Employers love to ask, “what do you know about our company?” in the job interview.
There are a couple things they’re looking to hear, and a few things they definitely do *not* want to hear. So I’ll walk you through how to give a great answer for this question.
Then we’ll look at some sample interview answers for “what do you know about our company?”
Let’s get started.
First, why do hiring managers ask this?
The primary reason is they want to make sure you did some research before applying. They don’t want someone who’s applying to 200 positions per day without even looking.
If you don’t know anything about their company, why did you want to interview? Or how do you know you won’t hate working for them?
That’s how the interviewer sees it when they ask this question.
Next, they want to see how much research and preparation you’ve done for this interview. So if you really want to impress them, be ready to get specific with a couple facts you read about their company while preparing for the interview.
There are a couple things that will definitely not impress the interviewer when they ask “what do you know about our company?”
If you know absolutely nothing, it’ll kill your chances at getting the job.
If you did no research and try to lie and cover it up, it’s even worse. So make sure you actually know a few things about the company. It only takes 5 minutes of research to prepare for this question.
And finally, saying things that aren’t accurate or correct will also hurt your chances of getting hired.
It’s better to know one or two facts that you’re 100% sure about, than walk into the interview with 10 facts and get half of them wrong or say them incorrectly.
So keep it simple and just know 2-3 basic facts about the company.
I mentioned above it only takes a few minutes of good research to have a few facts you can respond with.
But what exactly should you look for, and where?
I recommend simply going on the company website, and maybe glancing at their LinkedIn page too. That’s all it takes!
Here’s some information you can look for:
Those are just a few examples. You can research other areas of the company too. You just need a couple facts you can respond with when they ask this question.
Just show them you read about them and know the company you’re interviewing with. It’s really that simple!
Now that you know what to say, and what not to say, let’s look at some sample interview answers for when they ask what you know about their company.
These answers would impress the interviewer.
“Well, I know you’re one of the biggest providers of payroll software, and you were founded in 2012 when your CEO realized many small businesses spend far more than they should on payroll, which hurts their growth. The story on your website’s “about us” page was interesting, and it seems like there’s a big need for this product based on how quickly you’ve grown. I read that you doubled in size last year, and you are on track to do it again this year.”
“You’re one of the largest investment banks in the US. Your headquarters is in Raleigh, NC, and you have 25,000 employees worldwide based on what I read on your website. I’ve known about your company for a while and you’re one of the first names I think of in this industry, so I was eager to apply and interview here.”
If you follow the steps above, show them you’ve done your research and know what type of company you’re interviewing with, you’ll do fine on this question.
This is not one of the more difficult interview questions to answer, and as long as your response sounds similar to the two sample answers above, you’ll impress the employer.
Just show them you’ve done a bit of basic research and preparation.
And remember to practice your answers. Nothing comes out perfect the first time.
One more tip before I wrap up this article.
If you can compliment them, or show exactly why you were excited to apply for their job and interview at their company, it’ll make your answer even better.
You’ll notice this is happening in sample answer #2 above. When you tell a hiring manager that their company is one of the first names you think of in their industry, it’s a huge compliment.
But don’t say it if it isn’t true. If you’re talking to a bank with fewer than 150 employees and you tell them they’re one of the biggest names you know in banking, they’re going to think you’re crazy.
There are a lot of ways to compliment a company though. It doesn’t have to be their size. You can say, “I know somebody who used to work here, and they had great things to say about your company culture and how you support your employees.”
You could say, “I saw you’ve received a couple of local awards for community service, which is something I value a lot.”
It all comes back to showing you’ve done research and are really excited to be talking to this company. That’s how to get them excited to talk to you!