Last updated: Apr 17, 2023
Situational interview questions help to show a candidate’s work ethic and demeanor. In this article, you’ll find 20 situational questions to ask candidates.
Job interviews are about getting to know candidates and assessing their fit for a role. A great way to do this is to ask questions that allow each candidate to show how they would handle hypothetical situations in the role. That’s where situational interview questions come in.
Situational interview questions help the interviewer get a sense of a candidate’s work ethic, demeanor, attitude, and approach to problem-solving. As an interviewer, you need to decide which situational questions to ask — and as a candidate, you should think about how to answer them.
In this article, we'll cover:
Let’s get into it.
Situational interview questions, also called hypothetical interview questions, are questions that help the interviewer get a sense of how a candidate would approach a specific situation or problem. In this sense, situational questions are similar to behavioral questions.
The difference between the two types of questions is that behavioral questions are focused on candidates’ past behaviors — what they did in a specific situation and why they chose to do it.
Situational questions are questions about hypothetical situations which the candidate might not have encountered before. Asking situational interview questions allows the candidate to show how they would approach a given situation. This can help the interviewer get a sense of their work ethic and demeanor, as well as gauge whether the candidate is a good cultural fit for the company.
As an interviewer, the best way to get the most out of situational interview questions is to use real examples of situations, problems, or dilemmas that might occur in the role. For example, if you’re hiring for a customer service position, you could ask: “If a customer calls with a complaint about our service, how would you handle the situation?”
If you’re an interviewer, it’s a best practice to determine the situational interview questions you’ll ask every candidate ahead of time. There are a few reasons for this:
If you’re a candidate, you have no way of knowing for certain what situational questions you’ll be asked. Even so, you can still prepare by studying up on a variety of questions and considering your answers. This way, you won’t be caught off guard when the interviewer asks you to imagine yourself in different situations relevant to the role.
The best answers to situational interview questions include a description of:
If the candidate has previous experience with a situation like the one described, their answer may end up having a more behavioral focus. However, this isn’t a bad thing — it just shows that the candidate is able to reflect on past experiences and, ideally, learn from them.
To help you prepare for the interview, we’ve compiled a list of 20 situational interview questions that can be tailored to specific organizations and roles. If you have an interview coming up, we recommend that you study up on these questions — regardless of whether you’re a hiring manager or a candidate interviewing for a job.
With that being said, here’s our list of 20 situational interview questions:
The ORG helps
you hire great
Free to use – try today