What Are Competency Interview Questions?

Performing a job search is a full-time job itself. There is so much to know that you can easily be overwhelmed.

You’d think that once you nail an interview that the hard part is over. Think again. Your work is just beginning.

Competency interview questions are now commonly used during the interview process. So unless you’re prepared, it could mean the difference between “you’re hired” and “thanks for coming in”.

Luckily, with a little preparation, you can easily prepare for any questions your interviewer(s) may throw at you. Which means you walk away with the job.

So let’s go over competency interview questions.

What are Competency Interview Questions?

Today’s companies aren’t just looking to fill seats. They want to hire the best person for the position. But it’s hard to find the right employee by asking the question, “what’s your five-year plan?”

So questions were developed to help consultants and hiring professionals to ensure they hire the right person for the job. These questions allow them to more accurately measure your:

  • Skills
  • Attitude
  • Knowledge

While this may seem a bit scarier, there are ways to prepare. Don’t forget these questions will also help you, too. After all, you want to make sure you end up working in a place you love.

How Can I Prepare for My Interview?

Obviously, you want to make sure you are looking your best for the interview, but there’s a lot you can do to mentally prepare beforehand, too.

It just means doing a little homework.

1. Practice Makes Perfect

Ask and answer any potential competency interview questions that may come up. Especially the hard ones. The more at ease you are in the interview, the more your potential employer will see how unflappable you are in tough situations.

2. Test Your Skills

Most positions list the skills required to perform the open position well. If they’re not listed, ask for them before the interview. Then commit them to memory and have examples ready of times you’ve utilized those exact skills in other positions.

3. Use the STAR Approach

The STAR approach deals with behavioral competencies during specific situations.

  • Situation: A typical situational question would be, “Describe a time when planned and organized an event.” The answer shouldn’t be long, it would merely show you have experience dealing with that type of situation.
  • Task: What steps did you take to bring that event to fruition? Even the small steps matter with this question, so don’t leave anything out.
  • Action: This helps recruiters understand your accountability and responsibility within the workplace and in certain situations.
  • Results: What went well in the situation you’re describing? What didn’t? Add examples so they understand your actions and reasoning.

4. Expect the Unexpected

Don’t allow anyone or any questions to throw you off your game. The more unrattled you are, the more impressed they’ll be.

What are Some Common Questions?

Here are common competency interview questions:

  • Tell us a time when you had to win someone over who didn’t want to be?
  • Give us an example when your listening skills helped a situation?
  • Tell us about a time when there was a conflict with your team. How did you handle it?

Whether you’re looking for the right candidate or the right position, we’ve got you covered. Contact PT Systems today to get started building your future today.