Interview questions on analytical skills | Eden Scott

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How to Answer Analytical Skills Interview Questions

interview questions on analytical skills

In this article, we're looking at how to answer analytical skills interview questions.
 

Follow these tips and you'll be an interview pro in no time.


What are analytical skills?

Analytical skills are the skills we employ to assess situations, solve problems and make smart decisions. 
 

Most of us use analytic skills in a variety of settings (even if we're not aware of it!).


Examples of analytical skills

You probably have more analytical skills than you realise. Here are some examples of skills that fall into the 'analytical' category:
 

  • Logical reasoning
  • Research
  • Creative solution development
  • Critical thinking
  • Forecasting and planning
  • Evaluating
     

Why are analytical skills important?

Analytical skills are useful in practically every role within almost every industry. Analytical skills are essential soft skills that are transferable and versatile.
 

People with strong analytical skills tend to be able to work independently, take initiative and exhibit self-reliance. These qualities are valuable to businesses, as those with analytical skills can usually help companies progress.


Analytical skills example interview questions

Interviewers are highly likely to be interested in your analytical skills, but they probably won't use the term' analytical skills' in their questions. 
 

  • Here are some common interview questions that assess analytical skills:
  • Describe a situation where you didn't have enough information to solve a problem. What did you do?
  • Describe a time when you had to make an important decision at work. What approach did you take?
  • Explain how you would solve X problem
  • What is your approach to problem solving?
  • Describe a time you used creativity to solve a problem
  • How do you choose between two courses of action?


How to answer analytical interview questions

You might have noticed that the above interview questions are competency-based. That means questions that inspect your skills by reviewing your lived work experiences. 
 

The best way to answer competency-based interview questions are with the STAR format (Situation / Task / Action / Result)
 

STAR examples

You can use the STAR examples as inspiration for your responses to analytical skills interview questions.
 

How would you modify these examples to your experiences?
 

Question 1: Describe a situation where you didn't have enough information to solve a problem. What did you do?

Situation: I was asked to provide guidance on a new client's marketing strategy. Their objective was to increase sales. However, I wasn't sure about the client's target audience, meaning I couldn't make a good recommendation.
 

Task: I needed to learn more about the client's target audience. 
 

Action: I spoke with the client at length about their existing customers and consumers, including their demographics, interests and purchasing patterns. At the end of the discussion, I had a much better understanding of who the client needed to appeal to. 
 

Result: Based on our discussion, I was able to put together a marketing plan that involved raising brand awareness amongst the target audience on relevant social media platforms and driving sales through social advertising. 


Question 2: Describe a time when you had to make an important decision at work. What approach did you take?

Situation: I was asked to evaluate a new item of project management software and decide whether the business should replace our existing software.
 

Task: I needed to identify each software's benefits, including each product's cost-effectiveness.
 

Action: I undertook a benefits analysis of the two products, identifying the features required by our team. 
 

Using a scoring methodology based on cost and features, I was able to identify the best product for our team
 

Comparing features and price with the needs of our business, I identified that our existing software was cheaper but also lacked some key features, which the team was replacing with other technology. 
 

On the other hand, while comparatively more expensive, the new piece of software was much more bespoke and had all the features we needed - meaning there would be fewer bottlenecks in operations and better business results. 
 

Result: I opted to replace our software with the new software - our business now has fewer bottlenecks, and we have seen an overall increase in productivity.


Question 3: Describe a time you used creativity to solve a problem

Situation: As a team leader, I ensure that my team is engaged and motivated. Every year, the company takes the team out for a staff-wide party. However, during Covid, this was not possible. 
 

Task: I wanted to keep up morale and maintain my team's engagement levels during a time when this was difficult to achieve. I needed to find a creative solution to the problem.
 

Action: I reflected on what made the usual annual event so special - people enjoyed the feeling of togetherness and letting loose. 
 

So, I arranged for everyone to receive a half-day off and asked them to get dressed in smart attire. I sent round a selection of mini wines to team members' homes, and then assigned people to breakout rooms so they could enjoy spending time together. We also did Zoom activities like quizzes, awards and charades. 
 

Result: It was a much more low-key event than usual, but I ensured that I gave my team a space to relax and enjoy time together. I received positive feedback from my team - we have retained 90% of the department's staff since the event occurred.


Final thoughts

Feel more confident about answering analytical skills interview questions? 
 

Check out how to answer these other competency-based interview questions:
 

Remember, when you apply through Eden Scott, you receive tailored interview training to help you feel fully prepared.


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