Questions for Candidates to Ask When Exploring a Job Opportunity

Client Meeting Over Coffee

Preparing to interview for a career opportunity is not only critical for receiving a job offer, it also ensures that you’ve done your due diligence and can make a sound decision. This is a checklist of fundamental information you’ll want to gather prior to your interview, organized by industry, company, department, role, and hiring manager/interviewers. Not all of this information will be obtainable without going through the interview process. After doing your own research, we recommend bringing what questions remain to the job interview.


  • What is the industry?
  • How much market share does the company own?
  • What is the company’s niche or unique offering within the industry?
  • Is the overall industry growing, stagnant, or shrinking?
  • What are the current industry trends?
  • How stable is the industry? Is it susceptible or resilient to recessions?
  • Who are the major players in the industry?
  • Who are the company’s major competitors within the industry?
  • Are there any company’s within the industry that partner with your prospective employer?


  • What is the ownership structure? I.e., is it publicly held, private, private equity, family, or employee owned?
  • Where is it headquartered?
  • What is the company’s top-line revenue?
  • How many employees?
  • How does the company make money?
  • Is the company profitable?
  • Where all does the company have operations (manufacturing sites, distribution centers, retail spaces, sales offices, etc.) and offices?
  • Where all are the company’s customers?
  • Is the company growing?
  • What is the vision, mission, and values of the company?
  • What is the growth strategy of the company?
  • If the company is growing, is it organic growth or is it the result of acquiring other businesses?
  • What is the culture like?
  • What is the management style of the company?
  • What does the executive management team look like?
  • Has the company issued any major press releases lately and, if so, are they positive or negative?


  • What does the org chart look like?
  • How many staff total?
  • Who are the key employees?


  • Read the job description thoroughly
  • What are the responsibilities? Which ones have you done and which ones are new to you?
  • To whom will you report?
  • With whom will you work cross-functionally on a regular basis?
  • How many direct reports does it have and what are their duties?
  • What are the requirements, both required and preferred, and how do you measure up?
  • How does the Hiring Manger define success for the role? What does it look like? Is it measurable? Is there a timeline?
  • What are the main priorities for the first 6 months on the job?
  • Are there any major projects now or on the horizon?
  • If I were to start tomorrow, what is the first project I would work on?
  • Can you describe a typical day for someone in this position?
  • What is the most challenging part of this job?
  • What would the hiring manager like done differently by the next person who fills this job?

Hiring Manager and Other Interviewers

  • Obtain the professional profiles of the Hiring Manager and the interviewers, if possible. Ask your recruiter and/or search Linked In.
  • What is their profesional background?
  • How long have they been at their current company?
  • How long have they been in their current role?
  • What would be your working relationship to them and how will that impact the way you interview?
  • Can you see yourself working for and/or with them?
  • What is there personality like?
  • What is their management style or philosophy?
  • Can you get a sense of how they communicate? Do you get the sense that they will be approachable and open communicators?
  • What do they like most about working for the company?
  • Do they come across as trustworthy and ethical?
  • Do they come across as a leader?
  • Do they act professionally?
  • What all do you have in common with them that you can leverage to build rapport? Did you go to the same school, share common interests, or know someone who worked at one of their employers in the past, etc?

By answering these questions for yourself before and througout the interview process, you can rest assured that you’ve done your due diligence. The Hiring Manager will also get the impression that you also know exactly what the company is looking to do, what the role is, and what is expected of you, which will increase your chances of receiving an offer.

About The CSP Group

The CSP Group is a boutique recruitment firm focused solely on finance and accounting professionals. Our focus has allowed us to successfully develop a network with the express purpose of matching leading companies with top talent.

Our firm places transparency and honesty at the forefront of our process, taking every opportunity to do what is right, build trust and further enhance the customer service experience. We are fast. We are accurate. We are a value-added partner with the nuanced and dynamic market knowledge to keep your business competitive and growing.

The CSP Group conducts contingency and retained searches around the country, with operations in St. Louis, San Diego and Denver.

Contact The CSP Group today

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