3 Essential Steps for Job Interview Preparation for Engineers

The industrial engineering sector is in the midst of a labor market boom. Job outlook is projected to grow 10 percent over the next decade, faster than the average of any other occupation. These projections come as a generation of engineers retires or exits the industry. In short, there is a demand and a labor shortage coming. 

Engineering firms in aerospace, architecture, and construction are on the recruitment trail now. If you’ve identified your dream career in engineering, it’s going to take more than your problem-solving skills to meet the criteria. Here’s how to prepare yourself best for an interview for your next engineering position.

What Are Some Common Questions You’ll Be Asked as an Engineer?

Why should we hire you? What interests you about the role? Why have you chosen this engineering company? 

You’re bound to get questions like this that challenge you to think hard about your skill set and how you could be the best candidate for the company. Here are the themed questions you should prepare for so you’re not blindsided or left sitting thinking about how to respond. 

Themed questions

The interview process for your next engineering job will incorporate all or a mix of these themed questions. Let’s cover the purpose of these questions and what they sound/look like. 


For any job you apply for, the recruiter or interviewer on the other end wants to know your motivation or interest in the position. These questions include: “Why do you want to work in the automotive/aerospace/power generation industry?,” “Why do you want to work for this company?,” and “Why have you applied for this job role?”.


You should apply to a position where you can shine and display how competent you are in your chosen field of work. Some questions that an interviewer will cover on competency will sound like: ‘Tell me about a time when…’ In this example, you should be prepared to respond and perhaps expand on your skill level with whatever they ask for, such as problem-solving, teamwork, resilience, or leadership.  


These questions are designed to review how you respond to certain scenarios and whether you align with the company’s values and strategy. Listen for a question that is framed this way: “What would you do if…”


Your interviewer also wants to know where your strengths lie, so they can identify if you’re a good candidate for the role. Do you meet the criteria of the job description? They will find out by asking you questions like: ‘How do you judge success?’ and ‘Do you find deadlines motivating or inspiring?’. While these questions don’t require you to, it’s still good to draw on examples from your previous experience.

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Do Your Homework on the Company

You applied to the job for a reason – you saw something in the company that caught your attention and felt that it aligned with your goals and career aspirations. 

As you prepare for the interview, take the time to research the organization. What are the company’s goals? What are their values? What is the mission, if it’s listed? As you go through your interview, find opportunities to weave these company values into your responses about yourself as a person and candidate. 

Also, keep in mind the industry trends overall of your chosen field (aerospace, construction, etc.) As an employee, you’ll be expected to understand any challenges in the industry and how it affects the company.

Review the Job Description: How Are you the Best Candidate?

Check out the profiles of other engineers in a similar role as yourself from the company for a snapshot of qualifications.

Use all of this research to help put into words what interests you about the job, the employer, and the industry you’re applying to.

Show Off Your Skills: Growth-orientation and Problem-solving Strategies

Whether it’s construction or cyber security, engineers are the type of people who are problem solvers. They show up to solve issues and create better methods, processes, or systems. 

As you prepare your answers for the interview, think about how you can display that you’re the type of candidate who will take challenges on with enthusiasm. Draw from your experiences in a variety of environments, from past work to even extracurricular activities.  

Think about your career ambitions too, both in the immediate and distant future, as you may be asked a question on this. What sorts of projects would you like to work on? Do you want to achieve chartership? Do you see yourself taking on a management role?

Why Working With a Dedicated Engineering Recruitment Agency Is Your Best Ticket to the Top

Going solo in the current job market can be daunting and challenging to get in front of the right interviewer. Sometimes going through the career vetting process can take months. But it doesn’t have to be that way. 

Working with a dedicated engineering recruitment agency like AE Concepts guarantees a common meeting ground for engineering employers and candidates. We specialize in engineering industries for construction, engineering, and architecture.

Our connections with top engineering organizations ensures that candidates are getting in front of the right people. We focus on providing the permanent placement of highly skilled engineering candidates through an in-depth qualification process. Get in touch with a recruiter from AE Concepts today and find out more about our industry connections and where to start your next big career step.

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