accounting job interview questions

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     Job Interview

(Contributors: CUHK Final-year Students)

Types of Job Interview Questions

1. Ice-breakers

2. Skills and Experience

3. Knowledge

4. Current Affairs

5. Attitude / Personality / Motivation

6. Probing / Tricky / Problem-solving

7. Job-specific

8. Technical



1. Please introduce yourself in 5 minutes.

2. Introduce yourself.

3. Please introduce yourself and your hobbies.

4. Please tell me something about yourself, your family and school life.

5. Can you introduce yourself?

6. Can you tell me something about your hobbies?

7. Can you tell me something about your family and your studies?

8. Briefly introduce yourself.


Skills and Experience

1. What kind of activities did you participate in?

2. Tell me about your past working experience.

3. What achievement do you have in sports?

4. What kind of computer skills do you know?

5. What did you gain from your work experience?

6. What were the difficulties for your job? How did you overcome them?

7. Can you tell me your experience in the English Debating Team?

8. Why did you join the English Debating Team?

9. Which university course do you find most difficult? How did you cope with it?

10. Please tell me more about your involvement in extracurricular activities.

11. Describe what you have done and learnt from your summer job.

12. What did you do in your activities?

13. What exactly did you do in your summer job?

14. What sort of business does the company you worked for in summer do?

15. Which tutor do you like? Why?

16. Which course do you like? Why?

17. Which course do you hate? Why?

18. How did you handle conflict between you and your partners?

19. Why don't you take part in extra-curricular activities?

20. Please describe your position and duties in the Strategic Investment Society.

21. What did you learn from the Outward Bound Activities?

22. How did you solve your problem in the Outward Bound activities?

Skills and Experience (contd.)

23. What is the usual assignment given to you in your summer jobs?

24. Why are your high school reuslts so good, but not your university studies?

25. Can you explain why your GPA dropped substantially in the last semester?

26. Tell the details about your trip to Beijing.

27. How was the trip to Beijing?

28. What do people do in this club?

29. What have you learnt in the summer job?

30. Why did you take French studies as your minor?

31. What do you think about the French language course you took in France?

32. Did you try a lot of French food?

33. Did you meet a lot of people in this activity?

34. How about the trip to Guangdong village?

35. Tell me something about your two most recent employment.

36. What did you do as the Finanical Secretary of the Residence Committee?

37. Did the committee organize any activities?

38. Which activity was the greatest success?

39. Why did you make the decision to give up the degree programme in Xiamen?

40. What were the difficulties you faced when you came to Hong Kong as a F.4 student?

41. Can you describe your summer job?

42. What is your most favourite subject? Why?

43. What is your most undesirable course? Why?

Skills and Experience (contd.)

44. Which of the summer jobs do you like most? Why? What do you think about the
    company? What are their weaknesses? What are the contributing factors to its

45. Which extra-curricular activity do you enjoy most?

46. What is the most important decision you have made?

47. What is the decision that leaves you most regretted making?

48. How did you deal with difficulties in team work as a leader? Give concrete examples.

49. How do you set your goals? Give an example to show how you set the goal and
    achieved it.

50. Describe an incident that required you to make modifications or changes in you own

51. What did you do when facing opposition from others? Give examples.

52. What courses have you taken as electives in the university? Why did you take them?

53. Have you done any group projects? If yes, what are they about?

54. Do you know how to speak Mandarin?

55. What's the strength and weakness of the company for which you worked last summer?

56. Tell me something about the company you worked for.

58. Introduce a project you have done.



1. In what way is CUHK different from other tertiary institutions? What criteria will
   you be using when evaluating CUHK?

2. What is the role of a manager and that of a partner?

3. A partner is like running a business. Then, is there any conflict between this role and
   his profession?

4. How do you compare the ability between graduates in Hong Kong and mainland

5. Tell me what people in Hong Kong can do to maintain the city’s success.

6. Do you think Shanghai will replace Hong Kong in the near future?

7. Do you think business knowledge is important?

8. How do you rank CUHK, HKU and UST? Why?

9. What is the difference between a small local firm and a multi-national organization
   like the company that you worked for. Any differences in their management
   philosophy? What are the threats and opportunities?

10. What do you think are the qualities of candidates we are looking for?

11. What do you know about our company?

12. What do you think is the reason we do not have a subsidiary in Xiamen?

13. Do you think it is a suitable time for us to set up a subisdiary in Fujian when the
    relationship between Taiwan and China is not so good?

14. What is team work?

15. How do you feel about our company?

16. What do you think about the future development of our company?

17. In your opinion, what is Internet’s impact on business?

18. Which city do you think is the competitor for Hong Kong?

19. What is the advantage of Hong Kong as compared with Singapore?

Current Affairs

Current Affairs

1. What is your opinion about the Hong Kong government's behaviour in the financial

2. What will you suggest for the Hong Kong economy to revive?

3. What do you think about the recent economic downturn?

4. How do you keep up with current issues?

5. Which newspapers do you read?

6. Do you read SCMP?

7. What's the headline of today's SCMP?

8. What's the influence of the Asian financial crisis on the company which you worked
   for in summer?

9. Do you read any economic journal?

10. What's your viewpoint towards the government's action in the Asian financial crisis?

11. What’s your opinion on the Asian financial crisis?

12. Why has the Hong Kong interest rate been raised during the Asian financial crisis?

13. What is the current affair that you have paid attention to lately? What is your opinion
    on it?

 Attitude /
Personality /

Attitude / Personality / Motivation Questions

1. What are your plans for the coming five to ten years?

2. Why do you choose our company?

3. What do you expect to get from the job?

4. Why did you choose to study at CUHK?

5. Why do you choose to apply for this position?

6. Why are you interested in the job?

7. Do you think team work is important? Why?

8. What are the elements to become a good leader?

9. What are your goals?

10. What do you like? Team work or individual work?

11. What will you do if you have lots of work to do or many deadlines to meet?

12. Why didn't you apply to work in another field during your second year’s summer?

13. Tell your experience and feeling in communicating with the clients.

14. Can you describe a situation that you find it easy to compromise with others?

15. What are your main interests?

16. Tell me your 5-year plan.

17. Why did you choose Chinese University? How good is its School of Accountancy?

18. How do your friends view you?

19. Describe a situation that you had to stand firm.

20. How do you prioritize your tasks?

21. If the employer has to cut your salary, how will you advise the employer?

Attitude / Personality / Motivation Questions (contd.)

22. What kind of work are you interested in and why?

23. How do you allocate your time between studies and activities?

24. How do you plan your timetable?

25. What are your plans apart from that for your career?

26. How do you deal with conflicts in a team?

27. What’s your 5-year plan?

   Probing /
    Tricky /


Probing / Tricky / Problem-solving Questions

1. How do you manage your time in working and dating?

2. Why should I hire you?

3. Will you leave our company to join another firm after you get your professional

4. Do you like doing research? Why?

5. Will your family allow you to work overseas?

6. How will you invest if you were given one million dollars?

7. Give 3 reasons why I should employ you.

8. Can you tell me a story from the “Soup of Chicken” book that you have read?

9. Do you want to work in the PRC?

10. What do you think about teamwork?

11. Do you like working in China?

12. What’s your advice to the students if you’re asked to give a presentation on the topic
    “Career Choice” to a secondary school?

13. If there is a spectrum of solutions to a problem, how will you choose the best one?

14. What can you bring to our firm?

15. Will you prefer to work under a competitive or stable working environment?

16. Have you ever been to China?

17. What do you think is the main difficulty you will encounter in the job?

18. Do you think getting a balance in life is difficult?

19. Do you think money is the most important thing in life?

20. Do you think your background will be helpful to our business?

Probing / Tricky / Problem-solving Questions (contd.)

21. How did you feel when you saw your old friends in their jobs while you are still
    studying in the university?

22. Do you mind working in China to help our company expand the business there?

23. What do you do in your leisure time?

24. Why do you apply for this position?

25. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

26. What is your usual role in a team?

27. When there is a conflict in a group, how do you solve it?

28. What is your career plan for the coming five years?

29. Who has the greatest influence on you?

30. How do you manage your time? On what basis do you prioritize your tasks?



Job-specific Questions

1. What have you learnt from being an audit trainee?

2. Why do you want to join the accounting profession?

3. Why interested in tax?

4. How did you get the job of summer trainee in Ernest & Young?

5. How are the duties in E & Y divided between Profit Tax and Salaries Tax?

6. How do you expect KPMG to be different from E & Y?

7. What do you like about the job nature of the tax department?

8. What do you think are the alternative job opportunities for fresh graduates in
   accounting? Do you think the recent economic downturn will affect them?

9. Why do you choose auditing?

10. How do you rank the Big-5? Why?

11. What are the differences among the employees of the Big-5?

12. It was said that people of AA are aggressive. What do you think?

13. If you can't gather sufficient audit evidence from the management, what will you do?

14. What are the important ethical qualities of a certified professional accountant?

15. Do you know what the duties of an auditor are?

16. Why do you choose to concentrate in China Business?

17. Can you name me some clients that you have done tax computation on?

18. Do you really like the job nature of a tax accountant?

19. Why are you interested in auditing?

20. What aspects interest you in the field of auditing?

21. Tell me more about your duties as an audit assistant.

Job-specific Questions (contd.)

22. Tell me more about your post of marketing officer.

23. Why do you choose PriceWaterhouseCoopers?

24. You took the examination in the LCCI, so are you really interested in auditing?

25. What have you done in the post of audit assistant?

26. Do you know how to work independently as an auditor?

27. What are your considerations when choosing to apply to the Big-5?

28. Can you tell me more about the responsibilities of a marketing officer?

29. Were there any difficulties encountered in your marketing work?

30. Why do you choose auditing as your career?

31. Why didn’t you choose Professional Acountancy in your first year of studies?

32. Why did you choose accounting / auditing?

33. Please rank the Big-5.

34. Why do you choose the tax department?

35. Do you think auditing job is very boring?

36. Name one audit client of your employer’s.

37. How will you differentiate our firm from the other Big-4s?

38. How will you differentiate the Big-5 accounting firms from the banks, e.g. HSBC?

39. What are the characteristics and qualities a successful accountant must possess?

40. In one sentence, what is auditing?

41. With reference to your resume, you have worked for a CPA firm as an audit trainee.
    How will you rate your performance?

Technical Questions

Technical Questions

1. Can you describe the software development cycle?

2. Which do you prefer: C++ or Java?

3. In what way will the Y2K issue affect auditing?

4. What is the accounting treatment of investment in lease?

5. What is the accounting treatment of foreign currency?

6. What are the components of internal control?

7. What are the functions of sales and collection cycle?

8. How do you verify the existence of a fixed asset?


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