These 20 contract manager interview questions cover different areas that you should focus on to assess the skill set of your candidates. The responses to expect for every question are also included. Use them to simplify and expedite the process of getting the right candidate for your contract manager job.
1. What Qualities Should a Contract Manager Have to be Successful?
Here, the interviewer wants to know whether you are aware of the qualities that can make you successful.
Tip #1: State the qualities that contract managers should have
Tip #2: Demonstrate that you are aware of the traits that can make you successful
A contract manager should have excellent negotiation skills as he acts as the key facilitator for negotiations between independent contractors, companies, vendors, customers, and employees. He or she should be organized to make contract management a streamlined process and run it smoothly. Besides, contract managers should possess good communication, time management, leadership, and problem-solving skills. Besides, they should have an in-depth understanding of contracts.
2. What are the Roles Performed by a Contract Manager?
The interviewer wants to assess your familiarity with the roles performed by a contract manager.
Tip #1: State several roles performed by contract managers
Tip #2: Make the interviewer understand that you know your roles
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A contract manager is charged with contract drafting and managing all contracts a company is entering or negotiating. He or she oversees and directs contracts throughout their lifecycle. Moreover, a contract manager maintains contractual records as well as develops and implements contract policies and procedures.
3. How Does a Typical Day of a Contract Manager Looks Like?
The interviewer wants to know whether you understand your daily routine.
Tip #1: Mention several duties performed by contract managers daily
Tip #2: Ensure to be clear and brief
A contract manager supervises other contract professionals, offers responses to proposals, bids, and contract negotiations, and ensures the execution of contracts is following corporate guidelines. He or she trains contract staff, leads contract negotiations, conducts research before drafting of contracts, and reports on the status of contract management. Other duties include communication contract information to stakeholders and resolving contract related issues.
4. Why Should a Contract Manager Have a Good Filing System?
Here, the interviewer tests whether you are familiar with filing systems and their importance in contract management.
Tip #1: State why a good filing system is necessary
Tip #2: Show that you understand the importance of using a filing system
A good filing system features a comprehensive folder and tagging structure and easy searching capabilities. These features simplify the organization of contract information. Besides, such a system helps to maintain complete records on contract management processes and procurement processes. Doing is important as it helps to easily access those records when needed.
5. Briefly Describe Contract Drafting and Its Importance
The interviewer wants to assess your knowledge about drafting contracts.
Tip #1: Describe the meaning of contract drafting
Tip #2: Mention the importance of drafting contracts
Contract drafting refers to the process of writing the details and terms of a contract. The process involves outlining the legal obligations of the parties involved in the contract. Drafting contracts helps parties to fully know their respective duties and terms of the agreement. Contract drafting is vital in the contract management lifecycle as it lays the basis upon which agreements are made. Precision and clarity are essential in the process to ensure all parties understand and meet their needs.
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6. What Do You Understand by Contract Lifecycle?
The interviewer wants to assess your familiarity with the contract lifecycle.
Tip #1: Explain the meaning of contract lifecycle
Tip #2: Demonstrate that you are knowledgeable about contract lifecycle management
The contract lifecycle refers to the evolutionary process that involves drafting, reviewing, signing, and executing a contract. It starts with requests and culminates when those requests are fully satisfied. Proactive and effective contract lifecycle management is realized using relevant software. Contract lifecycle management software helps to reduce risks, maximize the value of a contract, and improve productivity.
7. Why is Contract Negotiation Important?
Contract negotiation is an essential element of the contract lifecycle. The interviewer wants to assess whether you understand its importance.
Tip #1: State the importance of contract negotiation
Tip #2: Be brief and ensure to provide all the important points.
Contract negotiation helps to agree on legally binding terms. For instance, when two organizations negotiate about a contract, they aim at obtaining favorable terms and minimizing operational, legal, and financial risks. Besides, contract negotiation seeks to arrive at certain agreements that will set an organization for success.
8. How Do You Ensure Your Team Stays Motivated?
The interviewer wants to know whether you can keep your team productive by ensuring it is inspired throughout.
Tip #1: Mention how you keep your team motivated
Tip #2: Make the interviewer understand that you can keep your team inspired
I keep my team motivated by recognizing their excellence as well as giving gifts. Recognition has a way of inspiring people to perform even better. Based on this, I ensure to recognize individuals who achieve their targets even before the set time ends. This also applies to those who exceed their targets. Besides, I offer incentives in form of gifts to those who stand out because of their achievement and determination. Using these methods, everyone gets motivated to be productive and achieve their goals.
9. If you are working with two contract professionals who are disagreeing on the terms to incorporate in a certain contract, how will you deal with the situation?
Here, the interviewer wants to test your problem-solving skills.
Tip #1: Explain how you will solve the issue at hand
Tip #2: Make the interviewer know that you can resolve issues with your team members.
First, I will talk to the disagreeing individuals to understand the dispute. Then, I will let them know the kind of contract we are dealing with and what we want to achieve. Next, I will let them understand the terms that will work for our case to achieve the desired results. Doing this will resolve the disagreement and have everyone work towards the same goal.
10. How Do You Keep Current with What is Happening in Your Field?
The interviewer wants to know whether you keep up with the developments and trends in your field.
Tip #1: State what you do to remain up to date
Tip #2: Show that you will be able to know and adopt new ways of doing things in your sector
I ensure to get the latest industry news by reading contracting journals regularly. Since these journals publish the latest research and development, I can know the changes and trends taking place in the field. I also keep in touch with some professionals in the contract management industry. We share experiences and exchange ideas on how to go about improving the way we do things. Besides, my RSS feed includes sites that publish contracting information. I check them often to know new developments as well.
11. What is Your Style of Management?
The interviewer seeks to know the management style you employ to maintain and improve productivity.
Tip #1: Describe your style of management
Tip #2: Show how it helps to enhance productivity
My management style of management upholds professionalism and employee motivation. I always ensure to handle my work professionally by upholding the positive values and guidelines set by the company. I also make sure to maintain the standards in the field. Besides, I treat my employees fairly and equally. This creates an environment where everyone can perform at his or her best.
12. How Will You Help to Grow the Culture of Our Company?
This question tests whether you know the company’s culture and how you will contribute to enhancing it.
Tip #1: Show that you understand the culture of the company
Tip #2: Explain how you will help to grow it
I understand that your company values teamwork, hard work, and integrity. Thus, I will work towards enhancing these values in my department. This is by ensuring that my team upholds them. Moreover, I will make sure to expand and improve the skills of my team members on these values.
13. What is Your Greatest Weakness?
Here, the interviewer wants to know your main weak point and whether that can affect how your performance and productivity.
Tip #1: State your greatest weakness
Tip #2: Show that you are making effort to overcome it
Sometimes, I become impatient with co-workers or subordinates who don’t understand my viewpoint or ideas. However, I will make effort to ensure that I become as patient as possible with my assistants.
14. What’s Your Take on an Ideal Working Environment?
The interviewer seeks to know what you consider to be an ideal working environment.
Tip #1: Briefly describe an ideal working environment
Tip #2: Make sure to provide a relevant answer
An ideal working environment constitutes one that promotes productivity for the organization. It enables employees to work optimally, interact, and work together towards a common goal. Also, it inspires employees to develop positive attitudes towards work.
15. What Management Tools Have You Worked With?
Here, the interviewer wants to understand how you work and whether you have diverse experience in using standard management tools.
Tip #1: State the tools you have experience with
Tip #2: Be brief and provide a complete answer
I have used majority of standard MS tools extensively to accomplish different tasks. But my preference is for the Conga document management solution. It is thorough and extensive in information tracking and also offers convenient cloud storage.
16. What is Your Protocol for Negotiating Contract Terms?
The interviewer seeks to understand the kind of negotiator you are.
Tip #1: Describe your approach to negotiations
Tip #1: Be brief and don’t mull over the answer
During negotiations, I usually have an honest and direct conversation with others. I maintain a keen eye for details, think proactively and take a methodical approach. When requesting changes to the document wording, I am upfront. Also, I ensure to keep a record of every request.
17. If a Contract Is Not Being Met, How do You Enforce It?
The interviewer wants to know how you go about contacting parties that aren’t complying with the contract agreement terms and the actions you take.
Tip #1: Describe how you enforce contracts that aren’t being met
Tip #2: Show that you are skilled in handling such situations
If a client fails to fulfill their duty regarding a particular contract, I will initiate a dialogue with them. I will seek to understand the issues that hinder them from playing their part. Then, I will attempt to provide solutions that will help them get back on track.
18. Are You Good at Multitasking?
The work of a contract manager involves preparing and managing many documents and the interviewer wants to know whether you can multitask.
Tip #1: Make the interviewer understand that you are food at multitasking
Tip #2: Provide a convincing answer
I consider myself to be highly skilled at multitasking. I stay focused on my work to perform it correctly. I can handle several tasks and ensure they are completed and delivered on time. I ensure that nothing fails when switching between tasks.
19. As a Contract Manager, How Would You Rate Your Communication Skills?
The contract manager role involves communicating with clients and colleagues. The interviewer wants to assess tour communication abilities.
Tip #1: Describe your communication skills
Tip #2: Show that you can communicate effectively
I would rate my communication abilities nine out of ten. I possess excellent written and oral communication skills. I communicate clearly to make sure my audience understands the intended message. Besides, I use simple language that is easy to understand.
20. What Personal Career Development Have You Done in the Past One Year?
The interviewer wants to know how you have improved your skills and knowledge.
Tip #1: State the initiative you have taken in the past 12 months
Tip #2: Be honest and clear
I enrolled for a short management course 5 months ago. The program took three months. Through the course, I gained great insights into leadership and management. The skills I acquired through it will help me to manage this role effectively and as expected.
These are but a few contract management interview questions that you need to prepare yourself before attending an interview. Hopefully these interview questions on contract management will help you land your next dream job.