RSPCA INSPECTOR INTERVIEW QUESTIONS
If you are successful in making it through to the interview stage of the RSPCA inspector selection process then you have done tremendously well. The competition is fierce and you will have made your way from thousands of applicants down to the last 100 or so.
The RSPCA does not have a set number of people that they will interview, but the ﬁnal number is usually around 100. You will all be competing for approximately 30-40 places that will be available within England and Wales so it is important that you prepare yourself fully for the interview and give it your best shot.
The ﬁrst and most important stage of your interview preparation is research. Do you know exactly what the role of an RSPCA Inspector entails? If not, then now is the time to learn it. Do you know what the role/mission of the society is? Once again, if you do not know then now is the time to learn it. There are a number of important areas that you should consider researching prior to the interview. Knowledge is power and the more you have the more conﬁdent you will be during the interview.
PREPARING FOR THE RSPCA INTERVIEW
Before we take a look at a few sample RSPCA interview questions let us take a look at some of the more important areas that you should research during your preparation:
The role of the Society
Learn as much about the role of the RSPCA by visiting their website HERE.
The role of an RSPCA Inspector
You can learn a tremendous amount about the role of an RSPCA inspector by visiting the website of the RSPCA and also by visiting the various RSPCA animal centres around the UK.
The history of the Society
Whilst you may not be asked questions about the history of the society it is certainly worth researching. The more you know about the society and where they have come from, including their achievements, the better.
Be aware of the society’s current activities and achievements. Once again, this can usually be done by visiting the RSPCA’s website.
Read the Advice Centre
Whilst the role of an RSPCA inspector is predominantly based around working with people, it is still good to have a general knowledge about the welfare of animals.
The society has a comprehensive Advice Centre, which can be found on its main website. Take the time to read the content and be aware of the facility.
Your own experiences
You will undoubtedly be asked questions about your own experiences that relate to the role of an Animal Inspector. For example, have you ever had to deal with a person who was confrontational or aggressive? If so, how did you deal with them?
Try to think of situations and examples for each of the following:
- Where you have had to relocate;
- Where you have had to deal with a difﬁcult or aggressive person;
- Where you have had to work on your own unsupervised;
- Where you have worked as team member to achieve a common goal;
- Where you have had to keep accurate records or paperwork;
- Where you have had to deal with pressure;
- Where you had to be ﬂexible in a work situation.
Whilst the above list is not exhaustive, it will give you an idea of the type of scenario you might be asked questions about.
Sample RSPCA Inspector interview questions
Within this section of the guide we have provided you with a number of sample interview questions and responses. Please note that the questions you will encounter at the actual interview are not guaranteed to be any of the following. Please use them as a preparation tool only.
Once you have read the sample questions and responses, please take the time to construct your own response based around your own personal experiences and knowledge using a blank sheet of paper.
Q. Why do you want to become an RSPCA Inspector?
Q. What can you tell me about the role of an RSPCA Inspector?
Q. Can you tell me of an occasion where you have had to deal with a difﬁcult or aggressive person?
Q. How do you feel about relocating to another part of the country?
Q Part of the role of an Animal Inspector involves performing animal euthanasia. What do you understand about animal euthanasia and how do you think you would cope with having to carry it out?
Q. Can you tell me of an occasion when you have had to work under pressure and unsupervised?
Q. What can you tell me about the work of the society?
Q. Can you tell me what the mission of the society is?
Q. What do you think the main qualities of an RSPCA Inspector are?
Q. How do you think you would adapt to wearing a uniform and being a part of a disciplined service?
Q. How would you feel about having to work unsociable hours?
Q. As an Inspector you will have to deal with emotional people sometimes. How do you think you would cope in this type of situation?
Q. Is there anything else you would like to say in support of your application to become an Inspector?
Now let’s take a look at a number of important tips that will help you prepare more for the RSPCA interview:
– When you walk into the interview room stand up straight and try to look conﬁdent.
– Don’t sit down until invited to do so.
– Sit with your hands resting on your knees, palms downwards. It is okay to use your hands expressively but don’t overdo it.
– Don’t slouch in the chair.
– Speak up and be positive.
– Be smart and take a pride in your appearance.
– Make sure you have researched both the society and the role of an Inspector.
VERY IMPORTANT – Try to think of some experiences you have gained that relate directly to the role of an Inspector. For example, times when you have had to work alone or unsupervised, when you have had to deal with an aggressive person etc.
Go the extra mile and learn a little bit about the society’s history. If the panel ask you ‘What can you tell us about the society?’ you will be able to demonstrate that you have made an effort to look into their history as well as their modern day activities.
Be respectful and courteous towards the interview panel.
Ask positive questions at the end of the interview. Try not to ask questions such as ‘How much leave will I get?’ or ‘How often do I get paid?’
If you are unsure about a question try not to ‘wafﬂe’. If you do not know the answer then it is okay to say so. Move on to the next question and put it behind you.
Finally, believe in yourself and be conﬁdent.
To learn more about how to pass the RSPCA inspector’s interview we recommend you obtain a copy of our excellent how to pass an interview guide.