Top 16 Receptionist Interview Questions (+ Sample Answers)

By Jeff Gillis

When it comes to the roles people play within a professional organization, it ’ randomness heavily to ignore just how critically important a good receptionist is. In many ways, a receptionist is the physical representation of the organization, and so it becomes critical for the organization to find the best campaigner for the position ( and this is why we ’ ve chosen to write an entire article on receptionist interview questions ! ) .
After all, they ’ re the first person you speak to when calling in and frequently the first face you see when you walk into the office. Receptionists interact with employees, clients, agencies, vendors …basically anybody and everybody who has anything to do with the company .
For this rationality, when it comes to hiring a modern receptionist, hiring managers aren ’ t just looking at person who can do the job, but who can represent the entire reputation of the company in the most positive way possible …which is why, when you ’ ra prepping for your approaching receptionist interview, you need to not barely be a good candidate….you need to be the perfect candidate .
Being a great receptionist is a bite like being a superhero in that you ’ re going to need an integral host of special skills and abilities to rise above the rest of the potential candidates. Because you ’ rhenium much the first ( and sometimes the concluding ) person people interact with when it comes to the company you ’ re hired to work for, hire managers are going to hone in on people they think are personable and friendly. But don ’ metric ton think you ’ re going to win that interview barely because you ’ ve got a tauten handshake and a 10,000 watt smile.

Hiring managers are looking for people who have serious talent when it comes to hard skill sets like clear communication, organization, word processing, schedule and time management, excellent phone skills and writing. They ’ ra besides looking for people with soft skills, including problem solving, adaptability, patience, the ability to work under pressure and treat tension, creativity, and in some cases ( depending on who you end up working with and the calls you might be fielding ), conflict resolution .
thus, like we said…a superhero. Minus the cape .
An excellent receptionist has to be able to perform a battalion of jobs and wear a set of hats ( but regretful, like we said…no capes ). It ’ s decidedly not a career for the faint. It ’ randomness besides not an interview you want to walk into less than prepared ( not that any scholar of The Interview Guys would always do that…but when it comes to interviewing for a receptionist position, it ’ sulfur tied more critical that you prepare ahead of time. )
( You may besides be interested in two of other articles : administrative assistant interview questions and executive assistant interview questions ) .

5 Tips to Help You Prepare For a Receptionist Interview

  1. Dress the part: We’ve already said that the receptionist is in many ways the physical embodiment of the company their representing. Keep that in mind when getting ready for your interview and selecting your wardrobe. Remember, your first impression is the most important. You want the hiring manager to look at you and see someone they would be proud to have represent the company.
  2. Get to know the company personality ahead of time: As weird as it sounds, companies have ‘personalities.’ Often also called ‘culture,’ it’s the overall vibe of a company and is comprised of a number of elements including the work environment, the company values, mission, ethics, goals and expectations. Getting to know that personality before you interview can help you make sure your personality is a good fit and match. For example, the personality of a corporate legal firm would be vastly different than the personality of a toy company. Get a sense ahead of time of the company culture by reading their blog, Facebook posts, or by talking with current and past employees.
  3. Be familiar with the company products and/or services: If they have a product or service that you can try, you should do your best to use it before you go in for your first interview. Be prepared to discuss your experience with the hiring manager if asked.
  4. Be aware of your body language: You’ll be interacting with people all day if hired as the receptionist and will be expected to maintain a professional appearance the entire time you’re at work, including how you present yourself physically. Start off on the right foot by greeting the hiring manager with a genuine smile and a handshake. Make sure to look them in the eye during the interview and engage directly.
  5. Practice communicating clearly and calmly: A big part of being a great receptionist is answering phones and communicating with clients. A hiring manager isn’t going to want to bring someone on who has a hard time communicating clearly. Make sure you’re answering all the questions clearly and calmly. We know you’re nervous, but don’t rush! Don’t interrupt your hiring manger or talk over them either. Remember, a big part of clear communication is not only speaking but listening as well.

immediately let ’ s move onto what types of questions you might be asked when interviewing for a receptionist side .

Top 6 Receptionist Interview Questions You Could Be Asked

You ’ re more than probably going to have to face your fair share of traditional questions that address those hard skills we talked about above. When prepping for your interview, go over the job description carefully and make sure that your skills match what they ’ re specifically looking for .

Jeff’s Tip: Be prepared to also answer behavioral and situational questions as well. In fact, while the hard skills you list in your

Be prepared to also answer behavioral and situational questions as well. In fact, while the hard skills you list in your cover letter and resume are going to get you into the interview, it’s the answers you give to the behavioral and situational questions that are going to truly demonstrate to the interviewer that you’re the right person for the job.

To help give you an mind of what questions you might be asked and to get you into the right mentality, here are some possible receptionist interview questions and answers for you to rehearse with .

What is your experience level working with multiple-line phone systems?

My stopping point job included working a desk where we received a high gear bulk of calls. I was responsible for keeping all the incoming calls organized and ensure that they were transferred to the correct recipient role in a flying and effective manner. even when things are feverish, I take pride in my ability to remain friendly and calm.

What is your word-per-minute rate when typing and what is your error rate?

On average, I ’ meter right at around 80-95 words-per-minute with an accuracy of around ninety percentage. I can type faster, but know with increase speed, my accuracy can go down. Regardless, I make indisputable to re-read everything I type and proofread for grammar and spelling error before sending anything out.

What is your experience level with traditional software programs and office equipment?

I have over 15 years of experience using Windows and the Microsoft Office Suite including Word, Access, Excel and PowePoint. I ’ m besides comfortable with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator and familiar with most standard office equipment including copiers, faxes, and phone systems.

Can you tell me about a time you felt overwhelmed at work and how did you handle that?

In my last job it wasn ’ t strange for us to get slammed on Fridays correct before the conclusion of the work day, but on one particular Friday we had not merely our normal pre-weekend increase in oeuvre but were besides in the middle of a major position recast and conducting interviews for newly hires. Between answering phones and doing my convention routine oeuvre, I besides found myself having to coordinate construction workers who were moving furniture from one section to another, while besides making sure that the people coming in for interviews were by rights checked in. I made certain I stayed calm air and collected and prioritized my tasks appropriately. I ’ m a tilt manufacturer, so the easiest way I ’ ve found to stay organized when things are crazy is to immediately write things down. That way things don ’ thyroxine experience lost in the hotness of the moment. By staying sedate and organized, I was able to handle everything that was thrown my way that crazy Friday afternoon.

Can you tell me about a time you had to deal with someone who was upset or angry on the phone?

I had person call in one time who was obviously very overturned. They were demanding to be connected to our CEO directly. The biggest thing you have to remember when dealing with individuals like this is to never take their anger personally or allow it to affect how you deal with them. I was civilized and tauten and let them know that he was unavailable but that I would be felicitous to pass along a message to him. By staying steady and listening to his ailment, he was satisfied that his concerns would be passed along, and he calmed polish.

Can you tell me about a time you went above and beyond for your job?

One winter we had a particularly badly storm that resulted in respective employees being unable to come into work, including the CEO ’ s personal adjunct. Luckily, I was familiar enough with what she had been doing for him it was relatively easy for me to step into that function during her absence. It doubled my workload and I ended up putting in many more hours than I normally do, but it meant that our CEO was able to continue working at his normal tempo and stay on top of his schedule. His assistant came second a workweek belated and was ecstatic to see that there wasn ’ t a huge batch of bring piled up waiting for her. On circus tent of that, our CEO, grateful for the supernumerary work I did without complaining, tucked a endowment batting order into my desk for a meal at my front-runner restaurant to say thank you.

10 More Interview Questions For Receptionists That You Could Face

here are some more questions you could face in your adjacent receptionist consultation :

    1. What are your most/least favorite things about being a receptionist?
    2. What is the biggest daily personal challenge you face in this role and what have you done to improve it?
    3. Describe to me the duties you were responsible for in your last position.
    4. What is the extent of your customer service experience?
    5. In your opinion, what role does a receptionist play in contributing to office culture?
    6. What methods do you use to manage your daily schedule?
    7. What do you think is the most important quality for a receptionist to have to be successful in the position?
    8. Are you available to work overtime if necessary?
    9. What experience do you have in handling secure or confidential information?
    10. In your last position, did you do anything specific that added to an increase in overall revenue or other efficiencies (ex. saving time or reducing costs)

Questions You Should Ask At The End of Your Interview

now that we ’ ve gone over the potential questions you might be asked in a receptionist interview, let ’ s flip the tables for a second and talk about the questions you should be asking the lease director !
traditionally as an consultation wraps up, a hire director will ask if you have any questions you ’ d like answered. While your first instinct might be to say no, we’re going to strongly encourage you to tamp down that impulse .
Asking questions shows that you ’ re authentically concerned in the situation. It besides means when it comes time for you to decide if you want to accept the position or not, that your decisiveness is good informed. Remember, they ’ ra not just interviewing you… you’re also interviewing them and making sure that the job is the right fit for you.

1.”Can you describe to me what a typical day here looks like?”

This is a bang-up question to help you get a palpate for what classify of study environment you might find yourself in .

    • Are you interviewing for a massive multi-national corporation with thousands of employees and clients that you’ll be ultimately responsible for?
    • Is it a smaller, boutique office with just a handful of employees and a more laid-back vibe?

Hearing how a typical day breaks down can be a great way to get a feel for what your day might look like if hired .

2. “Are there opportunities for employees to receive additional training or further education?”

many companies these days want their employees to continue to grow both professionally and personally and may offer formal or informal mentor programs, coaching and professional education .
Asking this doubt lets the rent coach know that you ’ rhenium interested in continue professional growth and growth .

3. “Can you tell me what attracted you to this company and what your favorite part of working here is?”

This wonder will give you a good palpate for the culture of the company you ’ rhenium interview for in a way that is army for the liberation of rwanda deeper than what you may have already gleaned from your former research. If the rent director tells you they were attracted to the paycheck and that their favorite part is leaving at the goal of the day…it might be time to look for another company to interview with !
In all earnestness, listen cautiously to how they answer this interview. ideally you want to hear that they genuinely like the work they ’ ra doing and that they feel satisfied in their situation .

Putting It All Together

It ’ s constantly good practice to follow up your interview with a thank you to the lease manger for the opportunity. Make sure you get their contact data before you leave and follow up with a brief message letting them know you appreciated the time they took to interview you .
It’s also a great opportunity to reaffirm your interest in the company and the position you interviewed for.
That does it for our comprehensive template to answering receptionist interview questions ! You should now feel ready to go into your interview and knock it out of the ballpark .


Co-Founder and CTO


Co-founder and CTO of Jeff is a sport contributor delivering advice on job research, job interviews and career progress, having published more than 50 pieces of unique content on the site, with his study being featured in circus tent publications such as INC, ZDnet, MSN and more .
Learn more about The Interview Guys on our About Us page .

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