How to Answer: Why do You Want to Work for Our Company?

They say the best way to answer, “Why do you want to work for our company?”, is to sing the company’s praises in front of the interviewer. But that’s NOT entirely true.

Interviewers have years of experience telling the lie, from the truth, from the flattery. They know you’re after the job, they know you’re gonna sing the company’s praises. It’s expected of you.

Guess what’s wrong with this interview:

Interviewer: So, why do you want to work for our company?

Applicant: Because your company is great. I’ve heard a lot of good things about you. That’s why I chose to apply here.

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Interviewer: Such as?

Applicant: That your company is big and stable, and that you own a lot of branches in different countries.

Interviewer: Yes, but there are other BPO companies that are bigger and owns more branches than us. If your criteria of a good company is its size and the number of its branches, then I don’t think you’re in the right place.

Applicant: (silence)

You know you’re fucked up when the conversation turns out like this.

The one rule you need to remember to when answering, “Why do you want to work for our company?”

Be Specific

Saying good things about the company isn’t enough. You have to sound convincing. You have to sound credible. The only way to sound convincing and credible is to be specific.

Doing the opposite kills your chance of passing the interview.

In the sample conversation above, the applicant assumed that as long as he said good things about the company, he’d be fine. Unfortunately, the interviewer knew exactly what was going on.

How to be specific

1. Google the company you’re applying in.

Let’s say you’re applying for a position in Convergys.  A quick Google search will let you know they were the Best Company of the Year at 10th International ICT Awards on 2016. Now, you have a concrete reason to back up your claim why you think the company is great.

Three years ago, I applied in Teleperformance. When the interviewer asked me the question, I told her that their company received two awards in 2010, plus the Outsourcing Community Project of the Year award in 2012.

She blinked, nodded, and smiled.

Right then and there, I already knew the result of my interview, before she even told me.

For all I know, she probably didn’t even know about the awards (Teleperformace operates worldwide). But hearing that an outsider was singing the company’s praises the right way, she felt proud.

2. Get info from the company’s current employees

If you know some friends who work in the company you’re applying in, ask them good things about the company. What do they like about working there? What sets the company apart from others?

Focus on the positive things, write it down, and pick the best ones to mention in the interview.

And then, back it up. Tell your interviewer that before you applied, you talked to their employees, that you did your research about them, that you didn’t just randomly sent your resume. That you chose them.

Example:

If you’re applying in ePerformax Cebu, I’m going to give you an example of the things I loved about the company.

  • As early as 3 months, you already have a chance to apply for a higher position, provided that you’re an excellent performer.
  • They have a specific department taking care of the agents’ needs, which includes:
    Hassle-free boarding house/ apartment search. Give them your preferred location and budget, and they’ll send someone to look and take photos of apartments for you.
    Bring your dirty laundry at work, and somebody will bring it to a laundry station for you.
    If you have personal problems, they won’t tell you, “don’t bring your problems here.” They have a department trained by psychologists to talk to you and offer you advice.

From these real info, let’s create a sample answer.

Before I decided to apply here, I did some research about ePerformax. I had a neighbor who work here as a call center agent, and she told me how she loves your company so much. Here’s why: you care about your employees.

First, you have a program allowing your new hires to be eligible for promotion for early as 3 months. Second, you have a Concierge department who helps agents with their typical struggles—like finding a boarding house, lending them umbrellas and towels during a heavy rain, even bringing their dirty laundry to the shop for them. Third, you talk to them when employees have personal problems and even offer an advice.

Most of all, you focus more on the quality of your work, and less on your size. That is my definition of a good company. I would love to be a part of ePerformax. I am not just here talking to you because I need a job. I’m here because I want to be in ePerformax.

If interviewer asks: What were the bad things you heard about us?

It’s impossible to hear the good things without hearing the bad.

If the interviewer asks whether you heard bad things about them, tell them the truth. No company can please every single employee. What matters is what the majority is saying about them.

What not to say:

  • “I badly need a job.”
  • “Because you’re hiring. “
  • “Because you offer the best salary.”

These are like saying, “I don’t care who I work for as long as somebody gives me my salary.” Well, realistically, this is the case for most of us. But hey, if ain’t helping, don’t say it.

I hope this helps you with your call center interview. Goodluck! 🙂

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