July 24, 2017 TruPath

Top 6 Systems Engineer Interview Questions

If you’re hiring a systems engineer to help manage the technological aspects of your organization, it’s important to ask the right questions in an interview to pinpoint your best candidate. The following systems engineer interview questions will help you uncover a quality hire.

Top 6 Systems Engineer Interview Questions

Have you ever worked in a group where an individual didn’t contribute? How did you handle the situation?

This question will reveal a candidate’s willingness to step in and take charge of what might otherwise be an unproductive situation. Can the candidate pull their own weight and also keep others in check?

Describe a time when you’ve had to resolve a conflict in the workplace. How did you handle it, and how’d you feel about the outcome?

As one of the top systems engineer interview questions, this helps demonstrate the candidate’s leadership style. Can they thoughtfully and candidly reflect on an uncomfortable office situation and describe the results of the encounter? Was it a positive or negative experience, according to the interviewee?

Describe a time when you had to deliver a presentation. How did you manage to explain technical details to a non-technical audience?

A seasoned systems engineer will typically know how to explain highly technical information in layman’s terms. Can the candidate tailor information to diverse audiences? When posing this question, ask the candidate what the specific technicalities were and how they effectively rephrased them for an unfamiliar audience. A qualified systems engineer can “water it down,” so to speak, for non-engineers!

Have you ever found yourself having to learn a technology in order to perform a task essential to your job responsibilities? Explain.

This is one of the best systems engineer interview questions — as it allows the candidate to demonstrate their drive for relentless learning. Does the candidate embrace a self-teaching approach to some aspects of the role? Do they keep up with industry news and tech updates to stay in-tune with the day-to-day job tasks?

Have you ever done something on the job that you felt quite proud of, but no one else really knew about?

An excellent systems engineer knows how to keep the back-end technology working. But not everyone in the company will acknowledge or even know about the inner workings of a system engineer’s duties. A quality candidate will understand this and will also practice humility — so dig deep on this one to discover an instance of behind-the-scenes “heroism” on the candidate’s part.

Someone informs you that the website is slow. How do you troubleshoot the problem? At what point do you ask for help?

As one of the top systems engineer interview questions, this allows the candidate to walk you through a step-by-step troubleshooting process. Does the candidate feel confident they can resolve the issue without needing extra assistance? A great hire will be able to tackle a wide range of technological hiccups that may arise in your organization.

What other systems engineer interview questions would you add? Let us know — and contact TruPath for your company’s hiring needs.


TruPath has been a trusted recruitment source for more than a decade. They have the industry knowledge and a proven model to help partners feel comfortable in their search for a candidate.

Through our TruProcess, we are able to consistently deliver exceptional candidates that help organizations continue down successful paths. Contact TruPath today to tell us about your staffing needs.