10 Best Sample Answers to "Why Do You Want to Work Here?"

10 Best Sample Answers to "Why Do You Want to Work Here?"

Updated May 24, 2022

Written by the WikiJob Team
Fact Checked by Bianca Praino MA pgDip

If you’ve been invited to an interview, you can expect to be asked some variation of the question, "Why do you want to work here?". People often dismiss this as a trick question, or assume that the interviewer is only looking to hear how great the company is. Yet it is arguably the most significant question an interviewer can ask you.

It is also extremely difficult to answer well. This article will outline exactly what your interviewer is looking for, typical mistakes candidates make, how to prepare your answer and similar versions of the question.

What Is the Interviewer Really Asking?

When you are faced with the question ‘Why do you want to work here?’ you may feel overwhelmed. However, your interviewer isn't going to ask you to recite all of their industry awards from memory. Nor do they want you to feed them empty compliments.

The interview is about you. Your interviewer wants to know:

  • Why you are perfect for the role
  • What motivated you to apply
  • How you will fit into the company’s culture
  • Whether you understand the company’s strategy and commercial goals
  • Whether you are likely to stay at the company for a long time

You need to structure your answer in two parts:

  1. Why do you want this particular job?
  2. Why do you want to work at this particular company?

We will unpick these questions below, but first, let's look at some example answers from job experts:

‘Why Do You Want to Work Here?’ Template Answers

Use the below examples to help you pull together your own answer. Remember to structure your answer in two parts, and bear the above points in mind.

Example Answer 1

I applied for the position of E-commerce Marketing Assistant because I am looking to kick-start my career in digital marketing.

As a graduate specialising in digital marketing, I have expertise in promoting online brand awareness.

Whilst at university, I volunteered for a charity by promoting regular bake sales. I used social media to garner attention and boost sales. In fact, our Students’ Initiative raised the highest amount for the charity in four years.

I want to work for [company] because I am interested in your product, a meal plan subscription service. As a keen foodie who is always too busy to cook, I have an in-depth understanding of your target audience.

Why this answer is good:

  • They linked their skills and interests to the job role.
  • They understood the company’s product and explained why they want to work for this particular company.
  • They backed up their answer with examples.

Example Answer 2

Two years ago I spent six weeks volunteering with disabled children in Vietnam. This inspired me to train as a teacher because I firmly believe that education is a right every child deserves.

I want to start my Post-Qualification Employment at this school because it has an excellent reputation for ensuring no child is left behind. You have an outstanding Special Educational Needs policy and the teachers here are passionate about encouraging every student to reach their individual potential. This is all reflected in your annual performance scores.

Why this answer is good:

  • They explained their reasons for wanting the position and backed this up with examples.
  • They gave reasons for admiring the school and demonstrated they share the same values.
  • They have done their research by mentioning specific policies.

Example Answer 3

I am drawn to this position of Media Sales Assistant because I am interested in the marketing side of medicine. My degree is in medical biochemistry, so I am knowledgeable about the medical industry and the principles of ethics that are relevant to medical advertising.

I want to work here because [company] has an impressive reputation for working with the major medical journals, and you offer an excellent opportunity to develop expertise within the medical advertising sector.

I understand [company] is looking to grow its client base. I am a very sociable person so I would love communicating daily with clients and building new client relationships.

Why this answer is good:

  • They linked their skills to the job role.
  • They outlined why they are interested in the position.
  • They stated why they want to work for this company in particular.

Example Answer 4

Ever since I was a small child, I have loved math. I was the kid in school who would ask for extra math homework and I used this passion to help guide my choice when it came to exams and college choices.

Now that I am fully qualified as an accountant, I am hoping to direct my passions in a way that is beneficial to others. I feel that your company and this junior position will be the best ways for me to grow in knowledge about the industry as well as enable me to launch a successful career.

Why this answer is good:

  • The background information indicates that this is a long-term passion of yours and something you are very interested in
  • States qualifications
  • Talks about growing within the company which indicates long-term plans

Example Answer 5

When I was a teenager, my dog got really sick. My parents couldn’t afford to pay for visits to the vet, so I researched and studied everything that I could to help improve the situation.

Through my research and actions, my dog eventually got better. This inspired me to study to become a vet and I am passionate about providing affordable and free veterinary care to people who desperately want to provide for their animals but are unable to.

I feel that your service here at the shelter is exactly what I am looking for to help provide treatment to as many animals as possible.

Why this answer is good:

  • Talks about strengths such as the ability to use initiative
  • Shows the potential employer that you have researched them before your interview

Example Answer 6

Every step of the way throughout my career, I have known how important it is to learn from people who have more experience and expertise than I do. This is why, when I began looking to take the next step in my career, I researched your company.

What you do here, in terms of marketing, is bigger than anything I have tackled before. It is also the logical next step for me. Your reputation for nurturing and building up individuals to help them find and grow their strengths is exactly what attracted me to the role.

Why this answer is good:

  • The background shows that you are willing to learn and grow as a person and an employee
  • Shows that you have researched the employer
  • Talks about what attracted you to the role and how you think this will help you as an employee and an individual

Example Answer 7

I have been a doctor within a hospital setting for several years now. Although I have loved treating patients and the atmosphere that a hospital setting brings, I feel that it is time for a challenge.

I feel that moving into general practice will provide a wider variety of patients and help me to maintain the level of patient care that I want to provide.

This particular practice is well known for patient satisfaction and I feel that I would be a valuable member of the team.

Why this answer is good:

  • It talks about your background and expertise
  • It states what it is that you hope to gain through your new role
  • It talks about what you can bring to the position

Example Answer 8

Your company is well known in the business world for its ability to nurture individuals and help them to reach their full potential. It is especially well-known for helping those who may not have had the opportunity to attend university and gain formal qualifications. This is why I think that I would be a good fit here.

Although I don’t have all of the formal qualifications, I have worked to expand my knowledge and create a foundation in this area. I feel that I can lend my skills well to this role and the nurturing environment will help me to improve across all areas.

Why this answer is good:

  • It shows the employer that you have researched their company and understand their values
  • By talking about the things that you have taught yourself, you are showing that you are motivated and keen to learn new skills
  • You are explaining how you feel that a role within the company could be beneficial to you.

Example Answer 9

I am passionate about providing a customer service experience that leaves the customer smiling and means that they are more likely to return.

This store, in particular, is widely recognized for its exceptional customer service. I feel that our values are similar and this is an environment I would be very happy working in.

Why this answer is good:

  • It talks about your strengths
  • It speaks about how your values align with those of the company
  • It paints the company in a positive light
  • It talks about how you can have a positive impact on the company

Example Answer 10

I have been watching this company for quite a while now, admiring the work that you do and keeping an eye on changes in the industry. You always seem to be ahead of the curve, so I have used your work as inspiration to keep me motivated.

Everything that I have learned so far has been self-taught and when I saw that you had a vacancy available I knew that I had to apply. I feel that I would fit well with the work ethic and values here, adding my personal style to the team dynamic.

More than anything, working here would be a dream and a culmination of years of quietly watching from the sidelines.

Why this answer is good:

  • It shows that you have had an interest in the company for a while and understand what it is that they do
  • It talks about how the values of the company have already helped you in the past and how you would anticipate this to carry on in the future
  • It shows that you have been waiting for an opportunity to join the company

How to Prepare for the Question

Now you know how not to answer, it's time to prepare your best response to ‘Why do you want to work here?’. Here are some tips:

1. Think About Why You Want This Job in Particular

Research the role and figure out why it interests you. Think about how the job description matches your skill set, ambitions and what you genuinely like most about the business.

For example, some of these may apply:

  • The responsibilities of the role align with your personal interests. Ensure you can link what interests you about the job role to specific examples. For example, if you are applying for the role of Editorial Assistant at Love Knitting Magazine, you could mention that you are a prolific knitter and you edited a student magazine at university.

  • Opportunities for progression. For example, internal qualifications, networking opportunities or management training schemes.

  • You want to work in a professional, team-oriented environment which values collaboration and knowledge sharing.

  • You love analytical and logical problem-solving.

2. Think About Your Career Goals and How They Align With the Company’s

A short-term career goal might be to gain more experience in customer service. Whereas a long-term goal might be to aspire to a management position. Make sure your career goal is relevant to the job role.

Here are some examples of how you can link your career goals with the company’s objectives:

  • For the role of Product Designer – The company makes a product which has inspired you to enter the industry and your career goal is to design similar products.

  • For the role of Healthcare Assistant – You are passionate about providing exceptional healthcare and you always aspire to improve your level of care. This is also a value prioritised by the company.

  • For the role of Private Client Paralegal – You value developing close professional relationships with clients and your goal is to build a legal career in private client work.

3. Think About Why You Want to Work at This Company in Particular

Make sure you read the company’s website and any news articles you can find. A company’s blog can also be useful, since it will list important projects the company has worked on and focus on topics which are of value to the company.

If you have any connections within your network who have worked with the company, it’s also a good idea to speak with them to find out more about the company from someone who has experienced it first-hand.

Some other ideas to think about when undertaking your research are:

  • Why you admire the company – Is it a front-runner in developing a ground-breaking software? Or is it one of the only companies in the country which specialises in aviation law? Make sure your reasons are specific to demonstrate you have done your research.

  • Has the company undertaken any projects that particularly interest you, and why? – As well as the company’s blog, check whether they have listed any case studies on their website which provide more insight into the work they do.

  • Can you identify the company’s short and long-term objectives? – A short-term objective might be to reward employees who volunteer for the company’s corporate social responsibility programme. A long-term objective might be a target for the number of annual employee hours dedicated to corporate social responsibility.

  • What are the company’s values? – For example, a bank might foster a culture of sustainable lending. Or a healthcare organisation might promote their staff’s caring and attentive approach to their work.

Five Typical Mistakes Candidates Make

Before delving into how you answer the ‘Why do you want to work here?’ question, here is some advice on how not to approach it.

1. Humour

Most interviewers will not appreciate a humorous answer. It makes you appear insincere or suggests that you don’t know how to answer the question.

Avoid:

I’m only here for the money.

You look like you could use my help.

2. Ambiguity

The interviewer doesn’t want to hear vague compliments about how their company “looks really cool”. Ambiguous answers will indicate that you haven’t done any research on the organisation or thought about why you want the job at all.

Avoid:

I just think the work looks fun.

3. Not Relating Your Answer to the Job or Company

It is surprising how often candidates forget to mention the job they are applying for altogether.

Avoid:

I liked your website.

You have bean-bag chairs in the break area, which is a nice touch.

4. Being Too Honest

Even if you’re just here for the money, don’t confess this to your interviewer. Never lie, but keep your answer focused on the job role and why you would be a great addition to the company.

Avoid:

I need to pay the rent somehow.

This isn’t my dream job, but it seems tolerable.

5. Saying You Don’t Know

If you cannot come up with a single reason why the company should hire you, they probably won’t.

Similar Questions: How They Are Different

There are many variations of the ‘Why do you want to work here?’ question that you may be asked at interview. Here are some examples of similar questions which ask the same thing:

  • “Why do you want this job?”
  • “What are you looking for in your next job?”
  • “Why did you apply for this position?”

However, make sure you listen carefully to the question you are being asked; some will require a different answer than you first expect. Never repeat a pre-prepared response without listening carefully to the question. For example:

“What qualities can you bring to this role?”

This question differs because it focuses less on what you personally think about the role. Instead, talk about your specific achievements and how you can apply your skills to the job.

Example answer:

As well as my ability to manage and administer pension claims, I have a unique background in data management and analysis.

For example, in my previous role, I was part of a project recording and analysing the causes of delayed pension payments. This led to the implementation of improved payment administration policies. I will be looking for opportunities to use my skills within this role.

This answer is good because the candidate has specified a unique skill which will set them apart from the other candidates and backed it up with an example.

“Why should we hire you?”

This question is used to single out the very best of the qualified candidates. We have a whole article about this one question.

The interviewer wants to know:

  1. Whether you will do the job better than everybody else.
  2. Whether you will fit into the company’s culture.

It differs from the ‘Why do you want to work here?’ question because it is less about your personal interest in the job and more about what you can do for the company.

Come up with at least three reasons you stand out from the crowd. For example:

  • You have experience in this industry;
  • Your past achievements demonstrate a proven track record;
  • You have relevant awards;
  • You have relevant qualifications or further education;
  • Your soft skills (such as communication skills) are especially strong (and proven);
  • You have specific technical skills (such as knowledge of certain programming languages).

Example answer:

I have over 8 years of experience working with clients to deliver successful projects. As part of this, I have developed great relationships with my clients and other team members.

This contributes to my ability to manage teams and get results. Last year I led a team that won an industry award for a national project.

“How are you a good fit for this company?”

This question differs because it focuses on your understanding of the company’s culture and what skills you can contribute.

Ensure you research the company and its values. Think about how your own goals and values coincide. Then answer the question by:

  1. Describing your interpretation of the company’s culture.
  2. Explaining how you fit into that culture (including specific examples).

Here are some ideas to think about when interpreting the company’s culture:

  • Does the company value collaboration?
  • Does the company value internal progression?
  • Are there any mentoring schemes?
  • What is the company’s attitude to work/life balance?

Example answer:

I love that [company] promotes supportive attitudes in its employees. At my current job, we also have a culture of support, especially when a tight deadline is coming up.

For example, I recently worked two weeks’ overtime to help a colleague compile the civil disclosure for a massive fraud case.

I love how stimulating and exciting that kind of work can be. Therefore, I think I will fit in well within your team where everyone comes together to work to similar tight deadlines.

Final Thoughts

Preparing to answer interview questions can be daunting, but follow the advice in this article and you will arrive at your interview prepared to impress. Remember:

  • Research the company and the position thoroughly.

  • Structure your answer in two parts: first, outline why you want the job. Then outline why you want to work at the company.

  • Be enthusiastic and back up all your reasons for wanting the job with specific examples.


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Or explore the Interview Advice / Interview Questions sections.