Compliance Interviews - preparation is key
Whether you are just starting out on your Compliance career, or have attained a high level of seniority; the interview process is always a daunting one. However, much the same as a sprinter competing in the Olympic 100m final, you must bring your a-game on the day, as you only get one chance to beat the competition and be first past the post. Thorough preparation therefore, is your own personal training regime; no sprinter would turn up for a big race without proper preparation.
Your interview research
Your basic groundwork for every Compliance job interview is researching the company, and we highly recommend that you don’t leave your research to the last minute. Whilst it needs to be fresh in your mind, a rushed last minute skim will leave you feeling tense and under prepared.
Information in the public domain
You are looking for a variety of information that lies within the public domain; first stop, the company’s website.
• The “About Us” section of their website to find out about the background and familiarise yourself with the products they deal with.
• Key people within the company – if the website doesn’t give you the information, LinkedIn and Google are good sources.
• Competitors – demonstrate your market knowledge through awareness of the company’s main competitors and their market share.
• Latest news – the company’s website will often publish their press releases, and make sure you check the industry news as well for latest published information.
Talk to your consultant
A good consultant will email links to the company website and any other relevant information they feel would aid you in your preparation. Being specialists in the Compliance market place, they themselves are an excellent source of information about the company that you won’t be able to find in the public domain and you must therefore make time to discuss the role as well as researching on your own. They should be briefing you on a variety of information including:
• The structure of the team and its reporting channels
• Company culture
• How the role came about and its long term prospects
• Who will be interviewing you
• What format the interview will take
This is also an ideal opportunity to quiz them on the research that you have carried out personally if you are unsure of anything in particular.
Make sure you review the job description provided by the consultant and ensure that your technical and regulatory knowledge is up to date and relevant.
Your goal during the interview is to present a professional image whilst discussing your achievements, skills, expertise, knowledge and showcasing your personality. It’s a tall order, and being able to discuss your CV fluently without having to refer to the document itself will aid you enormously.
However, no one is a robot so take a copy with you just in case you do have a blank moment and need to refer to it. Don’t ask to look at the interviewers.
Prepare your own interview questions
You will of course be aiming to ask questions at the end of the interview, and the company research you have carried out and your conversation with your consultant will give you the grounding on which to base these and showcase your acumen. Aim for at least four or five written down, just in case the interview covers one or two during your conversation. We do recommend that you try to maintain a positive rather than negative line of questioning, and don’t be reticent in drawing out your interviewer. Positive rather than negative lines of questioning are generally recommended, looking, how they have incorporated and integrated regulatory change in the past work well for example.
With your research done, questions practiced and a good grasp of the company, you should be now ready and raring to go; waiting to step out on to the track, listening to the roar of the crowd... take a deep breath and you’re on.