Before You Accept: Questions to Ask Interviewers

Approximately 29% of workers plan to look for a new job in 2018, according to a survey from Accountemps. If you are one of them and fortunate enough to earn interviews, expand your preparation beyond researching the employer and anticipating interview questions. Consider what you will want to know about the job (besides the compensation package). In particular, for a Commercial Card program manager or administrator position, following are possible questions to ask interviewers at some point during the interview process to help you evaluate whether the job could be right for you.

Possible Questions

Before the interview, determine what is most important to you. What program drawbacks or challenges can you deal with? Every program has them. What will be too frustrating for you? Gather a mix of information—facts, opinions, and perceptions.

Program Facts and Metrics

  • What card products/solutions are used today?
  • Who is the card provider? When does the contract end?
  • What technology solutions are used for program management?
  • What is the current program size (spend, transactions, cardholders, geography)?
  • What percentage of B2B payments are captured via the card program?

Organization Vision

  • What are the organization’s program goals and objectives?
  • How does the organization want to grow the program (e.g., more cardholders, additional countries, new allowed spend categories)?
  • Where do cards rank in terms of the overall payment strategy?

Perspectives, Buy-in, and Support

  • What are the biggest program challenges?
  • What are the biggest opportunities?
  • What are the most notable program successes to date?
  • Tell me about program buy-in by cardholders, their managers, and executives. Does anyone resist or resent the program?
  • How do procurement and accounts payable provide program support?

Auditing and Accountability

  • What have recent audits revealed about the program?
  • Who performs transaction auditing? How does the auditing occur (manually or via technology)?
  • Is everyone, including executives, held accountable for their respective card program role?
Look for the right job for you. Ask questions about the card program to evaluate whether the job would be a good fit.

Look for the right job for you. Ask questions about the card program to evaluate whether the job would be a good fit.

    About the Position

    • What qualities do you feel are most important in a card program manager?
    • What should be the priorities of the next program manager?
    • Is the role a decision maker for the program?
    • Are you looking for the next program manager to instigate change?

    Final Thoughts

    While everyone will have different priorities, I think there are some universal red flags. I would steer clear of a program that:

    • is not supported by management
    • is plagued with audit findings
    • fails to hold employees accountable  

    Conversely, an organization eager to improve and/or expand the card program—with the program manager leading the way—would be a good sign. Still, it pays to dig deeper before accepting any position, especially if/when some of the questions posed to you by an interviewer seem strange.

    For related resources, such as tips for hiring a program manager/administrator, visit the Program Management page.

    About the Author

    Blog post author Lynn Larson, CPCP, is the founder of Recharged Education. With 20 years of Commercial Card experience, her mission is to make industry education readily accessible to all. Learn more

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