What questions are allowed in a job interview?

You can practice the interview situation in advance and think about suitable answers to questions. Preparation is also a good way to keep the tension in control. It is also a good idea to think about what you would like to know about the job in advance. The interview is a good opportunity to get answers to your questions and to get the basic details of the terms and conditions of employment and the company rules.

Remember that the questions asked in the interview must relate to the job you are applying for. There are also issues you will not have to reveal in a job interview even if the employer asked about them. These include questions about your family situation and plans, religion and political conviction, so you do not have to answer them. The employer must not place applicants in an unequal position based on their answers or their refusal to answer.

There are issues you will not have to reveal in a job interview even if the employer asked about them.

Possible interview questions

The following questions may be asked in an interview:

  • Why are you applying for this job?
  • How well do you know our company/organization?
  • What do you expect from the job you are applying for?
  • What is your work experience?
  • What jobs do you like?
  • What is your education?
  • Name three good and three bad sides about you? (*)
  • Why should we pick you?
  • What are you like as an employee?
  • Talar du svenska? Puhutko suomea? (**)
  • Do you have any questions to us? (***)

* You can think of the bad sides as development points and reflect on them against the job you are applying for. For instance, if they hope the person elected for the job speaks fluent German, you can say that you currently have a reasonable command of the language, but that you are prepared to develop your skills.
** Your language skills may be tested by asking part of the questions in a foreign language. Answer the question in the same language even if you do not speak it that well. This is to show that you are prepared to try to manage in any language.
*** You should have a couple of questions ready to be asked in the interview.

Questions you do not have to answer in a job interview

You do not have to answer all questions in a job interview. These questions include:

  • Do you have children?
  • Are you thinking of having children any time soon?
  • What is your religion?
  • Are you engaged in politics?
  • Are you a member of a political party?
  • Are you a member of a trade union?
  • What ownership, business and/or corporate relations does your family have?
  • Do you have any severe illnesses? (*)
  • Are you living with anyone?

* Sometimes questions relating to e.g. health can be allowed if they are to do with the special characteristics of the job or with coping with the job.