If an interviewee asks you what the job title for the department head or supervisor is, they are trying to get a better understanding of your company. Knowing who they would report to if they were to get the job will help them understand what would be expected of them. This question also lets them know if there is a direct supervisor for them, and if this is a new position. When you get asked this question, you want to make sure to be as informative as you can be. They are trying to get to know the company in order to decide if they will fit in. Since that's one of your objectives too, you want to make sure to help them along.
Points to Emphasize
When you answer this question, you want to make sure to emphasize some information.
- Talk to them about who they would report to, if they were to get the position.
- Discuss the hierarchy of the company, so not only who they report to, but also who their boss reports to and so on.
- If applicable, talk to them about anyone that would report to them.
- Try to give them a detailed picture of the company workings.
Answering this question with detail will help them get a better feel for the company's chain of command.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
This question is fairly straightforward, but there are some pitfalls you want to avoid.
- Do not simply talk about the people. Also mention the name of the positions, since people can come and go.
- Be careful not to give too much information, so they feel bogged down.
- Try not to answer in a vague way. Be specific yet concise.
- Don't forget to keep the answer light and positive.
Giving an informative, yet concise answer may not be easily done, but it can be done.
Here is an example of what a great answer to this question might look like:
The title for the department head for this position is Administrative Trainer. They report directly to the Head of Human Resources who reports to the Vice President of Administration who reports to the President of Administration. No one would report to you, but you would be in charge of making sure that the training is finished. Even though there is a direct chain of command, the Administrative Trainer really does their own thing, and only reports to HR on an as needed basis.
Try to give them an idea of where they would be in the company, if they were to get the job.