Positions in finance call for essential skills such as trustworthiness and attention to detail which may be difficult to establish in a traditional interview environment. This is one reason why the competency based interview is becoming so popular in the financial sector, as it provides a good understanding of the personality and skills of each candidate and allows interviewers to compare applicants like for like.
In a competency based interview, each candidate is asked to give examples of his or her knowledge, behaviour and competency based on past experiences and roles. This enables judgements to be made about their likely future performance, and gives a clearer, more effective picture of the potential that they offer to the organisation.
When you’re interviewing for a position you want, you will need to do your research in order to maximise your chances of success. When you’re aiming to secure a role in the financial industry, you will need to demonstrate your technical ability, trustworthiness, strategic thinking and experience of legal compliance, for example, as well as your willingness to develop your skills and be innovative.
It can help to follow a simple method to ensure that your answers contain all that is needed to impress your interviewer. You should prepare several competency based examples from your own practice that demonstrate the decisions and actions you’ve made in your career, and this will enable you to select the best examples to show your competency in the interview situation.
You should apply the following to each of your examples when you are answering a question:
Focus on the situation. Give a quick description of the situation you were in to help to set the scene for your interviewer. Your whole answer should be formulated to give a clear and concise response to the question that demonstrates your expertise or experience in this area.
Talk about your task. You should be clear about what you were required to do, and what sort of input the project or task called for you to make.
Outline your action. You will need to explain why you were crucial to the success of the project, talking about exactly what you did and why you made the choice to act in this way.
Describe your results. Ensure that your interviewer knows what the outcomes of your project were by describing your results clearly and with reference to your own contribution.
CareerWise is Ireland’s leading specialist Technical and Executive Recruitment firm, and our team will work with you to find the best positions in the Medical Device, Sciences/Pharma and ICT industries. For jobs across Cork, Limerick and Galway, call us at CareerWise on +353 (0) 21 206 1900 for a consultation, or contact us online today.
Joe Robbins is co-founder of CareerWise Recruitment. A graduate of the University of Limerick (Degree in Business Studies, 1985), Joe worked in the UK for five years where he specialised in materials management, production management and plant management for a number of companies.
He returned to Ireland in 1992 to become Operations Manager for a Cork-based start-up, FMC Automotive Division which was subsequently taken over by Snap-on Equipment. Joe managed the business re-location of this company to Shannon in 1997 before setting up CareerWise Recruitment in 1999.
He is a committee member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) Mid-West region, and a former Director and Vice President of the Shannon Chamber of Commerce. Joe is former Chairperson of the Sixmilebridge Camogie Club and current Chairperson of the Clare County Camogie Board.
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