Project Manager – Interview Questions

Couple of weeks back i posted a link on how to recruit best breed of Program/Project Managers.

http://peeyes.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!9D867CC7936D3E20!422.entry

I was thinking what kind of questions i will be asking if I have to hire a new project manager and following is the list of questions that came into my mind. I will continue to update this list…

Following is the list of Questions you might want to check if you are interviewing/interviewed for the Project manager position

1. What are all the skills you will be looking at if you have to hire a project manager?
2. Why are you looking out for a job?
3. What is your current role and responsibilities? What did you like most in your current job?
4. How does your day normal look like? What are some of challenges you face on a daily basis?
5. What makes you exciting about Project management?
6. Why should we hire you as a Project manager?
7. How do you handle pressure and stress?
8. Your team is following agile practices. You have to hire a resource for your team. What are all the skills consider when you hire a new resource.
9. How would your co-workers or subordinates describe you professionally?
10. You are starting a new project, which includes offshore/onsite development. How do you manage communications?
11. Your project team does not have hierarchy. You have couple of good techies in your project that has same skills and experience. There is a conflict between two of them. Both are good technically and very important to the project. How do you handle conflict between them?
12. Have you done performance appraisals before? If yes, how do you appraise people?
13. How do you estimate? What kind of estimation practices do you follow?
14. Your customer is asking for an estimate. You do not have time do FP. But you do not want to give a ballpark estimate. What kind of estimation will you give?
15. Your company is expert in providing solutions for a particular domain. You are appointed as a project manager for a new project. You have to do Risk management. What will be your approach?
16. How do you improve your team’s efficiency?
17. You are joining as project manager for a team, which already exists. How do you gain respect and loyalty of your team members?
18. You are going to be the project manager for a web-based application, which is targeted towards Insurance. Your gut feeling is that it would take 5 resources and 8 months to deliver this application.
a. What kind of resources you will hire for this project?
b. If you are asked to deliver the project in 6 months. Can you accelerate the development and deliver it in 6 months? What will be your approach?
19. What kind of release management practices do you follow?
20. Your application is in testing for the last 2 weeks and you are supposed to deliver the application at the EOD. Your testing team has found a major flaw in your application in the afternoon. You cannot miss the deadline and your developers cannot fix the bug in couple of hours. How do you handle this situation?
21. You have a resource that who is not happy with his job and complains all the time. You have noticed that because of that the team morale is getting spoiled. How do you handle that resource?
22. Your team is into the 6th Iteration of 8 Iteration project. It’s been really hectic for the team for the last couple of months as this project is very important for your customer and to your company. You have started noticing that some of your key resources are getting burnt out. How do you motivate these resources?
23. Yours is a dedicated team for a customer and it’s been a dull period for you and your team. You are not actively involved in any development activities. Your team is providing support to the application, which you have delivered earlier. Your team is getting bored as the application stabilized now. Due to budget issues, customer is not going to give you work for another 3 months. How do you motivate the resources?
24. There was a situation where more than one-way to accomplish the same task. Your onsite tech lead and offshore tech lead has different opinions about doing this and the feelings were very strong. Both are very important to you. How do you react to this?
25. What are the practices you follow for project close out? Assume you are into a product customization for a customer and the application has gone live. How do you close this project?
26. Your team is in between iteration. Your customer wants few more items to be delivered in that iteration which you are working now. How do you react to your customer?
27. You are at the customer’s place and your application is in UAT/stabilization phase. Your customer comes up with a change request and says that it’s a minor one and he wants to see it in the next release. What will be your response/approach to your customer?
28. What is velocity? How do you estimate your team’s velocity?
29. What is earned value management? Why do you need it?
30. Describe the type of manager you prefer.
31. What are your team-player qualities? Give examples.
32. How do you prioritize your tasks when there isn’t time to complete them all?
33. How do you stay focused when faced with a major deadline?
34. Are you able to cope with more than one job at a time?
35. In your opinion, why does software projects fail?
36. Your customer wants a bug to be delivered at EOD. You have got the BUG/CR information in the morning. It will not be possible to develop, completely regress this issue and deliver it at EOD. How do you approach this issue?
37. You are following Waterfall as your development methodology and you have estimated X days for design phase. Your customer is not ready to accept this. How do you convince your customer to have X number of days for design phase?
38. You have to sell agile practices (XP/Scrum) to your organization. Your management is very reluctant to change. You are sure that if you do not change to agile, it will be very tough to survive. What will be your approach?
39. How do you set and manage expectations (with customers, your managers and your team)?
40. Your project is beginning to exceed budget and to fall behind schedule due to almost daily user change orders and increasing conflicts in user requirements. How will you address the user issues?
41. For some reasons you’ve encountered a delay on an early phase of your project. What actions can you take to counter the delay?
42. What is Function point analysis? Why do you need it?
43. What is the difference between EO and EQ? What is FTR?
44. You are estimating using Function point analysis for a distributed n-tier application. How do you factor the complexity for distributed n-tier application? Does FP Provides support for it?
45. You are getting Adjusted Function point count. How do you convert it into Effort?
46. How do you manage difficult people/problem employees?
47. How do you build your teams morale?
48. How do you estimate your SCRUM/XP Projects? How do you define velocity for the first couple of iterations? What is a load factor?
49. What is team building? What are the stages in team building? Do you consider it as an important thing? Why?
50. What are some of your lessons learnt with your previous iteration delivered? How do you use your lessons learnt in your iteration planning?

Please feel free to post your comments….

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