The interviewer would like to know if the safety gear (PPE: Personal Protective Equipment) you are accustomed to working in is similar to what they are currently using. Briefly give a list to the hiring manager of the safety gear you currently work in, and what you are most familiar with.
"I currently wear a variety of safety gear including steel-toed work boots, a hard hat, protective glasses, and fire resistant coveralls. Are there any other forms of PPE that I should be familiar with?"
"I have been taught the importance of wearing personal protective equipment. I will come prepared with my steel-toed work boots, hard hat, fire resistant coveralls, and anything else you may require of me."
"I am familiar with it all! It's incredibly important to be prepared and safe on the job site and I would never take shortcuts when it comes to the protective gear that I wear. I have my own PPE and will come ready to work, on day one."
The interviewer would like to know what sets you apart from other candidates. Be confident that you can confidently answer the hiring manager. What do you feel you can do better than anyone else? What sets you apart? This is not the time to be humble!
"I feel that what I can offer you that other candidates cannot is my degree in mathematics. I have stellar math skills which allows me to complete jobs quickly and more efficiently."
"When I started with my current company, I was the youngest graduate they had ever hired. That didn't stop me from becoming the most productive electrical technician in the company within six months. I am dedicated to my craft and engaged in this industry to the point where I commit myself to taking at least one technical development or electrically related workshop every business quarter. I am a competitive achiever. You won't be disappointed when you hire me."
"I have over a dozen years of experience in the electrical industry at one of your largest competitors. I have a proven track record of successes there and will bring that knowledge, not only of the industry but also of my creative solutions and how to position our unit better against theirs and help elevate your business to the next level. Having been a part of the industry for nearly half of my life, I have seen a ton of change and have adapted to every change or innovation with ease and excitement, and I look forward to doing that at your company as well."
The interviewer would like to know if you have experience with writing equipment maintenance programs. If you do, tell the hiring manager about the experience. Better yet - bring the work with you if you can! If you do not have experience in developing programs for maintenance equipment, be sure to talk about your interest in doing this, and discuss your stellar writing skills!
"I have written two programs in my career so far, and have brought them with me for you to view. Are you looking for someone to rewrite some programs, in this role? I am happy to do so. My writing skills are strong, and this is a skill that I can teach as well."
"I do not have experience in developing programs for maintaining new equipment. However, I have assisted my current supervisor in doing so. I am confident that this is a task I could perform with minimal training."
"I have developed many programs in my career and am happy to show you my work. To gain further strength in this area, I recently took a technical writing course. If you have programs that need to be developed, I am your person!"
Tell the hiring manager about your level of comfortability with reading electrical blueprints. Include how long you have been performing this task and any post-secondary reference that may be applicable. To make your level of experience more relatable, you can also refer to your skill level as a beginner, intermediate, advanced, or even expert!
"I am very comfortable reading electrical blueprints and would consider myself advanced in this skill. Blueprint reading was one of my stronger suits in university, and I perform this particular task on a regular basis, in my current role."
"As I am new to my career as an electrical technician, I will play it safe and say that I am a beginner and intermediate skill level when it comes to blueprint reading. I excelled in related coursework while obtaining my associate's degree; however, my real-life experience is limited. I look forward to expanding my skills in this area."
"My ten years of experience as an electrical technician has, without a doubt, made me an expert level blueprint reader. I have taught this skill to many of our new hires, in my current role. I am 100% comfortable completing any blueprint related task."
The interviewer would like to know more about the complex repair jobs you have worked with before. Tell the hiring manager the details of a complicated repair job you have worked on in the past. If you are new to your career as an electrical technician, perhaps you had a challenging cast study while completing your degree.
"The most difficult repair job I recall doing was on an ancient A/C machine. The equipment was not acting how it should despite everything appearing to be properly wired. I had to call in my supervisor to assist. We ended up getting it figured out but it was a very challenging experience."
"I am new to my career as an electrical technician so, at this point, I have not been the lead tech on any challenging repair jobs. While completing my internship, I worked under a senior technician and assisted him on a difficult DC installation. I was able to learn a lot from him, which I am grateful for."
"That is a tough question since I have faced many difficult jobs in my past. At the start of my career, I did the grind! I worked digging service ditches. In my opinion, very few jobs are harder than that. I knew when I thrived in that job that I could do anything."
Tell the hiring manager about any manufacturing experience you have. Bring your resume to life for the interviewer but avoid talking on and on. Pick out the best of your knowledge and highlight that. If you do not have experience in manufacturing, let the interviewer know that you have some form of understanding of the manufacturing industry.
"My last two employers were both manufacturing related so yes, I have approximately six years experience within manufacturing. Both of these employers were manufacturers of pneumatic valves and automation."
"I am familiar with the major aspects of manufacturing and fully understand the importance of efficient equipment, and a safe environment, within manufacturing."
"Yes, I am very familiar with manufacturing and have approximately four years' experience working directly in a manufacturing environment. I have been the lead electrical technician, and have trained junior technicians in a manufacturing environment as well."
The interviewer would like to see that you are planning to make this move, a long-term career move. Tell the hiring manager if you are looking for a long-term fit, and why you think their company would keep you around for years to come. If you have strong tenure in your work history, be sure to lean on that.
"If hired, I would like to work for you as long as possible. I am a very loyal employee and know that once I find the right fit, I am going to stay long term. You can also see from my resume that I have strong tenure in my other roles."
"This is the start of my career as an electrical technician, and I plan to stay here for a very long time. Training and onboarding is a time consuming and expensive effort, so I fully understand the importance of loyalty."
"As you will see on my resume, I have strong tenure with my previous roles. I am loyal and remain in my positions as long as possible. My last move was only because the company closed down. I would have stayed much longer if given the opportunity. I also plan to help you with employee retention by acting as a mentor to new technicians. I love to share my knowledge."
The interviewer would like to know why you chose this as a career path. Your answer can include a little bit of personal touch when you tell the hiring manager about your path to becoming an electrical technician.
"Growing up, my father was an electrical technician, and I knew it was the path that I wanted to take from early on. I like to be in a hands-on role, and this was a natural choice for me."
"I have a strong interest in electrical work and equipment maintenance but did not have an interest in going into engineering. I recently completed my 2-year associate's degree and am eager to get some hands-on experience."
"I have been an electrical technician for the past nine years and couldn't imagine doing anything else! I am ready to take on a role where I can teach junior electrical technicians. This career is important to me, and I am proud of what I do."
Perhaps you have been a coach for a youth sports team or were on the advisory board for a non-profit organization. You should always be prepared to show the interviewer that you have a natural ability to lead others. Whether you have led a group of 500 or a team of 2, you must display to the interviewer that you are capable of handling the responsibility that comes with being a leader and mentor. Talk about your desire to be a leader. Share with the interviewer that you strive to be a role model for others. Explain that you jump at the opportunity to lead groups, encourage your counterparts, and be a face of the organization when challenges arise.
"In my current position, I love that I have the opportunity to encourage employee engagement while being a positive influence on the workplace culture. I am a natural leader because I start with leading by example. As a leader, I make myself available to others who need mentorship, a bit of assistance in adjusting to their role, or just a listening ear when they've had a tough day. I am confident in my leadership abilities and look forward to joining your team in a leadership role."
"I have taken a course in leadership recently as well as bring some light leadership experience from my most recent role. When my supervisor takes time off, I am asked to step into his shoes to be a leader to the new staff. I am eager to take on a bigger leadership role shortly."
"I see myself as a leader. Not only have I managed a team in two prior roles, but also I believe that leadership does not always equate to management. I am sure to lead at all times by providing the best model of enthusiasm and work ethic. I am open to new ideas and love to tackle a new project which, to me, embodies leadership."
Working as an electrical technician can be stressful at times. Talk to the hiring manager about your ability to work well under pressure and high stress. Are you someone who can handle stress on the job? How do you manage the stressful times?
"I handle stress very well, and when you call my references, they will attest to this fact. When I am under pressure on the job, I focus on the task at hand and make sure not to get distracted. Staying on deadline is very helpful, and I will delegate when necessary to alleviate some stress."
"Stress is part of any demanding job, and I embrace it to the fullest. I take good care of myself and prioritize my workload to maintain a healthy balance in my stress levels."
"I am solid under stress and high-pressure situations. The way that I handle stress is by taking a step back, making sure that I have all of the required information, and then moving forward. I am great with utilizing my current staff and ensuring that they are all working well as a team."
The interviewer would like to know what the ideal work environment is for you, and if their culture will be a fit for you. It is essential to understand the company culture that you are looking for when you are meeting with a new organization. Tell the hiring manager about your ideal experience and culture by including a few key buzzwords.
"My ideal company culture would be an organization that gives back to the community, takes care of its employees and promotes a healthy and positive workplace."
"I am seeking a workplace environment that allows for mentorship and training opportunities. Being new to my career as an electrical technician, this is very important to me."
"My ideal workplace culture is an environment where I can lead, teach other junior electrical technicians, and have a strong team to lean on as well. Collaboration is essential to me."
Although this equipment may be listed on your resume, the interviewer would like further detail on your level of exposure to this equipment. Walk the hiring manager through your experience and rate yourself as a beginner, intermediate, or advanced tech when it comes to each type of equipment. This is an excellent time to ask the interviewer what kind of equipment they work on the most.
"I have worked on a variety of equipment including X, Y, and Z and would rate myself as an advanced tech in those pieces of equipment. I am confident in my ability to work on any equipment successfully. Could you share with me the most common types of equipment that you work on here?"
"I am new in my career as an electrical technician, so I have not worked on a large range of equipment. During my post-secondary training, we had a great amount of focus on DC/AC machines and electrical installations. I look forward to furthering my exposure."
"I can truly do it all! I have been an electrical technician for twelve years and am comfortable in any work scenario. In my current position the majority of my work focuses on A, B, and C; however, I also train junior technicians in the maintenance of X, Y, and Z."
Chances are, your favorite class is also your strongest area of knowledge. Tell the hiring manager about your favorite class but also include why it was your favorite. If you received special accolades, finished top of the class, or completed an exciting project, be sure to include those points in your answer.
"My favorite post-secondary class was in electrical code because I feel that it was one of my best subjects. It's a complex topic and directly related to safety. I found it challenging, and that excited me."
"My favorite class, by far, was on magnetic control and switching circuits. I loved to learn about reversing magnetic starters and the construction of overload devices."
"My biggest strength has always been in electrical theory. I was top of the class on topics such as RLC circuits and three phase basic calculations. I hope to teach these courses someday."
Talk to the hiring manager about the level of post-secondary education that you have completed. Be sure to discuss any awards or recognition that you may have earned while attending post-secondary.
"I have an associates degree in electrical engineering with a major in algebra. I graduated top in my class. Although I found my post-secondary training to be very rewarding, one thing I would change is that I wouldn't have worked a part time job while completing my final semester. The biggest positive for me would be that I received many scholarships and financial rewards throughout my time in school."
"I recently graduated with my certificate as an electrical technician. I finished with solid marks and was often top of my class when it came to my grade, and level of engagement. If possible, I would like to return to evening coursework sometime in the future to obtain my associate's degree in electrical technology."
"I have an associates degree in applied science in electrical and computer engineering technology. The best aspect of my education was the hands-on training that my vocational institution offered as well as the incredible practicum opportunities they set us up with."
Before your interview, make sure you conduct research on the company and thoroughly review the job description for any clarification you may need on the position. Asking intelligent questions demonstrates to the interviewer your level of interest in their company, and the position. If you are not prepared for the interview, and you need to think of questions off the top of your head, ask questions regarding company culture, traits they are looking for in the ideal candidate, and if there is anything not listed on the job description that this position will be in charge of. Typically, pay is not discussed during phone interviews, so avoid asking any compensation related questions in the phone interview.
"Absolutely! What are you looking for in an ideal candidate? What type of pain points is your organization currently experiencing? What is the last successful project your team implemented?"
"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 3 years? - Is there any reason why you would not move me to the next stage of interviews? "
"From what I understand this is a newly created position, so can you tell me how you identified the need and what types of duties, not listed in the job description, you might foresee falling under the position's umbrella?"
Before answering scheduling questions, it's important to be clear on the interviewer's expectations. If you haven't had a chance to clarify their scheduling needs, now would be the perfect time to ask! Consider asking, 'What are the scheduling expectations for this position?' If they expect you to work 12 hour days, it would be important for you to know that before you respond with, 'Absolutely! No problem!' You want to be sure that you can meet their expectations. If it turns out their schedule expectations won't work for you, think about what you CAN offer and see if you can meet in the middle. It's much better to discuss these things in an interview than for you to commit to a schedule that won't work for you.
"I am available for full-time work which is preferably 8-5 Monday to Friday. I am happy to be a team player and work some overtime, as required. Will these hours meet your expectations?"
"If overtime is required in this role, I am happy to accommodate whenever I can. My only restriction is that I cannot work Wednesday nights as I have an evening course those days."
"In a salaried role such as this, I don't expect a strict 40 hour per week schedule, but I also know that I'm looking for a work-life balance. As needed, I'd be available to dedicate more time to the team, while hoping to preserve that balance. "
The best thing that you can do when asked about your salary expectation is to be open and honest about what you are currently earning, and where you want to be in the future.
"I can share with you what I am currently earning, and where I would like to be in my next position. Currently, I am earning a base salary of $72K plus an annual bonus opportunity of an additional 10%. Last year my earnings were $78K, and I'd like to earn a bit above that in my next position."
"As I am new to my career and this industry, I am happy to negotiate my earnings based on your typical salary for this role."
"I am negotiable with my salary expectations. However, I am not inclined to lose compensation. Compensation to me, though, is not just net pay. I take into account work hours, drive time, benefits, and more."
It always puts a little bit of fire under the hiring manager, if they are aware that you are actively looking for a new position. Tell the interviewer about your search so far.
"I am keeping an eye out for viable positions. Although I am not in final stages with any other company, I am actively seeking a new position."
"I just graduated with my Associate's Degree in Electrical Technology and have been actively seeking a new position for a couple of weeks now. I have two other first interviews booked for this week, and a second interview in a couple of days."
"I am looking for a job that will provide me as much value as I am looking to contribute to an organization, so yes, I am in the process of exploring opportunities at companies that appeal to me."
The interviewer would like to know how you go about making decisions on your own when a supervisor is unavailable. Are you okay with making independent decisions? Tell the hiring manager about your confidence in your ability to make the right decision, on your own.
"If I needed something immediately and my supervisor was unavailable I would make the best decision possible, keeping in consideration what would be the best for the company. In my current role, I receive a lot of autonomy and am comfortable making decisions on my own."
"I feel that when I am confident in my knowledge and have a full understanding of the result that my employer is looking for, I can make educated decisions when left on my own."
"I am accustomed to working on my own and taking the lead on projects. I am certainly confident in my knowledge and ability to make the right decision when left to make it on my own."
The interviewer would like to know what you do to improve yourself as an electrical technician continually. Do you take additional coursework, watch videos on specific skills or read any electrical related literature? Tell the hiring manager all the things you do to improve your skills as an electrical technician.
"This past year I have taken a course on schematics and blueprint reading. I try to take a couple of courses per year to freshen up my skills as an electrical technician. Are there any courses or workshops you would like to see me take, should you bring me onto your team?"
"In addition to my recent degree in applied science in electrical technology, I have also taken coursework in project management. This additional work will set me apart from any other candidate in competition for this role."
"I think that continued education is incredibly important. For this reason, I take a leadership course every year. Also, I am working towards my PMP certification so that I can be the strongest project manager possible."
Being a bright communicator is an essential skill to master. Have you taken any courses in communication and writing? Are you confident in your written communication skills? Talk to the interviewer about your communication abilities and support your answer with a brief example or story.
"I would describe my written communication skills as very strong and would rate myself as a 9/10. I have always had a penchant for writing and have taken university courses related to writing RFP's and quotes."
"I consider myself to be a strong communicator, always calling upon a mix of written and verbal communications. When working in teams, I tap into interpersonal communications to build strong relationships with others."
"I would rate my communication skills as a 9/10. I love to get to know my team, and how they best operate when it comes to communication. My team has always rated me very high in my communication skills during my leadership reviews."
Electrical and electronics engineering technicians help engineers design and develop computers, communications equipment, medical monitoring devices, navigational equipment, and other electrical and electronic equipment. They often work in product evaluation and testing, using measuring and diagnostic devices to adjust, test, and repair equipment.