News & Blog

Accountancy Interviews - the second stage

  • December 15, 2015

Every interview process varies slightly dependant on the size and structure of the company to which you are applying, but it isn’t unusual to experience two, three or even four interviews from start to finish.  Our various articles throughout this series on interviews have touched on the variety of formats that second interviews can take.

Commonly employers will utilise psychometric testing at the second interview stage to establish not only your cognitive abilities, but also analyse your personality as discussed in last edition’s “The Secrets of Psychometric Testing”.

Whilst you have experience another standard format with one or two interviewers, it is entirely possible that you may well be requested to deliver a presentation to senior stakeholders within the business or even face a formal panel, as discussed in “The Challenges of Panels and Presentations.”
If you have been invited back for a second or third stage then you are obviously doing something right the first time around and irrespective which format it takes, we recommend  you keep a few key points in mind when approaching the subsequent interview phases, as over confidence complacency and can all too easily slip in and cause you to damage your chances of getting the job.

Second Interview Preparation

You will have spent a great deal of time researching the company and your interviewers prior to the first stage.  We strongly recommend that you refresh your memory and go over what you already know this time too.  Preparation will of course be of critical importance for any presentation, as will knowing who your interviewers are.  Remember that they might change and additional members of the business will also be involved.

An additional part of your preparation should be revisiting your strengths and weaknesses, and preparing other examples for competency based questions.  Don’t rejurgitate the same examples without further clarification and expansion – the objective of this interview is to delve deeper into your skills and experience.

Build on what you know: you should have extrapolated a great deal from your previous visit and the answers to your questions.  Use this information astutely to ask more probing questions of your interviewers, or use it to add credibility to your presentation.

Jekyll and Hyde

You may find that the attitude and demeanour of previous interviewer changes drastically.  You may well have used the technique yourself, from the first interview as a getting to know you chat, to really pushing the interviewee in the second. 

Office Tour 

Later in the interview process, it is more likely you will be given a tour of the offices or facility and maybe even meet the team.  Keep in mind that you are on display at all times and your interaction with those you meet will be carefully assessed.

This also gives you an opportunity to glean more of an idea about the working environment and company culture, which should help you in your decision making as to whether you actually want the job. 

It’s sometimes easy to overlook the fact that it’s about whether you want the job as much as whether the interviewer wants to employ you.  There are so many different factors that impact on whether the role is correct, careful consideration must be given to what is right for your career pathway both now and in the long term.