The ability to solve problems efficiently and on a timely manner is important for companies. It is also one of the key skills employers look out for in job applicants.

What is problem solving skills?

Employees with good problem solving skills can generate feasible and efficient solutions to solve problems and capitalise on new opportunities.

The highly skilled problem solvers can even anticipate potential problems beyond the current scope and apply higher order problem solving tools and techniques to turn problems into opportunities.

– Skills Framework by SkillsFuture Singapore

You can view the full list of skills and its descriptions here.

How do I shortlist candidates with good problem solving skills?

Here are 3 examples of scale-rating questions hiring managers can ask :

  1. I rely on my own experience to find potential solutions to a problem..  
    (Every problem has different scenarios. Other related aspects and hearing from others should be considered.)
  2. In order to solve a problem, I need to have all the information related to the problem to solve it efficiently.
    (Good problem solvers do not need all information to solve a problem. They are very focus on related issues to the root cause of the problem.)
  3. When running a project, I am very focused in running it smoothly and hope that no problem would appear.
    (Highly skilled problem solvers can anticipate potential problems)

Do remember to add on a few open-ended scenario based questions.

Here are 3 open-ended questions examples you can use:

  1. Share an example when you came up with a creative idea to solve a problem.
  2. How do you handle a dissatisfied and angry customer?
  3. The team efficiency is low. What do you do?

You can get more questions and other candidate selection templates for free on Prehireforms. Prehireforms can also help you automatically rank your candidates in their achieved scores based on your selected job match criteria, further saving your time to identify your top candidates.

Need help or do you have more questions? Write in to Lisa, your candidate assistant at [email protected]. She’s always happy to help!

Happy shortlisting!