Barclays Wealth Private Banker - Embark Programme Interview Questions

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Private Banker - Embark Programme Interview

No Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview
No Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied online. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Barclays Wealth in July 2011.

Interview

The Embark Programme is for experienced professionals looking to go into Private Banking. Process included an online application answering some questions and two timed online tests on numerical reasoning and handling of time-sensitive information. Both are fairly easy since you can practice some mock exams in advance so you know what to expect.

Then comes a telephone interview with a member of the HR team mainly to go over your CV and motivations. They keep you updated at least once a week and you can also track your progress online.

This is where things got complicated. You are supposed to get an interview (outside the selection process) with a current Embarkee to give you the opportunity to ask questions and learn all you want about the job and BW. Since we are all experienced and successful professionals looking to change careers, it is not a decision to be taken lightly and both BW and I want to make sure it's the right one. So far so good.

You are then supposed to go for a 1-to-1 interview with a senior banker to look at your career in more detail as well as your motivations to go into private wealth management and so on. If successful, you are expected to attend a half-day assessment.

I was phoned one week before the assessment centre to be told that the interview with the Embarkee would not happen and that I was therefore going straight into the interview with the senior private banker. If successful, I was to prepare a presentation outlining my three-year business plan to build my client book, to be delivered on assessment day.

Most of this wasn't really that unexpected but by robbing me of the chance to speak to the current Embarkee I lost the best opportunity I expected to have to learn about the job, make sure the career change made sense, and gain valuable info to prepare a well-thought business plan. I had been counting on that interview and as a reputable bank, I never expected BW to suddenly change their promise. So I thought: Fine, I can work with what I have and can get, and finalise the plan over the weekend between the 1-to-1 interview and the assessment day, trying to ask as many questions as possible during the 1-to-1 interview.

The 1-to-1 interview was mostly based on my career to date, my motivations to go into private wealth management and changing career, my interest in financial markets, and some competency based questions such as instances where I showed pioneering and self-starting work, etc.. What I definitely did not expect (since they had already asked me to have it ready for assessment day) was that the senior banker asked me for my business plan and of course it wasn't ready. As a result I didn't do well and looked like I hadn't given the career change enough thought.

I don't mind loosing the job for not doing my work or simply because I'm not the right candidate, but I do expect to be given a fair opportunity. This didn't feel like it.

Interview Questions

  • What is your business plan to build your client book over the first three years?   1 Answer

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