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Technical Writer interview questions and answers

This Technical Writer interview profile brings together a snapshot of what to look for in candidates with a balanced sample of suitable interview questions.

Christine Del Castillo
Christine Del Castillo

Former Community Manager at Workable specialized in employee experience, talent brands and our event series, Workable Ideas.


Technical Writer Interview Questions

Writing a highly specific job description will ensure that you get qualified Technical Writer candidates for the interview phase of your hiring process. Be sure to mention your industry and target audience. In addition, make a list of the kinds of materials you need to be written. Starting with a good job descriptions means that you’ll have a high-quality batch of candidates with technical writing samples that are relevant to your industry.

To hire any kind of writer, it is best practice to start with their portfolio. Below, you’ll find a sampling of questions to help you jumpstart a conversation about their work samples. Learn more about the kind of work they typically produce, how much guidance they are given to start, what team setup they’ve worked with before and other important work process details.

The rest of these questions are focused on other tasks and situations that they are likely to encounter on the job. Use this questions to see how they would interview subject matter experts, what tools they know how to use, how they handle criticism, and in general, how clearly and concisely they communicate. Your most promising candidates will ask insightful and probing questions, so listen closely to the questions they ask.

Operational and Situational questions

Portfolio Questions

  • What guidelines or materials are you typically given to begin a project like [this work sample]?
  • What role did you play in developing this [this work sample]?
  • Describe a time you worked on a technical writing project with a cross-functional team.
  • Who else did you work with on this project? What were their roles?
  • How much time did it take to complete [this work sample]?
  • Describe one of your more successful pieces. How do you define success?

Technical Writer Questions

  • What interests you about being a technical writer for our industry?
  • What do you know about our target audience?
  • What measures do you take to stay updated on industry news?
  • What software tools do you use on a daily basis?
  • How quickly can you learn to use a new tool?
  • How comfortable are you with conducting field visits to learn more about the product?
  • How much experience do you have with interviewing subject matter experts?
  • What tools do you bring when you interview subject matter experts?
  • Describe a time you received negative criticism from your editor. How did you handle it?
  • Describe a time you received constructive criticism from your editor. Why was it helpful?

Source and recruit Technical Writers with Workable’s Boolean search cheat sheets.

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