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Top 25 Power Plant Operator Interview Questions

Question 1 of 26
Where do you think one third of the electricity we generate at this power plant, goes?
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"When the electricity that we generate leaves our power plant, the electricity flows to large transmission lines held up by huge towers. The transmission lines carry large amounts of electricity to substations in cities and towns. Distribution lines carry small amounts of electricity from the substations to houses and businesses."
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Question 2 of 26
How can you tell the difference between induced draft and forced draft?
Professional Answers Preview
"Yes, I can tell the difference between Induced Draft and Forced Draft. Induced Draft (ID) is when a fan is used to extract the air from a boiler post combustion via Electrostatic Precipitator to exhaust through the chimney. Forced draft (FD) is when a fan is used to force air into the boiler to provide more air for combustion."
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Question 3 of 26
Do you remember your steam tables?
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Question 4 of 26
Explain to me why some cooling towers are 300 feet tall, and others look like a 30 by 30 foot cubicle on top of a building?
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Question 5 of 26
What do you do when your time schedule or project plan is upset by unforeseen circumstances?
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Question 6 of 26
What is your long-term career goal?
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Question 7 of 26
What is the temperature steam turns into dry steam?
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Question 8 of 26
Why is coal crushed to a powder before being fed into a boiler?
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Question 9 of 26
How important is safety to you?
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Question 10 of 26
Why are you the best Power Plant Operator for us?
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Question 11 of 26
What has been your greatest accomplishment as a Power Plant Operator?
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Question 12 of 26
Why does steam have to be heated to the temperature it is, before entering a turbine?
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Question 13 of 26
After we make electricity, why do we increase the voltage before sending it to the grid?
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Question 14 of 26
What is your greatest weakness and what steps are you taking to improve?
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Question 15 of 26
Describe a difficult project and how you overcame the challenges.
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Question 16 of 26
What excites you the most about a career as a Power Plant Operator?
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Question 17 of 26
How do you handle stress and pressure?
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Question 18 of 26
Why do you want to leave your current employer?
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Question 19 of 26
What made you choose a career as a Power Plant Operator?
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Question 20 of 26
What are the primary differences from a natural gas power plant to a coal power plant?
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Question 21 of 26
Do you enjoy working with your hands?
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Question 22 of 26
What is 'lockout- tagout'; or 'lock and tag'?
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Question 23 of 26
What is your secret to a successful career as a Power Plant Operator?
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Question 24 of 26
What do you feel is an acceptable work attendance record?
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Question 25 of 26
What is your philosophy towards work?
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Question 26 of 26
What is your greatest strength and how do you feel it will help you in this role?
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User-Submitted Interview Answers

Question 1 of 26
Where do you think one third of the electricity we generate at this power plant, goes?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Boiler feed pump takes one third of power that we generate.
2.
It is consumed by auxillary running equpments in plants.
3.
To the machinery used in the plant.
4.
Building control systems.
5.
To run the plant & its equipment.
6.
Back into the power plant.
7.
For running auxularies in the thermal power plant.
8.
To make the power station work.
9.
Taken up by auxillaries such as the feed pump.
10.
I will clean the machine and check the level of all fluid to prepare for the next working schedule.
11.
Back to plant equipment for power plant operations.
12.
Ya some heading only and I can read steam table data.
13.
Field operator working in wapda pakistan.
14.
On to the grid, as the efficiency of this plant is around 29%
Question 2 of 26
How can you tell the difference between induced draft and forced draft?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Forced draft installed to force air through, induced draft pulls suction through.
2.
Indused draft fan pulls the air, and forced draft fan pushes the air.
3.
Vacume vs forced blown air.
4.
Will take a review for that.
5.
Induce draft is negative pressure and forced draft is positive pressure.
6.
Then fan after boiler with flue gas will have induced draft, and the fan that has duct connecting to boiler will be the forced draft.Forced draft will give positive pressure to boiler and induced will give negative draft to the boiler.
7.
Induced draft pulling air through the unit forced draft pushing air into the unit.
8.
The induces draft gets the air and given to the boiler, the forced draft sucks the air from outside and given to inside.
9.
Induced draft fan for sending out and forced for sending flue gasses into the chimney.
10.
Forced draft is introduced into the furnace from outside and induced draft is the removal of gases from the furnace.
11.
Above and below atmospheric pressure.
12.
Induced draft is generally fitted at the end and used vacuum to pull air out of the chamber. Forced draft pushes air and is fitted at the beginning.
13.
Force draft fans are open to he atmosphere while induce draft fans blow air from within the system.
14.
Induced draft fans have fans to push air. Forced draft does not.
15.
If fans are below stream it was induced. Fans are above stream forced draught.
Question 3 of 26
Do you remember your steam tables?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
No, but if I need it for my daY TO Day work I will recall it again, before the particular day.
2.
No, if it needs to my work I ll recall it frequently.
3.
What is a plant operator.
4.
Yes I do, but I am an electric engineer need to refresh and will catch it faster.
5.
Not even a single string of it.
6.
Hello dear. After overhoal in power plant, diffrential pressure of boiler circulating pump 0.5 kg/cm2 down. Why?
7.
Comments like fate water fade water generation expansion.
8.
Not that much extend maybe.
9.
They measure pressure through temperature, volume of water and steam and amount of energy used by water during vaporization and vice versa.
10.
Yes. I am well knowledge to follow a steam table to gather information as required.
11.
Write your interview answer here. Then click next question. Yes.
Question 4 of 26
Explain to me why some cooling towers are 300 feet tall, and others look like a 30 by 30 foot cubicle on top of a building?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Dependent on application as well as area plant has available.
2.
They r natural draught cooli towwrs and the aller ones are forced draught type.
3.
It depends it is natural cooling or forced cooling.
4.
Because it is colder at high levels.
5.
Always on top of buildings.
6.
They place it usually at top because the higher the altitude the more effecient the cooling tower will be because its colder at high altitude than ground.
7.
Depending on the style of cooling tower and available wind makes a difference.
8.
For natural cooling and due to temperature difference the water will be cooled down fast.
9.
Up draft Honeycone cooling tower and free flow cooling tower.
10.
It is depend upon the application of towers.
11.
Its depend upon cooling tower.
12.
It depends upon plant rating and that amount water we use.
13.
Environmental impact and size of cooling needs.
14.
300 feet cooling tower are natural draught cooling tower and another is forced draught cooling tower .
15.
To release higher to allow for wind drift.
Question 5 of 26
What do you do when your time schedule or project plan is upset by unforeseen circumstances?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
It will happens in any industry also in our day to day life, we have to move on, and I will try to rectify the things as much quick as possible with my experience and my colleagues knowledge.
2.
Inform the chief engineer about the issue to find a potential solution to the problem.
3.
New plans and new alternavies for the present one would be found by meetings.
4.
Make safe dessions to get back on track.
5.
It is what it is, sometimes you just roll with it.
6.
Start making list and categorize what are top priority and work from there.
7.
We need to change the schedule according the circumstances as their will be a lot of uncertanity in thermal power plants. We need to take immediate action to solve the problem.
8.
Minimise the unforeseen circumstances.
9.
I report to the management or to the consult party and I will ask some extra time to finish the project with correct manner.
10.
I will try find solution for that and first of all I won't feel stress.
11.
Prioritize. Take care of emergency then regroup.
12.
I will plan it accordingly and go through the same.
13.
Some extra time to finish the project with correct manner.
14.
I will enjoy this moment, free from work.
15.
I will appoint someone to fit in the gap for me.
Question 6 of 26
What is your long-term career goal?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I will be in a good position like asst. Manager operations in power plant,
2.
As a more responsible individual with more responsibilities, still ever determined to meet the mission, vision, aim and objectives of the company.
3.
To have a good working knowledge of the operation.
4.
Would like to be in some sort of manager position or a control room operator.
5.
I would like to be in the good position in the oraganization.
6.
I saw myself in many era at last ten years, during at successful project work and troubleshooting of VFD machine.
7.
Unit coordinator or higher role.
8.
As a power plant manager.
9.
I see myself as a specialist electrical operator.
10.
With much more knowledge than I know now. A leader and on my way to a retirement.
11.
With much more knowledge than I know now. A leader and on my way to a retirement.
12.
In a leadership position well on my way to retirement.
13.
I will in the top position of the organisation by keep on improving my abilities.
14.
My long term career is get a PhD and equal job.
15.
To be the best employee at any task given to me.
Question 7 of 26
What is the temperature steam turns into dry steam?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Steam a bowl of saturated temperature.
2.
The Stan turns into dry steam at 200 to 250 centigrade at 1 disc pressure normally it based upon pressure based process.
Question 8 of 26
Why is coal crushed to a powder before being fed into a boiler?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Because to burn the coal fully, we have to pulverise the coal to powder form. And also it leads to achieve the greater calorific value.
2.
To increase the surface area of the coal for better ignition and combustion.
3.
For better combustion of coal.
4.
It is crushed into powder so it can produce heat fast.
5.
Because if coal is not crushed the combustion will not take place and also lump coal is very dangerous for the boiler water walls.
6.
Your creating a larger surfaces area, which will ignite faster and it will create more heat.
7.
For more effeciency of coal in relation to the temperature it would cause.
8.
Better air to fuel ratio for better combustion.
9.
To get higher buring rate and that it increases the effieciency.
10.
Better burn and combustion.
11.
Because it is difficult burn the coal when it is in solid form, When we powdered the coal it is easy to burn.
12.
To taking maximum heat energy.
13.
If we do like that we can maximum heat rate. I. E. Max output from coal.
14.
To get fully combustion in boiler and conduct area is high to get burnt easily..
15.
More efficient combustion.
Question 9 of 26
How important is safety to you?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Safety is very very important to every personal, especially in power industry. Because I am working in a particular position and I have to be a role model to others and also I need complete my job with my at most satisfaction for my organization as well as my family.
2.
Its major part of working.
3.
Very much, because it is the factor that keeps you in the right position and condition to work.
4.
Saftey is very impoertant in the power plant industry as their are lot of chances of uncertanity at the plant.So, safety should be first priority and the anything.
5.
Safety number one priority.
6.
Very much, as in power plants a small mistake can cause an enormous hazard.
7.
It is very important to keep my integrity and others around me.
8.
Safety comes first to me. If a safe environment is ensure inside the factory area, productivity will definitely increase proportionately as workers will get a comfortable place to work in.
9.
Safety is paramount and comes first in everything I do.
10.
It is most importance in an organisation. Safety comes first.
11.
It's my first choice in my working place. Because without safety everyone can't live.
12.
Very, I involve safety in all decisions I make.
Question 10 of 26
Why are you the best Power Plant Operator for us?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I can learn the things easily, and also I am easily adoptable with the team with my easy going nature,
2.
From my past mechcanical and electrical knowledge.
3.
My dedication for work in power plant.
4.
I always strive to be the best I can be.
5.
Willingness to learn and not afraid to tackle any task.
6.
I would like to run the power plant instead of running may work well with others and listen to questions and answers.
7.
Excellent understanding of site electrical systems.
8.
Because of my vast experience, qualifications, passion and zeal for what entails the job.
9.
My work aptitude has given me advantage when performing the assigned tasks.
10.
Because of the knowledge I posses. Interpersonal communications, team work, leadership, courage, unselfishness, loyalty, and dependability.
11.
I have the leadership, initiative, dependability, loyalty, enthusiasm, unselfishness, and skill to be the best and help others do the same.
12.
I can calculate efficiency and also mingle easily. Improve my knowledge to increase your industry growth.
13.
Iam well versed with power plant equipments and processes invloved in it.
14.
Because I have education and dedication in the task .
15.
Good at troubleshooting & vast experience.
Question 11 of 26
What has been your greatest accomplishment as a Power Plant Operator?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Team member researching EHC system contamination. Discovered problem and found solution, greatly enhancing system reliability.
2.
Synchronization of plant after shutdown.
3.
Always safe and dependable.
4.
Achieving powerplant knowledge and becoming a control room operator in three to four years.
5.
Surviving a cold winter with an air cooled condenser with high air inleakage.
6.
Saving a boiler from explosion and bringing it off range safely.
7.
I am challenging myself applying to this position.
8.
Finishing my apprenticeship as one of the top apprentices.
9.
I handled power station black out. And many steam turboine trip as individual.
10.
Solving routine problem that lead to plant shutdown.
Question 12 of 26
Why does steam have to be heated to the temperature it is, before entering a turbine?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Superheated steam drives turbine blades for power heneration.
2.
Heat plays a mojor role in turbine, incase of absence of heat the turbine blades may got damage due to formation of rust. If there is no heat in steam means it has a moisture. So we need the heat.
3.
More energy, and no droplets.
4.
Superheted steam will rotate the steam tubine blades.
5.
To increase the pressure in order to impend the turbine to rotate.
6.
Because the turbine is hot so steam should measure the heat of the turbine.
7.
So the water can be converted to steam.
8.
For the warm up and to avoid hammering and creacks due to sudden temperature change.
9.
Superheated steam is dry saturated steam has morsture that you do not want to get in the turbin.
10.
Superheated steam ensures it remains steam in the turbine. Water would damage the fast moving blades of the turbine.
11.
Superheated steam has more energy and it does not cause rust to the turbine blades.
12.
Superheated steam has more energy and it does not cause rust to the turbine blades.
13.
Because steam at its hottest has the most power.
14.
Because steam has the most energy at high temperatures.
15.
Dry steam cannot be entered. So steam should be heated up to its temperature to get super heated steam.
Question 13 of 26
After we make electricity, why do we increase the voltage before sending it to the grid?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
To avoid transmission losses we have increases the voltage.
2.
To avoid transmission losses we have to increase the voltage.
3.
This keeps the current lower and ensures power flows at highest.
4.
To reduce the power loss in transmission.
5.
To get greater distance & match what is on the grid.
6.
Match up the generator with the 500 KV line voltage so you're not back back to the generator reverse power.
7.
So we can lower current and wire size for long range transmission.
8.
To avoid transmission losses.
9.
Reduce lost, to reduce the current, reduce the size of the wire to transfer it.
10.
Because power is lost during transmission to the customer.
11.
Because some energy is exhausted during transmission.
12.
To reduced the loss of electricity. And easy transmission.
13.
To have excess available electricity to cover up incase of any emergency.
14.
Flow of electricity better from higher voltage to lower voltage. Since we are importing electricity to grid, we have to maintain higher voltage than grid voltage.
Question 14 of 26
What is your greatest weakness and what steps are you taking to improve?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I thought am good enough in some cases and missed to discuss with others.
2.
Literature...But where this factor needs to be mastered, then there is no way back down.
3.
I put in many hours at work.
4.
I am not patient with sluggish team players.
5.
That I don't know everything I need to know.
Question 15 of 26
Describe a difficult project and how you overcame the challenges.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
EHC contamination. Formed team and researched issue, found cause, and developed a solution.
2.
Conveying system was getting locked in program loop found a way to force it reset.
3.
Work with difficult people.
4.
Working with others to try to accomplish a project listening to their ideals.
5.
Planned outage with multiple jobs Concentrate on critical path.
6.
Designing a boiler efficiency calculator. I managed using C language and GUI
7.
I got mixed up on the location of a breaker. I called a journeyman who gladly came and help me find it.
8.
When I was put in charge of contractors and making sure they were safe and task was completed without incident.
9.
Acc vacuum dropping continues so I rectified that by checking leak and I found from flange. So I tightens that. That's it.
10.
I was given the to complete the water wash of compressor in 24 hrs with desired valve of conductivity. I worked continuisly 20 hours to achive.
Question 16 of 26
What excites you the most about a career as a Power Plant Operator?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Continuing to learn more about the power industry.
2.
The power plant lightening the life, and I am a part of it..
3.
Learning the new process and knowing making power for other operations.
4.
To work in a plant in which you begging to love and take ownership of and treat every piece of equipment like a patient.
5.
Day to day challenges that a power plant Presents.
6.
Using my skills in a productive manner.
7.
The duties involved and the realisation that electricity generated is one of the main agents of developing a nation.
8.
When I drive around coming to a city at night knowing that I am a part of creating electricity for those lights.
9.
Knowing that I am a part of making electricity for cities.
10.
The chanlanging, I love to work as power plant operator.
Question 17 of 26
How do you handle stress and pressure?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Understanding that obstacles/difficulties can always arise and finding solutions through discussion.
2.
I will manage the stress by means of sorting out the things based on those importance and I planned to complete the work with in the time limit with well planned mentality.
3.
Stress is one of the hardest things to handle, I personally try to focus on fixing the stress rather than dealing with it.
4.
Working with equipment and out in the field and as a power plant operator has enabled me to think before I act.
5.
Very well. Prioritize, adapt, conquer then move on to next challenge.
6.
I take them as providing new opprtunities for growth and development of life skills and knowledge.
7.
Through working out or working outside at home.
8.
I handling happily I like to work under pressure.
Question 18 of 26
Why do you want to leave your current employer?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
To find a better job (more income), also to get more knowledge and widen my experience.
2.
Would like to get closer to home.
3.
To seek new challenges and learn new things.
4.
I have to much interested to join in your company.
5.
I want to enhance my career forward as well as my organization.
Question 19 of 26
What made you choose a career as a Power Plant Operator?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Because am a perfect match for this position and I do mid there requirements they wanted.
2.
Felt like it would be a great opprituiity to show case my skills in a differrent procees.
3.
Given my past career and experience it compliments my talents.
4.
Hands on career good pay.
5.
The scientific principles behind the generation of electricity captivated my interest since childhood.
6.
Am basic mechanical and I love power subjects.
7.
The lack of electricity in some places. I want my country to glow in night times also.
8.
That is what I learn to do after high school.
Question 20 of 26
What are the primary differences from a natural gas power plant to a coal power plant?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
CHP & stock yard, crushers, coal conveyors, LDO HFO oil elevations, ash slurry disposal units, ash pond, wet or dry ash disposal.
2.
Gas is much cleaner and coal requires more involvement to keep emissions correct.
3.
Coal versus natural gas conveyor belts particulars for bag house line usage.
4.
Crushing mills, conveyor belts, ash handling plants, dust seperators etc.
5.
Coal, Bag houses, ash, clinkers, ash trucks.
6.
Coal, ash, dewatering bins, reject systems, tripper deck, coal silos.
7.
Coal handling unit. Ash handling unit. Coal feeding unit. Etc.
8.
Gas turbine, coal mills, coveyer, coal haandling plant.
Question 21 of 26
Do you enjoy working with your hands?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Yes, but with in my knowledge I have enjoy it. But I wants to assist someone means surely I will call them. Because team work makes the difficult things to easier.
Question 22 of 26
What is 'lockout- tagout'; or 'lock and tag'?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Procedure for protecting personnel and equipment during repair and/or maintenance.
2.
A lock tag that is disdenated to keep the machine from being turn on electrically.
3.
To lock out a piece of equipment in order to isolate safely for work or to work downstream safely.
4.
Requesting a lotto or piece of equipment to be worked on.
5.
Ensures equipment is safe to work on.
6.
A way of dealing with emergencies and involves striking a balance between human safety an plant safety.
7.
A process used to ensure safety by isolating equipment.
8.
A safety procedure used when plant equipment needs to be worked on.
9.
Lock out means any breaker opens them we put a lock out tag.
10.
In permit to work system. Tagging the isolations and locking to ensure the safety of workers who are working there.
Question 23 of 26
What is your secret to a successful career as a Power Plant Operator?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Learn all that I can and persue promotion opportunities when available.
2.
To be safe and listen ask question and work together.
3.
Hard work and dedication.
4.
Asking questions and being a good listener and willing to work.
5.
Being alert always and knowing what to do when.
6.
Mind my own business and remind myself how lucky I am to be working for the company.
7.
I like power generation. I work hard for the generation of power.
8.
Follow the rules & make as many friend as possible at work.
Question 24 of 26
What do you feel is an acceptable work attendance record?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
On time always. Absent only when illness wont permit working.
2.
Never late and dependable.
3.
Be at work 00 your scheduled work days.
4.
Don't use all sick time given.
5.
All things being equal 100%
Question 25 of 26
What is your philosophy towards work?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Working safely and being efficent on the task and working together and helpful.
2.
Anything worth doing is worth doing exceptionally well.
3.
Understand the job so that you can do the very best and do it one time.
4.
Doing things correct the first time.
5.
Always put forth your best effort. The work you do is a reflection of the person you are.
6.
To always do the best you can, because your work reflects the person you are.
7.
Work hard then everything comes like fame. Position. Money etc.
8.
Work hard untill you get it done completely.
Question 26 of 26
What is your greatest strength and how do you feel it will help you in this role?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Ability to work with others of various backgrounds.
2.
Attention to detail and problem solving with a good back to anticipate things before they happen.
3.
Trying to beat myself up over simple solutions not catching problems.
4.
Knowledge and experience.
5.
I am a hardworker who works efficiently without the need for close supervision.

About Power Plant Operator

August 22nd, 2017

A power plant operator is responsible for operating and controlling various power-generating and power-distributing equipment such as generators, water turbines, nuclear reactors, and boilers. As part of their job, power plant operators also inspect and maintain equipment, adjust controls, and read meters and gauges. Electric shocks, burns, and falls from height are some of the occupational hazards of working as a power plant operator.
A high school diploma or equivalent is the minimum educational qualification required to find an entry-level job as a power plant operator. For higher positions, employers will only consider applicants who have at least an undergrad degree related to this field or a vocational certificate.
At your interview, the interviewer will ask you questions to assess your knowledge of the job as well as your knowledge of security procedures. In this field, security protocol takes precedence and prospective employers will want to ensure that you are familiar with this aspect of the job. At Mock Questions, you will find a long list of commonly asked questions at these interviews as well as tips on how to answer these questions. Going through these questions and answers will help you be better prepared for your upcoming interview.

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