Regardless whether you’re a fresher or experienced job seeker, you’ll have to appear for an interview. Understandable, because the employer would love to know whom he’s hiring and whether you’re suitable for the position.
Usually, every interview consists of some common questions. The interviewer will ask your basic details, a brief description of your academic qualifications and work, if you have any experience. These aren’t difficult to answer.
However, these aren’t the only questions you can expect at any interview. Instead, these simple questions are to put you at ease and prepare you for further, difficult questions that would follow.
One of these questions is: “Why are you Interested in this Position?”
This question: “what interests you about this position?” can flummox almost every jobseeker- – fresher or experienced. Therefore, we need to understand what is the best way to answer this question.
In this article, I’ll try and equip you with vital information and essential tips that could help you give the best answer to “what interests you about this position?”
Variants of “Why are you Interested in this Position”
The question: “what interests you about this position?” is very generic. It is applicable to almost every entity applying for a job.
Therefore, you might come across variants of this question. Some classic examples of these variants include:
- Why are you interested in this role?
- Why do you think you’re suited for this position?
- Why did you apply for this job?
- Why should we consider you for this position?
- Is this position suitable for you?
These aren’t the only variants: there can be countless others. However, the motives behind asking the question don’t change.
And you should be ready to answer these questions regardless of the words an interviewer will use.
Motives for Asking This Question
Before I proceed further, let’s get this clear: an interviewer doesn’t want to waste their time or yours.
Therefore, every question they’ll ask has a specific reason and purpose. Similarly, an interviewer has several motives while asking you the question: “Why are you Interested for working with us”
Hence, let’s begin by exploring some of these motives.
Responsibilities of the Position
The interviewer wants to find out whether you understand the responsibilities of the position. This holds true for a fresher also.
Every job comes with its own slew of responsibilities. And your application for any position is a clear indicator that you’re willing to shoulder these responsibilities.
You may not have an accurate answer, because responsibilities of a specific position can vary from one employer to another. However, an interviewer will expect you have at least some idea of the position.
Your Confidence Levels
Your answer needn’t be astute, but the interviewer will definitely gauge your confidence levels while responding to this question. There’re two ways they’ll see how confident you are.
Your response would clearly indicate confidence vital to accept and shoulder responsibilities the position entails.
And secondly, your body language will indicate whether you’re comfortable or face difficulties while answering.
Both these factors will play a major role in deciding whether or not you are indeed suitable for the position you’re seeking.
Career Goals & Ambitions
Your answer or response to “Why are you interested in this job?” clearly indicates your career goals and ambitions.
If you’re a fresher applying for a job, the interviewer wants to gauge whether you’re choosing the position to make a career in that particular field and would be willing to exert extra efforts.
And for seasoned candidates, the answer would help the interviewer ascertain whether you’re applying for a position to advance your career or merely for more money or higher designation.
Your Enthusiasm Quotient
Are you really enthusiastic about working at a particular position and would give it your best shot? That’s what interviewers will try and gauge when the ask you the question: “what interests you about this position?”
This holds true for fresher candidates as well as experienced ones. There’s nothing you can achieve without enthusiasm in personal or professional life.
Your response also helps the interviewer to know your enthusiasm quotient and your readiness to take on various responsibilities.
And finally, an interviewer also looks for leadership skills from a jobseeker by asking this question.
This helps them gauge whether the candidate is suitable for long-term employment and promotions. This holds true for fresher as well as experienced job hunters.
If you’re a fresher hoping to get that first job, the interviewer wants to know how far can you go with the company and become a future leader.
For experienced candidates, it involves taking on the responsibilities of junior staff and fresh recruits. Leadership skills are something that all employers look for.
Preparing to Answer “What Interests You About This Position”
The question: “Why are you Interested in this Position?” can catch you off-guard. Therefore, you’ll need some research to ensure you aren’t stumped at the interview with this question.
Here I would suggest you start by researching as much as possible into the businesses of the prospective employer.
Often, a job posting or advertisement may not mention who’s the employer. However, if you read between the lines on the job post or ad, you’ll definitely find that an employer operates in a specific field.
In any case, you might learn about the employer from their interview call.
The second best thing to research are job responsibilities that are typical or common to the position you’re applying.
This is fairly simple. Similar job adverts and postings can be easily found on the Internet. Read them and you’ll be able to get some idea of what the position involves.
And thirdly, make an inventory of your skills. Before applying for any position, it’s always better to be realistic and know whether we possess the skills an employer is looking for as well as proficiency in that field.
This can help avoid a lot of embarrassment and hassles later if you land the job. Remember that the adage ‘fake it to make it’ doesn’t work well if it works at all.
How to Answer: “Why are you Interested in this Position”
This brings us to the question, how to answer Why are you interested in this position. There’s only one way: by using the same tools that you’ve used to apply for the job.
Meaning, by using details on your Curriculum Vitae (CV) or Resume.
I can understand the answer to this question isn’t as simple as I’m saying. Therefore, here’re seven best ways to answer the question “what interests you about this position?”
The second best thing to utilize for answering this question is your personal and career goals.
While I don’t really endorse that practice of jobseekers mentioning a career objective on their CV and Resumes, you may include one if necessary.
By my experience, most career objectives are so vague, they can be applied for almost any purpose in life.
Therefore, let’s start with answering: “Why are you interested in working for us ?” using details on your CV or Resume.
1. Pitch Your Experience & Expertise
This works well for experienced candidates as well as fresher jobseekers. Usually, a fresher has a slight advantage.
If you’re a fresher, respond to the question by stating you’ve no previous experience but would love to make a career in that particular field.
Speak a few words about what you know about the profession and how that position can help you launch an amazing career.
Talking about the profession and your personal interests indicates you’ve done some research on that career and are serious about pursuing it.
And for experienced people, the best way to answer: “what interests you about this position?” is by leveraging your expertise.
The very fact that you’re attending an interview for the position implies the employer is interested in some elements of your experience and expertise. Capitalize on their interest in you.
Pitch your experience and expertise in a manner that clearly shows why you’re suitable for the position as the reason for your interest.
Only you are aware of the level of your skills necessary for the position. Therefore, answer this question on the basis of your experience and expertise.
A fresher can state they have no experience or expertise but are willing to learn quickly and make a career in that specific profession.
2. Adding Value to the Employer’s Business
If you’ve done your research as I mention earlier and found the nature of business of the prospective employer, use this tip to respond to the question.
Elaborate on how your experience and expertise or skills can add value to the employer’s business.
Actually, that’s their only interest: what can you bring to the table? Discuss areas of the employer’s business and operations where your expertise can add value and help the organization function better or record higher profits.
The employer isn’t hiring you as a charity. Nor are you begging for a job. Both of you are at the interview trying to find common ground to work together.
And what’s a better common ground than finding ways and means to add value to the employer’s business? However, be careful about how you go about using this method to respond to the question.
You might invariably end up criticizing the current business model of the employer or sound very patronizing.
However, this isn’t a tip I would recommend for a fresher. As fresher, you’ll obviously have no experience. Hence, you could end up making tall, unrealistic claims.
3. Define Personal and Career Goals Explicitly
I repeat, define your personal and career goals explicitly to answer the question: “Why are you interested in this job?”
This can be done by both, fresher as well as jobseekers with work experience. Understandably, using this method to answer the question may appear self-centric in some elements.
However, your main objective is to get the job and not appease an employer or sound desperate to get hired.
Obviously, every jobseeker has personal and career goals. That’s the reason you are there at the interview. Hence, there’s no point in concealing this fact.
Explain your personal and career goals very specifically and clearly to the interviewer. Let them comprehend fully what you’re trying to achieve and how you intend going about it.
This imparts a clear impression that you’ll try your best to attain those objectives. And exert extra efforts to reach there.
Defining one’s personal and career goals isn’t that proverbial cakewalk as you may believe. The first step towards that is setting your own short, mid and long-term goals before appearing for an interview.
And finding out how the position you’re seeking would help achieve these goals. Understandably, you’ll require some degree of preparation to answer the question: “Why are you interested in this position?” in this manner.
4. Don’t Forget Your Qualifications
Qualifications play a very important role for any fresher applying for jobs. Quite understandably, you’ll look for a job that suits your school or university degree.
Surely, you’ve done a course – regardless it’s professional or a general graduation or post-graduation degree of even a doctorate for a specific reason.
Or you could be a dropout from school or college. Whatever your case, you can speak a lot about your educational qualifications to show why you’re interested in a specific position.
Pitching educational qualifications is the most important way for a fresher to answer this question about why you’re interested in that position. The obvious answer would be to launch a good career.
An experienced jobseeker can also play their qualifications while answering “what interests you about this position?” You can do so by highlighting your interest in that profession or field since days as a student.
And go on to how your educational qualifications are helping you in current and previous jobs.
Also, highlight how these qualifications can help bridge any skills divide or skills gap your prospective employer or the interviewer’s organization is currently facing.
5. Money, Money, Money
Let’s admit it. Money is the single greatest motivator while applying for any position. Especially if you’re applying for any job as fresher or even seasoned candidate.
And more so, if you’re looking for a job abroad or the job involves relocation to another place. Every employer is aware that you’re looking at the money the job would fetch you.
They’re willing to pay commensurately if you have the necessary skills. And also for a fresher who shows the right attitude and capabilities at the interview.
If money or higher salary and perks is your motivation for interest in that position, clearly say that.
Because your personal growth and family welfare depend upon how much money you’ll take home at the end of the week or month, as the case may be.
When you indicate that money is the main motivator for your interest in the position, an employer clearly knows they’ve to keep you interested in the job by offering pay hikes that match your performance.
It shows you’re willing to become an asset to the employer by exerting extra efforts to satisfy your financial goals.
6. Outgrowing a Job
A lot of senior or experienced persons outgrow their job. In simple terms, it means that your current employer doesn’t have any more opportunities to offer.
Therefore, chances of career growth a low or don’t exist. And you’ve been doing the same thing over a period of years.
You may have got a salary and perk hikes but stagnating in your career due to no growth opportunities.
You can answer the question: “what interests you about this position?” by highlighting the achievements at previous employers.
And of course, clearly pointing out that you’re looking for career growth that a current employer cannot provide. However, be careful not to criticize or denigrate your current or past employers.
Because criticizing an employer imparts a rather poor impression about you before the interviewer.
If you’ve genuinely outgrown a job or fear that scenario, it’s better to state that during the interview.
It is an indicator that you’re there to make a career and ready to work if ample growth opportunities are available.
7. Drawing Interviewer to Debate
While I’m mentioning this best way to answer the question “what interests you about this position?’ as last on my list, I rate it to be the best.
However, I’m mentioning it at the end because this isn’t the best way to answer the question unless you are very highly qualified and have enviable experience and skills.
And of course, excellent interpersonal skills. Drawing an interviewer to debate helps you both to agree upon certain points. Both the interviewer and you learn through this process.
There’re many ways to draw your interviewer into a healthy debate or discussion. You can do so using any of the six above ways.
However, in this way, you also pose a question to the interviewer about the company and its business. Instead of a monologue where you do all the talking, you also ask questions to the interviewer.
This is the best method of those with lots of work experience. By simply listening to an interviewer’s answers, you can suggest ways and means your qualifications and skills can add value to the company.
And it also provides the interviewer to learn more about your expertise and experience than what they would through a one-sided interview.
Now that you know these seven best ways to answer the question: “Why are you interested in this position?”, start preparing the skills inventory and begin doing research on various job profiles of positions you wish to apply.
This should help you tremendously as jobseeker and possibly, land you that job too.