Maintenance Q&As

What questions do I ask a maintenance technician during an interview?

Answered May 04 2019

The questions you ask maintenance technicians during hiring interviews should cover these skill sets:

  • Technical knowledge of mechanical and electrical principles
  • Knowledge of safety standards (like OSHA) and adherence to those standards
  • Organization and problem solving skills

When gauging technical knowledge, try these questions:

  • Describe a time when you successfully learned to use a new piece of equipment.
  • What experience do you have handling mechanized equipment?
  • What methods have you used to diagnose problems with equipment? What tools/methods do you find are best?
  • Walk me through how you’d test a (specific piece of equipment) for potential issues.
  • What types of work do you really enjoy doing?

The way the technician answers these questions can also give you a sense for how they adhere to safety standards. Further questions for testing their safety knowledge might be:

  • How would you handle a hazardous situation?
  • Suppose a coworker isn’t following safety standards. How do you resolve the situation?

For problem-solving and organization, these questions can help you get a sense for the technicians abilities:

  • Suppose multiple machines break down at once. How do you decide what to fix first?
  • Describe a time when you found a problem by inspecting data. How did you respond to the findings?
  • How would you determine when routine work is needed?
  • Describe a time when you applied new information or technology to performing a task.
  • How frequently do you tend to consult manuals, schematics, or diagrams to resolve an issue?
  • In what ways has diligent inspection of equipment helped you identify the cause of a problem?
  • Describe a time when you used a creative solution to resolve a problem.

Finally, these questions can help to determine how well the technician works with others:

  • How would you handle a situation where a machine failed and the operator was getting frustrated?
  • Drawing on your experience, what would you say are the keys to creating a solid team?
  • Share an experience where your connection with coworkers helped you be successful.
  • How do you balance coordination with others and independence?

Of course, your facility will have its own unique needs. Many of these questions can be adapted to see if the candidate meets those needs, and more ideas can be found here.

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