Accountant Interview Questions in San Diego, CA
In an accountant interview, employers ask questions to determine your ability to follow financial best practices, maximize profit, and prepare financial reports. Expect the interviewer to ask questions about skills vital to the role of an accountant, including software proficiency, data analysis, communication, and business acumen. The interviewer may also ask you to describe your experience in specific areas, including payroll, auditing, billing, and trend analysis.
Top Accountant Interview Questions & How to Answer
Here are three accountant interview questions and how to answer them:
Question #1: Which accounting software packages are you comfortable using?
How to answer: This question allows the interviewer to understand your familiarity with accounting software and determine how much on-the-job training you will need. Discuss software packages you have used, including your years of experience and how you used each package. Include any formal training you have received in accounting software.
Question #2: What are the common financial statements used in accounting?
How to answer: Interviewers use questions such as this to test your technical expertise. In this case, define and discuss the three key statements used by all accountants, including balance sheets, cash flow statements, and income statements. Define and discuss each statement's characteristics and how accountants use them on the job.
Question #3: How would you explain a complicated accounting process or report to someone outside of the accounting team?
How to answer: This question will demonstrate your ability to communicate complicated financial information to co-workers in other departments, such as information technology and human resources. Describe the interpersonal and written communication strategies you have used with non-accounting co-workers and clients.
How far apart is the hour and minute hand a 3:15?5 Answers
No matter what time of the day, the minute and hour hand are always touching in the center of the clock face. Less
360 degrees on the clock. Each number is 360/12 = 30 degrees apart from one another. at 3:15, the minute hand is at 3 while the hour hand is 15/60 = 1/4 away from 3. So (1/4) * 30 = 30/4 = 7 + 2/4 = 7.5 degrees Less
Imagine you make a very complicated calculation in excel for a client who is going to make a decision. After you reviewed it a couple of times you notice you are going to save the client $10 million in taxes. You give it to your senior and your partner, who review your work. They agree on your calculation and tell the client about the tax savings and the meeting to finalize the transaction is tomorrow. It's 9 o'clock at night and you are finalizing the paperwork, and you suddenly realize you made a careless mistake on excel and instead of putting a minus, you put a plus, so the client is not going to save $10 million, but is going to owe $10 million. What do you do? How do you handle the situation?3 Answers
Firstly, tell your partner and senior about it. After that, finalize the paperwork and bring it to your client's house. Talk to your client and just tell your client that you've made a mistake and tell your client the correct info Less
Start looking for a new job as soon as possible.
Answer: Everyone makes mistakes and you have to acknowledge it in a humble way. Tell the senior or the partner of the mistake as soon as possible, so they can help you minimize the damage. Less
When you're under a lot of pressure and tight deadlines, how do you manage your stress level?2 Answers
I always try to have a positive mindset. Things are only as bad as you build them up to be in your head. I am not the type to get stressed out because I know I'll get through whatever obstacle is thrown my way. Things always seem to fall into place when you stay focused, determined, and positive about the final outcome. Less
For the past five years I have been living with my very beautiful girlfriend who is twenty-five years younger than I am (I’m 55 yo and she is 30 yo). I let her de stress me the way she knows best :). Less
Can I balance a high stressed work environment and role being that I was a single mother.2 Answers
They asked a question that was somewhat confusing at the time but made a lot of sense later. They asked how I would deal with monitoring the work done by payroll administrators even as I was not their supervisor but was still responsible for the accuracy and quality of their work. Ironically, this question rang in my ears for a long time--it was definitely a dilemma.2 Answers
Lacking overall context, this question appears to be taking a long view on the project ... if you're managing budget, tracking tasks and attentive to remaining scope of effort, it would be useful to ensure (minimally) that: - hours worked/paid aligned with estimates - hours worked by groups aligned with delivered work -- is it done, did that element exceed budget - reporting on overall project relative to plan ... in short, does it mirror (quite literally) where you say we should be. In this space, labor is one of the few variable costs ... failing to completely supervise payroll could quickly cause a project to go over budget. Less
That is true and I was happy to do that. The problem did not lie in tracking and managing budgets. The problem dealt with administrators having trouble receiving constructive criticism or being asked to fix their entry errors by someone that was not their supervisor, especially on a weekly basis since books closed weekly. Nonetheless, that was a big part of the job I was paid to do, the accuracy and integrity of the reports was my responsibility. Less
How did you handle a group member who didnt pull their weight?2 Answers
Approach the offending party with specific examples of what they are doing wrong and what they can do specifically to fix the problem. Show them -how- they aren't pulling their weight, rather than just saying it. Ask the group member's input on the matter and help them come up with solutions to correct the problem. Anyone can identify an issue. It's the ones that can fix the issue that truly count. Less
Approached the person and explained they had to pull their weight or they would not share in the grade. Less
Name the 4 most important financial statements and their uses.1 Answers
Balance Sheet-data about available resources as well as the claims to those resources Income Statement-data about the profitability of the company detailing sources of revenue and the expenses which reduce profit Cash Flows- illustrates the inflow and outflow of cash within the business. It shows where the cash comes from into the company, and how it’s used Statement of Retains Earnings-focuses on changes in retained earnings Less