How do you succeed in information technology

10 interview questions IT consultants should be prepared for

After the written application as an IT consultant: Telephone calls

Interviews? We have deliberately chosen the plural here. IT consultant positions are not filled with a single interview. First, expect a phone call or two.

The first phone call is for orientation. An employee in the HR department would like to get a first impression of yourself. He is interested in the stages of your training and professional life. There should be no contradictions to your submitted CV. Be prepared for details of your previous positions and gaps or breaks to be discussed.

This can then be followed by a second telephone call in which specialist managers are involved. It's about how you are professionally positioned: skills, collaboration on projects, experience.

You should take the phone calls seriously. Punctuality and appropriate manners are mandatory. Tip: Do not hold these conversations in casual clothes from the sofa. Sit at a table, prepare your notes and dress as you would at an office desk. It has been proven that such circumstances subconsciously influence the way you talk.

As an IT consultant, you can expect these questions during an interview

The time has come: Your personal interview as an IT consultant is pending. What impression do you make as a person? Do you fit into the company or into the team? Your appearance should be businesslike in this situation. Dress like you're going to a customer appointment. The company wants to know if you are presentable with customers.

IT consultants are characterized by specialist knowledge that customers do not have. Using these skills skillfully requires two things: Firstly, deep-seated expertise from which one can abstract. Second, empathy for the customer. Consultants have to understand the customer and break down their specialist knowledge to meet their needs. The super expert, who lives in his specialist world and becomes impatient when the other person expresses problems of understanding, is not convincing.

Your interview as an IT consultant will be aimed at finding out if you have expertise, are psychologically adept, and are selling services. In order to successfully conduct an interview for the position of an IT consultant, you should be prepared for the following questions.

1. How do you imagine everyday life as an IT consultant in our company?

You are not expected to explain exactly how the processes in this company work. At this point, you can expand your knowledge of the company that you have acquired in advance from publicly available sources. Knowledge that you have received from someone you know who works for the company is taboo. Explain how a consultant job works: project monitoring, communication processes, preparation and follow-up of meetings, accounting, personnel planning, research.

2. Why did you apply for this position with us?

The classic. In your answer, you should avoid intrusive ideas about your personal career planning. Anyone who refers to a high salary or other advantages can be assumed to be a venial loyalty. Egomaniacs and careerists are not welcome. You don't identify with the company's goals.

Answer more in the direction of a general interest in the opportunities that are available in the industries the company serves. Try to point out that

  • You see a great need for company-related expertise
  • there are great opportunities in selling your service
  • You are passionate about this job because the topic and content cover exactly the area that interests you personally.

3. Why do you want to change your current job?

Attention, trick question! When answering you must make sure that you do not address any internal issues of the previous company.

Don't let it appear in a bad light. No company wants to employ someone who makes negative comments to third parties. It is relevant that you describe which professional challenges or goals you can better realize in your new desired position. If you want to change the company due to personal circumstances, you should address this.

4. How would you explain the difference between a class and an object to your grandmother?

Make use of the ability to abstract that you have as an IT consultant. Take a step back. From this perspective, describe what you are doing: for example, modernizing, digitizing or realigning business processes. On the other hand, your empathy is required. How well can you empathize with other people's perspectives? Do you manage to explain aspects of your professional activity in their understanding of the world? Is your grandmother a passionate gardener or does she like tailoring? Try to explain the question with metaphors from these areas.

5. What do you do when you get stuck with a programming project?

As an IT consultant, you have the ability to analyze at a distance. What was the starting point, what happened, where is the project today? Were the customer's requirements correctly formulated? Were sufficient resources available? Was there a lack of communication?

6. How would you represent the functions of an espresso machine as a process diagram?

Two skills of an IT consultant are required here: a quick grasp and your ability to break down problems into procedural issues. Play this through beforehand.

7. What are the greatest challenges for an IT infrastructure?

This question in the interview for IT consultants needs your expertise. As a consultant, you are familiar with the technical details. The conflict of objectives between technical requirements and the customer's budget expectations is relevant. Example: Not everything that is possible, for example to create 100% security, can be enforced with the customer for financial reasons. Sensitivity and negotiating skills are required.

8. How do you as an IT consultant organize the cooperation with external service providers?

Different disciplines come together in IT projects. As an IT consultant, you have to bring existing and new service providers to act together, organize processes, monitor interim results and control costs. Businesses want to get the best quality at the lowest cost. You will be valued as an IT consultant if you are able to achieve this goal.

9. How would you as a team leader approach the creation of a new software application?

- Analysis of the requirements

- Creation of specifications

- Resource planning

- Time plans

- Leadership

This section of the interview is a great way to demonstrate your expertise as an IT consultant.

10. Where do you see yourself professionally in 10 years?

This classic question explores whether your personal life and career planning is in line with the company's goals.

You shouldn't set goals too high in your response. You may get the impression that you are overestimating yourself. Or the company wants you to fill your job primarily in the position to be filled and not constantly strive for higher things.

It shouldn't sound too complacent: the suspicion of "following the rules" is in the air. There should be ambition.