min read

Conducting an On-Site Interview

February 13, 2024

After reviewing the scorecards and notes from your first interview, it’s time to extend invitations to interview again to your most promising candidates.

While the phone interview or initial screening is a great way to make sure that your candidates are qualified – for example, they have the number of years of experience they listed on their resume, or experience with the specific programming languages your company uses – your following interviews should center around gaining a sense of their soft skills.

At its core, engineering is all about problem-solving, analysis, and finding creative solutions. Being adaptable, solutions-oriented, and ready to push through even the most challenging bugs are all important traits of an engineer. Ask a few technical-specific questions if you realize there’s anything you didn’t cover in your initial call but try to keep the interview focused on soft skills if possible.

Some of our top interview questions to ask candidates during the second interview stage include:

  1. What do you enjoy the most about working in this industry?
  2. Conversely - what’s something you don’t like doing at work, or your least favorite part of working in this industry?  
  3. Tell me about the most challenging code problem or bug you’ve ever worked on. What did you do to solve it, and what did you learn from the experience?
  4. What are your best strategies you’ve found to manage your time when you have multiple, competing projects at once?  
  5. Let’s say someone on your team has a different solution or approach to a problem than you do. How do you work with them on coming up with a solution you’re both happy with?
  6. Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision without all the relevant information.
  7. What’s your experience like working with cross-functional teams – like product management, sales, data science, or finance?

One more tip to consider: a peer interview can also be helpful at this stage. If you’re growing an already-existing team, and your new hire would be working alongside one or more peers, it’s often helpful to have a current team member interview candidates. Peer-level interviewers may be closer to the day-to-day work than you are, and may be able to determine if your interviewee has the skills or attitude they need to be successful.

Do you need talent or a job?

Let our team help you get where you need to be.

Learn more from our blog

Visit our blog