Phone Interview

How to Answer This Tough Job Interview Question

Technical recruiters find that IT professionals are often stumped by one question in a job interview: how would you improve our company, product, website, etc?  If this question stumps you, here are some interview tips IT staffing firms would suggest trying.

1.    Practice answering this question.  It might be obvious, but IT recruiting agencies would suggest that if a question truly intimidates you, practice.  Practice responding with a family member, friend, or in front of the mirror.  You’ll feel better prepared to answer it and may not even feel nervous if your interviewer asks it!

2.    To answer the question, most IT staffing companies would suggest that you start with a compliment—the more specific, the better.  Starting your answer on a positive note helps here.  If you can make the compliment show off your own knowledge, all the better.  Maybe the website has features you particularly admire since you’ve tried to create similar ones in previous roles.  Perhaps the product is user-friendly in a way that competitors’ aren’t.  Remember to keep this compliment efficient and on the shorter side so you have time to actually give your idea for improvement.

3.    Now give the criticism or idea for improvement in the most positive way possible.  This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice confidence—IT staffing agencies often find that you’ll make a better impression on an interviewer if you give all your answers with confidence.  The way to keep a positive spin on it is to focus on the advantage of the change you’re suggesting rather than the cons of the way the company/website/product/etc currently exists.  Obviously IT recruiting companies would suggest you really need to avoid making negative comments about the company/website/whatever in its current state.

4.    Finish your answer by actively bringing the interviewer into the conversation.  Ask if your ideas have been considered, if the company has done something similar previously, or just try to get their feedback.  Again, this isn’t about breaking confidence.  You simply want to show your interviewer that you’re a collaborative person who’s capable of taking in criticism, new ideas, etc.  IT recruiting firms often find that the best candidate is usually the one that has a great technical background, but is also easy to work with and has good communication skills.


Stumped IT Job Interviews
Don’t be stumped by this interview question! Photo credit: airesa66 via Pixabay.


2 Phone Interview Mistakes that Will Cost You the IT Job

When your IT staffing firms set you up for phone interviews, you might feel like there’s less pressure or it’s less intimidating than an in-person interview.  Don’t make this mistake!  IT recruiting agencies see too many great IT candidates fail phone interviews because they’re too relaxed.  In particular, here are two major mistakes that could lose you the IT jobs you’re interviewing for.

  1. Being ill-prepared. Your IT recruiters will likely give you a scheduled time and day for the interview.  Plan to be in a quiet space with good reception (or better yet, use a landline). Research the company and familiarize yourself with any technologies your IT staffing companies note that you’ll be asked about.  Practice with a family member or friend if it’s been a while since your last phone interview.
  2. Being unfocused. Sometimes technical recruiters find that candidates will give more rambling, chatty answers on phone interviews.  Since the phone is usually a more social medium, it can be easy to fall into this pattern.  Try to remember that on some level, your phone interview is just a more condensed version of your in-person interview.  Your IT recruiting firms want you to give solid, comprehensive answers that don’t keep the interviewer on the phone for an excessively long time.


Being too chatty on your phone interviews won’t win you the IT job. Photo credit: niekverlaan via Pixabay.