“Why should we hire you?” This is actually one of the most common questions asked in a job interview. If you are in a good mood and excited to be asked this question, you have a good starting point because it’s a question that gives you the opportunity to tell the employer specifically what you have to offer, why you are a good fit, to properly sell yourself into the role to secure the job offer.
With every interview question the hiring manager or recruiter is trying to understand as much as possible about you, your skills, and your experience. All of this information helps him better understand if you are the person he is looking for.
Most recruitment specialists and hiring managers will give you the chance to describe yourself and present your skills with one of these questions:
- Describe yourself.
- Discuss your CV
- Why should we hire you?
- Why are you a good fit for this position?
- Why are you the best candidate for this job?
- Explain why your experience fits this position.
- What can you offer us that someone else can not?
- Why was there a gap in your employment?
- Tell us about your educational background.
- What questions haven’t I asked you?
You should expect to be asked the question “Why should we hire you?”. So, be prepared to answer why the company should hire you and not someone else. You might also have several job interviews over a short period of time. Each interview is a chance for you to rehearse, answer the questions better, and to convince the interviewer that you are the best person for the job.
To get the job, you need to present a clear summary of the key reasons why the company should hire you. Even if the recruiter does not ask you to describe yourself, you should be prepared to tell them about yourself and give them the most important reasons why you are the best person for the job.
From the hiring manager’s perspective, the reason to ask the question “Why should we hire you” is that interviews can be rehearsed, and candidates can often easily outline their skills and past accomplishments. An unexpected question is a chance for them to see how you react and think in a new situation.
Having said that, whilst it’s a tricky question, it gives you an opportunity to impress the interviewers.
How to answer the question “Why should we hire you?
Although this question might seem vague, it can be answered easily if you come up with a confident and engaging answer. And you need to get ready in advance. Take time before the interview to plan an answer why you should be hired for the position. This question can be asked at any stage of the interview, from the very beginning to a closing one. When preparing for this interview question, consider the following steps.
Take the time to read the job description in detail. Make a list of the requirements for the job. Create a list of the skills you have that fit those job requirements. Focus on a combination of your skills and experience most relevant for this position. If you have some specific skills that you know are unique then consider highlighting these to put you ahead of the competition.
For example, if you are applying for a job in software development, it could be the case that while other candidates also have programming knowledge, they often lack communication, project management or leadership skills. So, if you have both programming experience and communication skills, for example, that’s your trump card.
The steps to answering why you should be hired for the job:
- Stay calm and confident and never say “I don’t know”
- Show the recruiters that you have researched the job and the company and understand what the job role is about
- Explain why you fit for the position and the job requirement.
- Make a link between your experience and the job posting
- Describe your past accomplishments in a similar position or area
- Show your enthusiasm about this type of work and your motivation for the job
How to describe yourself and say why you should be hired?
Skills and qualifications
Demonstrate that you have skills and experience to accomplish the tasks and deliver good results. Focus on your talents and how they can benefit the company. You don’t know exactly how other candidates will describe themselves to the company. However, you should know your advantages. Emphasise your key skills, strengths, relevant work experience, and professional accomplishments that are essential to achieving the goals of this position.
Emphasise your particular industry experience in a similar position. Underline how it will benefit the company. Describe your technical skills that you need in this role to be successful. For example, your answer may sound like “My years of experience delivering complex B2C applications in the finance sector make me an ideal candidate for this job.”
Link your background to the job posting
Explain why your experience, skills and background make you well suited to the company and position for which you are applying. Be sure to respond to all of the requirements listed in the job posting and list any additional qualities that will make a difference vs. the competition.
Soft skills are very important for both small and large companies. This includes things like teamwork, creativity, or communication skills. Be prepared to provide some examples of how you have proven these skills in your past roles.
Hiring managers and recruiters like to hear about specific achievements where you have shown your skills to benefit your employer, especially in similar positions. Try to provide some good examples, and describe at least one success story.
Quantify your accomplishments
If possible, support your past accomplishments with numbers. For example, if you are applying for a digital marketer position at a company that’s looking for someone to generate more leads, you could explain with which methods you led digital marketing campaigns and how it contributed to the company’s growth. Mention figures, for example, 25% increase of forms submissions, 50% of website and social media traffic growth.
Show yourself to be an expert on the company
Don’t hesitate to spend time studying how the company presents itself, its mission, goals, values. Research company news and their recent announcements. It will help you better answer the question “Why should they hire YOU”. Use your learnings to explain how you are connected to the company’s values and how you could help the company achieve its business goals.
Describe yourself as a great addition to the team
Emphasise your team work experience and that you will be a great addition to the team. Show the interviewers that you have good personal and professional qualities that will make you a good team player. Identify the culture of the company and the distinctive characteristics of your potential department and explain to the hiring manager how you will fit in.
Show enthusiasm for performing the required tasks
Your application should show to the company and recruiters that you are willing to do the work. Being invited to an interview means that the manager thinks you are capable of doing the job. However, in the interview you should not only highlight your skills and work experience, but also to show your enthusiasm and convince the interviewers that you will have a positive attitude towards your daily tasks.
Be honest when answering this question
Be honest with recruiters and your prospective employer. Inventing things won’t get you very far. Hiring managers and recruiters often ask follow-up questions to validate your answers to tricky questions.
Why do recruiters ask “Why should we hire you?”
As you can understand, hiring the right person is not an easy task. A recruiter does not really know the skills of a new employee until that person has performed in the job for a while. A professionally conducted interview is an opportunity to minimize this risk. In this way, employers can assess whether you can actually do the job.
The hiring manager’s responsibility is to hire the best person for the job. Most applicants who pass the selection process are qualified for the job. So just having the qualifications and skills is not enough to make you stand out. When you are invited for an interview, it is usually about which applicant can present themselves better.
The employer asks this question to learn a few things about you. First, he wants to know what makes you different from the other applicants he is talking to. In other words: What does he get out of hiring you compared to other applicants? He may also ask this question to find out how you handle difficult situations, as many applicants struggle with this question. Let’s face it, it is challenging to explain in a humble and thoughtful way why you are the best person for the job.
Each interviewer will have a slightly different idea of how you might fit into the role. You can tell what is important to the decision-making process by the questions that are asked. This means that the interviewer is assessing your skills, motivation and personality. And when the question “Why should we hire you?” is asked, it’s the perfect opportunity for you to consider these aspects in your answer.
Your goal is to formulate an answer that will be convincing and memorable, and will help you to get the job offer. Therefore, you should craft a concise, persuasive response. Your job is to convince the hiring manager that you can get the job done and deliver exceptional results for the company, that you have a combination of skills and experience that make you stand out, and that you will fit in well with the team and be a great addition.
This question allows you to describe yourself and explain why you will be an important asset to the company. If you answer this question well, you will increase your chances of getting ahead in the hiring process.
Here are some examples you can base your answer on:
- You have a passion for the work and proven skills.
- You have differentiated experience in the field.
- You have exceptional drive and are determined to succeed.
- You have unique skills that set you apart from other applicants.
- You have the ability to enhance your team’s current capabilities.
- You have a deep belief in the company’s mission.
- You feel connected to the company and the team culture.
Common mistakes to avoid answering “Why should we hire you?”
We have covered things to consider and include when answering the question “Why should we hire you?” but what should you avoid? Below we have listed all the factors that will diminish your chance of securing the job, which you should avoid.
Take the time to prepare your answer to this frequent question before the job interview. Try also to look for the company’s challenges. Practice your answers out loud to yourself before the interview. By practicing, you might find that you need to improve some elements in the real interview.
Memorizing your answer
Although preparation is strongly recommended, you should not memorize your answer. This can make you appear as robotic and inauthentic during the interview. Instead, craft a general idea of what you would like to say and adapt your answers to the flow of the conversation. If the interviewer mentions any specific skills valuable to the company, you should reflect these in your answer.
Even if you do need a job quickly, the employer does not have any obligation to hire you. Your focus should be on how you can be a great asset to the company. But if you come across as being too desperate then you will put the hiring manager off.
Try not to come across as arrogant. While confidence is important in your answer, it’s important to remain humble. If the hiring manager feels that you are overconfident, it can cause doubt on your conduct as an employee. Avoid saying that you are sure you are able to do the job or that you are the best candidate. It’s up to the hiring manager to decide. Just explain why your skills and personality fit the position and that you are highly motivated.
Speak for too long
Keep your answer short. One minute and a half is ideal. If your answer takes three minutes or more, then you run the risk of losing the recruiter’s attention.
Missing the opportunity
While you may not be asked this question in the interview, be ahead of the game and look for an opportunity to share the reasons why the company should hire you before the interview is over.
Summarize why the company should hire you
When responding to the question “Why should we hire you?” you will need to summarize your greatest assets and emphasize why you are the right applicant for the job. State the facts succinctly in a confident manner.
This reminds the hiring manager and interviewer why you are qualified and motivated to do the job. They should also remember how valuable your unique blend of experience and skills could be for the company, and how they can benefit from having you on their team.
Regardless of whether you will be asked in a job interview, “Why should we hire you?” or not, prepare for that question by thinking first of all of your greatest assets. List what you have to offer as an employee, why you want to work for the company, and where you see yourself in a couple of years. We hope that these tactics and our advice will help you to get the job offer in no time!