Why Do You Want to Work Here? (Sample Answers Included)
What seems like a simple enough question can stump most professionals into wondering how to answer “Why Do You Want to Work Here?”.
It can’t be as simple as answering “I was interested in the position, hence I applied for the job.”
So, what does the hiring manager look for in an interviewee when asking this question.
Let’s learn more about this age-old interview question in the following sections.
WHY DO INTERVIEWERS ASK, “WHY DO YOU WANT TO WORK HERE?”
9 out of 10 times, a hiring manager is bound to ask the candidate this very question.
Although it may seem sarcastic by the hiring manager to be asking an obvious question, we assure you, it’s sincere.
Now onto the question — the interviewer needs to understand if you fit well with their work culture and if you’re the right candidate to hire for the position.
Having the right technical knowledge isn’t enough in the modern business world, interviewers are tasked to hire candidates with the right mentality and motivation for the job. A candidate requires —
- Ability to complete tasks on time
- Have a certain number of soft skills —communication, critical-thinking, problem-solving, etc.
- Motivation to grow your technical skills on your own time
Let’s breakdown the question into two important criteria to better help you understand the right way of answering the question.
Why are you interested in the Company?
Ask yourself — why do you think your position best fits with the company’s requirement?
Do you share the same goals with the company?
What motivated you to apply for the company in the first place?
Once you’re able to find the answers to these questions, you can better figure out what aspects of the company appealed to you.
Why are you interested in the job?
Are you someone trying to make ends meet?
Is this a temporary career path that you intend to pursue for a few years?
Hiring managers like to know if their candidates are best suited for a long-term commitment or they wish to pursue other companies after a span of 1-2 years.
Depending on your commitment, the company may not wish to hire candidates on a short-term basis and may simply reject your application.
The following two questions make it clear as to why you would want to work in a company and what is attractive about the job position offered.
While answering, it’s necessary to portray your passion for the work instead of looking at the job as a way to make money.
HOW TO BEST PREPARE TO ANSWER THE QUESTION
Being informed about the company that you are applying for provides you with knowledge on how to answer better.
Study the company’s background, values, senior team members, and create an answer based on the company’s mission projecting your desire to achieve those values.
Spend time analyzing the “About me” page on the company’s website, understand the vision of the company and what type of employees work in its offices.
Once you’ve data mined the entire history of the company, you’re in a better position to provide an answer to the question.
LinkedIn company profiles offer much needed information on the type of hires the company has made recently and what positions are in high demand. It also provides statistics, recent promotions, related companies, and former employees of the company.
Every company usually has a personal blog with achievements, milestones, and other important news. Reading the company’s blog is one of the best ways to attain information not visible to the naked eye. You can then quote a recent achievement and mention how it motivated you enough to approach the company for a job.
By gaining information on the company, you gain an interview edge over other candidates.
Another important factor is to read reviews left by former employees in websites such as Glassdoor. Knowing the background of the company puts you in a better position to personalize your answer based on research.
Show your value
As a professional, you need to demonstrate and match your skills to the requirement of the company.
You need to sound attractive describing your key skills and in what way the company benefits from utilizing them. Sell your services!
Don’t sound monotonous and talk entirely about your technical skills.
Your interviewer understands you’re an expert at what you do and he doesn’t need you to re-read what’s already mentioned on the resume.
Instead, talk about your soft skills and mention a story on how you converted a query into a lead.
An interesting story can keep your interviewer on his toes and he will be interested in knowing exactly why you want to join the company.
Culture consultant Steve Langerud recommends sticking to answers related to work culture and presenting your lifelong career dream in simple sentences. This automatically lets the hiring manager understand why you’d make an ideal fit for their company.
Keep up with Current Trends
A big turn off for interviewer’s is when the candidate utilizes outdated trends to show why they want to work in the company.
Keep up to date with the latest and upcoming trends to demonstrate your professional side of things.
Jennifer Malach from 20/20 Career Solutions shares an experience she had with a candidate who applied for the Accounting Manager position and how she pointed out the fact that the company needed a current trend of accounting skills and showed a flaw within the company.
This immediately put the candidate in the hotspot of being selected for her presence of mind in spotting a weakness within the company.
If you give an example on why the company needs your expertise or where the company is currently facing an issue, your hiring manager may just find you interesting enough to shortlist your name.
4 MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN ANSWERING THE QUESTION
Mistake 1. Too Generic
Often when hiring managers are interviewing candidates, they are used to hearing vague and over enthusiastic responses from desperate job-hungry entrants that don’t really answer the question.
Answers like “Because it’s the best company to work for and I would be great for this position.” — aren’t really what the hiring manager wants to hear. You need to describe what makes the company “best” and why your position would be “great” for the company.
Generic responses usually showcase that the candidate has no idea about the company and that they haven’t done any background research.
It’s an easy way for interviewers to reject the candidate upfront without needing to follow up with another interview round.
Mistake 2. Inappropriate Humor
“You guys look like you could need a hardworking professional like myself in this company” — A response such as this is sure to backfire, and you’ll be shown the door.
Keep the humor down and don’t try to shame the company in a negative light.
It’s alright to be a wise man and dim down the seriousness in an interview but trying to sound arrogant and obnoxious will hurt your chances big time.
Introduce light humor such as “I wish I spent more time rehearsing in front of the mirror for the interview instead of showing up 2 hours before the interview time”.
According to researcher Anindya Sen, humor has two representative sides — one that brings out the positive and cognitive response from listeners and other that isn’t necessarily accepted by a wide audience.
Using this study, we can state that utilizing humor that is positive to the conversation is the right way to engage in dialogue with your interviewer.
It’s alright to make snide remarks enough to lighten the mood. The interviewer will also identify the playful side of you and will certainly take into consideration your ability to lessen tension among the team members in the company.
However, when you have no idea of the kind of humor that pushes the boundary too far, it’s best to follow a simplistic and disciplined approach and stick to the basics.
Mistake 3. Being Too Honest
“I desperately need the money and I am trying all the companies I can for a job, your company just happens to be one of the many” — While being honest has its own perks, during an interview, its best to keep your personal interests to yourself and demonstrate your professional side to the interviewer.
Every individual has financial constraints and by openly talking about your problems with your interviewer, you begin to demonstrate that the job takes 2nd fiddle to your financial problems.
No company will hire an employee that is only looking to make their ends meet. Your interviewer is most likely going to sympathize with your situation but you’re never going to get a job.
Ensure you focus on your professional side and offer your expertise while hiding your financial burden when talking about why you want to work with the company.
Mistake 4. Stammering and Stuttering a Lot
Being nervous is a part and parcel of being a human.
Constantly stuttering and stammering portrays you as an individual that lacks confidence and the company will think twice before they offer a position to a person that isn’t sure about what he wants.
For example, take the role of an interviewer, imagine a candidate just walked into your office and you were presented with the following dialogue —
You — “Welcome, Have a seat.”
Candidate — “Uh….Thaaa..n…nk …yo..u..”
You — “There’s absolutely no need to be nervous, so I’d like to know why do you want to work here?”
Candidate — “Uh…yeaa…sure…Welll…I….lov …ee..um…to worrk in yourrr…..compan..ny be….ca..usee.”
Can you see the problem here?
If it’s taking the whole day to try and understand what a nervous candidate is talking about, imagine if they were hired and had to work with other team members in a live work environment — not going to happen!
Brushing up on your communication skills is important, if you are prone to stammering in a nervous situation, it’s time to work on it. Changes such as —
- Rehearsing in front of the mirror
- Visualizing an interview
- Watching personality grooming videos or visiting personality workshops to improve your overall behavior
SAMPLE RESPONSES FOR “WHY DO YOU WANT TO WORK HERE”
“I’d like to provide my 5 years of marketing experience to a company that is renowned in the digital marketing world. Former employees have vouched for the values of the company and how candidates are encouraged to share their ideas to come up with new solutions for an ongoing project. It’s for this reason that I have picked your company as my preferred choice of employment.”
The candidate in the following response identifies with the company as being a favorable place for employment.
He feels the company offers employees with the freedom to come up with their own unique ideas to contribute without being restricted by the senior management and hence, he prefers to work in a company that promotes creativity.
The candidate also mentions that former employees have provided valuable positive feedback about the company and this helped him make a decision in seeking employment with the respective organization.
The hiring manager now understands that the candidate has over 5 years of experience in his field along with a valid reason for working in the company.
“I read about the company’s recent achievements in Business Week’s featured article and how the organization rewards hard-working employees with company stocks. I consider myself an innovator and my resume has all my accomplishments listed, I hope I too can someday be a part of the hardworking team that has made the company a shining success”
The candidate is looking to provide his expertise and hopes to become a hardworking member of the team to receive a small portion of the company’s shares. Immediately the hiring manager understands that the candidate in question is looking to work for a longer duration to achieve the necessary accomplishments.
Another reason to impress the interviewer is the fact that the candidate is well-read and up-to-date with the latest articles in magazines.
Being alert and updated with news is a foremost quality that organizations tend to take notice while interviewing new recruits.
“I’ve got a proven track record and have experience in working with the latest innovative software related to the industry. I have experience in dealing with difficult working conditions and hence, can begin producing results within the 1st month of recruitment. For more information, you can inquire about my feedback from my past co-workers and senior managers on the quality of my work. The reason I want to join your company is to keep up-to-date with trends”
This type of response oozes with confidence and the candidate is asking the hiring manager to contact any past managers and employees for a positive feedback.
He also provides a track record on the portfolio for the hiring manager to validate.
The response is great in demonstrating to your hiring manager that there’s nothing to hide and everyone you’ve worked with can vouch for your good work ethics.
The reason for joining the company is as simple as remaining relevant in the field and that you prefer working with companies that take current technology seriously.
The question — “Why Do You Want to Work Here?” may seem simple enough to answer, however, on further inspection, many candidates have realized that by not being prepared they have lost a shot at the job for not being able to answer this very question.
This is a topic that hiring managers will never stop asking as it can stump the dullest of candidates and bring out the best of answers from the prepared entrants.
So be among the latter and prepare your own unique answer using the following advice and seal your position in the company.