The Top 11 Questions To Ask In An Accounting Interview
- 09 Jun 2022
- 4 minutes read
For most business owners, one of the most tedious tasks is to look for an efficient accounting service company. Usually, when the business is small the owners try to maintain the books by themselves, but as your operation expands, your accounts also scale up at the same pace. It eventually becomes necessary to get professional help for maintaining the accounts.
Once you realise that you need professional help, you need to sort out a few more facts. The most crucial decision is to decide whether you need an on-site accountant or a virtual accounting service that would suffice your needs. You need to think over the nature of your business, usually, most businesses are quite concise and do not require an on-site accountant.
Availablity often should also be considered before you begin your hunt. In order to get proper services within the budget, you can even go for outsourcing accounts. This is budget-friendly as well as you can get specialised assistance for dealing with your accounts. On top of this, you get access to cloud-based accounting programs that can do the books for you, and all the information is always available in real-time for your reference.
Irrespective of how you decide to deal with their accounting needs, you will require accounting professionals who keep your best interests in their mind. You can deal with the hiring process with a bunch of the most relevant and necessary accounting questions that can help in getting a bigger picture of the scenario.
You should ask the accounting service provider a few questions before the deal is done, and look for the answers you want to hear. The below questions can help you in finding the best accounting services provider.
Table of contents
The Top 11 Questions To Ask In An Accounting Interview
1. How are you going to make sure that the accounting process is in accordance with the current accounting standards?
The accountants who are entering a brand new workplace have a broad learning curve, they are always open to new learnings to cope with the constant changes in modern accounting. The technical advancements being made in the field of accounting require that the professionals are open to training.
2. Which accounting software do you use? Which additional software do you prefer?
It will be an incredible coincidence if your accounting professional is already familiar with your software. But, it is even better if you find a tech-savvy who has a knowledge of a wide range of software to provide the best solution in the shortest time span. You might even come across versatile candidates who have a lot of intellect and ability.
3. What type of accounting is your specialisation?
Being a small business owner, you don't have many requirements and you are probably looking for a general accountant who can manage most of your accounts needs such as accounts receivable, accounts payable, balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements, and other financial statements to keep your records in a proper structure.
4. Do you have any prior experience in working with small firms?
There is a huge difference between small and large businesses when it comes to accounting. A small-business professional is usually a generalist who has to manage end to end accounting, whereas last businesses typically look for specialists who can handle a single department. You need to pick up candidates that are most suitable for your requirement.
5. Tell me about a challenge you faced at your last job. How did you overcome it?
Analyse the problem-solving abilities of the candidates when he/she answers this question. Most often, the candidate will be able to recall any of his accounting experience and I would share how did you overcome the hurdles and resumed the process smoothly. Some candidates might face challenges in a different zone such as communication or technology.
6. Could you please cite some examples of the types of reports you generated in your previous job?
Each company has a specific requirement when it comes to reports. Not all firms need a similar kind of report when it comes to accounting. You need to check if the candidate is capable of generating the reports required by your firm.
7. Why do you wish to work with this company?
It is always fair to evaluate the candidates' motivation and expectations so that you know that the candidate and you are on the same page. This also gives you an insight into what kind of team and working atmosphere the candidate is expecting and how well he can blend in the current scenario.
8. Can you tell me about the unique kinds of journals?
This is a simple question that can be asked to check the candidate's fundamental knowledge. You can easily catch hold of applicants who are not well experienced with the basic concepts of accounting. The ideal candidates can give you a well-detailed answer with a few examples. In fact, you can share a snapshot of your company's journal and get some insights from the candidates.
9. Which method of communication do you prefer, and how do you communicate with your employer?
One of the prime causes of financial errors is a communication problem between the employer and the accounting department. There might be some readability issues when you pass your book off to accounts to a newly recruited staff member, even if they are highly competent and intellectual.
10. What are the top three skills of a great accountant?
Before asking this question, identify and list out the skills that your feel are essential for your accounting professionals. Mathematical and number-crunching abilities are the universal skills, but what other skills are vital for you other than these that you are looking for in your accountant. You can even find an essential skill that you have missed in your candidates' answers.
11. Can you explain a complex accounting process to me as if I am a brand-new employee with no prior accounting experience?
Since you have been looking after the business for a while, you will be able to understand accounting are the fundamental level. This does not apply to all your employees. Some of them belong to completely different departments. He would eventually deal with the accounts and paychecks of all the other employees. Hence, he should be able to deliver and explain the basic accounting concepts very clearly.
Just be very straightforward and transparent during the hiring process. Do not be hesitant if you have supplementary questions, as you are going to trust someone with the most crucial segment of your business. Hence, your trust and security are also of prime concern.
You can even request some of the providers for a demo so that you can actually realize the utility of the software and services you can avail of post the deal. You can reach out to multiple accounting services and choose the best one according to your needs, budgets, time frame, the services you require, and so on. Just look for the best answers and solutions, and your job is done.