How to prepare for a Operations Manager interview

Operations managers fill a pivotal role in business, government, and many other types of organizations. Their job is to design, supervise and organize everyday practices to further develop viability, efficiency and execution.

Operations Managers are responsible for all sorts of different tasks, from logistics to resources management and budget planning. With this in mind, you will need to know how to tackle operational problems and be able to find effective solutions in a timely manner. Having excellent numerical and interpersonal skills are also signs that you can be the right candidate for an Operations Manager position.

As with any interview, a little bit of preparation goes a long way. You’ll want to spend some time before you head into your interview researching information about the company and the industry if you are not familiar with it. As they present you with speculative conditions, consider featuring your capabilities and how you'd overcome difficulties or meet objectives in the work environment.

Interview preparation questions:

Here are a few operations manager interview preparation questions to practice

  1. How have your ideas improved operations at other companies? What impact did they have?
  2. How do you handle employees who resist change? How do you motivate others?
  3. As you analyze current processes, what information do you look at? How do you identify problems and solutions?
  4. As efficiency and productivity increase, how do you ensure quality is maintained?
  5. What role do other managers and departments play in processes analysis and improvement?
  6. Describe a project you oversaw that involved multiple teams. How did you manage the situation and how did you contribute to the project's result?
  7. Provide an example of how you adjusted to industry changes in the past.
  8. How have your ideas improved a company's overall operations? What would you do differently?
  9. Which Management Information Systems have you previously used?


* Tips on answering these questions: align your experience to the attributes listed on the job posting and/or company culture and values

Questions to ask your interviewers:

The type of questions you may want to ask will depend on who is interviewing you, or which round of interviews you are currently in.

  1. What is your favorite thing about being an operations manager at this firm?
  2. What can I expect in terms of company culture?
  3. What are some of the unexpected realities of being an operations manager ?
  4. What common characteristics have helped people at this level quickly succeed and reach an outstanding performance?
  5. I know operations manager positions can be very dynamic. What can I expect my day-to-day to look like ?

Interview follow up:

They say small kindnesses never go unnoticed and this is particularly true when it comes to interviewing.

A simple thank you email to your interviewer goes a long way to cementing you in their minds long after your interview is over. Your email could be as simple as thanking the interviewer for their time, or mentioning a particular part of the interview you enjoyed. This would also be a good opportunity to extend your interest in connecting via Linkedin.

Your interviewer will generally set the expectation for when you can expect to hear back from them. If nothing is set, a good timeframe for a follow up is two weeks after the interview.

Checklist for the day of your interview:

  1. Get a good night’s sleep - This allows your body and mind to recharge, leaving you refreshed and alert when you wake up, ready to ace your interview!
  2. Start your day with breakfast - You might find you feel a bit sluggish and struggle to focus if you don’t. Breakfast positively affects your mental performance, including your attention, ability to concentrate and memory. Skipping the most important meal of the day can make some tasks feel harder than they normally would.
  3. Wear clothing you’re comfortable in - The dress code for operations manager positions can vary quite drastically from business professional to business casual, or even completely casual. With this in mind, it’s always better to overdress, rather than underdress. Comfortable clothing will also help you feel confident during your interview.
  4. Leave your house early - Proper planning will help you arrive on time for the interview and eliminate any last minute stress. Double-check the interview location and your best route to get there. If you’re driving there yourself, it’s a good idea to consider where you might park.
  5. If you are having an online interview, remember to log on early and test your setup. You should check your connection, camera and microphone, as well as ensuring your background or environment is free from clutter and distractions.
  6. Follow in Superman’s footsteps - Try this right before you go into the room or join your call. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, place your hands on your hips and breathe deeply. This is the Superman pose, specifically developed to encourage your body to regulate breathing and allow your mind to clear and your nerves to calm. Plus, you’ll feel like you could leap tall buildings in a single bound - what better way to take your next steps to professional success?


Now that you’ve just taken your next steps towards succeeding in your career, be sure to take a look at the Wizco Blog for more insider tips and tricks and walk into every growth opportunity prepared.