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Best interview questions for your hiring process

Receptionist Interview questions

The Receptionist is often the first person customers, clients, and other visitors to the company meet. That’s why they have to be professional, warm, and welcoming at all times. They have to greet visitors, direct them to the right people or departments, and ensure that their first impression of the company is pleasant. A great Receptionist knows how to turn a stuffy office into a welcoming space.

As the face of the company, you want to ensure that when you hire a Receptionist they are the perfect person for the job. That’s why it’s important to have a well thought out hiring process in place, and asking the best Receptionist interview questions early on is a crucial step to achieving hiring success.

When you go about interviewing a Receptionist, you want to look out for the following skills and qualities:

  • Impeccable people skills.
  • Warm and friendly yet professional and presentable.
  • Great communication skills both in person and over the phone.
  • Excellent time management skills

Interviewing a Receptionist

You have received dozens of applications for your Receptionist job opening and now it’s time to invite a few of the lucky applicants to an interview. To ensure you have the highest chance of finding the perfect candidate, you need to be prepared. By asking the right interview questions you are more likely to separate the good from the bad. And that’s where our list of Receptionist interview questions comes in handy.

Please note, though, that these questions are relatively general as they are meant to be asked early on in the interview process. Once you move on to the next round of interviews you should prepare more experience-specific questions tailored to your company and your candidate.

How to open the Receptionist job interview

Even though your new Receptionist should be a great communicator they might still be nervous about the job interview. This is natural, and it doesn’t have to pose a problem. To ease these nerves a bit we do advise you to start the interview with some easy opening questions. This helps the candidate settle in and feel more comfortable for the remainder of the interview.

Best interview questions for your hiring process

Also see our Receptionist job description

For the interview

A positive opener to start

Tell me a little bit about yourself.

What has your career journey been like so far?

What is your favourite part about working as a Receptionist?

Behavioral Questions

Tell me about something you’ve done at your previous job that helped the company save money, earn more money, or save time.

A great question to allow the candidate to brag about something great they’ve done in their previous job. This gives you an idea of the experience they have and what achievement they’re proud of.

Tell me how you would make an important client for the business feel welcome.

Welcoming visitors to the business is a crucial part of being a successful Receptionist. When it’s an important client, you want the Receptionist to go that extra mile.

Tell me how you would ensure you protect the privacy of our clients.

As a Receptionist, the candidate will have to remain confidential and protect the privacy of clients. This question aims to find out how they ensure this in their job.

A client shows up an hour late for their appointment. What do you do?

Sometimes the Receptionist has to be firm and explain to a client they have simply missed their timeslot. See how the candidate deals with such a situation.

Soft Skills

How do you deal with stress?

The work of a Receptionist can get incredibly stressful with demanding visitors, a constantly ringing phone, and angry colleagues because the coffee machine broke down again. See how the candidate deals with such situations.

Why do you think you are a great fit for this position?

This question gives you an idea of the qualities the candidate thinks are most important for this role and what they are best at themselves.

What are your greatest weaknesses when it comes to working as a Receptionist?

We all have our weaknesses. Owning up to them and accepting this is a normal part of working life.

How do you stay organised and structured in your work?

Organisation and structure are key skills for any Receptionist. See what steps the candidate takes to ensure organisation at all times.

Hard Skills

What type of security protocol did you follow during your previous role as a Receptionist?

A more concrete question in terms of the specific experience the candidate has in this area.

How many words can you type per minute?

A Receptionist has to be able to type incredibly fast.

What other computer skills do you have?

This question teaches you a bit more about their practical experience when it comes to working with computers.

What can you tell me about our company?

This question tests if the candidate has done their due diligence in terms of researching the company before coming to the interview.

Operational / Situational Questions

Two customers come into the office at the same time, both demanding you help them straight away. What do you do?

This will happen to any Receptionist at some point. See how they prioritise in this situation and how they ensure they provide the best customer service to both visitors.

The office hours are 8 am till 6 pm. It’s 6.15 and you’re ready to leave when a visitor walks in. What do you do?

This question gives you an idea of the candidate’s working mentality. Are they a strict 9-to-5 kind of employee or do they not mind working overtime if it ensures better customer service?

A visitor demands to speak with the CEO and refuses to leave the building. What do you do?

Visitors can get angry and difficult. As a Receptionist, the candidate will often be the main person having to deal with this. See how the candidate handles a situation like this.

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