20 Most Common Accounting Job Interview Questions and Best Answers with Tips

Welcome! In this post article/tutorial, you will learn the top 20 accounting interview questions and how to answer them. So it does not matter which organization you are applying to join as an accountant. Make sure you go through this post article/tutorial from beginning to end, because you will really learn some top scoring answers to make sure you get the accountant job you deserve.

So, let’s get straight into those 20 accountant interview questions and best answers with tips.

20 Most Common Accounting Job Interview Questions and Best Answers with Tips

Question #1: Why do you want to be an accountant?

Below is suggested example perfect answer.

Example Answer: “I want to be an accountant because it’s a job that comes with a high level of responsibility and accountability. If you don’t perform your role as an accountant to the expected standards, the consequences can be far reaching. Now, the natural skills and qualities I possess and my desire to work under pressure to high standards means the role of an accountant is one that I will excel in on a consistent and reliable basis.

I am an inquisitive person who has patience and exceptional attention to detail skills, all of which go to make me the perfect candidate to be an accountant with your company.”

That’s nice response to the interview question, “Why do you want to be an accountant?” Let’s take a look at the second question of the top 20 accounting interview questions.

Question #2: Why do you want to work for our company as an accountant?

Now, this is pretty much guaranteed question during your accountant interview and here is suggested example answer.

Example Answer: “I want to work for your company for three specific reasons. The first reason is, you are clearly an accounting firm who sets high standards and the online reviews you receive from your clients demonstrate your desire to provide a great level of service based on their individual financial needs. Now, the second reason is, you are a company who has a strong reputation within the industry and I would actually feel proud to be an accountant for your company.

Now, finally, having carried out lots of research before applying for this accounting job, I feel you will support me in my role and encourage me to continually develop and improve, which is really important to me as a professional accountant.”

That’s perfect answer because you are focusing on three main reasons why you want to work for their company. I can pretty much guarantee that all of the other competitors at the accountant interview will give just one reason. But you are giving three great reasons why you have chosen their company.

Question #3: What experience do you have that would be applicable to this accountant role?

Below is a perfect simple answer

Example Answer: “The experience and competencies I have gained so far can be allocated to three main areas. Firstly, I have experience of working with a variety of different clients, both small and large. Whilst working with all types of clients, I always provide a consistent level of service and I go out of my way to get the job done on time and to an accurate standard.

Secondly, I have experience of working under pressure to tight deadlines whilst managing multiple accounts and clients. And thirdly, I have experience of working collaboratively with other accounting team members and bookkeepers to ensure accounts are completed and submitted on time. I believe the experience I have gained so far will enable me to perform highly within this role, and I will always act as a positive role model in my capacity as an accountant for your company.”

That’s a great answer and you are talking about the experience of the competencies that you have that will be a match for the role, and that’s important.

Question #4: How do you handle pressure now?

You and I know that as an accountant you have to work under pressure. There are difficult clients to work with at times, but more importantly, there are tight timescales that you have to adhere to and get the accounts completed, and especially during the end of year and when the accounts have to be submitted, there is a lot of work to do and you will be under pressure. So, “how do you handle pressure as an accountant? Below is a suggested example answer.

Example Answer: “To be truthful, I feel I work better when I am under pressure and I enjoy the challenge of getting my accounting work completed on time and to the right standard. I handle pressure by first of all, drawing up a list of tasks that need to be completed and by which timescale. I will then work the necessary hours to make sure the job is completed on time. More often than not, I will work from home in the evenings to get my work completed as I don’t like to fall behind.

As I say, working under pressure is something I do really well, and I feel I thrive when I have to get more tasks completed within a set period of time.”

So this demonstrates that you do the important thing whilst working on the pressure, which is drawing up a list of which tasks needed to be done, by which time, scale, and then you put in the necessary hours to get them done. And that’s the important thing that demonstrates that you are a completer finisher, somebody who can handle the pressure and get the job done.

Question #5: What do you expect to be doing on a day to day basis as an accountant?

So this is assessing whether you understand the role that you are applying for and also the key responsibilities of an accountant.

Example Answer: “The main duties I expect to be carrying out as an accountant include, providing financial account management information to clients as and when required; preparing asset, liability and capital account entries by analyzing account information; recommending financial actions after careful analysis of accounts, and also preparing balance sheets, profit and loss statements and also management accounts on a periodic basis.

I will also be required to guide accounting staff to assist the company in ensuring accounts are prepared on time; liaise with clients and provide advice and information based on their financial accounts; maintain financial security by following organizational procedures and protocol; and also maintaining client confidence whilst adhering to all the necessary rules, regulations and the law that surrounds GDPR.

Finally, in addition to reconciling financial discrepancies after careful analysis of client’s account information, I will be required to keep my own knowledge and professional development up to date based on developments from within the financial sector and industry.”

So that is an in-depth answer but that’s important because there are many and very different tasks that you will have to carry out as an accountant. So you need to be able to rattle them off and tell the interviewer or the hiring manager exactly what you expect to be doing on a day to day basis.

Checkout more Accounting/Accountant Job Interview Questions

  • Question #1: What you expect to be doing on a day to day basis as an accountant?
  • Question #2: Why do you want to be an accountant?
  • Question #3: How do you handle pressure?
  • Question #4: What experience do you have that would be applicable to this role?
  •  Question #5: Why do you want to work for our company as an accountant?
  • Question #6: When have you worked with others to complete a difficult task?
  • Question #7: What are your strengths?
  • Question #8: What’s your biggest weakness?
  • Question #9: Where do you see yourself in five years time?
  • Question #10: What are the different types of business transactions in accounting?
  • Question #11: Which accounting platforms have you worked on?
  • Question #12: Give an example of when you’ve worked with a difficult client?
  • Question #13: What are the different types of financial statements?
  • Question #14: What is working capital?
  • Question #15: What’s the difference between deferred revenue and accounts receivable?
  • Question #16: What accounting software applications do you have experience in?
  • Question #17: How do you maintain accounting accuracy?
  • Question #18: What is the difference between a trial balance and a balance sheet?
  • Question #19: What is the difference between inactive and dormant accounts?
  • Question #20: What is a deferred tax liability?

Questions to ask at the end of Accounting Job Interview

Some questions you could ask the interview panel would be:

  • What are the plans for your organization over the next three to five years? That demonstrates you plan to stay with them for a long time.
  • If I’m successful in the role, what do you want me to concentrate on as an accountant within the first few weeks of starting?
  • What have previous accountants done that has frustrated you?

My advice is to also make sure that you have a couple of questions that you want to ask the interview panel when you get to the end of the interview.

These most common accounting interview questions and answers are suitable and they will ensure that you give your best shot for your interview. Am very sure after you go through this post article, you will pass the job interview. I wish you all the best in your pursuit to passing your accounting interview.

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