Do I want to work here?

What do I ask an interviewer?


Interviewing is both a skill and an art, but it’s just as much about finding a place that wants to hire you as finding a place where you want to work. There’s a lot that goes into figuring out whether a place you are interviewing is one where you’d feel rewarded and passionate for your work.

Below are some questions that I find helpful in evaluating a company (along with some reasons in attached notes):

Business

  • How’s the business doing?
  • What are the big risks for the company in the next 6 months? 1 year?
  • Can you give me an example of when you’ve prioritized developer health and happiness over business concerns?

Learning/Professional Development

  • How often will I get to work on new projects?
  • How often will I get to work in new technologies?
  • Am I expected to learn about those technologies on my own time and on my own dime?
  • What are some of your policies around continuous learning/continuous improvement?
  • Is there a budget to attend conferences and professional development?

Diversity

  • What are your policies on diversity in hiring?
  • What are some of your programs/events for existing employees that promote diversity?

Career Growth

  • What does career growth look like from this position?
  • What paths forward are available to me?
  • What have others who started in this position ended up as?

Managers and Mentorship

  • Will I be assigned a mentor?
  • What is the role of “managers” like for the company? For this team? For my project?
  • Are there separate product/engineering managers from people managers?
  • How do people become managers from within the company? How do you hire managers?
  • What kind of training does a manager get in traditional HR things like workplace communication, conflict resolution, workplace diversity, sexual harassment policy?
  • What are some policies that are for management accountability? Do we get to give feedback on our managers?

Performance and Compensation

  • Are there performance reviews? How often?
  • What is the success/performance criteria?
  • How often are compensation and title reviews?
  • Do the performance reviews from above impact those talks?
  • Do salary increases include or exclude cost of living adjustments?
  • Are your salaries published anywhere externally? Internally?
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