7 of the Best Accounting Interview Questions to Ask

accountant interview

The average hourly rate for an accountant is $40, but those with more experience can cost you $400 per hour or more. So whether you’re hiring hourly or annually, the person you hire is going to cost your company a pretty penny.

Are you looking to hire an accountant but aren’t sure what accounting interview questions to ask? We’ve got you covered! Here are the 7 best questions to ask for your next accounting interview.

1. What Do You Think are the Top Three Accounting Skills?

This is a twist on the classic question about your strengths. You’ll want someone to mention good numerical skills. But you’ll also need people who are good at communication and analytics.

Keep an eye out for applicants that include both hard and soft skills in their list. And even better, look for applicants that include examples of these skills in past jobs.

2. What Accounting Software Do You Have Experience Using?

This is twofold. You’ll find out if they have experience using the programs your company uses. And based on the spread of software mentioned, you can get a sense of how tech-savvy they are.

If they don’t have experience your technology, don’t discount them. Instead, consider asking how quickly they pick up on new technology.

3. How Would You Explain Complicated Financial Data to Another Staff Member?

Out of all the accounting interview questions to ask, this exemplifies soft skills. You’ll want to hire someone that’s able to communicate complicated concepts. Look for someone who avoids complex jargon and acronyms from the accounting world.

4. What Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems are You Familiar With Using?

Again, this lets you know if they’re familiar with using the same system that you use. If they don’t have ERP experience, discuss certifications or what they want to learn. Many smaller companies have switched to the cloud and no longer use ERP as their primary system.

5. What Experience Do You Have with Creating Business Metrics?

Look for specifics, like examples of evaluating gross margin or the cost of new customers. These will show that the candidate knows what business metrics are. It will also supply specific examples of their experience.

6. How Do You Stay Up-To-Date on Accounting Policies and Legislation

Because accounting is a rapidly changing industry, it’s important to hire individuals that make it a point to stay informed. In particular, ask about the methods they use to keep up-to-date. These may include, subscriptions to publications, attending accounting conferences, or professional organization memberships.

7. Describe an Accounting Error You’ve Made and How You Managed It.

This is a practical question that will assess both experience and honesty. Keep an eye out for the lessons they learned for their mistake and how proactive they were.

Avoid hiring candidates that claim they’ve never made a mistake. They either don’t have enough experience or aren’t being honest.

The Best Accounting Interview Questions to Ask: Now You Know!

Now you know the best accounting interview questions to ask for your next interview. Looking for someone to help you recruit the best possible candidates? Consider PT Systems.

PT Systems has over 10 years of experience matching talent with world-class organizations. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.