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My Articleship Interview Expereince at Ernst & Young

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     on  14 March 2013    

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Dear All,

 

I just wanted to share my interview experience with you all. I really worked hard to get a call from the company as I did not have any references. I applied to the audit division. Initially there was an aptitude test with the following sections:

 

1. Quantitative Aptitude.

2. Accounting.

3. Logical Reasoning.

4. General Knowledge.

 

The paper was little lengthy but comparatively easy, so I didn't have a problem with clearing that.

 

Next came the interview which was scheduled later contrary to the common belief there was only one round of interview interview, the questions asked were as follows:

 

1. As usual it started with - Tell Me about Yourself.

2. Difference between finance lease and operating lease.

3. AS-6 Depreciation.

4. Difference between Reserve and Provision and contingent liability.

5. Journal entry for Provision for Bad and Doubtful Debts.

 

My Performance:

 

First of all I had travelled the entire previous night for the interview and hardly slept for two hours. I lost my presence of mind and here is how it went:

 

1. When he asked tell me about yourself I replied- I am a type of person who does only what I am truly passionate about. He instantly caught me and asked me...CA Profession gets monotonous sometimes, how do you think you can manage that if you can do only what you are passionate or interested about? I somehow managed that but it didn't go well.

 

2. He scanned through my resume and asked(I had done a course related to stock markets) - a question about that which I answered.

 

3. Series of questions on accounting standards - which I barely managed because I couldn't recall anything.

 

4. When he asked an example for Reserves- I said reserve for bad debts(which is not a reserve but a provision)

 

5.And for the journal entry for Provision for bad debts I told- Bad debts a/c to debtors(Ans- P&L a/c to Prov. for bad debts

 

6. I think the interview was over when i gave the wrong answer tot he journal entry question itself. But the worst thing I did was when he asked me what is your favourite subject, he tactically gave me the options like among law, finance, costing etc which is your favourite subject (note that the options don't include accounting and auditing)- I told him I like company law and any finance related subjects. I should have told him my favourite subjects are accounting and auditing as I applied to audit. So he concluded that it seems like you are more into finance..audit is not an area of interest to you.

 

My Inference/Suggestions:

 

1. First of all go to the interview in a right mind set sleep well the previous night and make sure you have the presence of mind. In my case I new the right answers to what is a Reserve, Provision, Contingent Liability and even the answer to that journal entry but inspite of that I gave the wrong answers.

 

2. Secondly, don't pretend to be something that you are not. In my case I was not really interested in audit, my interest areas were taxation and finance but since they were hiring only for audit I pretended to be interested in it but the interviewer caught me red handed, believe me the interviewers are can read your face and find out whether you really mean what you say.

 

3. Be your natural self. Think before you answer because if you give a wrong answer but correct it immediately, still the damage is done. This shows that you are not sure about what you know.

 

4. Lastly don't settle for something because that is what is available, follow your passion truly and do only what you think you can do really well. Here I told him I do only what I am passionate about which is true about my character but it became a lie in this case which was to a certain extent because I am really not much into audit.

 

I would like to say that, we all know how difficult it is to get a call from a big 4 for articleship interview and I even after getting an opportunity, failed to utilize it. However I never lost heart even though I felt bad as I believe Everything happens for a reason the reason here is god wants me to do what I really want to do :). Hope this post was of some help to you guys.

 

Cheers and All the best.

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