7 Data Science Interview Questions You Should Ask

November 13, 2020
7 Data Science Interview Questions You Should Ask

Have you ever felt an overwhelming sense of joy because you know that deep down inside, the best is yet to come? 

Maybe you’re a step closer to the dream data science opportunity that you’ve been waiting for. You’re ready to call everyone with the great news. But then, a doubtful passing thought enters your mind: “I should prepare for this and go over some data science interview questions. I don’t want to screw it up!” 

You start doubting your abilities, so you put your phone away and grab your computer to do some research. The next thing you know, you’re bombarded with loads of information. That joyful feeling you once had suddenly turned into fear and anxiety. “Where do I even begin?” you ask yourself. 

Sound familiar? 

Don’t worry! I am here to help!

I recently spoke in a webinar to a group of data scientists to discuss ways in which candidates can ace their data science interview questions. We went over the following topics: 

To start, I’ll focus more on the important Data Science interview questions you should consider asking. 

During interviews, many times the interviewer or hiring manager will wrap up the interview with this phrase: “So, do you have any questions for us?” 

When you’re posed with this question, you don’t want to stare blankly black at them and remain silent. You want to be prepared to answer this question with confidence. Make sure you answer this question and do your homework. 

Before we dive into the Data Science interview questions, I want to give you some general rules for asking questions. 

3 Rules on How to Ask Questions

Rule #1: Seek to Understand

When asking questions, seek to understand versus telling the interviewer your opinion on the matter. For example, if you ask, “How is the training?” They’ll typically respond by saying, “There is a week of virtual training, but we believe the best way to learn is to figure it out as you go.”

Now in your head, you’re thinking, “how a company trains its employees is super important.”

Rather than saying, “Oh, I disagree with that,” you can ask another question and evaluate whether the role is still a good fit for you. Remember, your goal is to learn about the company and the specifics of the job.

Rule #2: Be Aware of Your Body Language

When you’re asking questions during your Data Science interview, you want to make sure that your body language and facial expressions make a good first impression. 

A great way to be in tune with your body language and expressions is by practicing in the mirror and watching your movements. Think of the interview process as being on stage during opening night in front of a crowd. You’re selling yourself to the company and letting them know why you’re the right fit for the job. Maintain a sense of professionalism and make sure your body language remains open and receptive. Don’t be closed off and anti-social.

Rule #3: Be Mindful of Your Tonality

During a round of questions, you want to be mindful of your tone. Be as genuine and professional as possible. Avoid using an interrogating tone. If you’re curious about your interviewers and want to show them that you are interested in the company, think about the question, “How long have you been with the company?” 

You can ask with a curious tone because you genuinely want to know more about their professional career.

The way you ask questions is more important than the question itself. I recommend being mindful and practicing the questions you want to ask with a friend beforehand. 

It’s Data Science Interview Question Time!

Now that we have covered the three rules to consider when asking questions, we are going to reference The Muse’s article and go over seven main topics of Data Science interview questions with key examples.

Keep in mind that you don’t need to ask all of these questions. Pick only the relevant questions that cater to you and your needs. I would recommend asking anywhere between three to eight questions that you know the answer to.

7 Data Science Interview Questions

Questions about the Job

These Data Science interview questions have been crafted to help you learn more about the job requirements, a typical workday, and projects that you will be working on.

Some great questions to ask would be:

  • What does a typical day look like?
  • Which are the skills and experiences you look for in an ideal candidate?
  • What are the biggest challenges that someone would face in this role?

Questions About Training and Professional Development

The following questions help you figure out your career growth plan within the organization and whether it will be a good long-term fit. 

Some great questions to ask:

  • What will my training consist of? 
  • Are there opportunities for advancement or professional development?
  • Where have past employees in this position progressed to?

Questions About Your Performance

These Data Science interview questions have been crafted to help you understand how your performance will be measured. 

Some questions to gauge this would be:

  • What would you like to see a candidate accomplish in the first 30, 60, and 90 days?
  • What’s the performance review process?
  • What are the Key Performance Indicators for my position?

Questions About the Interviewer

These questions show you are interested in getting to know about the interview and allows you a chance to build rapport and make you stand out. 

Here are some great questions to ask:

  • How long have you been with the company?
  • What is your favorite part about working for this company?
  • What was your role before joining this company? 

Questions About the Company

These questions go over the company’s future, work culture, and what they stand for. 

Great questions to ask:

  • Where do you see this company heading in the next few years?
  • What gets you most excited about the future of this company?
  • What are the current goals, and how do collaboration and teamwork support these goals?

Questions About the Team and Work Culture

Company culture is important, so it’s always good to learn about the team you will be working with daily. 

Some examples:

  • To whom will I report directly?
  • Can you tell me about the team I will be working with?
  • What other departments work closely with this one?
  • What is different about working here from any other company you have worked at?

Next Step Questions To Gauge Interview Success 

These questions can give you insight into how the interview went.

Great questions to ask: 

  • Is there anything that concerns you about my background or skill set for this role?
  • What are the next steps in the interview process?
  • Can I answer any final questions for you?

Finally, I recommend looking over all of these Data Science interview questions and choosing the ones that are most important to you. 

Also, I highly recommend taking our free webinar that dives deeper into how to sell yourself and negotiate your salary. With these questions along with the webinar, you will be ready to turn your next interview into the offer you have always wanted!

Happy Data Science Interviewing!

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