Interview Question: "Why Do You Want This Job?" (With Answers)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 6 November 2022

Published 2 August 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

During an interview, a hiring manager may ask why you want the role you're applying for. Learning how to respond to this question could help you prepare for your next interview. In this article we explain why employers ask this, explain how you can handle this question and provide sample responses.

Related: How To Prepare for an Interview

Why do employers ask, "Why do you want this job?"

Interviewers ask this question as a way of finding out if an applicant is seriously committed to performing well in the role and if they see themselves succeeding.

Related: Common Interview Questions and Answers

How to explain why you want the job

1. Take time to reflect

Ask yourself the same question and make a list of what you're hoping to achieve in the job. Write your goals and expectations down, and also consider how taking this job could affect your schedule or family. By going through this thought process privately in advance, you're more prepared to give an articulate answer to your interviewer when asked.

2. Conduct research

Understand more about the company and the role you're applying for so you can have a better idea of what the job could offer you and vice versa. Find out what the company's core values and missions are, and whether they align with your own.

Related: Job Interview Tips: How To Make a Great Impression

3. Bring out your skills, qualities and experiences

When an interviewer asks this question, they're also indirectly asking why you would be a valuable addition to their team. Use this to highlight your most relevant qualifications and how they can apply to the job you're applying for. Aim to convince the interviewer that you want this job because your specific skills make you an ideal candidate for it.

Related: Interview Question: “What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?”

4. Share your goals

Explain how the job fits into your career development as a professional, to convince the interviewer that investing in you would be mutually beneficial for both the company and yourself.

Related: Interview Question: 'What are Your Career Aspirations?' (With Answers)

Tips for preparing for this question

When preparing to explain why you want the job, consider following these general tips:

  • Practise aloud. Taking some time to practise answering this question out loud can help you feel confident during your interview. Consider recording yourself or having a friend watch you so you can get constructive feedback.

  • Keep it short. Keep your response brief and direct so you and your interviewer can quickly move on to other questions.

  • Focus on your goals, values and skills. Although salary and benefits are an important part of selecting a career, it's helpful to bring out your personal goals when it comes to explaining why you want a new job.

  • Use specific examples. Consider using the STAR response method, which involves answering with a specific situation, task, action and result you achieved.

Related: How to Succeed in a Virtual Interview

Sample answers

Here are some sample responses:

Example 1: Marketing associate

Here's a sample response from someone interviewing for an entry-level marketing position:

"I'm interested in this position because it seems like a great opportunity to enter the marketing field. For the last four years, I've studied marketing and sales and built my industry knowledge and communication skills in an internship, and I think this role would help me further develop my expertise. This position involves direct client communication and numerical analysis, and I think this would be a great fit for me. I enjoy working with others, and I'm experienced in data measurement. I think I can bring a lot to Better Way Markets, and grow in this role."

Related: 34 Marketing Associate Interview Questions (With Examples)

Example 2: Web developer

Here's a sample response from someone interviewing for a web developer role:

"I am so impressed with Tech World's products, and I'd love an opportunity to be a part of your innovative designs. Working as a web developer would allow me the chance to use my technical coding skills while further developing my front-end design knowledge. I know I could bring my five years of back-end experience to this team and help create functional and attractive designs."

Example 3: Sales manager

Here's a sample response from someone interviewing for a management position in a sales department:

"I'm interested in this role because I want to work with Davis's Software. I've heard about your commitment to customer service and excellence, and I'd love to work with a company that shares these values. In my last role as a sales associate, I achieved a customer satisfaction rate of 95%, and I continued to push that number higher. I believe that my 10 years of software sales experience would help me be an excellent manager, and I would love the opportunity to help increase Davis's Software sales."

Example 4: Career change

Here's a sample response from someone hoping to switch from a customer service role to a banking one:

"This role is an exciting opportunity that would allow me to use my existing customer service skills while moving into the banking field. I have over six years in customer service, where I built my communication skills, developed my ability to assist customers and learned about data entry techniques. I think I could bring all of these skills into your institution while challenging myself to grow my financial industry knowledge."

Disclaimer: The model shown is for illustration purposes only, and may require additional formatting to meet accepted standards.

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