With a record breaking start to 2022 here at Public Practice Recruitment Ltd, we have plenty of accountants busy getting prepped to showcase their skills and experience at interview in the coming days and weeks.
So, in this week’s article we thought we’d share a crib sheet of ten bullet point tips for how you can shine at your interview for a role in practice.
If you’re feeling swamped juggling work and your need to get laser focused to win your dream job as an accountant then these ten pointers are a really good way of getting yourself interview ready.
1. Think logistics.
Right now you’re as likely to be interviewing online as you are in person. But whichever format your interview will be taking you’ll need to have worked through the logistics.
If your interview is online you’ll have wanted to test your connection, make sure your software doesn’t need any updates running, get your backdrop looking professional and make sure you have good light and sound.
If your interview is in person can you do a dummy run to check you know where it is, where to park or what the traffic or public transports is likely to be like on the day.
2. Learn the company.
You don’t want to terrify a potential employer by revealing things about their own organisation that they hadn’t even clocked, but you certainly want to show a specific interest in their firm as opposed to just any old firm. Why does their unique way of operating interest you? What case studies or clients have you seen they have that make you particularly interested in this role?
3. Dress to impress.
Yes it’s 2022. And yes lots of offices now adopt a smart casual dress code over the need for suits and ties. But really an interview is still your opportunity to show the very best version of yourself so do make an effort when it comes to your appearance. And check that as well as looking smart and professional you’re comfortable and won’t encounter any embarrassing wardrobe malfunctions!
4. Take a hard copy of your CV and your application as well as the job description.
If one of the questions quotes something you’ve written back to you, it will be handy to be able to pick out the context. It’s also helpful to have some notes in front of you that won’t interrupt the flow of an interview (online particularly) but will give you some quick inspiration to make your answers relevant to the job and bringing it back to the job description is always a great idea.
4. Have some flexible answers ready.
Can you remember when you studied for English Literature GCSE. Most likely you had a few quotes memorised from your set text that you knew you could tie in to any questions to showcase your knowledge. Well, use the same theory of your interview by having one or two examples of how you resolved a difficult situation and be prepared to swing how you present them to suit a range of different themes and questions.
5. Go slow and make sure you listen as well as talk.
Regardless of what role you’re applying for, your interviewer will be looking for a great communicator. And communication is just as much about listening as it is about talking, so slow down and be sure to listen to each question in full. Answer concisely and don’t be afraid to turn the chat away from questions and answers and more to a natural conversation. The ability to do this showcases true communication skills.
6. Remember that body language can speak as loudly as words.
Sit up straight and try not to let any nervousness show in your hand movements of gestures. Equally be wary that your body language doesn’t showcase disinterest or arrogance.
7. Smile and endeavour to show warmth and personality.
Your skills and qualifications matter a lot. But potentially even more important to your interviewer is that you’re a personable accountant who won’t rock the boat in their existing team and that their staff and clients will want to work with. So be sure to let a little glimmer of your personality shine through and convey warmth where you feel it’s appropriate.
8. Have some questions prepped.
There’s nothing worse than a candidate answering all of the questions they’ve been asked brilliantly only to crash and burn when it comes to asking their own questions. It’s fair to ask why the opportunity has arisen. What kind of study support might be available? What the key focus for the firms short, medium and longterm future might be. Have a list of questions at hand to refer to when you’re asked.
9. End on a positive.
When it’s time to go, don’t be afraid to let them see how much you’d love the job. Thank them for the opportunity and tell them that you’re really excited to hear the outcome. This will be their lasting impression of you so make sure it’s a positive one.
10. Go easy on yourself until you hear the news.
The post interview waiting game can be really hard. If you’re working with a trusted recruitment partner like us, you’ll at least have someone to chat things through with and you’ll be able to check on the decision making progress with us. But make sure you schedule in some positive distractions post interview to help you keep your cool until you’re notified of their decision.
Whether you have interviews lined up already or you’re only just starting your search for a new job as an accountant, be sure to keep one eye on our jobs board as they are updated almost daily and you never know when the perfect opportunity might present itself.
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And a whole host of brilliant accountancy jobs in the North East of England.