No matter how simple it sounds, the answer to “why should we hire you?” is always a tricky one. How do you emphasize how your qualifications meet the job requirements, that you have the necessary experience, and that you’re a good fit for the organization in a way that wins the interviewer over?
We reached out to 5 industry experts who regularly ask this interview question as they seek answers that show them the candidate is the right fit. Read on to see what they have to say.
Vishpala Reddy, Regional HR Director, APAC, Uber
You should use “why should we hire you?” as an opportunity to reiterate your most impressive strengths, and how they align with the requirements of the job and the overall company philosophy. At Uber, we expect all candidates to understand and believe in our mission and vision to transform the way people and cities move. A core component of what we look for while hiring is culture fit, where leading candidates display some of Uber’s core values of making ‘big bold bets’ and ‘doing the right thing.’ If you have examples of taking smart risks and experimenting with multiple possibilities to solve real-world problems, state those!
Another thing many candidates forget to address is how the role fits into their career plan: how it will be professionally fulfilling and help advance their careers. This allows recruiters to gauge the level of engagement, motivation, and dedication employees will have on the job, reassuring them that the candidate is really interested in the kind of role the company is offering and is in it for the long haul. We’re also looking for candidates who have the motivation to learn and continually re-skill. Speaking about your ability and willingness to learn is always an indicator of how quickly one adapts and acquires new skills when needed.
Sagorika Kantharia, HR Head, Jagran Group
It is imperative that you study the organization and understand the prerequisites of the role before coming in for the interview. When answering “why should we hire you?”, you must focus on connecting how your skill set would add value to the organization’s requirements and deliver successful outcomes. Cite examples from your current or past employment where you’ve successfully used your skills to solve a challenge at work or have been in a similar situation. That would help the recruiter understand your potential. With your examples, you should build confidence in the recruiter that you’re committed to the organization’s mission and goals and will be able to use your skills to further them.
Anupam Shrivastava, Senior Vice President & Head—Talent Management, CitiusTech
It’s a good idea to start your response to “why should we hire you?” with understanding of the role, opportunities, and challenges that you foresee it will bring. This is your chance to showcase your interests and preparedness to be hired. I strongly recommend that you carry out thorough research on the organization before appearing for an interview. Once you have established that, you can talk about your role at your past or current organization. Talk about how you contributed to collaborative assignments or volunteered for self-managed initiatives. You should make it a point to illustrate any efforts you took to learn newer technologies and domain skills, even when it was not expected of your role directly.
For example, you could say, “I understand that your organization looks for driven and self-managed professionals who can learn new skills and take on multiple responsibilities. I have been in similar situations all through my career and have actively taken up opportunities to learn new technologies and work across different types of projects. Here is how I did it….”
Charandeep David, Head—Learning and Development, SOB OYO
What one is really looking for is to see how well the candidate knows the organization, the industry, and the ecosystem in which they’re aspiring to work. When we see that the candidate has clarity about their value system, strength, and abilities (that maps to the culture of the organization) and how they would be a great fit, it shows positively on the candidate that they have done their homework. If we shortlisted the candidate, it means they probably have the prerequisites. Now the important factor we are looking for is the cultural values and spirit that the candidate will bring to the team. We’re also looking for an answer to how the candidate will take their role to the next level and what they bring to the table that’s unique to them.
Jayanthi Yeshwant, Chairman, Ad Astra Consultants
Recruiters asking, “why should we hire you?” are trying to find out how you will be a great fit (as a person) for the role. In addition to hearing about how your skills will benefit them, they also want to hear about your failures—especially the learnings—and they want to see how confident and comfortable you are when talking about them. Many people shy away from talking about their failures. But if you’ve been in similar situations and “failed fast, learned fast,” that’s a win. Recruiters want to know that you have the grit to do what it takes. They want to understand how you have the right skills and experience to carry out the tasks entrusted upon you. If you’re interviewing for your first job, this question is all the more tricky, but your confidence will make the difference. If you can demonstrate with examples from projects undertaken during your internships or other experiences that you’re a hard worker, eager to learn, and try new things, then it’s a good response.