How to Respond to 'Do You Have Any Questions for Me?'
As an interview draws to a close, it's very likely that the interviewer will ask, "Do you have any questions for me?"
When you hear this query, you may groan inside, since it can feel like you've covered absolutely everything during the course of the interview. However, it's better to respond to this question than politely demur. Otherwise, you could leave interviewers with the impression that you're not engaged with the conversation or interested in the position. Plus, since this question typically comes at the end of the interview, it's one of your final chances to leave an impression on your interviewers — so make sure it's a good one!
Here's what you need to know about how to respond — and how not to respond — when interviewers ask if you have any questions for them, plus some sample questions.
Prepare for the Question
Since this question is so common, it makes sense to plan for it. Come to your interview prepared with a list of questions that you want answered. Keep in mind that your questions may change based on who is interviewing you. If you're meeting with someone from Human Resources, for instance, your questions might focus on the interview process or overall company organization. If you're meeting with the person who will be your manager if you get the role, you might ask questions around responsibilities in the role.
Prepare several questions that you can use during this moment, in case some of them may be addressed during the interview.
Watch Now: What to Ask (and not ask) in a Job Interview
What Not to Say
It may be an open-ended question, but that doesn't mean any response goes. Stay away from questions on these topics:
Off-work activities: It's fine to ask questions about the culture at the job, but stay away from queries that are focused on non-work activities, like happy hour outings, lunch, or vacation time. These types of questions will make you seem uninvested in the company or work, which isn't the right impression to leave. Similarly, don't ask how many hours you'll need to work each day.
The interviewer's personal life or office gossip: Give interviewers the same courtesy you'd want them to give to you — don't ask about their family or living situation, and don't delve into gossip about people you may both know.
Things you could answer yourself: If your question could be easily answered with a quick online search or by glancing at the company website, skip it. Time-wasting questions won't be appreciated. Interviewers expect that you will have done a bit of research on the company, and familiarized yourself with the basics.
Salary and benefits: This just isn't the right time, particularly if this is a first-round interview. Getting specific about salary and benefits can make you seem uninterested in the work and the company, and focused only on yourself. (And here's how to respond if interviewers ask about salary themselves.)
Very complicated or multi-part questions: Asking multi-part questions can overwhelm interviewers. Make it easy on them: Ask just one question at a time. You can always follow up. Aim to make the moment feel conversational.
One more thing to avoid: Don't ask too many questions at this moment. You want to be prepared and ask one or two, but when interviewers begin to shuffle paper, glance at their watch or a phone, or wake up sleeping computers, take the hint and wind down your questions. Review these examples of what not to ask during a job interview.
- What are some of the latest developments at your organization?
- How much can I expect to earn during the first year, including commissions?
- What do employees do for fun with colleagues after work?
- Do you have children? Is this a child-friendly employer?
- What are five strategic goals for the organization during the next five years?
Here's more information about questions that you shouldn't ask during an interview, and information on why to avoid asking them.
So, What Should You Ask?
Ideally, your response will make it clear that you were engaged during the interview and have a good sense of the company's goals and priorities. You can reflect back to earlier moments in the interview ("It sounds like you were saying that XYZ is a real priority. How is your department involved in that project?"). Or, you can mention questions that build off of company news, or information you read on the company website.
Aim to always ask open-ended questions, and not questions that can be answered with a "yes" or "no." Here are a few broad categories of questions that are appropriate to ask.
Questions about the role: This is a great opportunity to learn more about what you'll do, if it hasn't already been thoroughly covered in the earlier part of the interview. Here are some questions you can ask:
- Can you share more about the day-to-day responsibilities of this position? What's a typical day like?
- Why is this position open — is this a new role? If not, why did the person who held this role leave it?
- If I were hired for this role, what would you want me to achieve in my first months in the position?
- What mechanisms are in place for performance reviews and when would I receive my first formal evaluation?
- In your opinion, what is the single most important indicator for success in this job?
Questions about the company or the interviewer: This is also a good opportunity to get a sense of company culture and how the company is doing.
- What's the company organization and management style like?
- What's one thing that makes you happy to come into work today?
- How long have you been at the company?
- What did you do before you were at the company?
- Can you talk about the company culture a bit?
- What are some of the issues facing the company?
- What are the company's goals for the upcoming year?
Questions about you: You can use this moment to get a sense of how the interviewer perceived you, and if they think you're a good candidate. With these questions, you might want to preface by expressing your excitement for the position. And then, based on the feedback you get, you can address the issue on the spot or follow up in your thank you letter. You can ask:
- Do you have any concerns about my candidacy?
- What are you looking for in a candidate?
- Are there any qualifications that you think I'm missing?