Job Interview Question & Answer: What Experience Do You Have In This Field?

Portraying Experience in the Best Light

As one of the most important hiring factors employers consider, experience proves a highly valued asset for job seekers. Virtually every interviewer questions applicants about previous qualifications and history in the given career field. When employers ask about experience, candidates face opportunities to frame accomplishments, skills obtained through prior jobs, and professional abilities in the most ideal manners possible. Portraying said aspects in favorable light often requires individuals to possess thorough familiarity with marketable experience. Review personal credentials prior to interviews to best understand which elements of experience to highlight.

Preparing Answers Beforehand
Applicants strongly benefit from preparing answers to questions about experience before interviews occur. Though memorizing routine responses mechanically does not constitute an effective technique, replying without prior thought or consideration often proves worse. On-the-spot answers may hastily overlook crucial or relevant details and negatively affect job prospects. Keep a general sense of personal experience in mind and plan to tailor replies to specific jobs in interviews. Hiring managers expect candidates to share the most applicable experience for the position at hand. Considering particular qualifications and work history beforehand aids employment hopefuls in providing appropriately related responses.

Relevance is Key
Successful career seekers find ways to relate experience to jobs at hand, as employers hire candidates to meet company needs. Focus on experience in the same industry, if possible. Prominently highlight management positions, awards, accomplishments, and quantifiable achievements in replies. Balance modesty and confidence when answering to avoid seeming conceited or shy to interviewers. For candidates without experience in a given field, place emphasis on transferable skills, such as communication, work ethic, meeting deadlines, and operating as a member of a team.

For Applicants Lacking Formal Experience
Applicants interviewing for first-time professional employment may still possess sought-after experience. Several viable options persist as alternatives to describe in place of formal work history. Talking about volunteer work, college education, internships, and/or leadership roles with respected organizations or groups constitute acceptable responses in many cases. Even when describing qualifications outside of traditional job history, remember to keep answers relevant to employer needs. Never state a complete lack of experience, as all applicants possess life experience potentially worthwhile to reference in interviews. Mentioning desire to grow and learn new skills helps circumvent obstacles with the field experience question.

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