How should I answer this job interview question: "What software applications have you used?" Job interview type question, what is the best way to answer this question.

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wannam's profile pic

wannam | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted on

Always tailor your answer to the audience. As the above posts have suggested, the type of programs you would want to list for one job could vary greatly from the type you would list for another job. If you are applying for a specific job, you may want to express how you are familiar with a particular program. For instance, if you were applying for an architectural or design job, you might want to talk about CAD and briefly touch on projects you have used it to create. If you are applying for a clerical job, you would certainly want to mention word processor programs and perhaps specifics on your typing abilities. Once you have given a description of the key programs, I would also include a list of any other programs you know. Today's employers are looking for someone who know about technology. It's important to show what skills you already know. In a generic resume, you may want to simply list the programs you are familiar with. Remember to edit your resume (or verbal answers) to fit the job you are seeking. You might have the same programs on your list, but edit the order so that the program they are most likely interested in is first.
litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The best thing to do is to research the company, the position, and the skills you will need before going to the interview. This way, you will know which types of software you should be familiar with. Many jobs require use of the basic Microsoft Office suite: Word, Excel, Outlook and Power Point. More specialized jobs will have more specialized software. If you are not proficient in the software, don't pretend to be. Misrepresenting your skills will either lose you the job once you get it or prevent you getting offered the job at all.
lmetcalf's profile pic

lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

This is a pretty straightforward question that you must answer HONESTLY!  To prepare for this kind of question, brainstrom all of the differently programs you learned how to use during your high school and college education or any programs you may have used in previous jobs.  Obvious examples are Microsoft programs such as Word or Works, Powerpoint, Excel spreadsheet, or other programs you would have used to create your homework assignments.  Think about computer application classes you took:  Did you learn how to create a Web page or take a Web design class? Which program did you use?  Did you write for the school newspaper or yearbook or literary magazine?  Which programs were used for those types of publications?  Did you use programs specifically related to math applications?  Did you take a digital photography class?  Did you take an accounting class or other business class where you learned business applications?  Your employer may want experience in a specific program, or may just be looking for computer skills in general.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

This would surely depend to a huge extent on what sort of a job you are applying for.  If you were applying for a teaching position, for example, you would want to talk about PowerPoint.  If you were applying for a job as a secretary, for example, PowerPoint would be much less useful and you would have to discuss your familiarity with programs like Microsoft Word and Outlook.

If this is a generic question such as one for a school senior project (where you don't have a job in mind), you should simply talk about whatever software applications you have used that could possibly be useful for any sort of job at all.  I would imagine that the Microsoft Office programs would be your starting point and then you could branch out into anything else (like graphics programs or Photoshop) that might possibly be relevant.

 

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