It’s inevitable that the question “Why do you want this job?” will rear its head at some point during the interview process so it behoves candidates to be prepared to answer it. That said, interviewers are disinclined to hire candidates who respond with stock answers learned by rote. Even if the question isn’t explicitly posed, there is an onus on candidates to convey the sentiment underpinning its response, if they are serious about securing the role advertised.

How does one formulate an appropriate answer to this question? Interviewers often pose this questions to eliminate candidates who haven’t given due consideration to their motivations when applying for vacancies.

Preparation is key to avoiding being caught off guard and muttering something embarrassing like “that’s a real humdinger”. Underprepared candidates are apt to issue a riposte which could backfire or be misinterpreted. Instead, it’s advisable to reflect in advance on why you’re attracted to the role in question. Such rumination will enable you to coherently express the reasons why the position appeals to you and why you would be a valuable addition to the company.

In order to give interviewers compelling reasons to offer you the job for which you’ve applied, view the answer as a sales pitch. Incorporate what the interviewer wants in a candidate into your response. Vary the tone of your voice when delivering your answer. An enthusiastic timbre and clear enunciation will communicate that you’re serious about the role.

To help you craft an appropriate response to this question, we have identified the following 4 tips:

1. Flattery

Speak highly of the company and your desire to work for the firm, detailing what attributes of the role and corporate culture in particular appeal to you.

2. Challenges

List some of the challenges of the role and how you are primed to combat them. Strive to convey confidence in your abilities without appearing arrogant

3. Interests

Elucidate how the job spec tallies with your personal and pofessional interests. This will create the impression that you’ll transition well to the role if selected.

4. Anticipate negatives

Consider why interviewers may not want to hire you and create answers which refute this logic. This will allay fears they may have about your suitability for the position.

Remember to approach the answer to this question as your sales pitch. Speak enthusiastically and naturally about your motivations for applying for the role. Approaching the question in this manner will convey the right impession to interview panels.

We hope you find these tips helpful during the interview process.

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