Non-Profit Interview Question Cheatsheet

Structured question (or work samples) are the most predictive form of assessment you can use.

Find the best possible person for the job using these behavioural science-based interview questions.

This cheatsheet includes interview questions for roles in:

- Media
- Social media
- Marketing
- Fundraising
- Project management
- Operations/Finance
- Leadership

Download your free cheatsheet

What are work samples?

Work samples are one of the most predictive forms of assessment you can use.

A predictive assessments is one that can accurately identify those who will perform on the job.

Work samples take parts of a job and turn them into tasks that get candidates to perform parts of the job before actually getting it. The idea behind work samples is to simulate the job as closely as possible without making assumptions about someone’s ability based on their background.

Instead of looking at past experience and credentials, work samples test directly for the skills needed for the job.

Why use work samples for your charity interview questions?

Callbacks by name study

Regardless of how well intentioned you and your organization may be, we’re all prone to unconscious bias.

Whether you’re a small charity or an international corporation, human decision making is far from objective…

And left unchecked, results in candidates from minority backgrounds being disproportionately overlooked.

Since work samples don’t require specific academic achievements or previous experience to complete, they allow you to focus solely on skills and potential, rather than someone's credentials.

And by using skill-based assessments, you’re able to reduce bias and improve diversity.

Sure, someone’s experience might make them the best person for the job, but work samples questions allow you to quantify skills instead of making guesses based on background.

Using predictive charity interview questions means that you’ll never be trading diversity for quality.
In fact, the opposite is true…

People hired via a work sample-driven process will perform better once in the job and are also more likely to stick around (which is why our customers tend to see a 93% retention rate). 

Testing for mission and values-alignment

For data-driven, debiased interviewing, we recommend using review guides.

These consist of some high-level criteria and a simple scale to score answers against. Deciding what you’re looking for ahead of the assessment process will result in more objective hiring decisions.

If you want to make your hiring as mission and values-driven as your organization, you can bake them into your criteria.

Example charity interview question

Best practices for more ethical interviews

Ask forward-looking questions
Your typical ‘tell me a time when’ interview question requires candidates to have encountered a given scenario before or to just lie! Asking questions around how candidates would deal with that scenario put the emphasis back onto skills and will offer you more useful insight into how someone would think and work should they get the job.

Give yourself scoring criteria

Score candidates against a scale (we use a 1-5 star scale), with a few bullet points noting what a good, mediocre and bad answer might include. 

Have three interviewers

Having multiple reviewers for each stage of the hiring process will ensure that any individual’s biases are averaged out. Using panels will also result in more accurate scoring. This is due to a phenomenon known as Crowd Wisdom - the general rule that collective judgment is more accurate than that of an individual.

Hiring for your non-profit? Find out how can help you build a more ethical, mission-driven hiring process here.