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Explain Why Your Background And Experience Is Good For This Job: Why It Is Asked & How To Answer [With Sample Answers]

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Have you ever wondered why interviewers ask you to explain why your background and experience are good for this job?

You’re not alone! Most people don’t understand why interviewers ask about answers they can glean from your resume.

There’s actually a valid reason behind the seemingly obvious query, and we’ve got the answer for you.

Plus, we have tips and tricks to help you create the best interview answers to wow your hiring manager.

Why Do Interviewers Ask, “Explain Why Your Background and Experience Is Good For This Job”?

The primary reason potential employers ask this question is to understand whether or not you’ll be able to fit in with its requirements.

Sure, they can look at your resume. However, your resume is usually short and doesn’t give details about what you learned at past jobs.

  • Determine what skills you developed in previous positions.
  • Figure out if and how the skills you learned in your past can benefit their company in the future.
  • It also demonstrates that you understand what the job entails and what skills they’re looking for.
  • Highlight unique skills and experiences that might set you apart from other candidates.

Finally, this question lets the hiring team see how confident you are in your background and skill set.

What Is the Interviewer Looking For?

When the interviewer asks for this explanation, they are essentially trying to see if your background and experience fit their needs.

If you can relate your knowledge to the job posting, this helps show employers that you can adapt your skillset to what they’re looking for.

Employers are also looking for specific scenarios detailing how you applied your skills in the past to gain positive outcomes.

This helps them understand your strategies when approaching tasks and challenges, while providing insight into your overall work ethic.

Even if you lack the skills or experience required, there’s an answer that can fill in those gaps and tell the interviewer a lot about you.

Don’t lie about your sparse background; admit you have no experience but are willing to learn.

How To Answer “Explain Why Your Background and Experience Is Good For This Job”

Since most interviews only last about 20 minutes, you need to get straight to the point with every answer.

That means crafting a succinct response that packs a punch by showcasing your value and key points without sounding long-winded.

What To Focus On When Answering This Question

When someone asks you to explain why your background and experience is good for this job, you should always tell the truth.

Employers will often call your references to ensure your resume is correct.

So, if there are any lies during your interview, they can jeopardize your chances of getting the job.

Now is a good time to mention your education, degrees, and certifications that would pertain to the job.

Only 23.5% of Americans have a bachelor’s degree, so mentioning this can give a good impression.

You don’t need a formal education to shine with this answer, consider using the following:

  • Mention any awards or recognition you received, like employee of the month or specific kudos from a client.
  • Ensure you speak confidently to show them you know exactly what you’re talking about.
  • Always explain how each skill will benefit the employer or company.
  • Mention any unique skills that will help you stand out from the other potential candidates.

Remember, as you craft your answer, think about what the company is specifically looking for in the job posting.

Then, pick out skills you learned over the years that can be beneficial to the job you’re applying for.

What To Avoid When Answering This Question

While practicing your answers is okay, try not to repeat your answers word for word to the interviewer.

Doing this will make you sound like you aren’t confident in your abilities.

It also takes your personality out of the conversation and makes you sound robotic.

Other things you should avoid include the following:

  • Don’t overcompensate or lie about your education, previous jobs, or skills. Doing this won’t benefit you or the company in the long run. About 75% of managers catch candidates lying about these things.
  • Don’t create a long list of skills. You only need to mention a few important ones with examples. Blurting out a bunch of skills won’t help the employer make a decision, as they can see this list on your resume.
  • Keep the focus off of what skills you don’t have.

Perhaps the most important thing to avoid is tensing up or stumbling over the answer with no structure.

You need to come across as relaxed and confident as possible with every answer.

Examples: How To Answer “Explain Why Your Background and Experience Is Good For This Job”

It only takes about seven seconds to make an impression during an interview.

So, you’ll need to make sure your answers are carefully crafted ahead of time to prevent word stumbling and getting caught off guard.

Example Answer One: Medical Office Receptionist

I believe I’m the best candidate for this job because I have experience in a small but busy local practice.

As a receptionist, I was able to juggle various job responsibilities, like answering phones, pulling patient files, and checking patients in.

The position required me to communicate clearly with patients and medical personnel in person and over the phone.

Additionally, I am proficient with medical office software and tend to learn systems quickly.

In fact, we used RXNT to manage our client data and I quickly became our office’s troubleshooter.

Why This Answer Works

This answer gives the employer an idea of what important skills you learned at your previous job and explains examples of how you used them.

It highlights an ability to organize herself and multi-task without specifically using those buzz words.

The candidate provides the general expectations but then expands on how she served a unique purpose in the office as a troubleshooter for the software they used.

Example Answer Two – Marketing Professional

I noticed that this marketing position focuses heavily on communication and the ability to use various editing programs to complete projects.

Between my undergraduate studies and previous work as a video editor, I am very familiar with the Adobe Creative Suite, Canva, and Gimp.

During my undergraduate studies, I participated in several group projects and minored in digital media.

I also participated heavily in student government and worked as a teacher’s assistant for a professor in the digital media program.

Both roles often entailed presenting to large groups and providing written feedback.

Why This Answer Works

This answer works because it tells a story of the candidate’s skills through their background and interests.

Even though it doesn’t specifically mention communication, the response makes it clear that the candidate gained substantial experience working with others in various roles.

The response also lists the programs the candidate knows, and draws clear lines from experience to the requisite skills.

Example Answer Three – Project Coordinator

I believe that my previous role as a project coordinator prepared me well for this position.

During my time with X company, I worked closely with my colleagues to complete several projects on time while staying within the budget.

Initially, our teams primarily relied on Microsoft Office programs, but I spearheaded an initiative to integrate a customer management system that helped increase overall sales throughout the company.

Why This Answer Works

This response works well because it addresses the basics of the candidate’s past experience and suggests leadership capabilities along with strong teamwork skills.

Further, it details programs they are proficient at using and details a positive change the candidate made for their firm.

Additional Tips For Impressing An Interviewer Asking You To Explain Why Your Background and Experience Is Good For This Job

Simply stating your experience and background isn’t enough sometimes.

Here are some additional tips to help you stand out and impress your interviewer.

Incorporate Small Stories That Relate To Your Background and Experience

Using stories will help make you more personable and help the interviewer learn more about your personality.

It’s helpful to explain stories about when you felt challenged and needed to use your skills to fix the problem.

Using the star technique to do this is helpful.

Research the Company You’re Applying To Ahead of Time

Doing this will help you easily incorporate your experience with the company’s values and the job description.

Many people don’t take the time to research the company thoroughly.

So, simply incorporating information from mission statements, about pages, and other things with your background can show the interviewer you’re serious about the job.

Hone In On Your Interesting Skills

The interviewer has probably heard many people explain why they’re a fit for the position.

They probably have similar skill sets as you, otherwise, they wouldn’t have gotten the interview.

It can get boring hearing the same things over and over again. So, try to talk about skills that are unique to you.

Ideas include the following:

  • Exceptional technology skills (this one is especially worth noting, as 37% of jobs can be completely remote)
  • Optimistic thinking
  • Self-motivated
  • Having a bias for action

Additional Questions To Be Aware Of

Your entire interview won’t solely focus on one question, so it’s worth taking a few minutes to go over additional questions to prepare for your next one.

Wrapping Up

Potential employers ask you to explain why your background and experience is good for this job to determine if you qualify and understand what the job involves.

Be sure your answer is honest and short, and always relate your skills to the company’s needs.

Then, use the above information and response examples to help you at your next interview!

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