How to answer Accounting interview questions (2023)

Securing an interview with an accountancyfirm is no mean feat. You want to be sure that when you get to your interview, you are well-prepared and ready to tackle whatever questions they throw at you. We’ve pulled together a few accountinginterview questions you might expect to see.

Table of contents

  1. Why do you want to do accountancy?
  2. Are you able to convey technical information to someone of more or less technical ability?Please give an example.
  3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  4. Can you give examples of when you’ve helped a team be successful?
  5. Why do you want to work for this firm?

How to answer Accounting interview questions (1)

(Video) 3 most frequently asked accounting interview questions

1. Why do you want to do accountancy?

Naturally, the way you answer this accountancy interview question will differ from business to business. When it comes to becoming a qualified accountant, it’s very important that you understand the firm’s expertise and areas of speciality.Have a think about the area you are interested in and why it appeals to you. For example, if you are interested in going in to tax, your reasons might be that you like trying to save people money and you enjoy the challenge of searching for loopholes.

If you were going into something like legislation, you might focus on your attention to detail and dedication to work. On the other hand, something like forensic accountancy requires investigative skills. Essentially, to nail this question you need to drill down on what the firm specialises in, what you would like to specialise in, and why your skill set fits so well into the role. The key to this is having a full understanding of the firm and your motivations for applying there.

2. Are you able to convey technical information to someone of more or less technical ability?Please give an example.

When a panel asks this accountancy interview question, they are looking for you to demonstrate confidence and clear communication. You will need to demonstrate your ability to digest information and break it down stage by stage. The example you give does not need to be related to accountancy, however, there are some key accountancy terms you can learn. You need to show that you can summarise and process information in a manner which is patient and adaptable. In your example, try and illustrate your ability to judge character and adapt your communication style as necessary.

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It’s very important that you understand the firm’s expertise and areas of speciality.

3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Thestrengths and weaknesses question is asked in so many interviews, so be prepared for it. Assess your skills and identify three key strengths which match up to the employer's values. When working in accountancy, you need evidence of having a great eye for detail.

When discussing your strengths, have specific examples of where your strengths have been valued. Identifying and talking about your weaknesses is always a challenge, so when you present your weakness as a problem, talk about how you have gone about addressing it. If possible, this should be a professional trait rather than a personality flaw. And don't be afraid of admitting your weaknesses - saying you don't have any will not impress an interviewer.

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4. Can you give examples of when you’ve helped a team be successful?

Don’t be fooled by this question – they aren’t asking for an example of when you have led a team so they aren’t necessarily asking you to demonstrate leadership qualities. As an accountant, you will need to work with various different teams, so try and talk about a time when you have supported or had a positive influence within a group. Mention how the team improved due to your efforts, and try to reference skills of resilience, co-operation and professionalism.

5. Why do you want to work for this firm?

The million-dollar question. This question, like many other accountinginterview questions, requires extensive research into the firm, its values, its culture and what distinguishes it from other firms. Have a thorough awareness of the different types of accounting and have reasons to back up why you want to pursue a particular area. Think about your prospects, and how this firm differentiates itself in terms of opportunity. This is your chance to show off your passion and enthusiasm, so make sure you don’t let yourself down. Keep it personal. Don't fall into the trap of making grand, sweeping statements about the firm in general. Tell them why you want to be there. The more personal you are, the more memorable and unique your answer will be.

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How do you answer an accounting interview question? ›

How to answer Accounting interview questions
  1. Why do you want to do accountancy?
  2. Are you able to convey technical information to someone of more or less technical ability? ...
  3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  4. Can you give examples of when you've helped a team be successful?
  5. Why do you want to work for this firm?

How do you pass an accounting interview? ›

5 expert tips for your next accounting job interview
  1. Let your CV tell the story. ...
  2. Do your financial homework. ...
  3. Prepare for accounting interview questions. ...
  4. Show off your communication and consultation skills. ...
  5. Demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role.

How do I sell myself in an accounting interview? ›

List your professional traits, such as trustworthiness and strong business and work ethics. Share what previous supervisors and colleagues say about your demeanor and your conscientiousness as an accountant. Depending on your career level, include recommendations from colleagues, supervisors and direct reports.

How do you answer why should we hire you as an accountant? ›

Example Answer:

In that time, I've worked my way up to a senior accountant position from starting in a temporary internship. I'm dedicated to excel in my career. It's my first priority. That's why I believe your company should hire me for this accounting role.

What are the three golden rules of accounting? ›

Golden Rules of Accounting
  • "Debit what comes in - credit what goes out."
  • "Credit the giver and Debit the Receiver."
  • "Credit all income and debit all expenses."

What is your weakness best answer accounting? ›

Accounting Weaknesses

Poor time management skills can make it difficult for you to manage various projects at once. Since you're mostly working on your own, it can be hard to stick to a schedule if you don't have good time management.

What is an interview cheat sheet? ›

A cheat sheet for an interview is a tool you can use when preparing for an interview and when participating in a phone interview. This document may include important information that you want to discuss during your meeting or potential answers to questions the hiring manager may ask you during the meeting.

How do you ace an entry level accounting interview? ›

How to Ace Your Interview
  1. Know Your Basics. For entry-level accounting jobs, you won't be expected to know all the ins and outs of accounting functions. ...
  2. Keep Up to Date With Industry Changes. ...
  3. Research the Company and Your Interviewer. ...
  4. Confidence Is Key. ...
  5. Ask Questions. ...
  6. Be Punctual. ...
  7. Know Why You Want to Be an Accountant.
Apr 28, 2020

What is your greatest achievement in accounting? ›

10 types of achievements you can include

Achieved financial gain. Saved the company from spending money. Built and maintained strong client relationships. Advised clients on important issues like tax liabilities or fund security.

How do you answer tell me about yourself accounting? ›

“Tell Me About Yourself” Sample Answers

I am an accountant with five years of experience working in public accounting. I have experience preparing financial statements, managing budgets, and providing consulting services. I am looking for a new opportunity to contribute to the team to use my skills and experience.

What are your strengths as an accountant? ›

Accountants should have a strong desire to learn and excel at solving problems. As an accountant, you might face complex problems that need to be carefully sorted out. You'll also need to learn new information, such as updated financial guidelines.

How do you handle stress and pressure? ›

2. Commit to a Positive Attitude
  1. Decide what you can do. Pinpoint which parts of the situation you have the power to change or influence for the better. ...
  2. Get support. Find someone to talk to about your situation. ...
  3. Care for yourself. Take especially good care of yourself when stress in your life is high.

Why am I interested in this position? ›

I see this opportunity as a way to contribute to an exciting/forward-thinking/fast-moving company/industry, and I feel I can do so by/with my …” “I feel my skills are particularly well-suited to this position because …” “I believe I have the type of knowledge to succeed in this role and at the company because …”

What are the basic accounting questions asked in interview? ›

Accounting Interview Questions Guide
  • #1 Walk me through the three financial statements. ...
  • #2 If I had only one statement and wanted to review the overall health of a company, which statement would I use and why? ...
  • #3 What happens on the income statement if inventory goes up by $10? ...
  • #4 What is working capital?
Nov 24, 2022

What is your strength best answer for accountant? ›

Pinpoint relevant strengths.

For example, if you are applying for an accounting job, consider highlighting your strong attention to detail, your excellent organizational skills or your proficiency with relevant accounting software.

What are the 10 most common interview questions and answers? ›

Top 10 Interview Questions and Best Answers
  • Tell Me About Yourself. ...
  • Why Are You the Best Person for the Job? ...
  • Why Do You Want This Job? ...
  • How Has Your Experience Prepared You for This Role? ...
  • Why Are You Leaving (or Have Left) Your Job? ...
  • What Is Your Greatest Strength? ...
  • What Is Your Greatest Weakness?
Dec 10, 2022


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