Technical and Non-technical Help Desk Interview Questions

Role of a help desk operator
The position of a help desk operator involves performing diverse roles and handling multiple job responsibilities. Since there are so many facets to the job profile, the fact that interview questions for help desk operator positions cover multiple topics and work areas doesn't come as a surprise at all.
Not only does the person have to handle calls of assistance and inquiry from company employees, but he also has to troubleshoot computer-related issues, co-ordinate and work with people from various departments, provide effective and efficient customer service, resolve random problems, etc. Basically, the candidate should have good communication skills. The task of managing so many functional areas can be quite tedious and at the same time, extremely stressful. Also, a help desk operator is expected to perform his duties while exercising a good amount of control over his patience and stress levels.
Non-technical Interview Questions
Q1. How would you rate your problem solving skills?
This is a common question asked during interviews for help desk positions. In this case, the concept of problem solving refers to a number of areas including technical skills, conflict resolution abilities, customer handling, etc.
Q2. How do you deal with criticism?
This is another common question that is asked in many job interviews. Interviewers are interested to know whether you take criticism constructively i.e. positively, or whether you blow your top when criticized. It helps in gauging the level of patience of the candidate.
Q3. How would you deal with an extremely irate customer or co-worker?
This is another question aimed at understanding your man management and inter-personal skills. Help desk personnel frequently encounter cases of upset or irritated customers and co-workers. However, in such situations, remaining calm, keeping your cool and coming to a solution in an amicable manner is what is expected of a help desk associate.
Q4. Are you a team player?
The job profile of a help desk operator is such that he constantly needs to work in sync with multiple organizational departments and teams. In such situations, smooth, effective and efficient work is possible only if the help desk associate is good at teamwork and is a team player.
Q5. How would you handle a caller who refuses to calm down?
This is a fairly common site and one which experienced professionals in help desk jobs would be familiar with. This question is mainly intended to test your patience, your tolerance skills and most importantly, the ability to keep your cool in stressful and demanding situations.
Q6. What do you do to relax or de-stress yourself?
This question attempts to give the interviewer an insight into your way of dealing with job stress and work pressures. It can give the interviewer a good idea of whether you would be up to the task or not when it comes to keeping your cool in unfamiliar or extreme pressure situations at work. Coping with stress is therefore, an important aspect of a help desk job.
Technical Interview Questions
Q1. If a customer calls saying his computer won't boot, how will you troubleshoot it?
This question is meant for targeting your logical, analytical and problem-solving skills as well as your technical know-how. What the interviewer will examine is how you approach the problem, the sequence of troubleshooting steps that you take, and the logic behind each one of them.
Q2. If someone finds that their Internet connectivity is down, how would you fix the problem?
Once again, this question will test your logic, your depth of knowledge and your problem-solving abilities, except that in this case, it will be pertaining to the Internet and networking concepts.
Q3. How would you handle a technical issue that you're unfamiliar with?
Such problems are quite common in corporate organizations and IT companies. As a help desk associate, you will no doubt be expected to have basic troubleshooting knowledge. However, you cannot be expected to know the solution to each and every technical snag or issue (or else you would be a network administrator). How you handle this situation, to whom you escalate the call, etc. will give the interviewer a good idea about how efficient you are as a help desk associate.
The preparation for a help desk interview requires you to think of many different scenarios so as to answer the questions confidently. Anticipating as many questions as possible and preparing your answers well in advance should serve you well at your interview.