The “off limits” job interview questions you need to know


The questions you might be asked at a backyard braai aren’t the same questions you should be asking at a job interview — innocent as they are, according to the website. recruitment. Glass door.

The group noted that this included a series of personal questions, including:

  • In what year did you graduate?
  • When do you want to retire?
  • Are you married?
  • Do you have children?

“These types of questions can come across as chatter, so you may not recognize that they are red flags. While they’re all perfectly fine in a social situation, it’s not a no-no in an interview. The nature of these questions could be biased or discriminatory, and they have nothing to do with your skills,” Glassdoor said.

Notably, discriminating against people in the hiring process is illegal in South Africa.

The Employment Equity Act prohibits unjust discrimination against an employee or job applicant in any employment policy or practice on the following grounds:

  • Race, gender or sex,
  • Pregnancy, marital status or family responsibility,
  • Ethnic or social origin, color or sexual orientation,
  • age, disability or religion,
  • HIV status,
  • Conscience, political opinion or culture
  • Language, birth or on any other arbitrary grounds.

How to change gear

Now, you know these questions are against the law and inappropriate, but knowing that doesn’t help you walk away from them in the moment. It takes practice, Glassdoor said.

“One way to handle this is to point out the interviewer’s error in asking these questions. But it could make the interviewer defensive and hurt your chances of getting an offer.

“Then again, maybe you have made the decision to reject companies where their investigators turn to personal matters, and you are ready to close that door. Still, if you’re like most job seekers, you want as many offers as possible.

Here are some tips to change the conversation.

  • Marital status, children, or religious or political affiliations – For questions related to your marital status, children, or religious or political affiliations, Glasdoor suggests a firm, yet polite response, “I try to separate business and personal matters like that. I don’t think my family life would affect my ability to do a great job here.Similarly, regarding medical condition or disability, you might respond that you are confident in your ability to meet the requirements of the position.
  • Home ownership – For housing issues, diversion and redirection to the interviewer usually works. “It was hard, wasn’t it? I keep reading about people who have made offers on 10 or more houses! Have you moved recently? »
  • Age and family – As for age-fishing issues? If an interviewer asks when you graduated from high school or college, unfold a friendly response that highlights your work experience. For example, “I feel like it was a long time ago!” I have already worked in accounting for 12 years.

Read: South Africa to look at ‘German system’ for jobs: Ramaphosa


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