What Computer Programs Are You Familiar With?

Job Interview Question & Answer: What Kinds of Software Do You Know?

Why Interviewers Ask This Question

Hiring managers ask “What computer programs are you familiar with?” to see if the interviewee has technology skills relevant to the position. Most job descriptions list the software necessary for that particular opening.

Preparing for the Question

It is important for candidates to think of the programs they can use prior to the interview process. For instance, many desk jobs and corporate careers ask for experience with Windows, Microsoft Office, or MacOS. On the other hand, retail stores and restaurants want workers to use a point-of-sale (POS) system.

How to Answer “What Kinds of Software Do You Know?”

Job seekers must respond to this question honestly based on their knowledge. Note any programs that might relate to the company. Listing other software shows a wide range of experience which may impress the hiring staff.

Those who don’t have much familiarity with computers should speak to their learning abilities. Mention past work that required adapting to a new situation. Certain jobs could need specific skills, but willingness to take on a challenge is a plus for any employee.

Possible Replies

Below are a few examples to give applicants an idea of how to answer “What computer programs are you familiar with?” It is always best to be truthful in a job interview, so do not memorize the responses.

Sample Answer 1 – Secretary

“In school, I worked a lot with Microsoft Office and Google Drive. I am confident in my ability to use PowerPoint and read data on an Excel spreadsheet. I have done several projects using these programs, and I’m sure I can use them effectively.”

Sample Answer 2 – Server

“At my old job, I became familiar with a POS system to input orders. I used this program so often that it was second nature to me. While some systems are different, I will adapt quickly since I am a fast learner.”

Sample Answer 3 – Office Clerk

“At work, I frequently use computers and am willing to train on any software for my job. I am adaptable and easily develop new skills. I also have a positive attitude toward learning, so I won’t get discouraged if faced with a challenge.”

Successful Job Interviews

Workers don’t usually need to know everything, especially for entry-level jobs. However, some positions prefer experience. Thus, be honest when responding to “What computer programs are you familiar with?” Potential hires should detail the relevant software they understand and exhibit a desire to grow.

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