“What do you know about this company?”
“What can you tell me about our products/services?”
“What do you know about our industry?”
No matter how interviewers phrase this question, one thing is certain: Homework is essential to nailing down your response!
Let the other candidates wring their hands and sit in the hot seat – because we have you covered. Below, our national employment agency shares a few tips for effectively answering questions about company or industry knowledge:
- Understand why the interviewer is asking it. Employers pose this question to gauge your real interest in the opportunity. If you can’t be bothered enough to spend a little time educating yourself about their company, the industry and the job itself, the interviewer will conclude that you’re just a “tire kicker” who doesn’t care about making a good impression.
- Assume it’s coming. Just knowing that you’ll be asked about company knowledge will help you panic less when it’s asked.
- Do your homework. Research the employer, their industry and the specific position you want. Take good notes, especially about anything that’s surprising, concerning or aligns well with your strengths and interests:
- Scour the company’s website and social media platforms.
- Conduct a thorough online search, using your browser’s News tab.
- Learn everything you can about the company’s size, locations, markets, products/services, mission/vision, industries served, competitors and recent accolades.
- Scan relevant industry publications to identify the biggest trends and challenges.
- Find out everything you can about the job.
- Integrate what you learn into your response. Do more than just spout off a list of facts:
- Craft a response that shows you understand what you learned, by connecting the dots between the company and their industry as a whole.
- Explain your interest in learning more about a fact, challenge or trend you uncovered in your research.
- Explain why you’re the ideal candidate for the opportunity, based on what you learned. If possible, find a way to incorporate your transferable job skills or work experience into your response.
- Maximize the value of your homework. At some point, your interviewer is likely to turn the tables – and ask what questions you have for them. Use what you learned while conducting research to create a list of relevant, specific follow up questions.
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