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How Quickly Do You Adapt to New Technology?

Technology is transforming the way we do business faster than ever before. Sometimes it seems like as soon as you’ve gotten comfortable with one piece of technology, it’s time to learn a new one (iPhone releases, anyone?). Like it or not, being able to pick up new technology quickly is a necessary skill in most fields. That’s why you should prepare to answer in a job interview, “How quickly do you adapt to new technology?”

Why do interviewers ask about adapting to new technology?

This question will likely come up in fields that rely heavily on technology, but it also depends greatly on the company. 

If your prospective employer prides itself on ‘being on the cutting edge’ or ‘shaking things up,’ you’ll be expected to keep pace whether you’re a software developer, an accountant, or a member of the HR team. Interviewers ask this question to determine whether you’ll be comfortable keeping up with the organization’s evolving speed. 

They also want to understand how adaptable you are in general. Adaptability defines how well you adjust to new circumstances, and it’s one of the most desirable qualities among employers. Your interviewer is looking to determine whether you can thrive in the face of change or have a hard time adjusting. 

What hiring managers are looking for in an answer about adapting to new technology

If an interviewer asks this question, it indicates they’re looking for a positive response. They want to hear that you’ll be game for trying new apps and learning platforms you’re unfamiliar with, so you want to communicate an openness to these things. 

They’ll also be paying attention to your attitude toward change–does it seem like you adapt reluctantly, or are you excited to try new things? Your level of enthusiasm could make a difference in whether you fit in well with the company culture and in turn, if you’ll move forward in the hiring process. 

How to answer, “How quickly do you adapt to new technology?”

Confirm that you can adapt quickly

Hopefully, this should be a no-brainer because it’s the truth. If not, you may want to take steps to become more adaptable or reconsider if you’ll be happy in this particular role.

Describe your mindset around change

Explain how you navigate unfamiliar territory and how you feel about dealing with uncertainty. Ideally, you’ll be able to confidently say that you feel comfortable with and maybe even enjoy change.

Give some examples of how you’ve adapted

Build confidence by sharing your successful track record of adapting, whether it was learning a new piece of software, tackling a confusing tech setup, or even recommending how your employer could use technology to their advantage.

How not to answer

Give the impression that you resist change

The last thing you want to do is convey a lukewarm or negative mindset around learning new things. In addition to causing roadblocks with your work, this could create the perception that you’ll be stubborn in other aspects of the job, like communication or teamwork.

Sample answers to “How quickly do you adapt to new technology?”

Example #1

“I’ve always loved trying out the latest technology trends. I used Facebook back when you had to have a college email address, and I was even a fan of Google+. Needless to say, I also love using technology in my job and finding ways to get my work done faster or more effectively with the help of tech.”

Example #2

“I welcome the chance to learn and use new technology, and I spend a lot of time making myself proficient with whatever tech I need to use on the job. I’m that person who will enthusiastically attend every training and read the user manual so that I know every shortcut in a program. When one of my coworkers runs into tech trouble, I’m the person they turn to for help. I wasn’t always this way, but I understand that being able to adapt will help me be the best I can be at my job.”

Be sure to use your body language and tone to convey enthusiasm. If it makes sense for your field, you can also sprinkle in some examples of your favorite apps or other technology you use in your role to demonstrate your experience.