Asking questions is almost as important as answering them when you’re in an interview. If you’re left on the spot without something to ask, it can show a lack of engagement that’ll work against you. Knowing what to ask is half of the battle, so where should you start? We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions from industry interviewees.
Do you offer a relocation package?: Whether you're from another county or a different country entirely, it's important to know what support you can get with your transition.
What are the working hours?: Not all roles are 9-5. From early Friday finishes to flexible working hours, it's nice to know what will be expected of you so you can plan it around the rest of your life.
Who would I report to day-to-day?: Knowing who to turn to for guidance and support is vital. It will likely be one of your interviewers, in which case you can ask more questions about the team and get to know them.
Is this a new position?: Whether you'll be filling the shoes of someone who has moved on, or whether you'll be making the role your own from scratch, it can help you gauge what is expected of you.
What training do you offer?: Personal growth is important. Knowing if the studio supports the development of their staff through focused training can help you grow in your career.
Are there any specific development processes used here?: Not all studios operate in the same way. Maybe there are a few more systems and steps than you are used to (or even a few less). Asking this will show you have an active interest in the ins-and-outs of the role.
What software/programs do you use?: There are of course industry standard packages but some studios, especially those on the cutting edge, are more open to new/niche technologies than others. Ask about them. Maybe you already have skills in that department that'll make you stand out.
If I'm hired, what is the next game or project I might work on?: NDA dependent, knowing what you'll be working on can help you weigh up your options, especially if you have mutliple offers on the table. Which one excites you more?
How much input will I get on the project?: It's important to have realistic expectations. Knowing the impact you'll have on the project you'll be working on will give you a better impression of what your day-to-day will look like.
How do you assign or schedule tasks?: Failure to prepare is preparing to fail. Knowing how tasks are assigned and scheduled out will allow you to see if this role will work with how you work. This is incredibly important if the role is remote.
Who will I be working with?: Knowing the team who will be at hand to support you is a great way of seeing if you'll fit within that dynamic. Maybe one or more people from that team are part of your interivew panel. You can build upon your question and learn more about the culture.
What is the process for promotion?: Asking this question will show the studio that you are serious about the role and your future with them. If you're planning to be promoted at some point then they can rightly assume you're a hard worker who isn't just looking at this opportunity as a pay cheque.
Do you have a bonus structure in place?: Many studios offer bonuses or shares either annually or paid out when certain commercial criteria is attained. If these are guaranteed, a lower salary might not be a barrier to you accepting the position.
What has been your favourite game/project to work on?: Knowing what the studio has worked on previously and why that was an enjoyable experience can help you determine whether you want to be involved in their future success.
How long have you worked here?: People come and go, but having hiring managers who have worked for the business a number of years (or even over a decade) can show you how strong the company retention really is. It can also show the progression on offer to hard workers.
What has been the most challenging game/project to work on?: Not all projects are straightforward. If you can get a better grasp of what some of the more challenging days look like, it'll enable you to make an informed decision.
How would you describe the company culture and management style?: Knowing what the studio is like to actually work in is important. Are department heads on the shop floor with the rest of their team? Are there daily catchups with line managers? The answers will allow you to know if you'll be comfortable working with that.
What are the company's plans for the future?: They might not be able to tell you much, due to legal restrictions, but knowing the direction the company is heading will help you decide if that is a journey you want to be a part of.
How many people are there in the team?: Are you someone who likes small and intimate teams or are you happy surrounded by a number of varied voices and viewpoints? This question could make or break your decision to join them if you're inflexible.