5 Common Accounting Interview Questions (and Answers)

A woman being interviewed for an accounting specialist position.
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Research shows that 92% of talented professionals often look for soft skills when interviewing candidates than hard skills in most roles, and accounting isn’t an exception. You’ll also need to demonstrate essential industry knowledge to make a strong impression on your prospective employer.

Every hiring manager assesses your capability to fit their company and how well you understand the work at hand. Therefore, if you’ve got an upcoming interview for a business accounting specialist role, you have to make prior preparations on both soft and hard skills to secure the job. Below are some of the accounting specialist interview questions to keep in mind.  

What Are the Biggest Challenges in Accounting, and How Do You Overcome Them?  

When an interviewer asks this question, they want to evaluate your overall knowledge of accounting. They want to know if you are informed about the common challenges and how best to deal with the inevitable. An ideal answer would be about the ever-changing laws and regulations in the industry. You can also talk about the reporting rule changes, income tax code updates on the state and federal level, changes in some tax rates, and more. To make sure you are ready for such questions, keep monitoring upcoming legislation, set up new alerts, and subscribe to industry publications.   

Which Accounting Software Programs Are You Familiar With?  

Hiring managers also want to know if you are familiar with accounting software programs and how fast you can learn new programs. You can select a few programs to discuss, including those you have the most experience with and those you’ve used recently. For instance, you can say you have over seven years working with custom accounting software and more than four years with FreshBooks in your previous role. You can also state other programs such as Quickbooks and Peachtree. 

Can You Explain the  Financial Statements?  

 The three fundamental statements in accounting are income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets. While giving your answer, explain each statement and how it works. A balance sheet shows an organization’s shareholder equity, assets, and liabilities. Cash flow statements show where a company’s cash comes from, while income statements show an enterprise’s revenue and expenses.  

 What Are the Most Common Mistakes in Accounting?  

As an experienced accountant, interviewers expect you to know the common mistakes encountered in the industry. Some include:  

  • Misallocating resources  
  • Failure to keep accounting books up to date  
  • Mixing personal and company accounts  
  • Not saving receipts  

 Interviewers can also ask you how you can avoid these common errors. You can say you have a habit of reevaluating your work several times before the final submission.  

What’s the Most Challenging Accounting Task You’ve Ever Encountered in Previous Roles?  

Issues come up every day, so hiring managers want to know how best you can solve problems. This is also a good way to show your experience. Answer this question based on your professional experience, regardless of your experience level, and choose a task that you could solve to show the interviewer that you are an excellent problem solver. For instance, you can say you were part of a team tasked with handling the bookkeeping for an organization.  

These interview questions for accounting specialists can go a long way in helping you secure a new accounting position. At SCI, we help prepare Texas students with employer-tailored training. For more details about SCI’s online Business Accounting Specialist program Contact us today for more details.  

This article was published on: 03/9/22 1:56 AM

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