Your resume is a chance to leave a great first impression with a prospective employer. Your interview is a chance to leave a great lasting impression with a prospective employer.
When it comes to hiring managers, the lasting impression is what determines whether or not you get the job, not the content of your resume.
It’s important, then, to be prepared for probing interview questions and answer them so that you impress the interviewer. Demonstrating competence in engineering may not be enough, especially if there are numerous candidates competing for the same position. You’re going to need to stand out from the crowd, and you’ll do that with an engaging dialog that shows you’re prepared to be an important part of the team.
Here are three common interview questions for engineering jobs, and how it’s best to go about answering them.
1. What are you doing to keep pace with technological advances?
Here’s what the interviewer is really asking when you hear that question: Is this person someone who just wants a job or is this someone who is really an engineer?
A “real” engineer is someone who enjoys the discipline and will take the time to keep up with latest in high-tech innovations. This is a quality that goes beyond simple academic or professional history, but points to a character trait that demonstrates commitment.
When you hear that question, you’re going to want to demonstrate to the interviewer that you not only have a background that suits the company’s needs, but also that you enjoy doing what you do for a living. Make it clear that engineering is not only a job choice, but also an important part of your life.
Emphasize that you’re always learning. Talk about web sites that you like to visit to keep up with the latest trends. Mention trade journals that you review regularly. If you have a subscription to any of those journals, all the better.
Finally, talk about a recent article that you’ve read that you really enjoyed. Explain why you enjoyed it. You’ll be demonstrating enthusiasm as well as your commitment to engineering.
2. How would you describe your most challenging client?
With a question like that, the interviewer is trying to determine if you’re someone who is just a bookworm with little ability to bring your expertise into the real world or if you’re someone who is committed to customer service.
The best way to answer that question is to talk about a previous experience in which you went above and beyond the call of duty to satisfy a customer requirement. You’ll be making it clear to your prospective employer that you can apply your engineering language to a business environment where competition dictates that customer satisfaction is key.
3. How do you make sure that you don’t make mistakes?
What the interviewer wants to know with that question is whether or not you’re detail-oriented. Obviously, that can be an important consideration in just about any job, but especially an engineering position.
Once again, you’re going to want to provide anecdotal evidence in your answer. Explain how, in the past, you have reviewed your work and acted as your own QA tester. Don’t be afraid to talk about how your own efforts have uncovered some mistakes that you’ve made, because that demonstrates that you do take your work seriously and take pride in your efforts.
Contact us at Selectek to learn more about job opportunities available for professionals with an engineering background. Our ability to match skilled candidates to exact-fit opportunities has been the basis of our success, and why we’ve become the staffing solution of choice for your engineering and technology industry.