Why this matters:

Recruitment is a major responsibility of human resources managers, so the candidate should be able to clearly outline their sourcing process from end to end. This question gives insight into the candidate’s resourcefulness and leadership skills, ultimately showing how they would drive results and fill open roles at your company.

What to listen for:

  • Familiarity with various recruitment tools, such as job boards, direct advertising, employee referrals, and networking events
  • Willingness to take initiative and a desire to drive results
  • Experience using modern sourcing methods, like social media recruitment, is a plus

Why this matters:

Human resources managers play a large part in ensuring an excellent employee experience, and putting together compelling benefits packages is a key part of their role. This question will assess whether the candidate keeps a pulse on evolving benefits and maintains an employee-first mindset.

What to listen for:

  • A comprehensive knowledge of different employee benefits and their importance
  • A history of surveying employees to hear their feedback and preferences firsthand
  • A recognition that there is always room for growth, and a desire for continuous improvement

Why this matters:

Human resources managers should be familiar with different computer programs and software that pertains to their role. This question shows what HR tools the candidate uses on a daily basis, and what knowledge they have when it comes to technology and software. While the software used may vary by position, the ideal candidate would be able to adapt to new software and show a desire to learn.

What to listen for:

  • Technical skill level that aligns with your current needs
  • Technical strengths and weaknesses
  • Commitment to continuous learning and a willingness to learn new technologies as needed

Why this matters:

Understanding how the candidate handles conflict resolution will help you determine whether they’ll make a good addition to your team. Disputes at any level can be difficult to navigate, but this is something human resources managers deal with on a daily basis. The candidate should be able to explain how they mediate major issues between management and employees, clearly showcasing their conflict resolution and leadership skills.

What to listen for:

  • Ability to remain impartial
  • Strong conflict-resolution and mediation skills
  • Comfortability around taking initiative to defuse conflicts

Why this matters:

Human resources managers are in charge of leading teams on various projects, so this question is designed to evaluate the candidate’s leadership skills and determine whether they’re able to successfully manage different groups of people. The candidate should be able to walk you through their process of leading teams and coworkers, providing clear examples of how they have accomplished this in the past.

What to listen for:

  • Examples of techniques for effectively leading teams and coworkers
  • Strong conflict-resolution skills, and a desire to maintain a positive work environment
  • Awareness of what different personality types need to succeed at work

Why this matters:

It is a human resources manager’s job to gauge corporate liability and potential law violations for all stakeholders and leaders of the organization. The candidate should have measures in place if an unethical situation should occur, including a detailed course of action. HR managers should strive to reach the best possible outcome for their organization.

What to listen for:

  • A well-thought-out course of action
  • Leadership skills and professionalism that helped the candidate handle a potentially high-stress situation
  • How the candidate learned from their experience

Why this matters:

While there are no wrong answers to this question, ideally you are looking for a candidate who aligns with your company’s mission and has complementary values. Hiring employees who work well with your existing team will increase the organization’s chance of success. This is also an opportunity for the candidate to showcase relevant strengths, so their answer should reveal their own values and approach to their career.

What to listen for:

  • Values that align with your company’s culture and mission
  • Relevant strengths and other qualities that relate to the role
  • An awareness of how their role impacts others across the organization

Why this matters:

This question is designed to gauge how the candidate handles feedback. As a human resources manager, they will regularly be gathering feedback from employees and clients — and this answer will indicate how well they respond to constructive criticism.

What to listen for:

  • Excellent communication and listening skills
  • Ability to handle constructive criticism and acknowledge improvement areas
  • Level of comfort in taking initiative and responsibility

Why this matters:

Human resources managers typically deal with issues on the regulation of state and federal taxes, minimum wage, worker’s compensation, and health insurance. Since this is a management position, candidates should be familiar with these areas and have key resources at hand in order to stay compliant with corporate standards.

What to listen for:

  • Knowledge of compliance issues and national labor laws
  • Commitment to staying on top of advancements in legislation
  • Willingness to seek outside expertise when they reach their limitations
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