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Audio Engineer Interview
Questions

26 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns
Updated August 21st, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Job Interviews     Careers     Engineering    

Question 1 of 26

What are you doing to keep current in technology?

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1.

What are you doing to keep current in technology?

An audio engineer is someone who is able to work well with technology, which is a field that is constantly changing. Through this answer, they should show that they stay up to date with technology and are always looking for ways to improve the way they work to produce the best quality product possible.

Rachelle's Answer

"I am constantly talking to other engineers and reading blogs online about current and upcoming technologies. It is so important to stay up to date on this because we are the main sources at the station that people go to for technology questions, and I have to make sure I have the answers."

2.

Why do you want a career as an audio engineer?

The candidate should discuss why they want to work as an audio engineer, and what in their life has lead them to want to pursue this career. They should talk about their prior experience in the field and work leading up to wanting to be an audio engineer, and how their passion for audio will make them the perfect candidate for the job.

Rachelle's Answer

"I knew I wanted to be an audio engineer the day I stepped into a control booth. I saw the audio engineer controlling what everyone was saying on air, and I knew that my skills of having a keen ear would make me a perfect fit."

3.

How well do you work with a team?

A good audio engineer works well with a team and is able to balance doing their job well with working and compromising with a team at all times. The hiring manager wants to know if the candidate works well as a part of a team and can compromise and take instruction well without issue. The candidate should discuss their experience working with others and how their addition to a team benefits the whole company.

Rachelle's Answer

"I consider myself a valuable member of any team because I offer help to others, but also welcome help myself."

4.

What is your experience editing audio?

Oftentimes, audio engineers not only control the audio booth for the speakers, but must edit the video in post-production to upload to websites, or give to a client. Candidates must have some experience editing, and should discuss their ability to edit sound with the hiring manager.

Rachelle's Answer

"I have experience editing with Audacity, as I have used it for editing sound for many years. I am a quick learner, and many sound products are similar, so I will be able to learn whatever you use."

5.

Tell me about a time when you influenced the outcome of a project by taking a leadership role.

The candidate should discuss a time where they have lead a group of people or stepped up to make a team work for a common goal. This does not have to be specifically from the audio engineering industry, but should show some of the candidate's personality and how they may react in the job.

Rachelle's Answer

"In my previous job, I was the motivating force to help everyone get our work done on time. While everyone else preferred to work slowly, I would get my work done quickly and help everyone else so we could check over our work and make sure it was error free."

6.

Tell me about a time when you fell behind your work. How did it happen and how did you catch up?

The candidate should discuss a time where they struggled in their work. This could be a time where they worked overtime or had to work under a severe time crunch. It could also be a time where personal stressors made working slow and difficult. However, the candidate should ultimately talk positively about the experience and how they found a way to persevere because of their passion for the job.

Rachelle's Answer

"There was a time where we had only three audio engineers on staff and I had to fill in more often. I was exhausted from working so many hours. However, this ultimately made me get more practice and learn more about various speakers so I could do my job better."

7.

Describe the most creative work related project you completed.

Although working an audio switch board does not leave much room for creativity, other aspects of the job call for some creative play. This includes during the post editing process, and even in certain technical ways of adjusting audio as the show goes on. The candidate can discuss some creative ways they have made audio their own.

Rachelle's Answer

"My friends say they always know when I have been working the audio in my company's videos because my transitions between speakers are smooth and fade cleanly, instead of popping between them and clipping each other's sound."

8.

What makes you passionate about being an Audio Engineer?

The candidate should discuss why they feel this job is the best fit for them based on their passions in life. The goal is to inspire the hiring manager and show their deep love for doing the job, and show that they would be a committed member of the team because of their desire for doing the job well.

Rachelle's Answer

"I am passionate about creating a great product that others can enjoy. People listen to audio more closely than they view pictures and video, so what people hear is very important. I want to make sure that what they are hearing is the best quality possible, so I can inspire others to love listening as much as I do."

9.

Why have you chosen the audio industry instead of working with video as well?

The candidate should discuss why they have chosen to work in audio. Perhaps audio is a jumping-off point for the candidate to learn more about engineering, producing, or the news or radio industry. Or, perhaps the candidate truly is passionate about audio and wants to be a longtime audio editor. The candidate should talk about their passion and why this job will fuel what they love about audio.

Rachelle's Answer

"I chose to work in audio because down the line I want to work in the radio industry and run my own radio show. Having the knowledge of how to run the switchboard myself means that a radio station would only have to hire one person to do all of the audio and hosting duties, and that will make me a valuable person."

10.

Do you consider yourself good at fixing technology?

Part of the job description for an audio engineer is being able to remedy small engineering glitches that may occur before, during, or after a show. The engineer should be experienced working with an audio switchboard and able to try to fix any issue that comes up.

Rachelle's Answer

"I have always been the person who friends and family come to when they are having technology issues. I work well with computers and the audio switchboard, and can even help with other engineering fixes people at the station may have."

11.

How do you juggle listening to your subjects and taking direction from directors?

It is often difficult in the control room to juggle the responsibilities of running audio while there are so many people speaking orders as well. A good audio engineer is able to do their job while also listening to directors telling them to switch microphones, open and close certain ones, and bring up external audio as well. The candidate must prove to be someone who can juggle multiple responsibilities at once, even in high stress situations, and still work flawlessly.

Rachelle's Answer

"I am very good at using my ears to juggle multiple jobs in the control room. While I make my first priority sticking to a script and making sure I bring up all the proper audio, I still keep an ear open for the producers when things change."

12.

How do you make each individual voice sound the best possible?

The candidate should discuss how they work with their clients and voice subjects to make their voice sound crisp and clear over the air. This involves checking microphones often, reducing any feedback that may create crackling, and having individual meetings with speakers to get a feel for their voice fluctuations and how to regulate it with the audio throughout their speaking.

Rachelle's Answer

"I want to make sure I know my subject's voice inside and out, so I like to have multiple microphone checks with them prior to the recording so I can make sure that when their voice naturally increases, I can reduce the audio so it does not get blown out."

13.

How do you take criticism?

The candidate should discuss their experience working under a manager or boss and how they deal with receiving orders and sometimes criticism for their work. The candidate should discuss how they appreciate getting feedback from their manager and how they work well under someone's advisory. They also may talk about how criticism will make them ultimately a better worker.

Rachelle's Answer

"I sometimes enjoy receiving some criticism on my work because I want to grow from my mistakes. I would rather be told how to do something right than be doing it wrong for longer."

14.

What are your salary expectations?

The salary of an audio engineer ranges job to job, depending on whether it is in the television market, radio market, or for private client business. On average, the starting salary for an audio engineer ranges from $20,000-$30,000 if the job is full time. Audio engineers can expect to make more after spending more time at the station or moving to a higher market or larger company. The candidate should take this time to discuss what they hope to make as a salary to come to an agreement with the hiring manager.

Rachelle's Answer

"Since I have much experience already working with your audio board and editing gear, I believe I would be worth between $23,000-$25,000 for this job. However, I am open to discussions about other benefits I may receive."

15.

Do you consider yourself attentive to detail?

Working with audio requires audio engineers to pay close attention to sound detail that the average listener may not even notice. They must also be able to recognize over time small nuances in speakers' voices and how to adjust the audio accordingly so the best possible product is produced.

Rachelle's Answer

"I consider myself very attentive to detail. In post production, I often spend hours working overtime fine tuning the audio product because I hear small details that others cannot. But ultimately this makes me the greatest candidate."

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26 Audio Engineer Interview Questions
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Interview Questions

  1. What are you doing to keep current in technology?
  2. Why do you want a career as an audio engineer?
  3. How well do you work with a team?
  4. What is your experience editing audio?
  5. Tell me about a time when you influenced the outcome of a project by taking a leadership role.
  6. Tell me about a time when you fell behind your work. How did it happen and how did you catch up?
  7. Describe the most creative work related project you completed.
  8. What makes you passionate about being an Audio Engineer?
  9. Why have you chosen the audio industry instead of working with video as well?
  10. Do you consider yourself good at fixing technology?
  11. How do you juggle listening to your subjects and taking direction from directors?
  12. How do you make each individual voice sound the best possible?
  13. How do you take criticism?
  14. What are your salary expectations?
  15. Do you consider yourself attentive to detail?
  16. What is your least favorite part of the job?
  17. What is your favorite part of the job?
  18. How does this position fit into your career aspirations?
  19. What unique qualities do you have that makes you a good fit for this station?
  20. What are the steps you follow to study a problem before making a decision?
  21. Do you consider yourself a leader?
  22. If I called your boss right now and asked him or her what is an area that you could improve on, what would he or she say?
  23. Where do you see yourself five years from now?
  24. How do you evaluate success?
  25. What was your biggest disappointment as an audio engineer?
  26. Describe a difficult project and how you overcame it?
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