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Getting to Know the Company You’re Interviewing

Rangam Feb 29, 2024 10:27:11 AM

‘What do you know about our company?’

That’s often the first question that an employer asks when you appear for an interview. There are two important reasons why employers ask this question. First, they want to make sure that you’ve done at least some research about the company before applying. The human resources (HR) team doesn’t want someone who’s applying for 100 positions each day without even caring about the type of job they get. Companies will always want someone motivated and hardworking. If they figure out that you’ve thought about the job and have specific reasons for applying, your chance of getting hired will increase. Second, companies want to check out how prepared you are so that they can place you in the scheme of things right away after hiring.

What to say

The best way to answer the question is to name specific facts about the company that you found out during your research. These facts will prove that you have a fair knowledge of the organization and understand their business. You can name facts from the company’s website, social media handles, news reports, and more. An example of a well-thought-out answer could be something like this: ‘I know that you’re among the top data science companies in the world and serve more than 50 Fortune 500 companies. Some of the biggest tech giants like Microsoft and Accenture are your clients. I read in a news report that your company is looking to expand its data consulting services to banks and financial institutions.’

What not to say

There are a few things that will likely not impress the prospective employer when they ask, ‘What do you know about our company?’ If you know nothing at all, it may kill your chances of cracking the interview. But trying to lie and then covering it up is even worse. It only takes a few minutes to learn about a company and prepare for an interview.

Saying things that aren’t entirely accurate will also complicate your chances of landing a job. It will not help your chances if you state 10 facts about a company and get half of them wrong. Keep things simple. Just some basic information is enough.

What you need to know

The company’s website will have sufficient information regarding its line of business and the work culture. Try to get the following information.

  • The products and/or services and how they generate revenue

  • Target customers

  • Staff strength
  • Founding year
  • Main competitors and whether the company is doing anything different to stand out
  • Mission and vision

The tech aspect

In a burgeoning digital world, new technologies are emerging every day. These are impacting traditional roles. Change is everywhere, making it essential to communicate your adaptability during an interview. A candidate who is willing to adapt to changes will be favored by recruiters.

But a mere reply like ‘Yes, I love cutting-edge technology’, will not be enough to impress. As a job seeker, you must illustrate your willingness to embrace technology, even if it’s not a core-tech role. Strive to communicate skills like problem-solving, adaptability, and curiosity about new tech trends. Show that you’re an avid learner, instead of just naming the technology you’ve worked with. Your answer must demonstrate your willingness to develop, learn, and evolve with the company and its technological needs. Embracing technology also proves that you have the potential to be a leader in your field, staying up to date with industry advancements.

Here are some points to brainstorm before appearing for an interview.

  • Whether you have used a new software for improving efficiency is a past role
  • Whether you introduced a new tool that made your team more productive
  • How you handled disruptions brought by new technology and adapted to it
  • Whether you have faced a steep learning curve while adapting to the new technology

On the tech aspect of an interview, always focus on things that you took the initiative to learn, instead of those you were asked to learn.

Remember to do your homework well before you face the interview board and always be honest with your answers. Share your experience and show your willingness to adapt to new technologies and challenges. Preparing for your interview brings you one step closer to landing your next role!

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