Below is our guide to answering the job interview question, why should I hire you? To best understand this topic, use the written section below alongside the video insights from our co-founders Geoff Balmer and David Landau.
Please find the full video transcript available at the bottom of this page.
You’ve covered your strengths and weaknesses, answered behavioural and situational questions and now the interview is coming to a close. The interviewer then asks “Tell me, why should I hire you?”
This question is often asked at the end of interviews and can leave many candidates struggling with how to address it. So, how can you answer this question without sounding arrogant and or talking your way out of a job?
In general, this question is asked to reaffirm your skills and suitability for the role. It’s essentially asking you to sell yourself, which gives you another opportunity to talk about your strengths and reiterate your enthusiasm for the job posting. It’s important to be concise and straightforward when answering this question, so let’s take a look at some of the key points to cover:
Align your skill set to the job posting. Take time to match your personality attributes, qualifications and skills to the role’s requirements. By thinking of five or so of your greatest strengths that align with the job description ahead of the interview, you will have the bulk of your answer prepared.
As an example, a Financial Project Manager job posting may list responsibilities that include process improvements, partnering with stakeholders, working with big sets of data and management experience. Your relevant strengths that would be fit for this position may comprise of:
You can then carve out an answer by incorporating the above strengths. The key here, however, is to back your skills up with real-world examples of each quality in action. This will illustrate why you are the best fit for the job – in this case a Project Manager.
Don’t waffle. Ensure your answer is concise and prepared in advance. It should cover not only how you suit the role but also why you want the job. Padding out your answers with unnecessary details can sometimes detract from your point or make you sound incoherent.
Listen. Make a mental note of the key points raised throughout the interview and reflect on these whilst answering. This way your answer can highlight you’ve been listening whilst also touching on the important points raised during the conversation, which will help you to stand out to the interviewer.
Demonstrate your research. Come back to the research you did on the company and tie it into your answer. Talk about what you can bring to the company and how you’ll fit in with their culture by specifically referencing the information you've uncovered during your research, and you'll find you come across as much more credible. In our Project Manager example, your highlighted management skill set could be a great platform to show how your values correlate with the ethos/values of the company. You may have an open and transparent leadership style that mirrors your employer, as you found out from the company's social media platforms or the website.
Be enthusiastic. Talk about what motivates you and why the role is interesting to you, showing that you’re genuinely excited to join. For many interviewers, your attitude and how you come across is what they'll remember as much as any specific answer that you give.
Focus on what you can do for the company. It's important to paint a picture for the hiring manager of how you can help them achieve their objectives and where possible to avoid spending time talking about what you can't do. Our Project Manager applicant could show how their many years of management experience coupled with communication skills can steer the company in the right direction and an increased bottom line. Put simply, showcase your abilities in a way that will benefit your potential employer.
As the end of the interview approaches, it’s a good idea to be ready for this question to be asked. It’s vital to be comfortable in articulating and highlighting why you feel that you would be a good fit for the role. Speak about the skills that you can bring to the table and communicate these in a straightforward manner to give yourself the best chance of getting the role you want. For other useful job search hints and tips please click here, or take a look at the following resources for more advice:
Hear advice from the Richard Lloyd Directors, Geoff Balmer and David Landau
How to Prepare for Your Dream Job Interview
Understanding the Three Types of Interview Questions
Answering Strengths and Weaknesses Questions
Top Tips to Avoid Crucial Interview Mistakes
David: We're going to look at the question, "Why should I hire you?" And try to determine what's the best way to answer that without sounding arrogant.
Geoff: This is normally asked towards the end of the interview. So it's really important that you've got a good response ready when the question comes.
David: In general, the interviewer is asking this question because they want you to reaffirm your skills and suitability for the role. Essentially, they're inviting you to sell yourself.
First things first, don't waffle. You should have prepared most of this answer before you even step foot in the interview. The next thing is, to make sure you've really listened throughout the course of your meeting. Mentally note some really important points that are key factors for success in the role. Then, try to reflect on them as you answer the question.
Geoff: Keep it concise and keep it straightforward and get to the point.
David: Your answer needs to highlight a mixture of your skills, your suitability for the role, and your interest in the job itself, of course, and also demonstrate the research that you did prior to going to the interview. So how do you align with the values of the company? Why does the culture of the organisation excite you?
Geoff: You also want to talk about your motivators. What motivates you, what gets you excited? Also, talk about your interests and why you feel the role is interesting to you and what you can offer to the company. I think the other part which is really important is to talk about the company as a whole and why the company is attractive for you to join. Bundle all that up into a good answer and you've got a good chance of getting the job.
An example of a response might be like this, "From our conversation today I've learned that this role will require three main areas of expertise, strong accounting, some great system skills, and also some people management skills. And in my last roles, I've demonstrated all three. I feel genuinely excited about the opportunity today because your company really interests me and I feel like I'd contribute a lot."
David: I understand from the job description and what you've told me today that you've gone through some systems upgrades recently and they haven't worked out exactly as you planned. I've been through that before in my current job and I've got excellent outcomes and all of the systems work very smoothly. Additionally, because you're using different systems to those which I've used before, I think that I could really up my own skill set and take on board a whole new suite of experience.
Geoff: This example highlights that you've listened clearly through the interview and you've made a mental note of the points that we have talked about. And it also highlights the fact that you're delivering it with a bit of enthusiasm. So it shows you're genuinely excited about joining the company and I think that's a very important fact.
In summary, avoid waffling, make sure you've made a mental note of everything you've talked about in the interview. When you answer the question, talk clearly about the skills you have on offer and deliver it with enthusiasm.
David: It's vital that you're comfortable articulating and highlighting why you feel that you'd be a good fit for the role and the skills that you can bring to the table that will be appealing to the interviewer.
It's important that you can communicate these in a straightforward manner so that you can walk away from the interview knowing that you've done everything that you can and prepared as thoroughly as possible to give yourself the best chance of landing the job that you really want.
Geoff: For more information visit the Richard Lloyd website. On the job seeker page, you'll find this information in the job seeker toolkit.