Everyone is striving to strike ahead of the pack in today’s competitive job market. The recruitment process has gone a notch higher, with recruiters ensuring that only the best make it through the needle’s eye. To impress these recruiters and secure an interview, ensure you countercheck your job application against this checklist before submitting for consideration.
When you get invited to an interview, how prepared are you? Do you just wake up and go or do you take the time to prepare? And when preparing, what kind of interview questions do you go through? Typical accounting interview questions look for evidence of accountancy related competencies, where examples are the key to demonstrating your suitability. We are going to discuss some of the interview questions to expect in an accounting interview and how to tackle them.
Here are 3 Must Know Accounting Interview Questions & How to Answer
1.What accounting softwares are you familiar with?
Well, I believe this information is already in your CV, but the recruiter is looking to find out if you are familiar with the software or you lifted the information straight from the internet. When answering this question, don’t just list the software and go silent. Go an extra mile of mentioning the latest versions and give your opinion on that which you prefer and would recommend to an organization and why.
If you don’t have experience in accounting, you can just state what you have worked with. For example, “So far I have worked with QuickBooks, which I find effective in terms of accuracy, speed, and simplicity. However, my willingness to learn has made me take personal initiative in self-learning to use other accounting software like SAGE. Given an opportunity, I will put in the time to learn more and become better at its usage and learn other software that will be in use at the organization”.
2.Have you helped reduce cost at an organization?
Don’t answer “yes” and sit there staring at the recruiter. This is your moment of glory, give two top examples that will go on to show you are a great asset. “Brag” in a modest manner how you have helped your current/previous organization reduce their costs.
For example, “During my first 60 days in office at my current organization, I was able to identify many accounts payables that we could do away with and others we could get cheaper alternatives. For example, the amount of the monthly parking fee we were paying at our office building was so high. I was able to find alternative parking in the building next to our office for a quarter of what we were paying monthly”.
If you don’t have experience, think of a time you made a judgment call either during your internship period or campus days that you helped someone or even yourself save money. Ride on this and make it count.
3.How do you minimize risk errors in your work?
In the accounting profession, you cannot afford slip-ups as they can cause an organization millions of shillings and even cost you your career. Nobody will want to hire a sloppy person and the recruiter will want to see how you normally go about ensuring accuracy is always achieved.
When tackling this question during an interview, talk of how you always double check your work and ask a fellow finance team member to review it for you before submission. For example, “I have a keen eye for details where I always ensure that I double check my work and ask a member of my team to review the work for me before I can submit”.
This answer will kill two birds with one stone. You will have answered the main interview question and smartly showcased that you are a team player.
Sample Cover Letter for Accounting Jobs in Kenya
Every cover letter should be tailor made for the job you are applying for. Accountant cover letters should show the skills that make you stand out for that role.
Below is a sample cover letter for Accounting jobs.
P.O. Box 20100- 00100,
24th March 2017.
The Human Resource Manager,
Box 30010– 00100,
RE: APPLICATION FOR ACCOUNTANT ROLE
With this cover letter and attached CV, I would like to express my interest in furthering my career by seeking new challenges in the Accountant position as advertised. I have a degree in Bachelor of Commerce- Accounting and Finance from Kenyatta University and have a CPA K.
Additionally, my 4 years of experience have been instrumental in equipping me with the knowledge and providing me with the opportunity to develop the skills necessary to succeed in the accounting profession. I have been involved in various accounting, finance, and audit roles and am skilled at managing priorities and able to meet deadlines either working as part of a team or individually.
It is often said that to operate effectively within a financial environment, one must be tenacious, analytical, and highly dedicated. I can assure you that as a member of your team, I would bring these attributes to your firm. I welcome the challenge of working for such a high-profile institution and will uphold your commitment to excellent customer service.
Thank you for your consideration. I would appreciate an opportunity to meet with you and discuss my interest in this position further.