1. Home
  2. Interview questions
  3. Onboarding Specialist

Interview questions

Onboarding Specialist

Best interview questions for your hiring process

Onboarding Specialist Interview questions

Onboarding Specialists are responsible for the hiring and successful onboarding of all new team members. They will also help hiring managers with choosing the right candidates, the interview process and any conflicts that arise. 

Some great pointers to look out for in your Onboarding Specialist are: 

  • Outstanding communication skills – this role most definitely calls for a ‘people person’.
  • Time management skills and organisation will be a big bonus for Onboarding Specialists as they will be working with many different departments at once with different aims. 
  • A good candidate will be passionate about the HR industry in general. 
  • An upbeat and welcoming personality will be a great plus as they’ll be introducing everyone new that comes through the doors. 

Need help attracting more talent for your interview? Multipost your job ad on 10+ job boards with JOIN—for FREE!

Try it now

Interviewing an Onboarding Specialist

Are you searching for an outstanding Onboarding Officer? Browse our interview questions designed for Onboarding Specialists and prepare your interview quickly and easily. 

Please note: Our interview questions are suggestions for the earlier stages of the application process and for candidates with average work experience. They are therefore a little more general.

How to open the job interview

Interviews naturally breed nerves, so the first part of your interview should aim to make the candidate feel comfortable speaking with you, you’ll get much more information out of them and a better sense of the person they are if they feel like they can trust the environment they are in. 

To do this you can ask some fun and interesting questions linked to the role, they should be open-ended and encourage conversation.

Best interview questions for your hiring process

See our Onboarding Specialist Job Description here

For the interview

A positive opener to start

What do you enjoy most about your job?

What has been your journey so far?

Behavioral Questions

In your opinion, what are some of the most important qualities that someone in this position should possess? 

This will give you an idea of the lessons the candidate has learned in the past, and what values and skills they will be bringing to the role.

What management style do you get on with the most? 

It’s important that your new team members will get on with the team you’ve already created, and flourish under their manager with the right working style. 

Are there any processes that you’ve used in the past that you would like to implement in this position?

Gives you an idea of how much research they’ve done about the company itself, it’s not essential for the candidate to do a lot of research and plan changes they would make, but it will make them stand out against the rest of the candidates. 

How do you currently stay up to date with new employment laws?

This question should be asked to get a feeling of dedication and passion to their role. Employment laws are, of course, very important and your HR team should all take responsibility for them.

How do you approach screening interviews for positions that you have little experience in?

Onboarding specialists will need to perform screening interviews across all departments, even though they will learn a lot about each department they will have some gaps in their knowledge. How they approach these interviews will give you a sense of their intuition and people skills.

Soft Skills

How many employees did you support in your previous role?

Lets you know their seniority level, how comfortable they are with leadership and how they would fit into your already established team.

In your opinion, what has been your greatest achievement at work?

This is an opportunity for the candidate to talk about their previous experience, and give you a broad overview of their background. They should be able to define why they consider the project a success as well as any issues that came up and how they fixed them. 

Could you tell me about a time that you made a mistake at work? How did you handle that? 

This should highlight their level of critical thinking and problem solving skills, they should be able to own their mistakes and understand the importance of reacting fast to solve them as well as communicating these issues to team members. 

Can you tell me about the day-to-day responsibilities you held in your past role?

You should get a good idea of their seniority level from this question, how experienced they are in different areas and what they’ll need to learn when joining your team.

How do you stay motivated in a role that requires a lot of positive energy?

Your onboarding specialists will be welcoming new starters on a regular basis, sometimes every few weeks if your company is growing fast. Keeping the same energy levels can be difficult so they should know how to stay positive and upbeat.

Hard Skills

What software systems have you used in your previous positions?

It’s not essential that the candidate should know the same systems that you’re already using, but the question should tell you how familiar they are with the most popular systems and how willing they are to learn new ones. 

What challenges have you faced while onboarding remote workers? How did you deal with that challenge?

The workplace is becoming more and more international and remote. Great onboarding specialist candidates will know why there needs to be different processes for in-person and remote onboarding. 

What would you recommend including in an onboarding package for new joiners?

An important task for an Onboarding Specialist is developing culture packs and welcome kits. They should have ideas about the important information to include in both such as culture outlines, first weeks schedule, and an overview of the company history. 

How would you measure the success of our onboarding program?

A great candidate will want to always be improving and reiterating the onboarding process, they should be concerned about feedback and understand that onboarding is a long process, not just the first few days.

In your opinion, what are some of the most important things to focus on during a new joiner’s first few days?

There’s no right or wrong answer to this one, it’s more about getting a better understanding of the candidate’s personality. They should also talk passionately about the important steps they take to make people feel welcome.

Operational / Situational Questions

How would you describe our company’s policies and values?

Explaining the brand and what your company stands for is one of the first things that new starters will encounter when they arrive. Your onboarding specialist should be able to communicate this effectively. 

In your experience, what have you personally learned from being a new starter?

Demonstrates critical thinking and learning from experience as well as their ability for making other people feel comfortable. 

Let’s say you have a new starter joining this morning but you’re running late. What would your action plan be?

Onboarding specialists should take this situation seriously as they’ll know the company’s first impressions are at stake. They should be asking another team member to step in while they’re arriving at the office as well as making apologies to their new starter.

Sometimes an Onboarding Specialist will have to deal with conflicts. How would you handle a situation in which your new starter isn’t getting on within their team?

Communication is key, a good candidate will know how to navigate sensitive emotions between team members. They should talk about setting up action plans to make everyone feel more comfortable.

Hire better, faster, and smarter

With automated & optimised workflows

Sign up – it’s free

Start hiring and prepare your interview

All platforms are available for you to promote your job through JOIN.

Create job ad for free
See more articles