15+ Best Data Entry Interview Questions

Getting hired as a data entry specialist isn’t just any job, its one that you should be proud of. In order to help you get on your way to landing your future gig, I’ve put together some of the best practice data entry interview questions and answers I gathered while speaking with hiring managers who are looking to place this position. Lets first talk about the position and then we’ll go into the interview questions. First, data is becoming increasingly more important for technology organizations as well as growing companies across the US. Its because as consumers and customers start to consume more information and request more solutions from their providers, they leave behind a footprint. This footprint is oftentimes in the form of data. Or, vica versa, where the request of solutions relies on data that may not actually be digitalized yet. This where someone on the data entry side can really help to empower a business and its future potential. Understanding that while your role, maybe seeming mundane and repetitive to some, is actually a very important one. And with a single slip of the keyboard or the inaccurate entry, you could potentially set off a series of events for a company that could lead to turmoil.

data entry interview questions

Before we go into the interview questions I often times like to provide short videos on the position for which you are trying to be hired for. Sometimes its helpful to see how others are speaking about the role so that way when your future hiring manager is having a discussion with you, there’s already some type of tone and communication style which you can emulate to deliver a secure, honest and confident stance on your desire for the position.

Data Entry Interview Questions Table Of Contents


Data Entry Interview Questions & Answers

1. How would you describe the role of data entry?

Data Entry is the process of which a computer cannot physically understand or interpret data which has not yet been digitalized yet, and so a human must help to interpret and ingest a large amount of data into some type of database, spreadsheet, format or another storage mechanism. Usually, these storage mechanisms are on a computer.

2. What makes you passionate about such a role?

I have a passion for wanting to help the business in ways where others might find jobs a bit repetitive. I find that the process of which I’m able to get extremely focused and do something which I can have incredible amounts of detail towards makes me really happy. Yes, this is a somewhat unique quality or trait, but I truly enjoy that type of a work ethic. I also realize just how much these roles can help businesses and that makes me really happy as well.

3. How do you think data entry helps our company?

Companies of all sizes need cleansed, historical, and unique data to run their operations now. From needing the data to offer their solutions. To making business decisions. Without the data entry role there might not be enough information to provide either the internal leaders the right insights or maybe our customers with the things they need to strive. Data Entry helps businesses by being able to fill those gaps.

4. What are some of the best qualities in a good data entry specialist, controller or operator?

The best qualities in a data entry specialist are someone who has extremely close attention to detail, who is focused on the work they are doing at all times, has the ability to think about their pace, has the ability to self-manage and is always aware of their surroundings.

5. What are some of the fundamental skills required for data entry?

Fast typing skills are an absolute must. Clear communication skills are also an absolute must. And though it is not a skill, I believe having honor in the work and being honest about the work that’s in progress is also a fundamental component to doing great work.

6. What does the term WPM stand for and why is it important to this role?

The term WPM stands for Words Per Minute. It is the measurement of how fast a Data Entry Operator can input words or potentially numbers into a computer. It is obviously very important for this role because it deciphers the overall pace and ability to achieve goals in a timely manner.

7. What types of departments do you think benefit from data entry?

There are many departments which can benefit from having a Data Entry Specialist, Operator or Clerk. The first would be the accounting department, who is always dealing with large data sets that are unique and custom to the business. The second would actually be the product or software departments, those who may need data entry to provide big data insights or fix scenarios of which data gaps have occurred. There are many departments who can benefit from this role but these two provide one very unique department and one more common.

8. How would you say your job is impactful to our success here?

Depending on which department I am helping to push forward, my role helps provide insight or fill missing puzzle pieces that help others achieve their goals or remove roadblocks.

9. How do you handle dealing with sensitive information?

I’m comfortable dealing with sensitive or potentially secure information. I do this by making sure I am complying with any of the regulatory standards that we have when handling this type of data. Whatever those regulations may be, I am ready to follow them. The shredding and absolute disposal of any written information or printed information is definitely the most common one.

10. What would you do in the event that you made a mistake?

This is where the focus is important. In the event I make a mistake I want to correct it quickly before it is potentially forgotten about and then lost into the ether of data further.

11. How would you handle needing to increase your pace?

I like to use an hourly timer and some type of benchmark to understand my own pace. So when I need to increase, I tend to take a deep breath, try to understand where I am seeing some friction in my process and try to focus in on the overcoming of that piece of friction. This usually helps me to pick up my pace and achieve goal.

12. What are some of the core metrics you should be following?

Depending on the data, core metrics I should be following would be WPM, number of sheets or data points which have been entered in an hourly period as well as weekly figures to this same thing that match our company goals.

13. How would you report your success to your manager?

I like to report success to my manager on a weekly basis. I can do this by following my core metrics and reiterating them via a small snapshot send on a potentially a weekly or bi-weekly amount. I’ve found this to be really effective at being transparent and also showing leadership.

14. What are the pieces of software you are comfortable using data entry with?

Primarily, the pieces of software I should be familiar with would be Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Terminal and maybe some type of database. But that database would be dependent on the company and if that’s helpful.

15. What are some bad qualities that we should avoid when we hire for this data entry operator role?

It’s incredibly detrimental to this role when someone doesn’t take pride in what they’re doing. That starts to have a decaying effect over time and the result of which is poor Data Entry or just simply a disregard for what they’re doing. This creeps up on the business as a whole. It’s not good. The increase in errors can lead to judgment mistakes made by the business. And that all came from a single Data Entry Specialist or Operator which simply didn’t take pride in what they were doing.

16. Tell me about a scenario which you were doing data entry and something went wrong.

I remember I was in a previous position that required heavy amounts of Data Entry. We were entering into databases large amounts of unique mathematical data based on personal information. This was going to be used to quantify and complete a data set which our business was then going to be able to resell. I can’t speak too much about this data but I hope that gives you enough knowledge of what type of data we’re talking about here. I remember I accidentally made a mistake, around 100 rows worth of data was incorrect. And unfortunately, we didn’t find out until I was mostly complete with my tasks for the week. Going backward wasn’t really an option. Along with my manager, we made calm and clear expectation management and communication not only with our team but with the rest of the company. I took full responsibility for the mistake. Because we couldn’t go backward the only thing we could do was to dump the information from that week that was entered and do it again. Because we couldn’t do that and also lose that weeks worth of data entry, I came up with the idea of splitting that data insertion into a series of chunks and evenly distributing it throughout the team. The team was incredibly helpful and adhering to the fact that the mistake was made. We were able to overcome the problem within the week and everything was cleared.

Preparing for your interview

The best thing you can do to prepare for your interview as a Data Entry Operator is to simply know the business. If you can spend a little bit of time getting to know the inner workings of the business, what they’re annual goals are and putting together some simple points on how you might see yourself fitting in with those, you should be absolutely fine. Remember that clear communication and honesty will take you extremely far in this particular role. Hiring managers who are looking to place a Data Entry role are specifically looking for people they feel they can trust. If your communication style isn’t presenting that, then you might be finding yourself on the job hunt again. Being able to hold yourself in the conversation and show that you have enough passion for the position to have looked up the companies latest news events and/or publicity will truly help you stand out. Good luck with your future employment and remember to be yourself.

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.


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