Subway is a fast-growing American restaurant franchise, which currently has over 40,000 locations in more than 100 countries around the globe. Subway restaurants are a popular place of work for many high school and college students, because they offer great shift flexibility, and plenty of part time opportunities.
Let’s have a look at 13 questions you may face while interviewing for an entry level job at Subway. Remember that most promotion happen internally, and if you want to work as a manager one day, you have to start with making sandwiches :).
Why do you want to work at Subway?
Try to show some positive associations to the brand of Subway. You can say that you consider their food healthier, when compared with other major players in fast food business, such as BK or KFC. You can also say that you enjoy the taste of their sandwiches, the variety of sauces, and appreciate the high quality of customer service–which you always got while eating at Subway.
You can also explain how the employment with them fits perfectly with your current situation and lifestyle. It will help you to earn some extra cash to support your studies, you will learn the basic working habits, and all in all you see only positive implications this job can have for your future life.
Try to talk with some enthusiasm, right from the start of your interview. They should get an impression that you really want the job, and do not apply only because you need any kind of work, or because you struggle with money.
Can you tell us something about your working experience? Have you worked in any restaurant franchise before?
I will suggest you a few things at this point:
- If you worked somewhere before, but quit after a short time (a week, a month), it is maybe better to avoid mentioning this in your interview. Maybe you quit because your boss was a total idiot, or you had some personal reasons, but still it’s better to skip this.
- If you worked somewhere for a longer time, you should have an explanation ready why you left the job. The hiring manager will surely ask about your reasons, because they want to know what you missed, or what the problem was, and whether you will find the missing part of the puzzle while working for Subway.
- If you have no previous experience, be honest. Ensure them that you have decent skills in a kitchen though, are a quick learner, and have confidence in your abilities to handle the job. Remember that you have to believe in your skills before an employer will believe in them.
How do you imagine a typical day in work?
Regardless of how you describe your idea of a typical day, you should ensure them that you expect to be busy. In certain fast food chains you may experience relatively calm shifts, but it is definitely not the case with Subway. There are always people waiting for their sandwich, and when occasionally there isn’t anyone in the restaurant, you have just enough time to do some cleaning and to stock the ingredients.
Basically you can say that you expect to spend your days in Subway doing three things:
- First and foremost, delivering exceptional customer service to each customer, following all the procedures and regulations set by Subway.
- Cleaning stuff, especially before the official opening of the restaurant, and at the end of your shift.
- Stocking things and preparing bread anytime it is necessary.
What is your availability? Which hours can you work?
Try to be precise. They should see that you did your homework, and are clear about your schedule. What’s more, this job should not be your last priority, after school, courses, boyfriend/girlfriend, computer games, or anything else. It doesn’t have to be your first priority, but shouldn’t be your last.
Typically they will expect you to work at least for 20 hours a week. You should show them a schedule that will allow you to work for as many hours at least, or perhaps even for longer. Try to show some flexibility. Of course everyone would love to do the shifts that are least busy, but that’s not a nice attitude to your colleagues or to your employer.
How would you describe a great customer service?
People do not visit Subway to experience surprises. They visit the place because they get the same taste and quality of food each and every time. And because they do not have to wait for ages, and they like the way in which the workers approach the customers.
You can refer to this in your answer. Say that you want to meet the expectations of the customers, delivering exactly what they expect from an employee at Subway–surely you will learn the ins and outs of this during your training.
You can also opt for a more descriptive answer, saying that you plan to approach each customer with smile, keeping eye contact, listening to their instructions carefully, and then meet them to the point, delivering exactly what they expect.
Special Tip: You can download all questions in a simple, one page long PDF, and practice your interview answers anytime later:
This job is repetitive. What will motivate you to try hard every day?
You have several options for a decent answer to this one. The first and honest one is simply saying that you are starting your professional career and can’t hope for some managerial or creative job right from the start. You need to get experience, put something on your professional resume. In your current situation, jobs like the one with Subway are all you can hope for.
Second alternative is saying that you actually prefer repetitive jobs. You have your skills but aren’t the most creative person in this city. You prefer to follow some manual in your work, doing the same things over and over again, instead of inventing the wheel. Nothing wrong about this attitude in my book.
Third option is referring to your goals, to things that drive you forward. You know that the job won’t be easy, and maybe you will feel like giving up on some days. However, you also have your reasons why you work, the dreams and goals you pursue outside of your job. Such things will help you stay motivated even on low days, because without money it would not be possible to achieve your dreams.
A customer complains about the quality of the food or the service you provided. What will you do?
You should not say that you’d let the manager address the situation, because it many cases it will be just you and one another sandwich artist in the restaurant. No manager around, they will came later, or they have already left and are enjoying a telly back home, while you struggle with your colleague during a busy evening hour.
You can start your answer saying that you will listen carefully to the feedback of a customer. You will try to understand what went wrong, and you will also ensure that you followed the instructions from the manual for Subway employees to the point.
If you followed them, but the food quality wasn’t satisfactory, you’ll check on the ingredients. Something may go bad in any restaurant, maybe there’s a problem with the fridge, or some other issue. And, most importantly, you will apologize to the customer, and you will try to learn from the situation, to do things better next time.
If you identify some issue with the food or electronic appliances in the restaurant, you will notify the manager immediately…
A few other questions you may face in your job interview with Subway
- What do you expect from your colleagues on the shift?
- Where do you see yourself in five years time? Do you consider managerial career with Subway?
- In your opinion, what distinguishes Subway from our main competitors?
- What are your weaknesses?
- What challenges are you looking for in a position?
- Do you have any questions?
Conclusion, next steps
Interview for a job at Subway belongs to easier interviews. Hiring managers won’t ask you any particularly difficult questions, and there’s no personality or IQ test.
Try to learn something about Subway, prepare for the questions from our article, and do not forget to show some enthusiasm and positive energy while talking to the interviewer. If they get an impression that you honestly want to work for Subway, and have confidence in your skills, they will give you chance. I wish you good luck!
May also help you succeed in your Subway interview:
- How to overcome interview nerves – A 4 steps guide that will help you get rid of any stress you may experience before the start of your interview.
- How to dress for an interview – Basic tips, perfectly applicable at Subway. Choose the right clothes and make the best possible first impression.
- 15 most common interview questions & answers – Why should we hire you? What are your strengths? What are your goals? Do you have any questions? You may certainly get some of these while interviewing with Subway. Check the answers and benefit from them in any interview you’d go to in the future.