Banking Job Interviews: Interview Tips and Sample Interview Questions

Winning a job in Investment Banking is extremely difficult and only the very best prepared candidates have any real chance of success.

It is highly competitive with thousands of Graduates competing for very few placements in roles such as analyst or associate. Having said that, if your application has been accepted and you are called to an interview, you are well on your way to an exciting, lucrative and rewarding career.

This article gives you some top tips, guiding you in what to expect and provides a sample of the types of questions you will encounter in Investment Banking Job Interviews.

Investment Banking Interview Structure

For graduates applying for analyst and associate programs, the first step is to submit your resume or CV with a covering letter. Successful candidates are then invited to two
or more rounds of interviews before reaching the offer stage.

First round interviews are often conducted on campus and in some cases, an initial screening may take place on the phone. Treat telephone interviews as you would any other and prepare accordingly.

Most likely the first-round interview will take place as part of a visit to an Assessment Centre. This can last the whole day and would include numeric tests, case studies, role
plays as well as interviews and group exercises. All of these are designed to assess whether you have the core skills, determination and personality required.

The second-round interviews interview process is usually conducted by one or two managers and lasts approximately 45 minutes.

Sample Interview Questions for Banking

Questions will vary depending on the employer, the level of job you are applying for and recruiting policy.

You should not expect trick questions and the interviewer understands that you will have limited knowledge of the industry. Having said that you should demonstrate an
interest in and some knowledge of the Investment Banking sector, your prospective employer and the specialist area for which you are applying.

You will be asked Competency Based Interview Questions exploring your Analytical Skills, Problem Solving, Numeric Ability, Initiative and ability to cope in a highly pressured environment. You would also be expected to have a good understanding of why you want to pursue a career in Investment Banking.

For example, how would you answer these questions?

Interview Question 1: ‘What is an IPO and why would a company want to go public?‘Interview Question 2: ‘How do you see the potential for cross-border Mergers and Acquisitions activity over the coming years particularly in Asia and give reasons for your answer?

Interview Question 3: ‘What do you consider to be the long-term global impact of the current price of oil?

Interview Question 4: ‘Tell me about a time when you had to communicate complex information. What was the situation, what approach did you take and what was the result?

Interview Question 5: ‘Talk me through a situation where you had to use your initiative to solve a problem for which there was no set procedures.

Interview Question 6: ‘Describe a time when you had to build a collaborative relationship either within your department or outside in order to achieve a particular goal. What steps did you take to ensure this was a success.’

* Questions taken from the InterviewGold Interview System.

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