The S.T.A.R. Interview Technique. How Does it Work?

Structuring your interview answers using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) interview technique will give you confidence and clarity when answering your interview questions. Following its form will result in your answers being high quality, comprehensive and detailed with fact. This technique will also help you avoid deviating from the question and keep your answers structured. Always use the first person when answering your questions!! STAR is particularly important to use during competency based interviews.

What is STAR?

  • SITUATION :A background to the situation you were involved in
  • TASK : Describe the tasks that were involved in the situation
  • ACTION : What did you personally actually end up doing and how did you
    go about it
  • RESULT : What was the result of your actions

Q & A without STAR

Describe a situation where you had to address an issue with an individual you managed?

I had one employee who wasn’t getting on well with the customers or her colleagues. I met her and told her that things were going to have to change.I felt I was assertive and she respected my opinions. She took on board my opinions as her manager, and things improved from there. I was very happy with the outcome.

Q&A using Star

Describe a situation where you had to address an issue with an individual you managed?

As Customer Service Manager ,I managed a team of 15 staff who were responsible for all aspects of customer care. At the beginning of a quarter, I received a 2 complaints from customers regarding one of the team members. This individual also attendance problems, both of which were impacting on the business and team morale

As her manager I was tasked with addressing the situation in a professional and transparent manner, so customer complaints relating to this individual stopped and all staff were positive and engaged in their relative teams

I invited the employee to meet with me at a scheduled time and date. I outlined the purpose of the meeting in advance. In preparation for the meeting I drafted a history of her performance and attendance. At the meeting I asked if there were any problems or areas where she felt that she needed further training. I reitterated her responsibilities and the service standards of our organisation . I also provided her with a copy of our employee handbook to outline our attendance policy which had already been provided at induction. I highlighted the consequences of her actions should they continue. At the meeting we agreed improved standards and we set a timeframe of 2 weeks to review progress.

The individuals attendance improved to 98% from 79% for the year, thereby reducing the impact on service delivery and the costs involved. Our customer satisfaction survey at the end of the quarter showed 90% satisfaction, an improvement of 10% on the previous quarter. Overall team morale improved and the team became more productive and engaged.