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5 Human Resources Manager Interview Questions and Answers

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Q:

Describe the software applications essential for human resources managers you've used in the past. How would you rate your skill level for each one?

A:

Anyone seeking a position as a human resources manager should be well-versed in a number of computer programs. While the individual applications may vary depending on the specifics of the position, it's best to get a feel for the applicant's computer literacy level right up front. The ideal candidate will exhibit flexibility and a desire to learn any necessary software. What to look for in an answer:

  • Technical skill level
  • Computer literacy strengths and weaknesses
  • Ability for rational self-judgment

Example:

"During my years in human resources, I've become fluent in the use of Excel and QuickBooks as well as our bank's payroll software program."

Q:

As human resources manager, you'll be expected to help lead the workplace culture. What do you have to offer in this regard?

A:

It's a given that an individual in this position should be expected to comply with the company's policies regarding dress code and acceptable employee conduct. However, it's just as important that they bring something to the table themselves. Ask them to describe how their personality traits will make the office a better place in which to work. What to look for in an answer:

  • Insight into the applicant's personality
  • Level of comfort in an office environment
  • Rapport-building skills

Example:

"I'm an energetic and enthusiastic worker who leads by example. It's especially important for my co-workers to feel comfortable approaching me in any situation."

Q:

Describe your steps for remaining current on issues of compliance with national labor laws.

A:

The majority of human resource specialists will have dealt with issues such as the regulation of state and federal taxes, minimum wage, worker's compensation and health insurance. The most qualified applicants will be familiar with these steps and be in a position to describe their implementation. Since you're hiring for a management position, you want to be sure to choose an individual who's comfortable taking the reins. What to look for in an answer:

  • Depth of knowledge of compliance issues
  • Level of comfort in a supervisory role
  • Level of problem-solving prowess

Example:

"I make sure to visit the IRS and Department of Labor websites every quarter to ensure that I'm aware of the current laws and regulations."

Q:

How do you go about finding the best and most qualified job applicants for any given position?

A:

If the human resources manager is to be in charge of hiring and firing, ask them to describe their process for both operations. Do they rely on websites or local advertising to find applicants, or do they have more creative methods? This is a major responsibility, so pay close attention to their response to ensure that their preferred procedures are a good fit for the company. What to look for in an answer:

  • Insight into their leadership skills
  • Level of comfort taking initiative
  • Compatibility of their methods with company's

Example:

"I find is useful to maintain a strong presence in the community so that the company becomes known locally as an excellent place to work."

Q:

In your work in human resources, which tasks do you most enjoy, and which do you look forward to the least?

A:

The field of human resources is a broad one, and not all positions are created equally. The chosen applicant's success or failure in the position depends largely upon which responsibilities they'll be taking on. Learning which tasks they enjoy the most and least can help you determine their personality as well as their desired level of involvement. What to look for in an answer:

  • Honest self-evaluation of their skills and weaknesses
  • Willingness to take on any tasks
  • Insight into their level of humility and ability

Example:

"I got the most enjoyment out of running the weekly payroll. Knowing that there was so little room for error kept me fresh and alert."

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