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How to Have Your Most Successful Accountancy Interview (Ever)

Posted by: Lynn Sedgwick

You’ve got an interview for a new accountancy role – whether it’s an Accounts Assistant, a Bookkeeper or Semi Senior Accountant, possessing the knowledge to have your most successful interview ever will help significantly on the day.

Interview nerves can affect all of us, but this shouldn’t be a barrier to your success.

The ideas included in this article are tailored to accountancy candidates hoping to impress in your upcoming interview.

So, let’s get started.

 

1. The Practicalities

Firstly, you will only be able to give an excellent interview when your mind is free to focus on your answers – this means eradicating any worry about the practicalities of the day.

It is an unfortunate fact that candidates sometimes turn up late for interviews; they are unsure exactly where the interview is taking place or how long it takes to get there. A tip I like to give candidates is to be on time – and this means being early!

Plan your time before the interview carefully, make sure that you are 100% happy with what you are wearing (this will help with your confidence) and you know the names of who will be interviewing you. Using their website and social media, plus the help of your recruiter, research the company thoroughly and be aware of current issues going on in the business – I will talk about how important this is in the next section.

 

2. Develop a Connection With the Interviewer

The most successful interviews all have one thing in common – the interviewer and the interviewee have a connection.

The way to do this is to listen carefully. Pick up on anything that the interviewer says either during the interview or from your research beforehand.

Has the business recently been taken over? Is the head accountant new in their role? Is there anything on their website that relates to you personally?

They might have posted a news article about a recent project or topic that you have also worked on recently. Accounting firms generally aren’t as self-promotional as businesses in other sectors, so it will make your research more difficult if they haven’t updated their website for a while or they aren’t active on social media. In this case, working with a recruiter will allow you to find out helpful information about the business that will help you to strike that all-important ‘spark’ with the interviewer.

 

3. Be Commercial

Being a successful accounting candidate is all about demonstrating your commercial awareness and current knowledge of the accounting industry.

Tax, IR35, interest rates, the budget – there are plenty of topical issues that affect the lives of accountants and their businesses. Your interviewer will want to know that you are not only a shrewd accountant, but that your awareness of current issues will make you an asset to their team.

Keep up to date with the Financial Times, Accounting Web, Accounting Today and ACCA Global to equip yourself to talk about current issues.

 

4. Communicate Effectively

Some accounting candidates think that all they are needed for is their accounting skills. While this is true to a point, your employer will require you to be able to communicate your ideas clearly to other members of the team.

The interviewer will be looking for a confident individual who can communicate effectively, whether that is presenting your ideas or findings to a group, or relaying technical information to members of non-accounting teams. So use a mix of professional and personable language, and don’t focus too much on the technical.

 

5. Demonstrate Why You Want to Work for This Firm

Finally, one of the essential elements of a successful interview is to let the interviewer know why you, over the other candidates, are the right choice.

This involves being able to explain your career goals and how you fit into the company’s growth plans.

Show them that you want to grow with the company but also that you are the right ‘fit’ for their culture.

It would be best if you had a good idea of the company’s culture from the information that you are given before the interview and throughout the recruitment process. 73% of professionals have left a job due to a poor culture fit; this can be a frustrating time for an employee and can damage your earnings. Working with a recruiter ensures that you are only applying for a role in a company in which you will thrive – don’t run the risk of taking a chance on a company who you think will be right for you, only to be disappointed shortly after you start.

 

What Next?

Are you looking for your next accounting position? This article should have helped you to ace your next interview, but if you need any extra guidance, talk to us today. We help accounting candidates in the North West find their perfect role and guide them through every step of the recruitment process – get in contact to find out more.

Thanks,

Lynn

 

ABOUT CLAYTON RECRUITMENT

Clayton Recruitment has been partnering with organisations across the country since 1989 and during that time has built up an excellent reputation for trust and reliability.

With specialist divisions covering Commercial, Financial, Industrial, Nursing, and Engineering appointments, on both a permanent and temporary basis. If you are looking for your next career move, we can help. Call us on 01772 259 121 or email us here.

If you would like to download our latest interview checklist, you can do so here.

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