10 Questions to Ask Generation Z Candidates During an Interview

Generation Z is coming. The oldest representatives of this age group are already in the workforce, and, within a few years, they’ll make up a substantial part of the labor pool. It’s time to start gearing your recruiting efforts to this growing source of talent. That means crafting interview questions to learn the most you can from each Gen Z candidate you meet.  

The people born between the late 1990s and the early 2010s represent about 67 million Americans. That’s not quite the Boomer level, but more people than make up Generation Z. Their potential size alone makes Generation Z an important team-building consideration.  

A good portion of these Zoomers are still in school (they made up only 9% of the workforce as of 2017). However, they will soon represent a major chunk of the people you interview. On study suggests that Gen Z will make up about 23% of the workforce by 2025 and more than a third (34.7%) by 2030.  

So what can you assume about Generation Z? Well, by definition, Gen Z workers are at the beginning of their careers. You won’t be able to rely on their work history to get a view of their capabilities.  

Meanwhile, Gen Z workers are also the first wave of employees who grew up entirely online. Their connection to technology and communication will be different than any previous generation.  

With all that in mind, here are 10 interview questions that will help you get to know your Gen Z candidates better:  

What’s your biggest weakness?/Etc.  

We are using this as a stand-in for all the typical interview questions you ask all your other candidates. Whatever the details of a particular candidate, you need to discover some baseline information. Most of your interview questions should remain standard, whether the candidate is Gen Z or not.  

…Can you give me an example of that?  

By definition, young workers have limited experience. That applies not only to their job experience but to the act of interviewing itself. As a result, you might have to coax them a bit. To get more information from your novice job candidates, periodically asking for additional information. This will let you learn more about your candidates than you might otherwise discover.  

When you applied for this job, how did you imagine it?  

This question allows you to set and discuss expectations. Young workers often don’t have the professional experience to make realistic predictions about what a job’s day-to-day routine will involve. This query lets you figure out where your candidate stands, and provides an opportunity to discuss the position in more detail.  

Tell me about a time you worked on a team project.  

Modern society can be lonely. Social media and personal communication devices have changed the way people interact. The impact is felt most among people who have grown up with the new technology. Given this reality, this question allows you to delve into your candidate’s teamwork skills.   

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?  

For any young worker, you are hiring for potential as much as you are for their current skill set. As such, you want to learn as much as you can about their aspirations and their ambitions. It will help you figure out how much upside potential each candidate has.  

Tell us about a time you improved your performance in response to criticism.  

One generalization of Gen Z workers is that they are sensitive to criticism. This might represent a stereotype, but it’s an avenue worth exploring for any potential employee. This question investigates how well you can expect a candidate to develop over time.  

Explain how you use your social media presence.  

Younger workers are more attuned to social media than previous generations. Drill down on how your candidates use social media in their personal lives.  

What techniques do you use to stay organized?  

If you’ve got teenagers in your house, you know why this question is necessary. Younger workers generally tend to lack the broad organization skills that often develop over time. This question lets you gauge how much of a project you’re dealing with.  

What communication technology do you prefer, and why?  

Get to know your candidates’ communication habits with this one. It will also give you a hint at how technologically proficient they are.  

How do you plan to improve your skills over time?  

Keeping up with the younger generation is tough. Snapchat, Instagram, TikTok…fads come and go. Still, it’s essential to understand how each candidate gathers information and how they improve themselves over time.   

Build a Strong Team 

Building a strong team means finding talent wherever you can. A culture focused on inclusiveness and diversity can help. So can a partnership with a top staffing agency, like LaborMax.   

Contact LaborMAX Staffing today to take your recruiting efforts to the next level.