STAR Technique Template
Use our STAR technique template to prepare for job interviews. Practice job interview questions using real-life examples to create structured, concise answers.
About the STAR technique template
The STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) technique template is a framework that allows employers and candidates to prepare for job interviews.
If you’re an employer, the STAR method of interviewing helps you gather concrete evidence of the skills and personality traits that make someone a successful, high-level performer. With this information laid out in the template, it’s easier for you to identify the best candidate for the position.
If you’re a candidate, you can use the STAR technique template to prepare your answers to interview questions. Many hiring managers or interviewer panels will ask prospective employees competency-based questions such as, “Tell me about a time when you …” or “Share an example of a situation where. …” This template allows you to draw on concrete examples, showing that you have the skills and experience to do the job well.
What is the STAR interview method?
STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, Result. Using the STAR interview method, candidates respond to competency-based questions with a specific four-point structure. Here’s what each element means in more detail:
Situation: A specific event or situation when you need to accomplish something. For example, growing the business to increase market share.
Task: The goal you (or your team) were working toward. Let’s say your goal was to increase revenue by 10% to help the business grow (check out our SMART goal template to find out more about setting achievable and realistic goals).
Action: The actions you took to solve a problem or contribute to achieving a goal. To increase revenue, you offered an incentive for existing customers.
Result: The outcome of your actions and positive results you can take credit for. The incentive increased revenue by 10% and boosted customer loyalty in the process.
Candidates using this framework will be able to find concise and relevant answers to a range of job interview questions. During the interview, they’ll demonstrate how real experiences have developed their learning and professional experience.
An example would be the classic interview question, ‘What challenges have you faced, and how have you overcome them?’ Using the framework, the candidate can prepare a satisfactory answer with a real-life example.
For employers, the framework helps them identify key features and characteristics they’re looking for in employees. They can anticipate the answers they want to hear from candidates so they can find the person best suited to the job.
How to use the STAR framework
Miro’s online whiteboard is the perfect canvas for setting up the STAR framework with this template. It’s intuitive, user-friendly, and easy to customize.
It’s also collaborative, allowing employers to share the framework with their internal teams ahead of interviews, so panels are aligned on the competencies they’re looking for. Individuals can share the template with mentors or friends to get their input on how to strengthen their examples.
Get started by selecting this STAR template. Then, follow these steps:
Step 1: Identify the situation. Add some detail here about the overall context surrounding the situation you were facing at the time. This will jog your memory about what happened and help you explain it clearly during the interview.
Step 2: Outline your task. Be clear about what you had to do to improve the situation.
Step 3: Add your actions. Outline the specific actions you took to rectify the problem and provide a solution.
Step 4. Input your results. What were the results, and what did you learn from the process? This is arguably the most important element to your future employer. If STAR isn’t your preferred framework, you’re in luck. Our templates are all customizable, meaning you can tweak and adapt the default template. For example, you can adapt the headings to “CARL” (Challenge, Action, Result, Learning) or “PAR” (Problem, Action, or Result).
How to use the STAR framework as an interviewee
As an interviewee, using the STAR framework can be overwhelming. How do you know what situations to use as an example? What exactly should you talk about? Is there such a thing as too much detail?
Don’t panic. Here, we’ve outlined some tips to help you use the framework effectively.
1. Think of recent professional situations that can make a case for you as an optimal candidate. These can broadly fall under demonstrating behaviors in leadership, teamwork, initiative, planning, and customer service.
2. Draft up short descriptions of each situation so you can recall them easily. Add some details with Miro’s sticky notes feature if you need more in-depth answers.
3. Check that each example follows a storytelling structure. Remember, you need a beginning, middle, and end. How did the situation and task lead to action and results?
4. Do a positivity check. Maybe the results didn’t turn out as planned. That’s okay – what did you do that still reflected positively on yourself as an individual and team player?
5. Keep it honest. If you're asked about a situation you’ve never been in before, map out how you’d attempt it using the Situation, Task, and Action sections. Be honest and clear about how you'd handle the challenge. You can also discuss metrics you’d use to measure success.
6. Include the essential details. Give a detailed account of a specific situation – this will build a stronger case for you than broad generalizations. You can use comments on top of text boxes or sticky notes to add more information.
7. Demonstrate experience from different roles and times in your career. Try to point to experience in other industries, leading by example, working on tools, or contributing to team culture. These can be color-coded with sticky notes to coordinate details when you need to recall them.
8. Practice your responses verbally without relying on your notes. Need feedback or extra motivation? Ask a colleague or mentor to hop on a video call with you, or share your filled-in template and have them ask you relevant questions.
How to use the STAR framework as an employer
Employers can use the framework to find out how candidates would act in certain situations based on their past experiences. 1. Draft questions tailored to the framework. Prompt candidates to give you real-life examples by tailoring your questions to the STAR framework. Here are some examples:
Provide an example of a time when you had to work under pressure and how you managed the situation.
Have you ever had to make a tough decision, and how did you overcome it?
When have you had to demonstrate leadership, and how did it go?
Tell us about a time when you had to manage a conflict and how you resolved the issue.
2. Tell candidates what you expect from their answers. Give candidates a chance to answer your question effectively by telling them what you want them to explain (the previous example questions demonstrate what we mean). For example, tell them you want a real-life example to back up their answer. If you don’t tell them this, they might not do it. Don’t be too specific as you don’t want to put words in their mouth, but give them an idea of what you’re looking for. 3. Know what you’re looking for. Have a clear picture of what you want from their answer. For example, if you’re asking a question about leadership, you might be looking for them to tell you how they thrived in a leadership position. However, don’t let this limit your ability to accept other answers. If you’re too focused on what you want them to say, you might miss something else.