Get Hired: Interview Tips for Young Accountants


As a young accountant you may be a year out of school and working your way through the CPA program.

You’ve networked, sent out resumes and developed a strong LinkedIn profile. All of your hard work has paid dividends and you’ve landed an interview with the company you’ve had your eye on.

Now it’s time to ace the interview and get hired. Here’s how.

Communicate Professionally
Time to put your inner Valley girl in a box. While you might use “like” frequently with your friends, or slang, communicating professionally as a young accountant is the key to being successful in an interview. Be clear, direct, succinct, but humble. Position yourself as eager to learn, highly motivated and open to feedback. As recruiters we hear this frequently – employers want someone who is coachable. Technical skills can be refined and taught, attitude cannot.

Project Confidence
Part of projecting confidence is looking the part. We’re surprised how often candidates appear with ties askew, or shirts wrinkled. Don’t chew gum and while a 5 o’clock shadow looks great in a cologne ad, aim for clean-shaven for your interview. Your first impression counts so make sure you’re conveying the right one with your appearance.

Highlight Transferable Skills                        
Whether it’s an internship, or part-time job that forms the basis of your previous work experience, tie them and what you’ve learned into the role you’re applying for. Young accountants may not have the specific skill set outlined in the job description, but as long as they can demonstrate transferable skills that will allow them to learn tasks quickly, they have a good chance of getting hired.

While the job market in the GTA remains competitive for young accountants, those who communicate professionally, project confidence and understand the value of their transferable skills, stand a good chance of nailing a great interview and landing a job.