Job interview questions in the age of the pandemic to prepare for 2022


1. Have you been vaccinated?

“Although vaccination status has become a more frequently asked question over the past 12 months, employers should have a good reason for needing to know, such as wanting to protect the safety of other staff,” advises Elliott.

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) says that asking applicants when recruiting if they have been vaccinated may be justified in certain sectors and positions where there is a particular exposure to health and safety, but, in Generally, medical information is sensitive data that may be deemed inappropriate to ask during an interview, as employers should avoid asking questions related to the health of potential employees.

“While it may be inappropriate to ask prospective employees about their testing and vaccination status, employers can justify processing any data relating to vaccination or vaccination testing. existing employees provided it is relevant to the position and complies with the data protection requirements below.

Employers can ask employees for their vaccination status, but an employer must have a reason for asking. The reasons must be “clear, necessary and transparent”, says the Information Commissioner’s Office. If an employer cannot specify the use of the information, such as the health and safety risk assessment, they are unlikely to be able to justify its collection.

A person’s Covid status is sensitive personal health data, so employers should comply with data protection rules if they collect it.

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2. What kind of flexible/hybrid work are you looking for?

Covid-19 appears to have changed the work landscape for good with a full-time return to offices set to be ditched in favor of hybrid working. Hybrid working is a branch of flexible working that has become widespread during the pandemic. This means a combination of working from your regular workplace and working remotely.

Employees will soon have the right to request flexible working arrangements from their first day on the job under new government proposals, although bosses can still reject such requests.

3. How many days would you like to work from home?

Many businesses are having to work hard to get people back into the office, with Google spending £730m to make their UK offices more welcoming. Goldman Sachs tried to bring all staff back to the office in June, but that was delayed by new restrictions, with the group’s chief executive calling home working an “aberration”.

“If you are not asked about flexible working during the interview, but it is something important to you, you can ask your interviewer how the company prioritizes work-balance personal life and whether it has flexible work arrangements. This will help you decide if the company is right for you,” Elliott said.

As many people have shifted to working from home, people are having to deal with fewer face-to-face interactions with colleagues and managers. For some, this can make it difficult to discuss ideas or receive feedback. Try to be honest about your needs or preferences for a manager, as well as your ability to manage your time and workload.

5. Are you comfortable with your work from home setup?

This question alludes to employers’ desire to understand and accommodate candidates’ preferences for their work environment.

6. What have been your experiences of the pandemic?

This is a particularly broad question, which may seek to obtain context on why you are currently applying. Maybe you were on furlough or were laid off, or maybe you’ve been training and looking to move into a new industry.

You should explain how these circumstances or events brought you to where you are now, but don’t forget to put a positive spin on them by explaining why they make you a good fit for the job you’re interviewing for.

7. How has Covid-19 affected you?

Similar to question six, this is an opportunity for you to explain current circumstances and flexible work requirements, or highlight how the pandemic has shaped your character, attitude, or outlook.


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