Interviewing is an important step for candidates and hiring managers to find the right match. When done well, an interview is a two-way conversation where both parties can share what they’re looking for and what they can deliver.
If you’re a hiring manager, it’s important to identify the key qualities a candidate needs to succeed in the role, then select interview questions that get at those qualities.
If you’re a job candidate, it’s important to prepare for an interview, so you can convey your thoughts clearly during the real thing. One best practice is to develop a structured approach to answering questions, then practice using common interview questions.
Below is a list of interview questions that were shared with us by treasury professionals in the AFP community.
Treasury professionals in the AFP community shared, based on their experience, the interview questions they like to ask:
Common behavioral interview questions
General Interview Questions
Spend five minutes and walk me through your résumé.
Tell me about yourself and why you are well suited for this role.
What sets you apart from other candidates?
In your last review, what are three things your manager gave you positive feedback on? What are some items your manager wanted you to work on?
What are you most passionate about in the work you do?
How do you approach work you don't want to do or find boring?
Treasury departments typically run lean. How do you manage and prioritize a busy and changing workload?
Problem-Solving Interview Questions
What do you do when you don’t know how to do something, and how do you get support
Tell me about a time you had to make an important decision but did not have all the information.
Tell me about a new skill/procedure/complex problem you have had to resolve. What were the steps you took, and were you successful?
Describe your communication style, both written and verbal.
Tell me about a time you joined a team and had to accomplish a common goal.
Tell me about a time you had to manage disagreements or disappointments, and how did you recover?
Give an example of a time you had to manage resistance to a change you were implementing.
Tell me about a time you had to manage a difficult situation with customers or senior management.
Describe a time you had to bring a group of senior stakeholders around to your way of thinking. Describe the situation, your actions and the outcome.
Tell me about a time when you, as a treasury professional, had to train someone else and help them understand the importance of the treasury function.
Leadership and Team Management
What is the most successful yet challenging activity/project you have led?
What is your leadership style, and how do you like to manage teams, whether informal or formal?
What is your approach to managing poor performance in your team?
What do you consider to be effective staff development opportunities that can be offered to the team?
Technical interview questions
What risks do you see inherent in the industry that you would address if hired?
What is your 30/60/90 plan for this position if hired?
What is your personal perspective on risk management?
How do you approach safeguarding the company’s assets?
What is your definition of success for the treasury department?
Can you explain the fraud services you typically see on an accounts payable bank account, payroll? What about accounts receivable accounts or treasury accounts?
Explain a prudent process when adding or removing users from bank platforms.
What is FBAR?
How do you approach cash forecasting?
Explain the concept of free cash flow and how to calculate it using the direct method.
How would you go about understanding and figuring out a new country and banking in that country?
We have three projects for the treasury department. Projects: A, B, C. We're looking to automate manual processes in project A; how would you recommend we do this?
For Business B, we're looking to reduce fraud, increase days payable outstanding and increase throughput of payments; what would you recommend?
For Project C, we are looking to lower overall costs, increase interest income and lower interest expense; what would you recommend?
Accounting Interview Questions
What are the three main financial statements? What information do they convey? How do they connect with each other?
Why would a company receive cash from a customer in month 1 but not recognize it as income until month 2?
Let’s say I buy a piece of equipment. Walk me through its impact on the three financial statements.
Suppose you have a company where EBITDA has been rising for the past several years and that company suddenly declares bankruptcy. How might this have happened?
Conglomerate X has a significant amount of debt maturing next year. With debt markets still tight, what options does the company have?
Questions to Ask in an Interview
At the end of every interview, candidates are always given the opportunity to ask the interviewer some questions. Make sure to prepare your questions to ask the interviewer ahead of time. Choose questions according to what’s important to you and any additional information you need to determine if the role will be a good fit.
To help get you started, here are questions suggested by treasury professionals in the AFP community:
How do you communicate and deliver information?
How do you approach a situation when I ask for help, and how will you remove obstacles to help me succeed in a task or project?
Why did you accept your job, and why do you stay?
What challenges have you faced that you did not necessarily expect?
What training do you offer, and how will you help me grow my experience?
How do you motivate, engage and inspire employees?
What makes someone a valuable employee in this company?
Do you feel valued in this company, and how does the company demonstrate this?
My career goals are [insert here]; if I am chosen, how will you help me reach my goals?
Is there anything in my experience or education that would give you confidence or concern about my success in this role?
What systems do you use? How do you train employees on these systems? Is the training internal or external?
What is your approach to automation and resource allocation for enabling efficiency in the treasury department?
How does the company manage liquidity — domestically and globally?
What is the company’s approach to hedging risk?
How does treasury impact EPS in this role?
How does the company approach ESG, and what value does it place on it?
What is your approach to both internal and external stakeholder management, and can you talk about how the treasury department interacts to ensure a successful partnership?