“Why should we hire you?” has to be one of the most dreaded questions in a job interview.
Isn’t the HR manager’s job to determine that? After all, you prepared a great resume and answered all their previous questions.
Well, this question allows you to show the hiring manager what sets you apart from other candidates…in your own words.
Although the answer will vary depending on the candidate and the position, you can follow some best practices.
In this guide, we’re going to cover:
- The Best Way to Answer “Why Should We Hire You?” – What To Do & What To Not Do
- 5 Sample Answers Split by Seniority Level
The Best Way to Answer “Why Should We Hire You?”
By asking “Why should we hire you”, the interviewer wants to make sure that you understand your role and how your skills and experience make you a good candidate.
The answer should directly reflect on how you’ll add value based on your skills and previous experiences.
Best Practices To Answer “Why Should We Hire You”
Be prepared and do your research!
You can’t just wing it. So make sure to consult the job posting before you prepare your answer. Checking the company’s website and social media accounts can also help you figure out what their “perfect” employee looks like.
Tailor your answer!
Preparing a generic answer that could apply to every job or company is not the solution here. An untailored answer doesn’t address how you’ll be of value to the PARTICULAR position or company you’re applying for. Your best bet is to focus on the job posting, the company information you’ve uncovered during your research, and the job requirements. Your answer should demonstrate how YOU match all of those.
Focus on the essentials!
Don’t mention every single qualification you have. Instead, focus your answer on the ones 0that are best suited for this job. You could have a Guinness world record for building the biggest treehouse, but that still won’t make you a good accountant.
Be confident and enthusiastic!
Passionate candidates make for passionate employees. Make sure your confidence and enthusiasm come out through your answer.
Offer a solution to a problem!
Recruiters love someone who can make their lives easier and can be helpful right off the bat. If you have thought of a new way to manage things or a new strategy you can implement that will make things run smoothly, DO mention it.
Quantify your achievements!
Tell the recruiters about the impact you had on jobs that required the same skills, what you achieved, and to what extent. Using numbers in your answer gives them a clearer idea as to how your skills and experience can be translated into practical outcomes.
Common Mistakes When Answering “Why Should We Hire You”
Do NOT be too modest or too confident!
Find the middle ground between the two: show off your skills and expertise without coming off as boastful or too humble.
Don’t make it about you!
Your answer covers your best skills and qualifications. But you should frame them to show how they serve the company and the team. Try to show the managers how much THEY will benefit from having you on the team. Not how great this opportunity is for YOU.
NO funny business!
They expect an honest answer that tells them you’re qualified and that you’ll be a good fit for the job. Anything like “You guys hit the jackpot because there is no one else like me out there! I’ll make you millions!” followed by a creepy wink SCREAMS unprofessional.
Do NOT talk too much!
Keep your answer as concise and short as possible. If you start rambling about yourself, the recruiter will eventually get bored.
Do NOT memorize!
It is good to be prepared and to know what to expect from the interview. However, there is a line between rehearsing your answer beforehand and learning it by heart and reciting it in front of the recruiters. Don’t cross that line.
“Why Should We Hire you?” – Good & Bad Example
Here’s what a good answer should sound like:
“I am happy you asked! I believe that I would be a great addition to your team because of my five years of experience in marketing research. Having worked as a research assistant for 3 years, and then being promoted to a manager’s position for another 2 years has provided me with insight into consumer behavior and how that affects business in our world.
I managed a team of 20 people and helped more than 15 businesses improve their customer service, which translated into an average of 20% increase in profits for these businesses. That experience made me a skilled communicator and a great team-player. I also got firsthand experience with marketing budget management, which is essential when managing big departments like yours. I am ready to manage projects more efficiently and work directly with customers towards retention improvement. I’ll make sure to bring that same enthusiasm and leadership skills to your company and make your success my only priority.”
And here’s what it should not sound like:
“Isn’t it your job to determine if I am a good fit for this position? I am just kidding! I’ll tell you why! You should hire me because you guys are looking for someone to fill in the position, and I am looking for a job that will pay my bills. It’s as simple as that!”
It’s pretty obvious that the first answer is much better and implements all the best practices.
The first answer was tailored to the company and position and no irrelevant experience was mentioned. The applicant was confident and enthusiastic about the new opportunity and she was able to quantify her achievements.
The second applicant tried being funny and made the whole situation about herself and her needs. The recruiter most definitely sent her packing.
5 Example Answers for “Why Should We Hire You?”
Looking for more inspiration? Check out these examples:
Student or Internship Answer Sample
“Well, I’ve been passionate about art and design ever since I was in middle school where I used to do logo designs for friends or designed concert posters for the rock band in my school. That’s why I decided to pursue Graphic Design in my undergraduate studies.
I’ve tried to pick up the technicalities on my own through constant practice and schoolwork, and my 3.90 GPA can show my commitment to learning. I have also joined online classes on Typography and Logo Design that add to my skill set and knowledge of design. As an intern, I’ll be applying all my skills for ACTUAL clients, and I am eager to learn how the real world works. You’ll find me to be a great addition to your team. I have attention to detail, discipline, and great technical know-how. I am super passionate about working for the best in the field and am committed to putting my best foot forward.”
Entry-Level or Recent Graduate Answer Sample
“Good question! As a recent Computer Science graduate, I haven’t had the chance to actually work as a Software Developer. However, my internship helped me create a better understanding of the field. That’s where I enhanced my developer skills and familiarized myself with the latest trends in technology. I helped develop a project from scratch in only half the time it usually required, and my mentors said I was one of the most dedicated interns that they have had in years. That’s also how I managed to enhance my communication skills, my ability to learn, and my problem-solving skills, which are essential in a fast-paced working environment. I would love to bring those skills to your company and focus all my efforts to deliver high-quality work and grow with you.”
Mid-Level Professional Answer Sample
“I have previous experience as a Construction Manager and I am able to manage a team towards more efficient work processes and within a tight deadline
I used to be a Civil Engineer and am familiar with construction and the processes that underlie it. I also have 5 years of experience as a Construction Manager for a recent project that dealt with the construction of 3 new malls in the suburban area. As the manager, I had to coordinate a team of 20+ people and make sure everything was done in time, executed perfectly, and within the company’s budget. That experience has also provided me with leadership and decision making skills that help facilitate teamwork. If hired, I would make this project my sole priority, focusing all my efforts on it and its success.”
Senior Professional Answer Sample
“When I saw that you were looking for an experienced Substance Abuse Counselor for your rehabilitation center, I immediately knew that I had to apply as I truly believe that I have the right skill set to succeed. I’ve had my fair share of experience in the field of Psychology as a Clinical psychologist specifically, after getting my Doctorate Degree and post-doctoral training. In the past 10 years, however, I have concentrated my efforts on the Addiction Psychology discipline ever since I first started working with the military as a counselor for PTSD patients. I was interested in their circumstances and how their situations affected their chances of becoming addicts. This experience in particular helped me develop excellent communication skills and social perceptiveness, and made me an active listener, which are all skills that facilitate the counseling process. I also took the liberty to take a few years off and focus on my own research on addiction and published my own papers in some of the most famous journals. I believe that my firsthand experience in the field and my passion, along with my thorough knowledge of the field are all assets that I would love to bring to your institution and use them to successfully and effectively treat patients.”
Career Change Answer Sample
If you’re in the middle of a career change, it is normal to feel uneasy and at a disadvantage. That might come from lack of proper experience in the field.
However, many skills can be transferable and be useful in many disciplines.
Here’s how to translate your value into your answer:
“I am not your usual applicant considering my lack of proper experience in a marketing setting. However, I do have experience in analyzing and interpreting data using statistical software. Although I haven’t practiced my skills in Marketing Research, my background in psychology gives me some invaluable insights that an analytics-only candidate might lack.
My experience as a licensed Personality Psychologist has thoroughly allowed me to study human nature. That has given me invaluable insights into human behavior, which not only would help me analyze and interpret data, but also decipher patterns which are essential in predicting future trends in the customer behavior. I have conducted my own research in RStudio, so I know the platform like the back of my hand.
Not every applicant has both statistical experience and knowledge of human psychology, and I strongly believe that my abilities compensate for my lack of relevant experience in Marketing Research. If given the opportunity, I’d love to implement my diverse expertise in a way that’s beneficial to your company. I strongly believe that your marketing team can benefit from a different perspective.”
By now, you should have a better understanding of how to answer “Why should we hire you?”
A few things to keep in mind before we part ways:
- Do your research! Knowing about the company, its culture, and what they are looking for will make you prepare a top-notch answer.
- Always CUSTOMIZE your answers! This is the most important thing. Your answer should show how your skills and qualifications make you stand out from other applicants for the PARTICULAR job you are applying for.
- Be confident! This is your time to sell your abilities to the recruiters. Avoid being arrogant or making it all about you though.
If you follow all the DO-s and DON’T-s we mentioned before, you definitely have a good chance of getting the job.
So be prepared, and good luck!