Most Commonly Asked Finance Interview Questions and Answers

1-2 minutes

In this blog, you will learn:

  • 6 questions you could get asked in your finance interview.
  • What the hiring manager may be looking for in your answers.
  • Where the latest finance jobs are and how to apply for them. 

You’ve been granted an interview for your dream finance role, and it’s equal parts exciting as it is nerve wracking. You want to look the part, make a good impression and demonstrate your skills and experience. But have you considered what questions you might be asked in the interview and how best to answer them?

According to industry body, CityUK, the number of job vacancies in financial services was down from 41,000 in the first half of 2023, to 53,000 in the year-earlier period. In such a competitive job market it’s essential to take the time to plan and prepare for your finance interview whether it's for an Accounts Assistant, Financial Advisor or Financial Accountant role.

It’s even better to have example answers at the ready without sounding rehearsed or removing the passion and enthusiasm for the role. 

Discover expert tips and advice to help you excel in your finance industry interview with the most commonly asked finance interview questions and tips on how your answers can increase your chances of securing a new role.


6 most common finance interview questions and answers

  • What is your greatest achievement in your financial career so far?
  • What do you know about our company and why are you looking to work with us?
  • What are the biggest economic issues that the finance industry is facing?
  • What in your opinion, makes a good financial model?
  • Describe a time when you had to analyse a complex financial problem and how you approached it.
  • How do you stay updated on financial markets and industry trends?

    

What is your greatest achievement in your financial career so far?

This question aims to understand and evaluate your progress and experience to determine how you can commit to and collaborate in your work environment. The hiring manager wants to know what you consider to be your greatest achievement to discover more about you as an employee and a person.

This question gives you the opportunity to show how you have actively contributed and committed to your previous roles and the impact your decisions and hard work have made. The hiring manager wants to discover what positive contributions you have made to the company and the strategies that you used, to analyse how your skills and initiatives would compliment their organisation.


How to answer this question

This is your opportunity to demonstrate how you have contributed to other organisations in the past, with your skills, experience and initiative. In your answer, set the scene or describe the situation that led to your accomplishment and the strategies you used. 

Perhaps you achieved financial gain, built and maintained strong client relationships or exceeded your monthly targets; whatever the achievement, provide examples, explain how you did it and end on how it helped to solve a situation, resolve a matter or improve efficiency or wellbeing in the workplace.

Be specific and mention the strategies that were successful, your motivation and how you came to the final result.


What do you know about our company and why are you looking to work with us?

This question is designed to determine whether you have done your research and what unique factors have persuaded you to apply for the role at this company. The hiring manager is looking to learn more about your preparation and organisational skills and why you deem their organisation to be the best fit.


How to answer this question

Prove you have researched the company and mention specific initiatives or impressive facts to the hiring manager. In your answer demonstrate your knowledge of the industry as well as information on the company’s history, services, financial performance and recent news.

Explain how your skills can contribute to the success of the company and why you think you will be a good fit. Mention how your expertise and experience can positively benefit the company and how you share the same values and goals.


What are the biggest economic issues that the finance industry is facing?

The purpose of this question is to determine whether candidates are up-to-date with the finance industry and have done their research prior to the interview. The hiring manager wants to find a candidate that keeps up-to-date with economic issues and is aware of the bigger picture and the future of finance. 


How to answer this question

In your answer, mention examples of issues that you have noticed and how you would go about tackling those issues and improving the company. Mention industry challenges and any plans you may have to reduce the impact of these issues. Demonstrate your ability to solve-problems and think beyond the company in terms of how issues in the industry can impact the company.


What in your opinion, makes a good financial model?

This question is important to allow the hiring manager to discover the candidate's thoughts, ideas and plans for the financial success of the company. As many senior executives make decisions based on financial models, the hiring manager will be looking for someone with strong analytical skills.

In this technical question, the hiring manager is looking for a candidate with knowledge of financial modelling and the ability to analyse the potential outcomes of different financial scenarios. 


How to answer this question

In your answer, describe the purpose and importance of a good financial model and how it is useful for company executives to optimise their financial strategies. Mention the principles that you would follow, examples of how a good financial model can be useful for valuing companies and support your answer with facts, statistics and evidence.


Describe a time when you had to analyse a complex financial problem and how you approached it

With this question, the hiring manager is looking to learn more about your problem-solving skills and your ability to assess a situation. The hiring manager wants to know more about how you would use your problem-solving skills and analytical abilities to solve a problem.


How to answer this question

In your answer, provide a specific example of a time when you encountered a financial problem, such as a financial modelling challenge or a budgetary issue, and explain how you analysed and approached the situation.

Describe how you identified the problem and any strategies that you used, such as gathering relevant data and conducting research. Highlight your skills and your adaptability, in order to overcome problems or situations and what the outcome was of your efforts.


How do you stay updated on financial markets and industry trends?

The finance industry has undergone a major fundamental shift over the past few years and continues to change and develop. The purpose of this question is to discover how you keep up-to-date with trends and your passion for the role, company and the industry.

With this question, the hiring manager is looking for a candidate that is enthusiastic about keeping up to date with the financial market and trends in the industry. Staying engaged and updated demonstrates to the hiring manager that you are a suitable, enthusiastic and experienced candidate. 


How to answer this question

In your answer, discuss how you stay informed about financial markets, e.g. by subscribing to newsletters, following credible leaders on social media, listening to podcasts and visiting government websites specifying current business and economic policies.

It’s also important to mention or discuss any specific examples or current trends that you deem to be important or impactful, to demonstrate your knowledge and present yourself as a great candidate and potential employee.

Whether it’s how finance professionals are leveraging AI or competitive trends, emphasise your commitment to continuous learning and development as well as your ability to adapt to changes in the finance industry.


Find your dream finance job

Now you know what questions you might be asked in your finance interview, the next step is to consider 8 killer questions to ask the hiring manager to improve your chances of being hired! 

If you’re still looking for your dream finance job, we can help! Check out how to get a job in finance or simply upload your CV to be contacted when an opportunity with us becomes available. 


Recruiting for finance professionals?

As a specialist finance recruitment agency, we support businesses predominantly in the Lancashire and Cumbria areas, with their staffing needs. If you’re struggling to secure top talent for your business, why not get in touch with our Principal Consultant, Shannon McGarry, to discuss how we can help.

We recently interviewed Shannon to learn more about how the finance job market works and the current challenges in the industry. 


Who is Spencer Clarke Group?

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