It’s no secret that our work environments have been forced to adapt as a result of the emergence (and re-emergence) of Covid-19 in New Zealand. From protecting the health and safety of employees and customers, to changes in business strategy – most organisations would have made significant pivots in some way shape or form in recent months. If you have an upcoming interview – whether it’s virtual or in-person – don’t be afraid to ask questions that’ll give you a better understanding of their response to the pandemic. We’ve picked out four interview questions you should be asking hiring managers in a post-covid environment:
1. How has the organisation’s strategy changed in response to Covid-19?
There will be very few organisations on the planet that have remained unaffected by the pandemic, forcing so many to change processes, find new ways of working, seek out new markets or even develop new products/services. There’s two things you want to understand here: a.) where they have seen challenges, and b.) what their new strategic priorities are. After all, you’ll want to feel reassured that your potential employer is in a strong position moving into the ‘new normal’ era of work.
2. What lessons has the organisation learned from Covid-19?
Given so much of the change explained above has occurred in a matter of months, mistakes will have inevitably been made along the way. What you want to understand is how the organisation and its leaders have learned from those mistakes. Did they move quickly to resolve issues associated with the crisis? Will they be ready if/when something similar happens in the future?
3. How do you ensure the organisational culture is maintained during times of remote working?
Culture doesn’t happen overnight – it can take years to build, requiring input from everyone in order to keep it going, not just in the good times, but the bad times as well. However, in hybrid settings (some staff in the office, others working remotely), it can bring a whole new set of challenges to the table when it comes to maintaining organisational culture. With that in mind, what steps are they taking to keep the culture ticking along?
4. What is the organisation’s/team’s view on remote working? What support is available for your (newly) remote workers?
If the organisation is working in a remote or hybrid way (it should be quite clear by this stage of the process), managers will likely have some sort of plan to support remote workers and help them thrive in a ‘work-from-home environment‘. How will it affect onboarding? What about building relationships with colleagues that you may not see in-person very often? How do they go about fostering team collaboration?
Given the climate, there is a chance that the hiring manager will cover some of these throughout the process – as always, use this opportunity to ask the most relevant questions you can to help inform your decision, if the role is offered to you. For more interview guidance and other resources, check out our blog or get in touch with the team – we’d love to help!