‘Are You Interviewing With Any Other Companies?’ – How To Respond

Your interview is going swimmingly until you’re asked that question. ‘Are you interviewing with any other companies?’ There are many different answers you could give, but there’s only one piece of information that your interviewer wants to find out.

Are you an in-demand candidate who is passionate about the business and will give everything to give them an edge over their competitors? Here’s how you get that message across in your answer.

Show That Your Job Search Is Focused

Saying ‘I’ve applied for quite a few different roles in this sector and have a number of other interviews arranged’ is probably one of the worst answers that you could give to this question.

If employers think that you’ve just applied for any job that matched your CV, because you needed a job, then they will doubt whether you have enough passion for their specialist area of the business to succeed in the role you’re applying for. A better response would be:

I’ve applied for a number of roles in X because they would allow me to develop X skills, this role was particularly interesting because…

Responses like this mark you out as an ideal candidate, because you are showing your interviewer where specifically you would add value to their business.

Show Why You Would Be A Perfect Fit For Their Team

Answering ‘I had a great interview with one of your biggest competitors last week, their office was fantastic but there were loads of applicants so I might not get the job’ would be the interview equivalent of a facepalm emoji.

You need to show your interviewer why it was worth taking time out of their day to meet with you. Extolling the benefits of working with their competitor is not the way to do it. Instead, explain in detail what you particularly like about the role you’re discussing with the interviewer, and why you would be a great fit for their team.

Don’t Offer More Information Than You’re Asked For

In business, everyone knows everyone. It may well be that your interviewer met one of their peers from a competing firm at a networking event prior to your interview. If you’re interviewing with a few different firms, your interviewer will probably already know about those other interviews.

If during your interview, you start to share details about the content of these other interviews, then your interviewer will find out something else. They will conclude that you’re happy to reveal confidential information to competitors if it suits your interests, and therefore that you could be a serious liability to their team if they hired you.

Leaving out unrequested information avoids this unhappy conclusion and gives you the opportunity to be remembered by the interviewer for your excellent skill set, rather than something else.

But If You Are Interviewing With Multiple Companies, Show That You’re In-Demand

Whilst not wanting to give too much away about any other applications you’ve made, there’s no reason why you can’t use them as leverage to obtain a more lucrative offer and a faster response after your interview.

Saying ‘I’ve reached the advanced stages of application processes with a number of businesses in X area, but I wanted particularly to interview with you because….’ will show interviewers that if they want you, they’ll have to put a competitive offer together as soon as possible.

Without Exaggerating

If you’ve made something up, your interviewer will find out. Don’t do it. It will make you look terrible and may jeopardise many, if not all of your applications.

Most Importantly – Stay Calm

In every interview you might be asked questions that you weren’t expecting, or questions that you were expecting in ways that came as a surprise. It is important to always remain calm in this situation and respond in a way that shows the interviewer why you would be the best candidate for the role.

If you are interviewing with other companies, or if you aren’t, someone who spontaneously shows genuine passion and enthusiasm for the role on offer is often a more attractive candidate than someone who reels off a number of pre-prepared responses at interview.

Showing each interviewer that you meet, exactly why you would be such an asset to any firm in their sector will make sure that you have multiple offers to choose from when you’ve finished interviewing.

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