15 Questions To Ask An Interviewer As A Software Engineer
Updated 1 August 2023
To get a position as a software engineer, it is crucial to perform well in the interview. Asking relevant questions about the role and the company is a good way to convey to the interviewer your enthusiasm for securing the job. If you want to succeed in your software engineering interview, you can consider preparing a list of questions in advance to show your dedication and interest in the company and position to better impress the recruiting managers.
In this article, we discuss why to ask questions in a software engineering interview and provide a list of top 15 questions to ask an interviewer as a software engineer with an explanation for each.
Why Ask Questions From The Interviewer In A Software Engineering Interview?
Asking questions during a software engineering interview helps you to learn about the company and also allows the company to learn more about you. When you ask questions, it shows the interviewer your interest in the company and the position.
Asking questions also helps you determine if a company is a good fit for you. For instance, by asking insightful questions, you can determine if you can enjoy working at the company, if its culture matches your values and whether you possess the skills to succeed in the position. Asking your interviewer about the position can help you decide if the company can help you fulfil your professional goals.
15 Questions To Ask An Interviewer As A Software Engineer
You can do your own research on the company you are interviewing with to identify specific questions to ask an interviewer as a software engineer. You can also choose some questions that allow you to learn more about the company or position. Here are 15 potential questions you can ask your interviewer to know more about the job role and organisation:
1. What expectations do you have from this position?
Understanding a job's requirements can help you better prepare for the duties and responsibilities of the position. Job requirements may vary significantly between companies and depend on the service or product the company offers. You can also consider asking the interviewer how the role's expectations can change over time, as, for instance, quarterly and yearly expectations can be different.
2. Can you tell me about the team I am going to work with in this position?
It is also helpful to know about the team you are going to work with if you get the job. Consider your preference when deciding on the job, like whether you prefer working independently or in groups or whether in small or large groups. You can inquire about the team and department size, the different roles on the team and how and if the team collaborates with the interviewer.
3. What are the project planning methods the software engineer team prefers?
Asking about the project planning approach of the software engineering team can help you determine if that matches your work style. You may also ask about the company's project prioritisation and division practices. It helps you analyse your comfort and compatibility with the work procedures.
4. What technologies does the software engineering team use here?
You can ask your interviewer about the common technologies and development tools the software engineering employees use at the company. Consider whether you want to work with the company's technological infrastructure. Knowing this can also help you determine if you are proficient with the tools and technology the company uses and assess if you can be efficient in the role.
5. What are the key performance indicators in this position?
You can ask the interviewer about the key performance indicators of the position to help you understand the job complexity. Asking this question also demonstrates your dedication to performing better in the position, making you a more desirable candidate. You can also ask about the specific metrics for measuring performance and the nature of the performance evaluation procedure. The interviewer's response can provide insight into how you can excel in the position.
6. To whom does the person in this position report?
To gain more insight into the position, you can ask the interviewer about the person you may report to after you start. You can also request to meet the person if you qualify for the latter stages of the application process. It is an important question, as your supervisor can have a substantial impact on your job satisfaction. If you can meet the person earlier, you may have a better idea of how well you can get along with them and how much you can enjoy working with them on the job.
7. What are the opportunities for advancement in this position?
Consider asking this question if you are looking for career advancement at a company or improving your software engineering skills. Asking about growth opportunities helps you determine whether you can practise and learn new skills in the position and get promoted to higher levels of the organisation. This question can also show the interviewer that you intend to work with the company long-term, demonstrating your commitment to the position.
8. What is the company's development methodology?
Asking the interviewer about the company's development methodology gives you an in-depth understanding of the system, its operations and work procedures. Learning about planning and dividing development projects is another way to determine whether a position can be a good fit for you. By asking this question, you can assess whether you are comfortable with the company's development methodology and can work for the company for a significant period.
9. Can you tell me about the company's work culture and the software engineering department?
A company's culture comprises the shared values exhibited by its employees and the values that define its public image. Understanding a company's culture can help you determine whether you want to work there and does the company's work environment is conducive to your work style and values. This question can also tell the interviewer about your desire to contribute to positive company culture, demonstrating that you can be an asset to the team.
Related: What Is Organisational Culture?
10. What challenges do you believe the software engineering team facing the most?
Asking about challenges facing the software engineering team and the company can provide insight into the top criteria of the company in their potential hires. It also indicates that you care about the company and want to contribute to overcoming obstacles and resolving problems. Asking this question can help you understand the specific issues you may be responsible for if you were to accept the position. You can also consider asking about the current approach to address the challenges to identify the company's general perspective on resolving operational problems.
11. Does this job offer any flexibility in working hours or location?
Consider asking this question during the interview if you value flexibility in your work schedule or location. Depending on your personality and lifestyle, the job's structure may be crucial to your decision whether to accept the position, depending on whether it can accommodate your particular requirements. For instance, if you enjoy working from home a few days per week, consider asking the interviewer if that is a possibility for the position.
12. What qualities are necessary to succeed in this position?
Asking this question can help you determine if you possess the requisite skills to succeed in the position. It also shows the interviewer that you want to excel in the role, which can differentiate you from other candidates. The interviewer's response to this question can also help you assess the skills or knowledge you may require acquiring for career advancement in the short- and long-term.
13. What are the company's short-term goals?
Asking about the company's immediate or short-term plans can show the interviewer that you intend to contribute to the team immediately after getting hired and help the company successfully meet its goals. It can also provide you with information about the company's growth. It can also help you understand how you can benefit from a professional perspective if you can contribute effectively to the short-term goals and eventually attain the long-term goals the company has.
14. What does a typical workday in this position look like?
You can ask the interviewer about the day-to-day responsibilities of the position or a typical workday on the job. This can demonstrate to the interviewer your interest in the position's specifics and help you determine if you can perform the daily responsibilities. Asking this question also gives you an insight into whether it is manageable and if you can maintain your work-life balance successfully after joining.
15. How does the company's work benefit its clients?
Even if your position may not involve direct interaction with clients, you can ask the interviewer how the company serves its clients. Understanding how a company's work benefits its users or society can give you a sense of purpose in your work and help you show to the interviewer that you want to contribute to the company's mission and help the team increase its revenue. In addition, this question can help you identify the vision of the company and whether you want to associate yourself with it.
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