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I will be holding interviews over Easter for a new administrator for our pre-school and I was wondering if some kind soul who has already employed an administrator would have a list of questions to ask candidates to save me time and energy.


I would be eternally grateful as it looks like Easter will be a blur of work, study, work, study..... - you all know what it is like I know.


I have a job description and I realize some questions will be relevant to that.


I intend to ask each candidate the same questions and mark them on a scale of 1 to 5, to show that I am treating them equally etc.

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Guest Spiral

Hi Deb,


maybe ask them open questions so that they are able to waffle on and either shine or flounder?


'can you provide an example of'

'I noticed on your application form you have experince in..... what were some of your favourite aspects' (a great one to get them talking and expressing themselves further).


Also, I would suggest bringing it right down to the basics - create a question which asks if they have experience with organisation and mathematics? Both of these are so important.


Last time I interviewed, I had questions with a grading system 1-10, I felt that some people were very nervous and in fact they were the ones which I pumped further for answers - and that was fruitful.


Are you interviewing on your own - maybe team up with someone.


I talk too much for others so I have to be quiet and listen actively! Have plenty of water to drink and tissues ready in case of a sneeze or anything. Also, finally keep a clock handy.


Best of luck,



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Good advice from Spiral, as usual!


I wouldn't overlook issues around child development, behaviour management and confidentiality either, if the candidate is likely to come into any contact with children in the setting, and parents outside the setting. Our methods and ways of dealing with children's behaviour might not sit well with some people who have different views and experiences, and can be a source of conflict if our rationales are not understood and supported by the whole team.


Also, you need to be very certain that your administrator understands her duties with regard to maintaining confidentiality (and safeguarding, now I think about it) - we all know how parents love to talk about their children and that can make the supermarket conversations particularly tricky in some communities!


Good luck!



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Thank you both for your replies, and pertinent comments which will be very helpful and relevant!


I will be interviewing with the deputy.


It is such a key role, don't want to get it wrong.


Thanks again


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we have recently employed a new administrator and these are the questions we used.


our administrator works mainly from home but this may change if planning goes through for our new building.


hope that this helps and good luck


Did you have a nice journey?

Why have you applied?

What do you know about Little Apples?

What skills do you think you can bring to the job?

What are your strengths and weaknesses?

We will be implementing some new dedicated pre-school software in the very near future at Little Apples. How comfortable do you feel setting up something brand new?

How do you envisage fitting this job into your current lifestyle? ie collecting/dropping off work from Little Apples, when will you do the bulk of the work? There will be some work to do during the school holidays – how would you cope with that?

How do you feel about working from home – do you have somewhere to store information/files/stationery etc?

Can you work individually and as part of a team? Please give examples.

It can be tricky dealing with parents who are late payers – do you feel comfortable with writing/phoning/speaking to them face to face if necessary?

The following characteristics are an essential part of the role. Can you give an example where you have had to demonstrate the following?

· Prioritising work

· Being motivated

· Using initiative

Do you have any questions you would like to ask about the role?

(Not sure how to finish off – I wondered about asking whether they would take the job if offered – but is that a cruel question for the 2 we don’t offer it to?)

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Thank you so much for sharing your interview questions for an adminstrator, they are really useful, which I will use along with the suggestions from Happy Maz and Spiral as a basis for our interview questions.


I know when I have been asked that question at the end of an interview, would you take the job if offered to you, I have answered yes even though I may have had reservations in order to keep my options open. I think I could ask something like, having found out more about the job do you see yourself in the role/do you have any reservations you would like to discuss now - though I'm not sure if the result would be any different.


Thanks so much again.

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