Making a good impression during an interview can be crucial to securing the next position in your career. Being prepared to answer a wide range of interview questions can show potential employers that you are competent, calm and eager to learn about their company. One way to prepare for an interview is to read sample questions and decide how you might respond. In this article, we’ll look at questions that interviewers may ask when evaluating candidates for contract management or contract administrator positions.
General Interview Questions
The interviewer will usually ask a few general questions to understand your professional character and why you applied for the job. Here are some general questions an interviewer might ask for a contract manager position:
- Why are you interested in this contract manager position?
- What professional strengths would help you in this position?
- What are your professional weaknesses?
- How do you approach conflicts in the workplace?
- Tell me about a professional challenge you faced and how you responded to it.
- What are your career goals?
- Can you describe a time when you disagreed with a manager and how you resolved the situation?
- What are you looking for in your next workplace?
- What makes you the best candidate for this job?
- Can you tell me what you know about this company?
- Do you have any questions for us about this position or the organization?
- How long do you plan to stay with your next employer?
Interview Questions about Experience and Background
The interviewer may ask about specific experiences on your resume or broader questions about experience to see if your skills might translate to the position. Here are some basic questions an interviewer might ask:
- What experience do you have with time management and multitasking?
- Have you worked with internal or external contracts in other positions?
- How did you develop and improve your contract writing skills?
- Do you have experience collecting money from customers?
- Does your knowledge include budgeting and financial recording?
- Did your recent Contract Manager position involve Accounts Payable Management?
- What experience do you have in working with different groups of people? Have you had to adjust your own workflows?
- What job responsibilities have you had that have tested your attention to detail?
- Do you have experience managing others? How do you track their progress to keep projects on schedule?
- Did your previous positions involve consistent work with the same suppliers, and if so, how did you cultivate these professional relationships?
- Have you written project specifications before?
The interviewer may ask detailed questions to find out what systems you are familiar with and how much you know about contract management responsibilities. Here are some detailed questions the interviewer might ask:
- What management tools do you have experience with and what did you like about them?
- How do you approach contract negotiations?
- What is your method of prioritizing tasks when there are many tasks to be done?
- How do you prepare for contract negotiations?
- What research do you do before signing a contract?
- What is your personal procedure for preparing an order?
- How do you think regulations affect the contract manager’s job?
- How do you evaluate potential suppliers?
- What control processes have you found to be successful in ensuring accuracy and cleanliness of contracts?
- What is your negotiation process to make sure the goods are of high quality and the prices are low?
- What do you do when a contract has many revisions?
Interview Questions with Model Answers
Here are some sample contract manager interview questions with sample answers to consider as you prepare for the interview:
How do you approach the enforcement of contractual terms and conditions?
Interviewers may ask this question to see if you have experience with contracts beyond writing them and to learn about your personal approach to potential conflict situations. In your answer, you can give an example of a time you enforced a contract or a similar time you held another employee accountable.
Example: “I’ve found that many contract violations come from misunderstandings, so my first reaction when I hear about a potential violation is to reach out and make sure they know the terms of the contract. They usually respond by sending payment or quickly changing their behavior, but if they don’t, I send a reminder email. In that email, I try to simply explain the terms of the contract, the consequences of breaking the contract, and the solution, whether it’s a revision of the contract or another idea.”
How do you stay organized and manage your digital and physical records?
This question may be important to interviewers if they have complex recording systems or process large amounts of material every day. In your answer, show the interviewers your personal organizational skills by describing a specific method.
Example: “My routine helps me stay organized. Every time I have new information about a contract, I add it to the digital submission information for that vendor or customer and watch all the submission dates on the calendar to make sure I don’t. Because I do this with everything that comes across my desk, I know where I can find records when I need them.’
How do you make progress when negotiations seem deadlocked?
The interviewer may ask this question to find out more about your negotiation style and how much experience you have. Your response can be an opportunity to demonstrate that you are calm under pressure, willing to present unorthodox ideas, and able to persist in a negotiation until it is completed.
Example: “In my experience, meetings tend to slow down when people are tired, or when none of the usual solutions work for everyone. My approach is to ask for a quick break so that everyone can rest. During the break, I think about what is related to the points of conflict and try to come up with a solution or new terms that will get to the bottom line.
How do you ensure that all your contracts comply with the laws and guidelines of our organization?
The interviewer may ask this question to understand how seriously you take compliance issues. In your answer, you can show the interviewer any knowledge you have of the relevant regulations or express your desire to learn.
Example: “Knowing all the regulations is the most important step for me to make sure contracts meet everything they need to. I make a habit of regularly reviewing any laws or guidelines in case I have forgotten any details. starting a new position, it takes me a while to really make sure I understand the internal rules of the organization, and when I start creating contracts, I ask myself a lot of questions so that I can interpret those rules consistently.”
What skills do you have that would translate into this position?
If you’re early in your career, the interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your experience and skills, and to see if you understand what the contract manager job entails. In your answer, mention your strengths and try to link them directly to the duties of the job offer.
Example: “My last job was in administrative work at a law firm, so I understand the importance of accurate filing and proofreading. I also helped prepare legal documents in that position, so I have some experience making sure documents meet common standards.” while every detail is tailored to the specific situation.”
Our contract manager position works closely with internal and external legal departments. How do you work with other teams?
Interviewers may ask this to see how you approach working with others and understand how you might fit into the existing company culture. In your answer, highlight your communication skills and be positive about the relationships you could build with your new co-workers.
Example: “It’s important to me to build strong professional relationships with others, so when I start a new position, I like to get to know those I’ll be working with in my own team and in other departments. Knowing the roles of everyone in the group makes it easier for me to bring up questions to the right people. Seamless communication is also really helpful, so I try to ask questions sooner rather than later and make sure all the projects and files I’m working on are available to everyone else who needs them.”
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