Waiting room for the interview

During a design interview, the interviewer will typically ask a series of questions to assess the design skills, experience, and qualifications of a prospective applicant.

Candidates need to demonstrate they are experienced, able to adequately explain the reason they pursued a career in architecture and give examples of how they would perform under certain circumstances. They may also be asked to present a portfolio of their work and to answer questions about specific projects the candidate has completed.

Here are the top five questions asked during a design interview.

Can you walk me through your design process for a recent project?

Interviewers wants to gauge your understanding of the design process, as well as ability to communicate process and approach. The interviewer is looking to understand your process from concept to completion, and steps taken along the way.

Hiring managers also want to know what kind of discovery questions you would ask your clients at the beginning of each project.

Taking the time to know the client versus asking questions from a basic list shows a lot of what kind of candidate that person is. Top candidates make it clear that they understand the importance of tailoring to the client at every stage.

What kind of experience do you bring to the table?

More often than not, design firms want to know your technical skills such as your knowledge of building codes, materials, and construction techniques and your experience with computer-aided design (CAD) software, 3D rendering software, and other design tools.

The interviewer will also likely ask you to present a portfolio of your work.

This will give them a chance to see examples of your design projects and evaluate your design skills. They may ask you to explain specific projects you have completed, and how you approached the design process.

Another aspect of the interview may include a design exercise or a presentation on a design topic. This will give the interviewer a chance to see you in action.

Tell me about a time when a client was upset with a design choice you had made?

At some point in your career, you will have encountered a hurdle working with a particular client. This question is meant to gauge the candidate’s problem-solving skills, as well as their ability to handle difficult situations.

The interviewer wants to understand how the candidate approaches conflict, and how they find solutions to problems that arise during a project.

How do you stay informed about new materials, products, and design trends?

Architecture is constantly evolving, and staying current with new materials, products, and design trends is crucial for success in the field. The interviewer wants to know how the candidate stays informed and educated about the latest industry developments.

How do you work with contractors, architects, and other members of a project team?

Design projects often involve collaboration with a variety of other professionals.

The interviewer wants to know how you work with others, including architects and contractors, and how you approach communication and coordination.


Overall, the goal of the interview is to determine whether a candidate is a good fit for the position.

Make sure to do your research about the company and learn as much as you can. Be prepared by having your answers ready to these questions and other questions that come up.  But most importantly, be honest about your qualifications and what you bring to the table.

An interview is not won by answering interview questions correctly; it is won by answering interview questions honestly.For more information on being successful during a design interview, please contact us here.