Interview

20 Help Desk Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a help desk professional, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

When your computer or phone isn’t working right, where do you turn for help? If you’re like most people, you probably call the help desk. Help desk technicians are the front line of support for computer users in businesses and organizations of all sizes. They answer questions, solve problems, and sometimes even provide on-site support.

To land a job in this in-demand field, you’ll need to be prepared to answer help desk interview questions. In this guide, we’ll provide you with sample questions and answers that will help you shine during your interview. You’ll learn what to expect and how to answer questions about your experience, your skills, and your ability to provide support to users.

What do you enjoy most about working in IT?

This question can help the interviewer get to know you as a person and understand what motivates you. Your answer should reflect your personality, but it also needs to show that you enjoy working in IT.

Example: “I love being able to solve problems for people. I find it rewarding when someone comes to me with an issue and I’m able to fix it for them. It’s even more satisfying when they’re surprised by how quickly I was able to resolve their problem. Another thing I really like about this field is that there are always new technologies coming out. I enjoy learning new things and figuring out how to use these new tools.”

Why are you interested in working for our company?

This question is a great way for employers to learn more about your background and why you are interested in working for their company. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention something specific that attracted you to the job posting or company. It can also be beneficial to include what skills you have that will help you succeed in the role.

Example: “I am very excited about this opportunity because I think your company’s mission aligns with my own values. I believe that by helping customers solve problems, we can make the world a better place. In my previous roles, I’ve developed excellent customer service skills that would benefit me as an employee here.”

How do you handle stress at work?

Help desk employees often experience stress when they’re under pressure to solve customer issues quickly. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the ability to manage your stress and remain calm in high-pressure situations. In your answer, share a few strategies that help you stay focused on solving problems rather than getting stressed out by them.

Example: “I find it helpful to take short breaks throughout my workday. I also practice deep breathing exercises to help me relax and refocus my attention. Another strategy I use is setting realistic expectations for myself. If I know I can only solve one problem at a time, I’m less likely to get overwhelmed by all of the things I need to do. Finally, I try to remember that each person has their own unique needs. While I may be able to solve some issues right away, others might require more research or discussion with other team members.”

What do you think is the most challenging thing about working in a Help Desk position?

This question can help an interviewer get to know you as a person and see how you might fit in with their team. It also helps them understand what challenges you might face on the job, so they can make sure you’re prepared for those situations. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention something that is challenging but also something you enjoy about working in Help Desk support.

Example: “The most challenging thing about working in a Help Desk position is when users are frustrated or upset. I find that if I am patient and empathetic, I can usually calm them down and resolve their issue. This makes me feel good because I’m helping someone who needs my assistance.”

Would you say that you have a strong technical background?

This question is a great way for employers to learn more about your technical skills. They want to know that you have the necessary knowledge and experience to do the job well. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention any certifications or training you’ve had in the past.

Example: “I would definitely say I have a strong technical background. In my last role, I was responsible for troubleshooting issues with software programs, operating systems and hardware. I also regularly worked on resolving customer service issues over the phone. This required me to use my problem-solving skills and critical thinking abilities to find solutions to their problems.”

What was your educational background?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your educational background and how it relates to the job. They want to know if you have a degree in computer science or information technology, but they also want to see that you have some experience with computers and software. If you don’t have a degree in IT, explain what led you to work in tech support.

Example: “I graduated from high school with an A average and went on to study business at a local college. I was working as a barista when I realized I wanted to pursue a career in IT. I enrolled in a coding boot camp where I learned basic programming skills. After completing the program, I got my first job as a help desk technician.”

What other IT positions have you held?

This question can help the interviewer determine your experience level and how you’ve grown professionally. If you’re applying for a position that’s more senior than others you’ve held, it can show that you have the ability to take on new challenges and learn quickly. When answering this question, try to focus on the skills you developed in each role and how they helped you grow as a professional.

Example: “I started my career as an IT support specialist at a small company where I learned basic troubleshooting techniques and customer service skills. After two years there, I moved to a larger organization where I was able to expand my technical knowledge and hone my problem-solving skills. In both positions, I gained valuable experience working with different types of technology and helping customers solve their issues.”

How would you prioritize various tasks when it comes to responding to customer inquiries?

Help desk employees need to be able to prioritize tasks and respond to customer inquiries in a timely manner. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the ability to manage your time effectively. In your answer, explain how you would approach prioritizing tasks at work. Explain that you will use your organizational skills to ensure you are responding to customers’ questions as quickly as possible while still maintaining quality service.

Example: “I would first look at the urgency of each task. For example, if I had an urgent email from a manager or client, I would respond to that inquiry before any other tasks. After that, I would look at which customers have been waiting the longest for a response. I would then respond to those inquiries next. If there were multiple inquiries with similar wait times, I would respond to them based on their individual needs.”

What would be your go-to action if you received an emergency call from one of our clients, requesting technical assistance?

This question is a great way to test your problem-solving skills and ability to prioritize tasks. Your answer should include the steps you would take to assess the situation, gather information and solve the issue as quickly as possible.

Example: “If I received an emergency call from one of our clients, my first action would be to ask them for their name and department so that I can address them by name when speaking with them. Then, I would try to find out what exactly they need help with. If it’s urgent, I would offer to connect them to our on-call IT specialist who could assist them until I arrive at their location.”

What motivates you to help others solve their computer-related problems?

Help desk professionals need to have a passion for helping others. Employers ask this question to make sure you are motivated by the desire to help people and not just the salary. In your answer, share what motivates you to do your job well. Explain that it is important to you to be helpful and solve problems for customers.

Example: “I love computers and technology, so I am always happy to help someone with their computer issues. I also enjoy being able to use my problem-solving skills to find solutions to customer questions. When I can help someone fix their issue or learn something new about their computer, I feel like I’ve done a good job.”

What software applications are you proficient in?

The interviewer may ask this question to see if you have experience using the software they use at their company. Before your interview, research what software the organization uses and make sure you’re familiar with it. If you don’t have any experience with the software, consider taking a class or doing some online research to learn more about it.

Example: “I am proficient in all of the major operating systems including Windows 10, Mac OS X and Linux. I also have experience working with many different types of databases including MySQL, Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server. In my previous role as an IT specialist, I was responsible for maintaining servers that used Apache web server software.”

How do you plan on remaining up-to-date with technology changes?

Technology changes rapidly, and the interviewer wants to make sure you’re committed to keeping up with these changes. Your answer should show that you have a plan for staying current on technology trends and advancements. You can mention specific ways you plan to stay informed about new technologies or how you’ll learn more about them as they become available.

Example: “I’m currently enrolled in an online course where I’m learning about the latest software updates. I also subscribe to several tech blogs and newsletters so I can read articles and tips from experts in the field. I try to attend at least one conference per year to meet other professionals in the industry and hear what’s new in the world of IT.”

Do you think that customer service skills are just as important as technical skills in a Help Desk position? Why or why not?

This question helps the interviewer determine how you view your role as a Help Desk technician. It also allows them to assess whether or not you have the necessary customer service skills for the job. Your answer should show that you understand the importance of both technical and interpersonal skills in this position.

Example: “I think it’s important to have both technical and interpersonal skills when working as a Help Desk technician. I believe that having strong technical skills is essential because it allows me to solve problems quickly and efficiently, which can help keep customers happy. However, I also think that having good customer service skills is equally important because it allows me to build positive relationships with my clients. These relationships can lead to repeat business and referrals.”

Describe how you’ve handled challenging situations at previous jobs.

Help desk employees often encounter challenging situations, so employers ask this question to learn how you respond to these challenges. When answering this question, it can be helpful to describe a specific situation and the steps you took to resolve it.

Example: “At my previous job, I had a customer who was having trouble with their printer. After troubleshooting the issue, I realized that the problem was related to the computer’s operating system. Since I didn’t have access to the computer’s operating system, I contacted my manager for help. My manager helped me reset the computer’s operating system, which resolved the issue.”

Explain the last time you had to resolve a complex issue on the help desk.

Help desk employees need to be able to resolve a variety of issues, including complex ones. This question allows you to demonstrate your problem-solving skills and ability to work under pressure.

Example: “At my previous job, I had a customer who was having trouble with their printer. They were using an older operating system that didn’t have the right drivers for the printer, so we couldn’t install it properly. We tried updating the driver but still couldn’t get it to print. In this case, I called the company’s tech support line and asked if they could send us a new printer with the correct drivers already installed. The customer was happy when we resolved the issue.”

What do you do when you don’t know the answer to a customer’s question?

Help desk employees need to be able to solve problems for customers. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the confidence and problem-solving skills to handle any situation that comes up at work. In your answer, explain how you would research a customer’s issue until you find an answer. Show them that you are willing to put in extra effort to help customers.

Example: “If I don’t know the answer to a customer’s question right away, I will do my best to try to solve their problem over the phone or by email. If I can’t figure it out, I will look through our company knowledge base to see if there is already an article about the issue. If not, I will create one so that other employees can refer to it in the future.”

How would you explain technical issues to customers so they can understand?

Help desk employees need to be able to explain technical issues in a way that customers can understand. This is especially important when you’re working with clients who are not technically savvy. Your answer should show the interviewer that you have experience explaining technical concepts and terminology to non-technical people.

Example: “I’ve worked with many customers over the years, and I find that it’s helpful to use analogies or metaphors to help them understand what’s happening. For example, if they’re having trouble connecting to the internet, I might say something like, ‘Imagine your computer is at a party and wants to talk to another computer. It knows how to speak to other computers, but this particular party has so many people that it doesn’t know where to look for its friend. So, it starts shouting random numbers hoping someone will respond. That’s kind of like what’s happening here.'”

How would you handle a dissatisfied customer?

Help desk employees often interact with customers who are frustrated or upset. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the interpersonal skills and problem-solving abilities to handle challenging situations. In your answer, explain how you would use your communication skills and empathy to help a customer feel heard and respected. Share an example of a time when you helped someone solve a problem and left feeling satisfied.

Example: “I once had a customer call in because they were having trouble printing their documents. I listened carefully as they explained what was happening and asked questions to clarify. After asking them to print something else, I determined that it was a software issue rather than a printer issue. I walked them through updating their software, which fixed the problem. They thanked me for my patience and helpfulness.”

Are you comfortable using various forms of communication (e.g., chat, phone, email) to help customers resolve their issues?

The interviewer may ask you a question like this to assess your communication skills and determine whether you can effectively communicate with customers. Your answer should show that you are comfortable using various forms of communication and have experience doing so.

Example: “Yes, I am very comfortable using all types of communication to help resolve customer issues. In my previous role as an IT support specialist, I used both phone and email communication methods regularly. For example, when working on more complex issues, I would typically direct the customer to call me so I could speak with them directly about their issue. However, for smaller questions or problems, I would usually respond via email.”

What information would you gather from a customer before helping them?

This question can help the interviewer understand how you approach customer service and what information you need to do your job. Your answer should include a list of questions you would ask customers to gather important details about their issue.

Example: “I always start by asking for the caller’s name, department they’re in and their phone number so I can call them back if I have any questions or issues with their computer. Then, I ask what kind of problem they’re having and whether it’s happened before. This helps me determine if there are any underlying issues that may be causing the current problem.”

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