'What can you bring to the company?' Tricky graduate interview question (2024)

How to answer the question ‘What can you bring to the company?’

The simple answer to this question is you : you bring all of your skills, qualities, values, interests, academic knowledge, internships and life experience to the company. But, of course,you should never just answer ‘me’. Instead, follow our steps to structuring a successful answer.

1. Know what you are being asked

It’s rare that interview questions only assess you on one thing. Questions about how you’d contribute to the employer are really asking you multiple questions in one:

  • How much do you know about our company? Are you sufficiently interested in us to have researched us?
  • Would you fit in with our company culture?
  • How self-aware are you?
  • Do you have the right skills, attributes and values to help us achieve our aims while being a supportive colleague?
  • How good are your communication and influencing skills? (ie can you make a ‘good case’ for why we should hire you?)

2. Combine company research with self-reflection

The most impressive graduate-level answers use examples of your achievements, strengths, values, interests and so on, plus facts about the company, to show you would be a good match. Think about:

  • your enthusiasm for the profession and the employer and your desire to make your mark.
  • your personal qualities, such as your drive and willingness to learn.
  • the skills the employer seeks and how you have demonstrated them in the past – your answer should show why you would be competent in the job.
  • your key achievements: what skills, values or behaviours do they illustrate? How could you use them for the company’s benefit?
  • the company’s values: do you share them? Have you got evidence that you do? Your values are essential because they will drive your behaviour in the workplace.
  • the company’s CSR (corporate social responsibility) activities, such as its charity or community work: do you admire its CSR work? Can you contribute to it?
  • if the company has networking, mentoring or diversity groups, do you want to join them?
  • if your degree is technically based or vocational, what up-to-date knowledge will you bring from it? For example, student engineers will often be learning about the latest technological developments and so may be able to share recent thinking on cutting-edge topics with colleagues who may not have had the time to stay informed about the very latest thinking.

Your answer could include any or all of the above – prioritise the points that your employer research suggests are most important to the company.

3. Let your achievements sell themselves

Neither underselling nor overselling yourself is the way to go with this question: avoid both the ‘Um, not much – me, I suppose’ and ‘Me – because I am the best candidate you will ever interview’ ends of the scale. You want to come across as someone who has got good self-awareness – who is aware of their strengths and talents but hasn’t exaggerated them.

Base your answer on facts and your previous achievements. You should show that you understand the company and know why you would be a good match, but it would be wise to also say that you are aware you have a lot to learn – and that you want to do so at that company.

'What can you bring to the company?' Tricky graduate interview question (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Velia Krajcik

Last Updated:

Views: 5660

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (74 voted)

Reviews: 89% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Velia Krajcik

Birthday: 1996-07-27

Address: 520 Balistreri Mount, South Armand, OR 60528

Phone: +466880739437

Job: Future Retail Associate

Hobby: Polo, Scouting, Worldbuilding, Cosplaying, Photography, Rowing, Nordic skating

Introduction: My name is Velia Krajcik, I am a handsome, clean, lucky, gleaming, magnificent, proud, glorious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.