Sweating about an interview coming up where you’re going to be applying as a finance manager? No worries! Listed below, you’ll find some of the most common finance manager interview questions as well as some examples of how to answer. Read on!
What experience do you have as a finance manager?
A straightforward question that requires an honest answer – list experience you have as it pertains to the position you’re applying for. What happens if you don’t have any experience? By thinking about the question ahead of time, you can have a reply at your fingertips. Your interviewer will appreciate your ability to relate skills gained in one position to another.
While my experience with x is limited, while working under y at my last job I really got to learn the ropes about z
As we move into the future, what challenges do you feel our industry is facing, especially the role of finance manager?
No right or wrong answers here, but certainly an opportunity to demonstrate some foresight. These days, mentioning Artificial Intelligence, software, and related items should do well. Regardless of your answer, be sure to have something to backup your responses.
Its hard to know for sure with industry factors such as x and y changing so many things – all I can say is that Im excited for the challenges that come with that
What systems have you developed to reduce/eliminate errors in your work?
While we all make mistakes, accountants can afford no such luxury. No, the company you are applying to isn’t expecting their employees to be flawless. What they’re seeking here is some method you deploy for QA.
Rain or shine, I always make sure that x is reviewed 3 times over and referenced against y before it goes out the door
Describe a situation you needed to use data to prove a point?
Here, it isn’t about you being right or a client being wrong, it’s about finding the facts through data. The key to answering this question is focusing on the outcome of data you furnished – and why it mattered.
Our department had been struggling for years, but by clearly illustrating the relationship between x and y, we corrected and showed record improvements in the next quarter
Tell me about a time when you received difficult feedback. How did you react?
One of the most difficult things to dispense – and receive – is critique of work. Anyone who has spent enough time in this industry realizes that human error is part of the job, and no one is perfect. What you’re going to want to do here is be sure to let the interviewer know what you did in reaction to this feedback. How accountable were the parties involved? Your ability to navigate though difficult situations will place you high on just about any accounting employer’s list.
No one likes these situations, but Ive found that dealing with it factually and without predjudice tends to be the best approach
Give me an example of when your attention (or lack of attention) affected the outcome of a project. Why?
Always with the details! No matter what your role in the accounting industry, this one’s important. Once again, saying it is one thing, being able to prove it is another.
A careful review of x revealed that y and z were out of order, ultimately preventing a costly audit
Which software and/or applications are you proficient in?
You’d be hard pressed to find an accounting firm these days where software isn’t at the cornerstone of how they operate. If your experience lies in a single – or outdated platform, be sure you are familiar with the current standards. Take some time to ensure you are able to to name popular applications, and have a solid idea of their purpose.
Im proficient in x and y, but ive ready tons of good things about z and would love to learn more about it
Regarding culture, what environment do you feel you do your best work in?
Culture is king these days, and for good reason. It’s more than simply ‘the way things are done’, it’s how things are done and why. While you may be a lone wolf, be careful how you answer this question should it fall out of alignment with the organization.
I succeed when given clear expectations of me and my team, and find a balance of working individually as well as alongside a team is when Im most content
Why are you leaving your last financial industry / accounting position?
This one can be leading, and must be answered carefully. Your need for better pay or indicating that your ‘old boss was an idiot’ may leave your interviewer with the wrong impression of you. Regardless of the reason your employment ceased to be, keep it on point and do not get negative here.
It was time for me to move on, and I feel as though I am ready for a new challenge