Operations Managers plan, direct, and coordinate the daily functions of an organization. Their primary goal is to maintain and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the organization to assist it in achieving its core business objectives. Their responsibilities vary depending on the organization but typically include developing or improving process strategies, managing quality assurance programs, procuring material or resources, and ensuring the organization remains legally compliant. In some organizations, they might also perform Human Resources functions (e.g., hiring, training, monitoring performance) or Finance functions (e.g., budgeting, forecasting, improving profit margins). To accomplish these variety of different tasks effectively, operations managers need to exhibit high leadership, management, and organizational competencies.
Core skills for Operations Managers
Teamwork / Collaboration
How to effectively interview Operations Managers
While it might seem difficult to figure out whether a candidate will succeed as an Operations Manager in your company, a well-developed set of interview questions that tap into the core skills required to perform in an Operations Manager role will go a long way in helping you decide.
But where do you start? How do you develop a set of great interview questions?
The best interview questions come directly from a job analysis. A job analysis is an evidence-based method that focuses on assessing key features of a particular role. These features describe both the job itself (i.e., tasks, responsibilities, and performance objectives), and the characteristics required of someone to perform successfully in the job (e.g., knowledge, skills, and abilities). A job analysis forms the basis of many HR practices such as compensation, performance management, and - you guessed it - how to interview and hire candidates.
At Hireguide, we’ve done the job analysis work for you. We’ve used the method to identify a core set of skills associated with the Operations Manager role, and we’ve developed and validated a list of behavioral and situational questions with answer guides that tap directly into those core skills. And that’s not all. We’ve compiled these questions and created an Operations Manager Interview Template for you that integrates other interviewing best practices. Skills-based interviews will not only help you make higher quality and evidence-based hiring decisions, but research also shows they enhance fairness and reduce bias in your hiring process.
Example interview questions to ask
Tell me about a business/HR change you managed that you are most proud of. Why was the change effective, and how did you measure its success?
- Describes the business context and the change that was implemented
- Explains their specific role/involvement in managing the change
- Describes the data and metrics used to measure progress and success
- Shares evidence to justify the impact the change on business efficiency
- Elaborates on lessons learned and key takeaways
Imagine you are introducing the team to a new [insert process/tool/system], but some team members are resistant to the change. What would you do?
- Discusses the main principles and challenges associated with managing change
- Identifies and understands the root cause of others’ reluctance to change
- Clearly communicates the reason for change and promotes transparency
- Justifies change with evidence and emphasizes advantages to individual employees
- Communicates collective benefits of the change for the team and business