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Charles Schwab Broker Trainee Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Jun 6, 2014
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33 candidate interviews Back to all interview questions
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3 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 3+ weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab.

Interview Details – Typically you will have a phone screen with a recruiter, takes 30-60 minutes and includes very basic questions: why Schwab, why this position, talk about prior experiences and how they align with job/company. This is fairly informal and is just to make sure you can speak to your resume basically. Then you may or may not get an invite into a "orientation" type program where 10-20 candidates will come to a meeting where you learn about benefits, culture, training, expectations, and then take a test to make sure you have basic math, interpersonal, typing, problem solving skills as well as a personality test. You then get a call back a couple days later and will know if you are going to be invited to manager interviews (2:1). These sessions are lots of questions that start with tell me about a time when... and it will be about a time where you failed, a time where you excelled, used technology to solve a problem or make a process better, went above and beyond. You will also get some questions about providing customer service and interacting with people. There won't be too much in the way of technical market questions (valuations, market mechanics, trading, strategies-unless you already have your licences in which case you can expect a few but nothing too deep). These last 60-75 minutes. You will then get a call from recruiter on a potential job offer a few days to a week later. Starting salaries are usually not negotiable, for brokers/bank reps you will not find your schedule out until after training.

Interview Question – These are behavioral interviews. Have multiple scenarios memorized about a time when you failed, how did you create a positive from a negative, and how specifically you deal with a difficult situation or stress.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – There is not a negotiation all starting salaries for entry level positions are the same. The only time you can really negotiate is at a manager/director level.


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Phoenix, AZ

I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in January 2014.

Interview Details – Sent in a resume, had a minute call the next day, a weel later we had an hour long interview over the phone, then had to pass the SIFMA test and once I found out the results were good a day later I was scheduled to have a final interview with a couple of managers at the location.

Interview Question – Can you give an example of a time where you had to fix a problem with a client and how did you handle it?   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Indianapolis, IN

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in October 2013.

Interview Details – One of the best and most thorough interview processes one can go through. As everyone has stated, it begins with an initial 5-10 minute phone call, followed by about a 45 minute phone interview the next week or so. If you are successful in the phone interview, they will ask you to come in for an interview with 2 hiring managers. Be able to answer behavioral questions, and know about the company and the specific position in which you applied.

Interview Question – Standard behavioral questions   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Set salary


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Denver, CO

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Charles Schwab in August 2013.

Interview Details – The interview process was quite extensive with an initial 5 minute phone interview, a second, longer phone interview, an on-site SIFMA exam, and a final one hour on-site interview. Schwab has clearly made strides to make sure that they find the right people, which is something I take as a good sign. They are also superb in selecting people to walk you through the interview process. My hiring manager was detailed, personable, engaging, and empathetic. Questions were quite standard in the longer phone interview and on-site interview.

Interview Question – Tell me what you know about Schwab.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – No negotiations for this position. It was set before I even applied.


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in August 2013.

Interview Details – A 2-3 mins phone interview first. And was told to receive an email in one week.

Interview Question – asked why do you want to get the license   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Englewood, CO

I applied online and the process took 6 weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in June 2013.

Interview Details – I filled out the online application for the broker trainee program, and took an online personality assessment right after. Was sent an email about a week later inviting me to have a brief 3-5 min phone interview. After that, i was scheduled for a longer, 45 minute phone interview with a different recruiter. Be sure to know a lot about Schwab, and have examples of behavioral responses for STAR type interview questions. Passed that interview, then was asked to come in for a SIFMA exam, which consisted of 30 logic questions (easy), and 27 financial math problems (a little harder since I was rusty with math by hand). Passed the SIFMA, and two days later was scheduled for an in person interview with 2 hiring managers. They were great, and really portrayed the culture of Charles Schwab well. They askes STAR type questions also, and we spoke candidly for a while about hobbies, future goals, etc. After passing that interview, i was sent an email saying that i was a finalist for the position, and that i had to fill out an application/background check. I did that on a thursday morning, and exactly a week later I was offered the job.

Interview Question – When is the last time you took notice of market forces/conditions, and how did you act upon them to produce a favorable outcome?   View Answer

Negotiation Details – No negotiation. Pay is 40k/year to start, with an average yearly bonus of circa 5k.


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Phoenix, AZ

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in January 2010.

Interview Details – Be aware that they will hire you but then rake your background over the coals. If you have a traffic tickeoe anything. You will need to have this information for compliance. Instead of being professional and asking you for this information before you accept the job. You are allowed to leave your previous job and be stressed during training with getting documents regarding even the most minor leagl issues.

Interview Question – None. They asked about my reading habits. What was the last book you read and what impact it had on you.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – There was not really a negotiation, they offered 31000.00 it was the height of the recession I accepted it.


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Indianapolis, IN

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Charles Schwab in November 2010.

Interview Details – I applied online, then filled out the online assessment. I then received a phone call from a woman for a brief, five-minute interview. She asked me about how I had heard about the company, what I knew about them, and why I wanted to enter the Broker Trainee Program. During this phone call, we scheduled a 45-minute phone interview.

The 45-minute interview was much more in-depth. We discussed my background, and discussed further my interest in the company and the position. It seemed to go well and, soon after, I received an email asking me to come in to perform a computerized assessment.

The assessment took nearly an hour, and asked a number of basic math questions. They were almost entirely based around arithmatic word problems.

Finally, I received a call to schedule an in-person interview. Two managers met me at the northside Indianapolis office. They were very pleasant and put me at ease, and we talked for just over an hour. They then took me on a tour of the facility. Although I was confident that the interview went well, I received an email about a week later that I had not been selected.

Despite not being chosen, the process was excellent. Everyone was warm and professional, and seemed to work hard to put me at ease. I still think Charles Schwab would be a great company to work for, and recently applied for the broker trainee program again when it opened up.

Interview Question – The primary topic in all of our interviews was customer service. Everyone I spoke to emphasized that customer service was really the focus of the company and the position.   View Answer


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Indianapolis, IN

I applied online and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Charles Schwab in September 2012.

Interview Details – Filled out their online profile and attached my resume and cover letter. I was then prompted to take a personality test on the internet. Shortly after I was contacted by a recruiter to schedule a 5 minute phone screen. At the end of the phone screen she asked me if I could do a 45 minute interview the next day. I should have prepared more for the interview but I was short notice. Know the position well. I did not make it pass this stage but she told me a skills test was next followed by a 1:1 with a hiring manager at the Indianapolis office. Overall the interview was good practice.

Interview Question – Several behavioral questions about customer satisfaction. Be prepared with SPAR responses. Tell me about a time you pleased a unhappy customer? Can you give me another example?   Answer Question


12 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Broker Trainee Interview

Broker Trainee
Phoenix, AZ

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Charles Schwab.

Interview Details – The process took approximately 1.5 months. I found out about the position through my university's career services. After applying via Schwab's website, they will send you a link to assess your personality. A week later, I received an e-mail from a coordinator to set up a brief (3-5 minutes) phone interview. She wanted to know what I knew about the company and position and why I was interested in applying. You will know if you'll move on to the next round of interview because they will asked you to schedule a 40-50 minutes interview immediately after. I interviewed with the company's recruiter the following week. Be sure to know all you can about the company and the position. I did research by looking at their website and what other people are saying about them. I also looked at how their customers are rating them and what kind of complaints they have about the company's services/products so I can formulate appropriate questions for the recruiter to show that I'm well prepared. Also, study your resume if you haven't already done so because you will be asked plenty of questions about your education and previous experience. KNOW HOW TO ANSWER BEHAVIORAL INTERVIEW QUESTIONS (STAR method) and be prepared for follow-up questions. Have 2-3 questions to ask the recruiter! If you interview successfully, the recruiter will ask you to come into their office to take the SIFMA (a two part assessment which will gauge how likely you are to pass the Series 7/63 exams), which I did a week later. I was e-mailed a day later saying that I had passed. The recruiter called me the day after to set up an interview with 2 hiring managers. I interviewed the week after. I prepped by looking at the company's website (again), I Googled a SWOT analysis of Schwab to see what their strengths and weaknesses are so I am able to discuss the future direction of the company if necessary (this shows them that you are looking to work for them long-term even if you don't plan to). I met with a seasoned manager and a new manager who was promoted not long prior. They first asked me what I knew about the company and why I wanted to work with them. Then, for the next 30-45 minutes was spent on behavioral-style interview questions. They have a list of questions to pick from. Be sure to have specific examples "of a time when...." questions and what YOU did as a result. Always say "I" when answering these questions. Emphasize your ability to communicate and the love to help others as this is what they want in a potential employee. I turned the interview around by asking them questions about the company and position. A day later, the recruiter called to let me know that the managers would like to move onto the next process which is a background check. It takes about 5 business days. Everything checked out and I was offered the position.

I would recommend you go through all the Broker Trainee interviews posted on here and try to answer them as the majority were asked during the interviews. If you feel extra nervous about the interview, record yourself as if you were being interviewed. This will help you pick up any bad interview habits that you might not notice. Also, it will allow you to practice and assess yourself. Try being interviewed by friends, professor, or colleagues. The more prepared you are the better.

Interview Question – Phone/Person: Why Schwab?

Phone/Person: What do you know about the company?

Phone: Name a time you had to go above and beyond to help a customer.

Phone: Tell me a little more about your [experience at the last company].

Person: Tell me about a time when you had to get a group to to cooperate with what you are doing. Tell me about a time when you had to get a group, outside of your own, to cooperate. Tell me about a time when you had to explain a technical term to someone who was not familiar with it. Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer and how you dealt with it.

SIFMA: I don't remember the exact questions, but be sure to study logic questions (multiple choice answers with a) necessarily true b) necessarily true but not false c) not enough info given [never the case] d) necessarily false but not true e) necessarily false) and financial-related math questions (stock split, return rates, rate comparisons, percentage, etc). Yes, you are required to add, subtract, multiply, and divide by hand. Approximately 26 logic questions (30 minutes given) and 27 math questions (1 hour given).
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Negotiation Details – The offer was non-negotiable. It was made clear from your initial application that the salary is "take it or leave it."

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