How to answer the question, 'Why should we hire you?'
Make sure you’ve got a response prepped and ready before you get to the interview.
Arguably, it’s the most important question you should be prepared to answer in an interview. If you can’t make a case for why you’re the best person for the job, why should the company think you’re the best person?
It doesn’t hurt to have an answer prepared in advance. Chances are you’ll run into some form of this question. And even if a company doesn’t ask in so many words, it's vital that you address the issue to make it crystal clear that you are in fact the best candidate.
“Don't make them search for the ‘why,’ because they won't,” says Cachet Prescott of Career Cachet, based in Valdosta, Georgia.
The good news is that you’re probably already part of the way to an answer, assuming you’ve written a cover letter. The three things you definitely need to include in your answer:
Show that you know what the employer wants
Danielle Kunkle, vice president of Boomer Benefits in Fort Worth, Texas, says she wants to hear answers that show the candidate has researched the company.
“I want to hear that they read through our website and are interested in this job as an informed candidate, and are not just interviewing for any old job out there,” she notes.
You say: “A fast-growing organization like Company X has to be a dynamic place to work. A company that has outstripped its revenue expectations five quarters in a row provides the challenge and opportunity I’m looking for.”
Show what makes you especially qualified
If you’ve earned an interview, the company already considers you qualified enough for the position, says Prescott. So when you get the question about why the company should hire you, don’t simply outline your relevant work experience, but focus on what sets you apart from other qualified candidates.
“Do not make the mistake of merely restating the content on your resume,” adds Erik Episcopo of Resume Genius in Wilmington, Delaware. “Instead try to answer the question with an anecdote of your prior job experience.”
You say: “The numbers I achieved at my current position show my dedication to performance. My Q3 and Q4 numbers from the past year, which I achieved while also serving as interim department head, are an example of the kind of results you can expect from me.”
Show why you want the gig
Finally, take a moment to highlight your enthusiasm about working for this particular organization, Prescott says. Talk about personal attributes, values or ideas that would make you an asset and a great cultural fit.
You say: “I thrive on high expectations, and it’s clear Company X holds its employees to incredible standards. The results speak for themselves and I’d like to be a part of that.”