First of all, I have good news for you: Interviews at Kroger belong to easy job interviews, and the company is almost always hiring. Once you fill an application in one of their stores, or online, an HR person or a store manager will typically contact you within a week to arrange an interview with you (can be face to face but also online).
You will face some basic questions, related to your expectations, goals, attitude to work, and experience. You may get a few behavioral questions as well (“describe a time when…”), but this does not apply to basic roles such a cashier, sales associate, courtesy clerk, and similar position in one of Kruger’s supermarkets or stores.
Let’s have a look at 10 most common questions you may deal with while trying to get a job with Kroger.
Can you please tell me something about yourself?
They like friendly and outgoing people at Kroger, and that’s exactly how you should answer this question. Tell them what you do for a living, whether you study, what role this placement plays in your life, and do not forget to mention also some hobby, or something from your personal life, just to help ease the atmosphere in the room, and to show right from the start that you are a genuine applicant and do not plan to hide anything in front of the interviewers.
Why Kroger? Why not Walmart or another competitor?
Just do not say that you do not care. You should find a reason why you want to work at their store. One of the reasons you can specify is the excellent customer service Kroger focuses on, especially when we talk about older customers,, 55 years of age or more.
Quality matters more than price here, which certainly isn’t the case with most other retail giants. Kroger also has some job openings that they competitors do not advertise (and contrariwise), so if you have a specific position on your mind, you can cite it as a reason of your choice.
A simple option is saying that you’ve been a customer for a long time, you enjoy the shopping experience at Kroger, and see no reason why you should apply for a job in some other store, with some other brand. The wages are almost identical everywhere, so you go with a brand you like.
Do you have any relevant experience for this role?
Experience isn’t necessary, but they like to see that you have at least some basic working habits. Perhaps you worked in a fast food chain before, or on a construction site, or volunteered at school. Anything you did, any job in which you had to come to work at a certain time and had certain responsibilities, is a valuable experience.
And if you have no experience, ensure the interviewer that you know what will be expected from you in the job. You read the job description carefully, and believe to have the right skills and character traits to fit the team at Kruger. After the on-boarding process, you’ll be good to go.
At the end of the day, everyone has to start somewhere, and gain their first working experience. You hope that they will give you a chance and surely won’t disappoint.
How would you handle an unhappy customer?
Just say that you will keep the standard code of conduct at Kroger--being courteous, listening patiently to each customer, trying everything within the limits of your job in order to please the customer with your service.
But you also realize that people may be upset for all sorts of reasons, and that you won’t please each customer–regardless of how hard you try. That’s a part of your job, and you won’t take their words personally. You will try to learn from the situation–perhaps you can do something better next time, but you will eventually move on and try your best with another customer. Hopefully this one won’t be upset…
Are you a team player?
Team spirit and good relationships in the workplace form an important part of Kruger’s success story. Ensure them that you are a team player, and feel responsibility for fellow team members.
You can narrate a situation from your past job or from school, when you helped your team member, or even did something extra for them, such as taking their shift on a last minute notice, when they did not feel well or had an urgent appointment.
You can also say that you try to be attentive to your colleagues. Listening to them and trying to identify opportunities to help them (sometimes a simple word of encouragement can make a lot of difference in a day of your colleague).
What are you looking for in this job?
The most important thing is to show realistic expectations. Read the job description carefully, and if possible, observe some workers before the start of your interview in the store–those who have the same role you want to get with Kroger.
What are they doing? Are they working inside, or outside of the store? What clothes are they wearing? These observations should help you with a realistic picture about the job, and then you should present such a picture in the interviews.
Alternatively you can focus on things you want to learn, or even on some challenges, or goals you have, or on relationships, new friendships and connections. Saying that you are looking for learning the basics of this or that job, and want to improve your attention to detail and customer service skills, is definitely a good answer.
What makes a good leader?
You can get this question both when applying for common in-store jobs (cashier, sales associate, stock clerk, etc), but also for low-level managerial or supervisory role in one of the Kroger stores. A good answer does not change much from one case to another.
You can say that a good leader leads by an example. They are an excellent listener, and are receptive to the feedback of their subordinates and customers. They are genuine and talk openly with their people, helping them to improve in what they do, but criticizing them in a constructive and sensitive way, trying to avoid pointless conflicts.
And of course they like to work hard and they have proactive approach to their role.
What is your availability? What hours can you work?
You should be clear about your schedule, and ready to work a lot. Most part time workers at Kroger work for at least 30 hours a week, so it definitely isn’t possible to have this job if it isn’t either your first priority, or the second one at least (when you are studying and school occupies the first place).
Prepare a weekly schedule, you can even print it and show to your interviewer. You will together identify the days and hours of a week when you can work, and surely you will find a good compromise. The key is to show some flexibility, and your willingness to sacrifice something for your employer and colleagues.
Obviously nobody enjoys working on Sunday, but the stores are open on Sunday and somebody has to be there… Ensure the interviewers that you have no problems of working on any shift, as long as it doesn’t interfere with your college obligations.
Why did you leave your last job?
This one is a bit tricky, especially if they fired you in your last job. In such a case maybe you do not have to tell the entire truth, since Kroger rarely contacts your past employers to ask about their feedback on your performance in work.
If you left because you did not like something–a shift pattern, job conditions, the way the managers treated the employers, you can refer to such a reason, just be sure to check that you won’t face the same issue while working for Kroger.
In any case, you should avoid any extremely negative remarks on your past colleagues or employers. At Kroger, they do not like to hire people who complain about something or someone all the time.
Do you have any questions?
This is a simple interview, and you do not need to force a question, especially if they explained everything clearly, either on the job description, or directly in the interviews.
Of course, if they did not talk about the payment schedule, or hourly wage, or shift patterns, or forgot to explain any other important detail of your employment, you should ask about it.
Alternatively you can simply thank them for inviting you for an interview, and ask about the next steps of the recruitment process.
This isn’t a difficult interview, I hope you will make it, and wish you good luck!
May also help you succeed in your interview with Kroger:
- Retail interview – What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- Wegmans interview questions.
- Trader Joe’s interview questions.