you enjoy most in your courses?

This question investigates which subjects are most enjoyable to the graduate. Does the candidate get excited about the tax side of accounting, or have they taken the initiative to lead a study group in a particular different subject? If you know what subjects the person gravitates to or the type of involvement they had at university, it’s easier to see the type of job that would suit them. 

It’s sometimes best to dig a little deeper to gain an understanding of a graduate candidate’s life experience during the interview. Graduates will not necessarily have five years of work experience and a rocking recommendation letter from a previous supervisor if they’re looking for entry-level work. Find out more about their involvement at the university or college and take note of what mindset the candidate has towards work.

6. What type of work environment do you enjoy, and has it changed since the pandemic?

Use this question to find out how the candidate has responded to the impact of the pandemic. Employers need to know first-hand whether the applicant has the drive to be productive in a work-from-home environment. Find out what their internet connection is like. Do they have an ergonomically sound and dedicated office space? Have a look into their attitude towards a virtual or hybrid workplace. 

RecruitAGraduate offers onboarding support to employers to make sure graduates are successfully onboarded to a company.

READ: How work readiness programmes fast-track graduate employees

7. What do you like to do outside of work?

Apart from doing their job, graduate candidates will also need to interact with other people who are already working for the company. This question will allow an employer to determine whether the person will easily blend into the culture at the company or not.

RecruitAGraduate is a national online recruitment agency that assists forward-thinking companies to find talented university and college graduates. Load a job on RecruitAGraduate for free and experience our personalised service. Pay only upon success.


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