What questions should you expect? How to make a good impression on your interviewers? What decides the winner at the end?
Simply, how to prepare for this challenging experience and walk away with a coveted job contract? We will try to answer this question on our website that specializes only in accounting interviews. Written by Caren Mayers, Recruitment Consultant at Financial Recruitment Agency & by Matthew Chulaw, Private Interview Coach. Welcome!
What questions should you expect?
The most important part of your interview should always consist in practical exercises and technical questions. They will test your brain cells will tricky accounting tasks, and they may even ask you to perform some simple operations in an accounting software of their choice. This is actually the best way how to assess your experience in the field, and they will easily distinguish whether you understand your job, or just talk about understanding it.
They will also give you some behavioral questions, to see how you coped with various work-related situations in the past. How you solved a conflict, how you dealt with pressure in work, etc.
In most companies they will add some typical interview questions targeting your personality and motivation, such as, “Why do you want to be an accountant?”, “What characterize a good accountant?”, “What do you think is a goal of an accountant in this company?”.
Job seekers who want so succeed will have to deal with all these questions.
Other things also matter
Brilliant answers to their questions will form a foundation stone for your success. But you shouldn’t forget that interviewers observe many things, such as your non-verbal communication, your motivation, and they also try to assess the following:
- Your computing skills
- Mathematical skills
- Your attention to detail
- Your partience
You should try and present yourself as a detail oriented, responsible, motivated, and loyal employee. You can do it while answering their questions, solving the case studies, and doing other things in an interview. Stay calm, be patient. Double check everything and approach their tasks responsibly.
List of typical accountant interview questions
Note: Clicking a question will direct you to a separate page, on which we analyze the particular question, and offer some sample answers.
However, we suggest you to firstly read this page to the end, so you will understand all the nuances of accounting interview. It would be useless to practice interview answers without having this knowledge. . . .
- Why do you want to become an accountant?
- Why do you want to work in our company?
- What was the toughest accounting task you had to solve in your career?
- Why should we hire you?
- Do you possess knowledge of accounting standards?
- How do you ensure you make no mistakes in work?
- What characterize a good accountant from your point of view?
- Describe a stressful situation in work and how did you handle the situation?
- Describe a time when you helped to reduce costs at a previous accountant job.
- What do you think is a goal of an accountant in our company?
- When you hear an expression creative accounting, what do you imagine?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- What motivates you to do this routine job?
- Which accounting software are you familiar with?
- Practical exercises
Do the questions differ in various companies?
Obviously, the interview process differs in every company. On the other hand, if they try to recruit a corporate accountant, they will not give the applicants interview questions for managers, or for bank tellers. . . .
Even if they use some other questions, the same interview strategies and attitudes will help you to succeed and get a job.
Big companies may include an IQ test, psychometry, and personality tests in their interviews, while personal preferences may often play an important role on decision making in small companies, or family business.
Job interview is not a monologue. And it shouldn’t become one.
You should ask the employer some questions about their working environment, accounting software, vision of the company, career growth options, etc.
Two humans talk
At the end of the day, do not forget that every job interview is just a meeting of two (or more) people – You and the interviewer(s). Try to approach it in a way in which you should approach every meeting–be nice, smile, be friendly, listen to them, show positive emotions.
You should simply try and build a good relationship with your interviewers. It can help you to stand out from the crowd in their eyes, and get a job.
What to say at the end?
If you find the preparation challenging, or the questions difficult, you can have a look at the Accountant Interview Guide. It offers brilliant answers to all common interview questions, you’ll find there some practical exercises, winning interview strategies, and much more. . . . Thank you, I wish you good luck!
Caren Mayers, Your Personal Interview Coach