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5 Key General Accountant Interview Tips


After you are done creating your impressive resume and detailed cover letter, you may feel like putting your feet up and waiting for the offers to start rolling in. Unfortunately, the time for relaxation is not yet here. You need to start getting ready for the next big step in the job search—the interview. This meeting is an essential part of the job-getting process. You have to use this time to articulate your skills and how you would make a positive impact on the company.

You should use general tips to learn about what you should wear, common questions to practice answering and what your nonverbal cues might be saying to the hiring manager. If you want to get more specific tips, however, you need to read on. These key general accountant interview tips will help you better prepare for and do well at your big meeting with the potential employer. This could lead to getting the job you want.

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General Accountant Interview Tips

Stay Educated: To be an accountant, you will be expected to have certain degrees, certifications and licenses. You may have to pass the Certified Public Accountant exam or have a bachelor’s degree. The education you have now may be shadowed by the education you are willing to pursue. Technology is changing. New computer programs and software come out all the time. Let your potential employer know you are prepared to stay educated. Emphasize your willingness to attend conferences or workshops. Not only will this make you an appealing candidate, but it will help you grow professionally.

Highlight How Detail-Oriented You Are: Accountants are often tasked with preparing financial documents, inspecting account books, computing taxes and organizing financial records. With all of this paperwork, it can be difficult to keep things straight. You have to match up the invoices to the purchase orders to the vouchers. Without an eye for detail, you may be a poor candidate for a general accountant. The interviewer may ask a pointed question about how detail-oriented you are, but you can always work it in to your answers when possible. An eye for detail is an important part of being an accountant.

Prepare for the Unexpected: As you go over general accountant interview tips, you will likely be told to prepare for commonly asked questions. You should practice answering these queries. However, you need to do more. You can go over common inquiries until your hair falls out, and you will still not be fully prepared for the meeting. Instead of simply practicing your response to common questions, you also need to prepare for unexpected questions. How can you prepare for an inquiry you are not familiar with? Come up with an answering method. You need to stay cool and calm in the face of a startling query. Think about what the hiring manager was really trying to ask. If you need clarification, feel free to probe for more information. Try not to dodge the question. Take your time to answer, but always keep eye contact. Having an answering method will help you formulate how to reply and give a good impression.

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Understand Your Prospects: Do you know where your career could take you? Can the company you are meeting with help you grow professionally? You need to know what your professional prospects are if you really want to ace the interview. For example, the need for accountants is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This could mean more job opportunities with consultation firms, government agencies or businesses in a myriad of industries. With this knowledge on your side, you may have the confidence you need to find a job with a bright future.

Focus on How You Communicate: Communication is a key part of working with your colleagues and customers. You can showcase your ability to communicate well by discussing financial reports you helped draft or presentations you gave. Tell stories that show how well you can communicate. You can also focus on this communication by confidently talking with the interviewer, accurately responding to questions and quickly making your own inquiries about the job and company.

Armed with these key general accountant interview tips, you should be ready to outshine your competition. Do well at the meeting with your potential employer, and you might get the job.