Answered by Megan, Hiring Expert at Cardinal Health, on Thursday, February 20, 2014
When interviewing with an HR representative, they are typically screening for minimum qualifications, cultural fit and to assess your past performance as a predictor of future performance. To do this, HR representatives may ask a lot of general questions, such as why job changes were made, verifying responsibilities at each position and inquiring about what roles you liked most and least. In addition, to assess a cultural fit and future performance, you should expect a fair number of behavioral based questions.
Once you move on to an interview with a manager or technical employee, you should expect much more narrowly focused questions. These questions will likely be situational and you will be asked to provide precise examples. The questions may be presented in a technical manner that would not be familiar to a person outside of the given industry. Hiring managers are going to try to look for specific skill sets that will fill a void in their department as well as find a person who will fit in with their team culturally.
The key to both interviews is preparation! Write practice questions prior to your interview and be prepared with appropriate answers to each question. You may not be asked a question that is identical to those that you prepared for; but if you have a variety of examples prepared, you should be able to rather easily adapt those examples to a number of various questions.