Sunday, November 30, 2008

Interview Questions - Part 5

“What kind of salary are you seeking?”

Sample Answer(s)

Answer1: I would expect a salary which reflects the experience and qualifications that I bring to the role. What range do you have in mind?

Answer 2: I’ve got a strong background in this industry and my skills are a perfect match for this role. I would expect my compensation to be at the upper end of the position’s salary band. Can you tell me what that salary band is?

Answer 3: Based on the information I have about the position, a salary in the range 28,000-32,000 would reflect the experience and expertise that I would bring to the role.

Advice from the recruitment consultant

When preparing for the interview you should try to discover the salary range for the job from the recruitment consultant or human resources department. This information can put you in a strong position when the time comes to negotiate a salary.

Unless pressed, you should not give a specific number here. Instead you should specify your value relative to a ‘salary band’. Most firms have salary bands for each position. You should aim to negotiate a salary towards the peak of the range for the position in which you are interviewing.

If you are pushed for a specific salary, respond with a target range. This will help lay the groundwork for future negotiations. You should qualify yourself by specifying that your answer is based on the information that you have to hand about the job. Do not give the actual range that would satisfy you, as your prospective employer may try to bargain you down at a later point. For example, if your target salary range is 26,000 - 30,000, you should specify a higher range such as 28,000-32,000.

“Have you completed your education?”

Sample Answer(s)

I believe that I’ve finished my formal school and college education. Right now I’m focusing on my career and on being as good at my job as I possibly can. I enjoy learning and I think it’s essential in both personal and career development. Ideally, I hope that the firm I join will encourage growth and learning through in-house and/or external training. I strongly believe that the most important component of learning occurs ‘on the job’ where you learn from your peers, manager and others around you. In summary, my answer is ‘No’, I very much hope that my education is not over.

Advice from the recruitment consultant

The interviewer is trying to assess your attitude towards learning and your willingness to take on board new ideas and new skills. As a new employee in an unfamiliar environment there will be much to learn. You should demonstrate your capacity for learning and your desire to take on new knowledge.

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