We're a company of innovative thinkers; we rely upon our innovative thinking to solve client problems. Tell me about a time when you came up with a breakthrough idea that was not obvious to others. Describe your idea and how you developed it?
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Innovation is the cornerstone of any successful company. If you show me a highly successful company, I will show you people within that company that were innovative thinkers. Great examples are Steve Jobs from Apple, Bill gates from Microsoft, and Jeff Bezos of Amazon just to name a few. The hiring manager is posing this as a two-part question to see if your response is clear, concise, and related to the question. Stay on point with your response, because that's what they're looking for. Think about this question for a minute to dissect what they are asking. They are a company of innovators.....which means, will you fit into their culture and be able to come up with ideas that will be innovative. They will be listening attentively to how you articulate your message about your breakthrough idea. Walk them through how you came up with the idea, what your thought process was, how you got approval to move forward, and how you executed on the idea.
"I've always considered myself an Outside the Box thinker. Settling for the norm has never been my working style. I always work with the expectation that my idea will serve many purposes, and bring value to our customers. One example is when I came up with an idea to train the trainer at multiple locations via remote video conferencing. This idea was well received, and was implemented at over 50 locations worldwide. I came up with the idea because I was responsible for training multiple divisions and didn't have the budget to fly everyone in from multiple locations for the training sessions."
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"I was working on implementing a friendlier looking graphical user interface solution for a financial services client. The inspiration came from the feedback I received from people at the client site complaining about processing transactions on a mainframe computer that wasn't much fun to work with or look at. They were used to the dreaded Green Screen on a mainframe, but my solution had a Windows look and feel which they liked quite a lot."
If a client is considering moving from an internal data center environment to our platform. What are the key issues you would recommend them addressing before making this move?
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By asking this question, the interviewer is attempting to understand the depth of your knowledge about a hosted cloud computing environment and your ability to plan and manage client's transitions to the cloud without causing any disruption in their business.
"When transitioning to a hosted cloud environment, there are several things you need to consider. The first and most important is business continuity. You need to make sure that there is no downtime during and after moving to the cloud and that no data is lost or compromised. Another key consideration it the integrity of the data; you don't want it to be hacked or lost between the user and the cloud. Maintaining availability and access to the cloud is also important. Capacity planning is critical, and measures need to be taken to ensure there are enough computing and storage resources available to the users, and that additional resources can be provisioned or de-provisioned as needed. Finally, the company needs to be aware of any regulatory or compliance issues around data integrity and privacy when utilizing cloud hosting."
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"The key considerations when moving to a cloud hosted environment center around data integrity, availability, and compliance. You need to take measures to ensure that the company's data is secure, can't be compromised when communicating with the cloud, and can be recovered if lost. Most cloud hosting service providers can assist with this through the transition planning and execution process. Having a good backup and disaster recovery plan is also important. Availability of the information, applications and computing resources is the next most critical issue. Selecting the right cloud hosting service provider is the first step. They should offer SLA guarantees and have contingencies in place when issues occur. Finally, it is the company's responsibility to make sure that they are in compliance with any regulations and customer privacy requirements when they move to a cloud environment. Again, although not primarily responsible, the service provider can assist in providing the guarantees and documentation necessary to address this issue."
The way we approach clients in our business is we identify client needs and recommend solutions to their needs. Tell me about a time when your knowledge and expertise allowed you to make a recommendation to resolve a problem or address a pain point?
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The is a classic example of the hiring manager asking you to role play your response. The way it works is the hiring manager asks you to role play as the consultant, and he/she is the client who asks you to give them a pitch about why your company is a firm that they need to work with. There are a few ways to make this role play work in your favor. Here are a few examples you can use in a response. 1. Act as a problem solving adviser that can find and recommend solutions quickly, 2. Tell the client they have accessibility to you and other team members as needed, 3. Point out the benefits that they will get when they hire your company, 4. Share some examples of successes from companies of a similar industry, size or market.
"I've been a firm believer that the customer is always our highest priority and that I need to be the eyes and ears of the customer. With that said, there some examples I can share that will hopefully resonate with you. I typically ask what solutions have been proposed in the past, and how they have worked. Are there metrics to track the success or failure of past efforts? Having data to review helps me understand the process and approach previously used. Knowing the team makeup, and what methodology they used will also give me a deeper insight into what they were thinking. I like to conduct a voice of the customer survey, which I believe adds tremendous value to this campaign. Lastly, it's important for me to analyze the cause & effect relationships from the customer surveys, because It reveals a lot of underlying issues like task failures, root cause problems, and how good or bad the data is."
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"My recommendations would be based on what the customer wants and how well they articulated the deliverable. If, for example, the client wanted something that resembles a ketchup bottle, but the team delivered a salt shaker, that would indicate a miscommunication of what the client requested. My approach would be to closely dissect the customer requirements, then build a mock-up of what they requested, and have them review for approval before going to the next phase of development. After this phase is approved, I would do testing and debugging before presenting it to the customer. Mapping the customer journey is a visualization process a customer goes through and tracks each step along the way with the vendor, so everyone is on the same page."
What part of this career brings you the most stress?
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Stress can often be a regular part of the day to day work experience. Talk to the interviewer about which areas of your career are the most stressful. Ensure that your answer does not include a factor that would make you appear unfit for the position. (IE: a bus driver should not find driving to be the most stressful part of the job).
"The part of my career that brings me the most stress is when the schedule is running behind due to lack of hustle on my teams part. I like to be on time with my schedule to ensure that my clients are assisted properly."
Second Answer Example
"I probably bring myself the most stress because of my drive and desire to be/do the best I can be. I manage this by focusing my energy on productive activities that are good for my career."
What is the differences between 'scalability' and 'elasticity' when speaking in terms of cloud hosting?
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If you are asked this type of question, the interviewer is attempting to confirm that you really understand the concepts of cloud hosting. They may also be genuinely trying to clarify this information for their own benefit. You should answer the question as clearly and succinctly as possible.
"Scalability is a characteristic of cloud computing which is used to handle the escalating workload by escalating in proportion amount of resource capacity. Using scalability, the service provider can easily and quickly add resources when the requirements are being raised by the client. On the other hand, Elasticity is a characteristic that provides for the concept of provisioning and de-provisioning a large amount of resource capacity dynamically. It is usually measured by the speed by which the resources are coming on demand and the usage of those resources. Scalability often refers to a permanent increase in resources whereas Elasticity is temporary, based on fluctuating demands or business activity."
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"That's a great question. People often confuse the concepts of scalability and elasticity. Scalability refers to the ability to easily increase the IT resources used by the organization. This is accomplished by using technology that can be increased quickly and with no disruption in service or downtime. Another characteristic of scalability is that it is typically permanent, and based on the growth of the organizations business. On the other hand, elasticity refers to the ability to dynamically add (provision) or remove (de-provision) IT resources based on fluctuations in business cycles or customer activity. Service providers in hosted clouds accomplish this by having "standby" resources on hand which can be turned on or off as needed. These resources are typically shared by multiple clients, who are only billed when they actually use them."
6. How can DAZ Systems motivate you on the job? Every employer should know how each staff member is best motivated. Talk to the interviewer about the variety of ways in which you find motivation on the job. Here is an answer example: "I am best motivated through words of praise and recognition for a job well done. I do like to know that my efforts are noticed. In my current position, we have a leaderboard and I do like that concept because it creates a healthy bit of personal competition for me as well." Here is an answer example: "I am very much self-driven and self-motivated. As long as I am being treated with respect and feel appreciated, you will get the best work from me."7. A client of ours wants to discuss a possible divestiture of some of their company locations. What are some key points during a consulting discovery that you want to understand to determine if our firm can potentially assist them? This particular hiring manager is asking you to give a scenario where their client has approached them about a divestiture of some of their locations, and they want to make sure they make a sound business decision for this client without having negative consequences on their business. As a consultant to this client, they would be looking to you as a trusted advisor and consulting firm that can help them through this process. It's important to note that the interviewer wants to know what key points you plan to discuss to determine if they could be a client or not. Your answer should drill down into how you conduct a discovery call and how it relates to the impact it will have on their business after a possible divestiture. I advise highlighting your analytical skills and how you were able to come up with a few options for them to choose from will greatly improve your response. Here is an answer example: "When a client puts their full faith and trust in me, I feel honored. Performing a divestiture is a time-consuming task, and it takes a team of people to make this transaction happen. It starts with monitoring the portfolio to see which locations or business units are profitable, and which ones are ripe for a divestiture. As an IT consultant, I always look at the technology implications first, then the business drivers for perspective. Performing a divestiture comes with legal obligations and corporate valuations that need to be addressed as well." Here is an answer example: "A divestiture is not easy, especially if it means a location is closing and people might lose their jobs. Several considerations need to be accounted for including severance, identifying who the new buyer of that location will be, and the possible benefits of divesting. Managing the transition does present a challenge, but I have extensive hands-on experience managing this process through its entirety. I've seen companies divest for many reasons, but it always comes back to the strategic focus of the company, and where they can be most profitable."8. Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume. The interviewer would like to get to know you apart from what is on your resume. You are indeed not obligated to discuss personal matters such as your kids, or relationship status, for instance. Stick with a couple of fun facts to show the interviewer that you are a real person, too. Your answer should be unique so that you are a memorable candidate!
Focus on unique non-work related skills or hobbies. For example, you might share that you enjoy beat-boxing or making origami swans. Be prepared for the interviewer to stop you and ask you to perform your skill on the spot when it's possible! (This will make you unforgettable!) Here is an answer example: "I am an avid marathon runner and have traveled to 10 countries in the last eight years to compete in a variety of races. I am a competitive individual and enjoy keeping fit." Here is an answer example: "I am bilingual in Spanish and have some proficiency in French and Italian, too. I also am a huge Harry Potter fan and could pretty much quote each book to you."9. Our clients have high expectations of our work, tell me about a time you worked with challenging time constraints, but were still able to exceed client expectations. If I only had more time. I hear this all the time. It's a fact of life in the business world. Being prepared for situational questions that ask about project planning, resource planning, expectations, delivery, and how you anticipate distractions will show the hiring manager that you have meticulously planned and know each step in the process. Your answer should reflect the steps you take to resolve a problem, or minimize risk so problems don't occur. Walk the interviewer through one of the steps in the process, and detail how you address time constraints specifically, and how you are able to still meet client expectations. Detail this response with how you set up a project plan, the step-by-step approach, and why everyone needs to follow the process in order to avoid delays, and to deliver on time. Here is an answer example: "Almost every project will have time sensitivity challenges and deadlines that need to be met. I am very mindful of these things, and take the appropriate steps to ensure projects are planned properly with the appropriate amount of resources, technology, and approvals throughout the process. The way that I start and execute on a project is always with a project plan that serves as a roadmap for success. If I am to avoid time constraints and other challenges, I clearly identify the deliverables, and follow through on the most efficient way to produce them. In order to avoid distractions, I take a close look at design and test times, project risk, team focus, and management involvement so that we minimize delays from the executive level." Here is an answer example: "When I start a project, there are a number of tasks and milestones that I consider very carefully. The most important one is identifying risks up front to avoid surprises. I take a systematic approach to each step and phase of the project. It has been my experience that setting quality expectations in advance sets the tone for a much more favorable outcome for the project. Keeping a focus and not deviating from the original plan is important for meeting milestones and expectations. I understand that changes happen, and change management needs to be addressed if this happens. If or when change happens, we refocus the project using rapid application development RAD to stay on schedule so the delivery date of the project doesn't change."10. As a Real Estate Agent you are expected to be available to your clients on evenings, weekends, and holidays. Are you comfortable with these expectations? The life of a Real Estate Agent isn't a typical 9-5, Monday to Friday gig. Your clients' primary availability may be outside of 'regular' working hours which means that you need to be available for them during those times. Assure the interviewer that you have a full understanding of these hours requirements. Here is an answer example: "I am very comfortable with the hours required of me to succeed in Real Estate. If I do need some time off, or a weekend away, I will plan far ahead. My cell is always on me, and my clients understand that they can book showings with me outside of typical work hours, no problem at all." Here is an answer example: "I fully understand the time commitment associated with a career in Real Estate. I'm prepared to make the sacrifices necessary to have a solid career here at DAZ Systems."11. How do you approach vendor and purchasing management in your role in business processes and operations? Staff in business and operations roles within IT departments are often responsible for vendor and purchasing management, as a part of their operations responsibilities. The interviewer is asking this question to determine how much knowledge the candidate has in vendor and purchasing management. A sufficient answer to this question could include many different scenarios that involve working with vendors, negotiating pricing contracts, developing purchasing strategies, and/or managing budgets. A high-level answer to this question would include an example of how the candidate developed a best-practice strategy or procedure for purchasing that was standardized within their department or company. In any answer to this question, the candidate should not generalize information but should provide specific examples from their professional experience. Here is an answer example: "In my current position, I am responsible for managing vendor relationships and developing purchasing strategies, so I have a lot of experience in this area. My approach to vendor management and purchasing is very simple, try to get the right product for the lowest price. Although this sounds a bit ambitious, with the right negotiating techniques, it is possible to get custom pricing, especially when you are ordering for your entire company. For example, I recently started a new relationship with a software vendor, as I needed to purchase licenses for a number of staff members. When the vendor and I first started working together, she was unwilling to offer discounts on the licenses, but after working with her a bit more and building a relationship with her, I was finally able to work out a volume discount, which saved quite a bit of money per license. I feel that building and maintaining relationships with vendors is extremely important, in order to get the best prices, and I will be able to use these same strategies while working for DAZ Systems." Here is an answer example: "I have a great example for this question. When I first started my current role in business processes and operations, I conducted an analysis of the purchasing practices of the IT department and found that everyone was ordering independently. Because of this, the company was spending significantly more money than they should have been because we were not taking advantage of bulk or volume discounts offered by certain vendors. After I discovered this, I developed a group ordering strategy and best practice guidance for ordering and distributed it to the leadership in the various areas in the IT department, which resulted in significant cost-savings in my company. This is only one example of how I can analyze purchasing practices and streamline them to save resources, and I will be able to use similar strategies if given the opportunity to work for DAZ Systems."12. There are many different definitions of a 'Cloud' in the IT industry. In order to make sure we are on the same page can you provide your definition of a cloud hosting environment and describe its components? The purpose of this question is to make sure you define a cloud hosting environment in the same way the employer does and that you have familiarity with what elements constitute an IT cloud. Here is an answer example: "A cloud is an amalgamation of computer hardware, software, network, storage, and services. It can be managed by the organization or by a third-party service provider, such as Amazon or Microsoft. It is also known as 'computing as a service'. End users are unaware of where the components are located and where their applications and data reside. They access the cloud via an interface. This creates an environment in which they do their work." Here is an answer example: "A cloud environment is a collection of IT assets and services that are accessed by the users through a portal or dedicated interface. The cloud can reside or be hosted on the same physical premise as the users, offsite or by a third-party service provider. The components of the cloud are the same as a standard data center. They include hardware, software, storage, network, applications, and services. Many cloud environments are designed for specific businesses, including customer service, financial services, application development, and healthcare, to name just a few. These are typically hosted by third party service providers who specialize in the individual market segments."13. Tell me about a time where you made a great recommendation that you think would have greatly benefited your client, but they just didn't like it. What approach did you take to convince them? It's a challenge when you have to deal with a company that has different opinions and management styles. Depending on whom you are working with, and their role and responsibility, you will likely have to craft a compelling value proposition to clearly show that your recommendations will yield a return on their investment in a relatively short time. Consultants know this all too well. Push back from the client comes from managers who either don't understand the idea, concept or solution, and how it will help the organization. This type of interview question is asked to see how you handle rejection from the client, and if you recommend another solution that might work better. In addition to a compelling value proposition, provide a similar example that you recommended to a client that worked very well and had a good return on their investment. Here is an answer example: "When someone doesn't like my ideas or recommendations, I don't take it personal. I show empathy towards people who may disagree with my ideas or recommended solutions. I understand that some people may not be clear about how the technology or solution works, and how it may benefit them. When it comes to change, it is sometimes difficult to implement change since people like the way they work, and get used to a certain routine at work. One of the approaches that I used to convince them that my recommended solution would benefit the company was to highlight the areas that directly benefited them, and how it would make their daily tasks easier to manage." Here is an answer example: "Another way I was able to convince this client that they need my recommended solution was that I gave them ownership and involvement in the project very early on so they could see first-hand where they would be able to realize the benefits that directly apply to their department. I made them feel they were an important part of the process. As an outsider (consultant) telling them how I could improve their operations, I know I had to be respectful to their concerns. I avoided confrontation, and took a non-intrusive approach to learn how they worked so I could document and show them exactly where they benefited from my recommendations."14. There are times when you need to consider a broad range of options before recommending a solution. What was the situation, and did the solution help the client? When you're in a position of trust with a client, they lean heavily on you for advice, guidance, and direction. This is a great opportunity for you to explore multiple options that will yield a desirable result for the client. The client will expect you to present options that not only fit within their budget, but meet their business requirements. Some examples might be one or more of the following; Sales Pipeline Development, Product Order Status, Invoicing, Production, Accounts Payables/ Receivables, Project Management, etc. The solution could be a software or hardware solution. Thinking outside the box will give you an advantage. Start with a high level business requirements approach from a strategic level, and drill down to operational and tactical levels if you really want to understand where the customer is coming from, and where they want to be in the future. Here is an answer example: "As an IT Consultant, I regularly keep up to date on new technologies in software, hardware, networking, security, and programming. It goes without saying that any consultant would have to fully understand a client's business needs before making any recommendations. In one particular case, i had a meeting with the COO to learn what the business drivers were, and why he thought they needed a new software solution. I learned that their sales organization didn't have a CRM to track and manage customer and sales data. I researched three Customer Resource Manager (CRM's) that met the client's qualification, and after a 30 day trial period, I suggested one that met their needs. After implementation, the client was able to view a pipeline of sales activities, customer order data, closed sales, sales reps activities, which is exactly what they wanted." Here is an answer example: "When I build relationships with clients, the first thing I think of is to help my client improve their performance and growth which can result in increased sales and increased value for the business and stakeholders. I start by conducting onsite research, monitoring day to day operations, and analyzing data to learn their business. I take it a step further to learn where manual intervention is needed, and whether a solution will be technology-based, personnel/resource based, or process based. I found that the requirement was personnel/resource-based and that they needed a team of programming experts, along with business analysts and project managers. I suggested bringing in a team that I knew would be able to handle the task of building an application to support their warehousing distribution business."15. IT projects rely on teams and each other to succeed. Describe a scenario were you lead your team to a successful outcome? Here's a great opportunity to show the value and worth that you can bring to the organization. While you were managing a team, you can describe how you motivated and empowered your team so they could have ownership and accountability on the project. Your goals should be to illustrate how you recognized the team's achievements, and inspired them to work towards a successful outcome. Don't forget to provide examples of when you were able to meet deadlines, and overcome obstacles that might have delayed your project. Lastly, provide a purpose for the project, and how important their involvement is, and why it's important to have a successful outcome for the project. Here is an answer example: "Teams respond in different ways based on how their manager leads. I found this to be true in many cases when I manage teams. I feel that effective collaboration and leveraging the appropriate resources is important to reach a goal or target. I strongly believe that building strong relationships with my team and stakeholders separates me from mediocre managers. Igniting a passion in my team has helped me show them that anything is possible when you work together as a team to achieve a successful outcome. It's not difficult to envision a goal if you nurture a belief in your team, and trust their capabilities. Case in point, I was tasked with creating and documenting a sequence of events for our IT Project Management team so that projects could be assigned more efficiently, and everyone from the project management team would get task notifications to complete before the next phase of a project could be assigned to another project manager. This resulted in projects starting and completing 40% faster, and with an established sequence in place, this was easy to follow and maintain for the department manager." Here is an answer example: "There was a particular instance where my team and I were assigned a project to re-write the functionality of a module from our enterprise software. Our goal was to develop new features in the manufacturing module so it could perform real-time data analytics and the plant manager could track inventory levels, and error rates in the production environment. I made sure that my team was well prepared and understood what needed to be done for this to be a success. This initiative resulted in timely reorders when stock was low, and it also reduced error rates by 70% which also resulted in cost savings to our bottom line."16. As a business process and operations expert, how do you approach a situation when a project is failing to progress and is not meeting its deliverables? The interviewer is asking this question to determine how the candidate would approach a situation when a project is failing to progress, which often happens in IT and other professional environments. When a project is not meeting its goals or benchmarks, business process staff can assist project staff by analyzing the project plan and developing interventions to get the project back on track. There are a number of strategies the business process and operations staff member can use to ensure a project begins meeting its benchmarks, including but not limited to: redesigning the project plan or timeline, dedicating more resources to the project, introducing more efficient production strategies, such as LEAN methodologies, or reassigning project teams. The candidate can successfully answer this question by providing a specific example of how they have successfully turned a failing project around in the past. Here is an answer example: "As a business process and operations manager, I have often had to intervene on projects that were not meeting their benchmarks or goals for completion. In most of these cases, I have found that the failure to progress is not due to the lack of efforts of the project team, but because of misallocated or misused resources. For example, I recently had to assist a project manager on a project that was significantly behind on creating mapping logic for a data interface that we were preparing for. When the project manager came to me with her concerns, I took a look at the project plan and was able to find some essential steps in the project plan that were missing. After I identified these steps, I worked with the project manager to redesign her project plan and develop more detailed process flows, which helped the project get back on track." Here is an answer example: "I was just dealing type of situation last month. There was a software development project in my department's Project Management Office (PMO) that was supposed to have been closed out three months ago, and when the PMO Director came to me for help, he said the program was being sent back to development, because a significant bug was found in the beta-testing phase. The PMO Director was extremely frustrated, as this bug should have been identified in the alpha-testing phase, and this error caused an even more significant setback. Because this software program is a significant deliverable for our department and overall organization, the additional delay affected more than just the PMO itself. As the PMO Director and I looked through the project plan and resources, I decided it would be best to allocate additional testing resources to the project by hiring a technical vendor to assist. This way, it could relieve the burden from our internal team, and provide the expertise needed to conduct the software testing. Once the vendor took over the testing of the software, the project was successfully tested and was able to be rolled out without further delay."17. As part of the IT team, how do you approach your role in the implementation and roll out of new software and technical programs? The interviewer is asking this question to determine if the candidate is ready and willing to provide training and operational support to employees and users of new software and technical programs when they are being rolled out by the IT department. While it is the role of other individuals within the IT department to lead the development and/or selection of these programs, when it is time to roll them out to end users, these users will rely on the business process and operations staff for training, technical assistance, and best-practice information. The candidate can successfully answer this question by providing details on how they would develop and execute a training plan, and a stronger answer would include an example of how they have approached a similar situation in the past in one of their professional positions.
For example, "As a business process and operations professional, I understand it is my responsibility to assist with the training of staff and end users when a new software program or application is being rolled out. When faced with this type of situation at DAZ Systems, I will do everything I can to ensure the software implementation goes smoothly, and that includes learning all the ins-and-outs of the software application, developing user manuals and process flows, hosting user training, and ensuring help desk staff has in-depth training so they can offer adequate support to users. I understand that effective training on new software applications is key to getting staff and users to adopt the new systems, and in my business process and operations role, I will do everything I can to ensure employees at DAZ Systems feel supported." Here is an answer example: "As a business process and operations professional, I understand it is my responsibility to assist with the training of staff and end users when a new software program or application is being rolled out. When faced with this type of situation at DAZ Systems, I will do everything I can to ensure the software implementation goes smoothly, and that includes learning all the ins-and-outs of the software application, developing user manuals and process flows, hosting user training, and ensuring help desk staff has in-depth training so they can offer adequate support to users. I understand that effective training on new software applications is key to getting staff and users to adopt the new systems, and in my business process and operations role, I will do everything I can to ensure employees at DAZ Systems feel supported." Here is an answer example: "My current company recently went through a software upgrade that made a significant impact on daily staff operations, and because of the significant impact the upgrade had, I stepped in and supported the upgrade by hosting training sessions, developing user manuals, process flows, and best practice guides help sheets. By preparing these documents and offering the training sessions, I was able to help staff adjust to the upgraded software much more quickly, which prevented our overall operations from suffering. Helpdesk staff was prepared to receive a massive influx of calls once the upgrade went live, they found that their call volumes were light, compared to what they were anticipating. The ease of transition to the upgraded software has been attributed to the thorough training I provided to staff. This is only an example of when I supported a software rollout, as I have supported many in the past, and with my experience, I know I will be able to successfully support such rollouts at DAZ Systems."18. In Real Estate, timing is everything. How do you determine priorities when you have multiple projects due? When you feel torn between multiple projects or tasks, how do you decide which one needs your attention the most? Assure the interviewer that you can be diligent when it comes to assessing your priorities. Here is an answer example: "I will determine which project requires my attention by the number of hours we are behind and then the project size. I am comfortable delegating tasks when needed, but I am also aware that these times will require an additional commitment of hours from me. Never have I under delivered on a deadline." Here is an answer example: "I determine priorities based on project value and receptiveness of my client. The most engaged clients generally get my attention and the fastest turnaround."19. What questions do you have for me about DAZ Systems? It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the questions you are asking are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of items you could have found the answers to from merely watching a video on their company site!
Here are some sample questions:
- When would you like to have this position filled?
- How long has this role been vacant?
- Is this a replacement search or a newly created role?
- What is your favorite part about working here?
- What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months?
- Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you?
- What do you see as the most significant change in this industry over the past three years?
- Is there any reason why you would not hire me? Here is an answer example: Here is an answer example: "Thank you for asking - I do have a few questions. What is top of mind when it comes to filling this role? Also, what types of career growth opportunities would follow this position? And lastly, do you have internal candidates who are also interviewing for this position?"20. How do you approach your role in business processes and operations when your department or the Project Management Office (PMO) is operating smoothly or there are no pending improvement projects in the queue? This question is very important to the interviewer, as it is important for them to know that the candidate understands that someone in the role of business processes and operations should be constantly looking for opportunities to improve their department and the PMO. Anticipating improvements and changes that can be made when operations are not in a state of flux will allow staff responsible for business processes and operations to work more effectively work project teams to make improvements to processes in order to eliminate waste and reduce variation. The candidate can successfully answer this question by providing examples of how they took initiative to make changes in their department or PMO when they were not specifically assigned a task or faced with a problem that needed an immediate solution. Here is an answer example: "If there are no immediate needs for improvement in my department or in the PMO that needs my attention, I look at the 'parking lot' of improvements that I maintain and determine what I have the capacity to take on at the time. Throughout the year, when requests or improvement projects that are not immediately needed are received, I put them on a parking lot to be addressed later. So, when there is additional time, I am able to prioritize the parking lot and choose an improvement project based on needs, capacity within my team, and the capacity each department has to take on an improvement project. I find this method very effective for continuously improving the department and PMO, and I can use the same or similar method at DAZ Systems." Here is an answer example: "In times where there are no improvement tasks or projects, I do not rest on my laurels. Instead, I take the opportunity to assess the various areas within the IT department, the PMO, and the company, by speaking with leadership to determine what improvement projects we can start during these down times. I find that these down times are much easier to implement new processes or streamline existing processes, because staff members are not already overburdened with a project, and they are more willing to take on change. In order for me to be a successful Business Process and Operations Manager, I feel that I must always be finding ways to help my colleagues improve, and I will always take the initiative to get a project started when my workload is less in order ensure I am contributing in my position as much as I can."21. How would you convince a company that is still undecided about whether or not they should continue managing their own data center or move to a hosted cloud? Being able to convince potential clients to join DAZ Systems's cloud services is a key skill that hiring managers are looking for. By asking this question, the interviewer is attempting to determine your knowledge of a hosted cloud and your opinion of the benefits. Here is an answer example: "There are several benefits to moving to a hosted cloud. The key benefit is cost, based on the ability to only providing the resources you need. You can scale up the resources during peak business periods and then de-provision them when they are no longer needed. This is difficult in a self-managed data center environment. Other advantages include more secure data and backup, built-in disaster recovery, more flexible software licensing by using Software as a Service (SaaS) and it is platform and OS agnostic. These features provide the organization with greater flexibility. The final benefit is increased productivity. The company can focus on its business rather than running an IT department." Here is an answer example: "Hosted Cloud service providers provide an organization like yours several benefits. The key benefit is cost savings. Moving to a hosted environment allows you to 'rent' your computer resources and only use what you need. This includes compute, storage and even software, using the SaaS model. You pay for what you need when you need it, then put it back on the shelf and don't pay when you're not using it. Other advantages include focusing on your core business vs. running an IT department, being platform and OS agnostic, and being able to use the most productive or popular technologies. Finally, you will be operating in a secure computing environment with SLAs, backups and disaster recovery included with the services."22. Can you explain to me the basic characteristics of a hosted cloud? DAZ Systems offers cloud hosting and wants candidates who understand the essential characteristics of a hosted cloud. It's key in your answer to point out the advantages of cloud hosting and how it is superior to standard server hosting.
1.) Take a step back and evaluate how you arrived at this point
2.) Temporarily stop the project
3.) Figure out why the project is failing
4.) Set up a turn-around (war) room
5.) Draft an agenda to go over findings, from quantitative reports to team member interviews
6.) Re-assignment of team member tasks and roles
7.) Gather all notes and project collateral
8.) Set clear objectives, and ask each team member to provide you a work list with specific tasks they are responsible for on the project, and their understanding of the team goals" Here is an answer example: "A failed project can be humbling, and eye-opening at the same time. If not managed and executed properly, it can go horribly wrong. That's why when I put together a team for a project; I religiously follow a methodology that works flawlessly. I've learned to become good at this methodology after a failed project a few years ago. It also made me good at spotting where projects go wrong, and where I needed to make immediate changes. Let me break down what I learned about the failed project, and what I did to turn it around:
1.) What did I learn from the process
2.) How did it affect me and the team
3.) What were the key issues that caused the failure
4.) I found that the key issues were.....Complexity, External Influence, Financial, Organizational, Technology, and Scheduling"25. Listening to our clients is absolutely essential to understanding their business and technology needs. Tell me about a time when you're listening skills helped exceed their expectations in the delivery of the project? It's easy for a client to overlook small details, that's why they hire IT Consultants so they can stay in the know. IT Consultants typically take a deeper dive into a clients operation from a technology and business perspective. One of the biggest reasons that clients look to IT consultants is to look at their organization from an outsider's point of view. Having a vantage point into client operations, and how they do things tells the client that another pair of eyes sees things they might have missed. It's important to recognize that a client is relying on your expertise to give them a perspective that an internal employee would normally not see. Some of the areas you might want to address with the client is how they run their operations, and even have them rate their current level of expertise with all their technologies. This will reveal a few things. One of the most important is where you need to navigate and lead the interview discussion. Asking questions like what do you like and dislike about your current operations. Offer up that you like the challenge of solving problems, and working in different types of environments, and perfecting your craft. Here is an answer example: "I've worked with many clients at different levels of an organization, including executive level management personnel. Being a good listener is an absolute requirement, and getting the opportunity to collaborate with clients and help solve their problems is very rewarding for me. It's important for me to show clients that they are getting the highest value possible for their money. When I have conversations with clients, I sometimes find that they don't know what they don't know, and I find that this is a good base level start because you're starting from scratch and identifying problems as you walk through their environment from top to bottom. My basic qualifiers start with technology, and how they use it. Here's a basic outline of questions I posed.
1. What platform do you run your ERP or enterprise software? Windows, UNIX, Linux, etc.? The reason I ask this questions is after I find out what they are using, it's easier for me to suggest a software solution. After explaining the pros and cons of their current set up, I recommend a solution that will help solve their problem.
2. What database are you using to store your data? SQL Server, Oracle, Sybase, BD2, etc. The reason I ask this question is to see if they are up to date with current versions, and the capacity of data and where it resides. I also ask whether their data is On-Premise or in the Cloud. Depending on the responses, I would be able to make suggestions on efficient ways to work with that data." Here is an answer example: "My prior work has taught me that asking the right questions at the right time is very important. When I do discovery with a client, there are a number of questions that I ask to arrive at a few core problems they are facing. Let me give you an example of what I ask, and why.
1. Walk me through your current process, and highlight an area where you are experiencing pains and challenges? The reason I ask this is to build trust with the client, and get them to talk extensively about their problems, and how you can propose a solution.
2. Is it your belief that a software application will be able to solve these problems for you? I ask this question to see if they think they need a software solution, or is it just a process fix that can be achieved by process and productivity improvements, along with process re-engineering."26. Describe to me your ideal employer. A job search isn't just a one-sided hunt. You must also feel as though this is a good fit for yourself. Tell the interviewer what your ideal employer looks like. Be specific and be sure to keep the conversation positive. Avoid speaking poorly of any previous managers or organizations. Here is an answer example: "My ideal employer is one that brings charisma and passion to their work. I work best with organizations who have a penchant for learning and promote their employees based on performance." Here is an answer example: "Here are some other ways you could describe a great employer. A great employer will:
- Pause to have fun now and then but also know when to be serious
- Treat everyone fairly, and equally
- Offer rewards for great work
- Offer a continually challenging environment
- Offer flexibility and understands that personal situations come up from time to time
- Encourage a collaborative workplace"27. How do you ensure that you are meeting your clients' needs when it comes to their property wish list? Listening to your client's needs is a significant component when it comes to your success in Real Estate. Discuss with the interviewer how you ensure a full understanding of your clients' needs before you begin showing them new properties or helping them to sell a property. Here is an answer example: "When I start working with a new client I will sit down with them and discuss what they lack in their current property, what they would change if they could, and why. I want to know their motivating factors for change and will start there. Of course, transparency on budget and expectations is vital as well. Open communication throughout the process is my number one priority as a Real Estate Agent." Here is an answer example: "I find that the easiest way to start is by asking my clients what they do not want. From there, we can compile a list of must-have's. I will ask my clients which areas they are willing to compromise and which they are not. This way, I can make a final list of properties and truly only show them the ones that meet those 'must-have' requirements."
Writers for DAZ Systems, Inc. Answers and Questions
Tom Dushaj is a business and technology executive and an accomplished author of the book "Resumes That Work". Tom has vast experience providing solutions to Fortune 500 companies in the areas of Information Technology Consulting, ERP Software, Personnel Management and International Business Operations. His work experience includes Personnel Administration, Recruiting, Interviewing, Project Management, Career Counseling, as well as Manufacturing and Quality Assurance Consulting. You can find Mr. Dushaj's full profile at https://www.resumebaron.com
William Swansen is an Author, Job Search Strategist and Career Advisor who assists individuals from all over the world and in a variety of professions in finding their ideal career position.
His Services include:
• Resume Writing
• Cover Letter Writing
• Updating your LinkedIn profile and teaching you how to make it work for you
• Identifying Employers, including Hiring Managers and their Contact Information
• Interview Preparation, Practice and Follow Up
• Job Search Coaching
You can learn more about William by visiting www.sellingyourselfintoajob.com or on Linkedin: billswansen
Kelly Burlison, MPH, is an experienced professional with over ten years of experience interviewing in the health care field, half of which are focused on an IT subindustry of health care. As an administrator in a managed care organization, Kelly has successfully interviewed and hired many clinical and support staff positions. Through her IT experience in the health care field, which includes roles in telemedicine, registry operations, quality measurement, and business process management, Kelly has been involved in the interview process for many different positions, from entry-level to executive.
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