PwC Interview Questions & Answers

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Difficulty rating 5 / 10

Interview experience

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  • IT Risk Assurance

    4.5714/5 | Interview date: December 2015 | Job offer? Yes |

    Was this helpful? Yes 2

    Sectors: Accounting

    Difficulty rating 80.0 / 100

    Interview process

    For this job role there were two sets of interviews. The first was a telephone interview which was the most difficult stage of the process for me as you had 35 minutes to answer 9 questions. During the interview the interviewer kept cutting me out to ask follow up questions and then rushing me for answers due to time constraints. Luckily I got through that and went on to a one-to-one interview with a director. This interview was far more relaxed and was just a general conversation. The director just wanted to know more about me as an individual. The purpose of that was to see if I would fit in with the team and weather he'd want to work with me.

    Most difficult question

    I feel the most difficult question of the interview was 'why do you want to work for us?' The reason I say this is because you need to plan your answer carefully for this question. You need to carry out research before the interview but can not sound robotic during the interview so have to make it sound natural.

    Interview tips

    My advice for the interview (as well as the rest of the application process) is to just be yourself. Do not try to be someone else as this will show during the process. Make sure you carry out extensive research before the interview, relax and be yourself. There's no trick questions and they just want to get to know you as an individual. They know you possess the skills required for the job (shown through the other stages in the process) so take the interview as your chance to show yourself as an individual.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    During the Assessment Centre, I had to complete three tasks. The first task was a numerical and verbal reasoning test. This was fairly similar to the online tests done previously but was done in person and on paper. The second task within the assessment centre was a written case study. Within the study I received a booklet of information. Using the information I had to write a one page (both sides) proposal outlining which schemes I would chose from the booklet and why. The key to this task is structure. Make sure you have a set structure whilst writing. The final task of the assessment centre was the group exercise. Here with 4 other people we had to discuss a range of ideas (given to us individually before the task) and come up with the best ideas.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 4/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 4/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 4/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 5/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 5/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 5/5
  • 
  • Opportunities in Assurance with PwC – April and Autumn 2014

    5.0/5 | Interview date: June 2014 | Job offer? Yes |

    Was this helpful? Yes 4

    Sectors: Accounting

    Difficulty rating 60.0 / 100

    Interview process

    My first interview was on the phone. I was mainly asked competency questions here based on their common competency's outlined on the recruitment website.
    This interview was the hardest. For example, they asked me a time I had to correct someones mistake. I chose a time when someone at work wasn't doing there job correctly and I had to speak to my manager about this and he dealt with this.
    They then wanted another example as I had not directly dealt with it myself and therefore for this interview thinking on the spot of several examples was required making it relatively hard.
    The 2nd interview I had was with a partner of the company and was one to one. This I preferred, it was more like an informal chat, there was some competency questions but a lot of it was checking I understood the role I had applied for and what would be required of me if I was to be offered the job.

    Most difficult question

    Describe a time when you had to improve a piece of work after criticism?
    Who are our clients in the local area?
    When was the last time you read something about us (PWC) in the news?

    Interview tips

    I would advise other students to really research PWC and the specific role they have applied for. I would advise using sites such as wiki jobs to become informed on what to expect. Preparation in advance is key. Also keeping up to date with current affairs (read a few news stories daily) may also be useful.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    I had to do paper versions of the online numerical and reasoning tests. I also had to spend half an hour preparing and writing a report on a water conservation issue. I then had a group exercise where we had to work as a team to solve a common problem (ours was the best way to generate revenue from 5 different energy problems).

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 5/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 5/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 5/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 5/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 5/5
  • 
  • Opportunities in Assurance with PwC – April and Autumn 2014

    2.7143/5 | Interview date: May 2014 | Job offer? Not yet |

    Was this helpful? Yes 0

    Sectors: Consultancy

    Difficulty rating 60.0 / 100

    Interview process

    My final stage interview lasted just under an hour. I was asked questions about both the company and my own personal experience for each of the competency areas available on the website. The panel consisted of two senior managers. The format of the interview involved a series of questions which they read from a booklet and marked my answers from 1 to 5.

    Most difficult question

    Describe how you have been following a recent business issue.

    Interview tips

    You should prepare answers to each of the competencies explained on the website and think about how the experiences you have had relate. The process is extremely transparent and it is just a case of preparing well in advance to avoid feeling nervous.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    I firstly had to retake the online assessments (numerical and logical) before completing a written report. There was then a group exercise with 7 others in which we had to decide what steps a case study business should take.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 3/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 3/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 3/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 3/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 2/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 3/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 2/5
  • 
  • PwC - Graduate Opportunities Within AIMS - Autumn 2014

    4.5714/5 | Interview date: February 2014 | Job offer? No |

    Was this helpful? Yes 4

    Sectors: Accounting

    Difficulty rating 60.0 / 100

    Interview process

    My telephone interview lasted about 50 minutes with a member of the graduate recruitment team. The interview starts with the recruiter giving you some information on what they will ask you in the interview e.g start with a few questions about yourself and then move on to commercial awareness questions.The competency based questions are quite standard e.g. tell me about a time were you had to lead a group? the commercial awareness questions are not to specific to accounting but more about how this would impact pwc or how could pwc help in this situation.

    Most difficult question

    Describe a situation where you had to deal with a difficult person

    Interview tips

    Research the core values of the pwc and relate these to your answers and try to choose a current news story that is relevant to the position you applied to.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    At the assessment center you are split into two groups the first group does a paper version of the online numerical and diagrammatically tests done online. Then you move onto a group task were you have to read information on a company wanting to invest in a project and each person in the group is given a project to read. Then the group must decide which project is best for the company to do. Then you have a another test where you are given information on a topic and have to write a report to management on what course of action you would take given the information.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 4/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 4/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 5/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 5/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 4/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 5/5
  • 
  • PwC - Graduate Opportunities Within AIMS - Autumn 2014

    5.0/5 | Interview date: January 2014 | Job offer? No |

    Was this helpful? Yes 1

    Sectors: Consultancy

    Difficulty rating 40.0 / 100

    Interview process

    The final partner interview was very relaxed. The questions were based on the core PwC values, which are posted on their website. Mainly competency based, with some background questions about interests out of the university, opinion on latest business news. You have to be prepared to present what you know about the qualification you will be working towards, if any, and also for your short and long-term plans.

    Most difficult question

    Which piece of latest business news you think will affect PwC's business, how and why?

    Interview tips

    Prepare very well and read the core values. Read the latest business news, think on them and how they can affect different business and market spheres.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    The online tests were done once again, this time more questions for more time. The minimum result for success was lower than of the online tests. At the end there was a group discussion, you have to be able to work under pressure, when the facts change and should be able to communicate well and efficiently in a team to succeed on this one.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 5/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 5/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 5/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 5/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 5/5
  • 
  • Opportunities Within Technology with PwC – 2014

    4.0/5 | Interview date: November 2013 | Job offer? No |

    Was this helpful? Yes 4

    Sectors: Travel & Hospitality

    Difficulty rating 20.0 / 100

    Interview process

    Having completed the tough online tests and hearing about getting a one-to-one interview with the head of technology solutions at PwC, I was obviously thrilled to have got this far.
    The interview itself was an absolute grilling. The initial outset seemed friendly enough explaining my CV, my reasons for applying, my experiences and my goal of working in the sector. This lasted about 20 minutes where I also heard about the interviewer's experiences and history within the sector at PwC.

    The next 40 minutes included a various number competency based questions and also a number of mathematical questions regarding statistics and statistical distributions (due to my degree being in Maths and the Mathematical content of the programme). This part was very difficult to work on the spot and remember everything I had studied over the past 3 years of my degree seemingly tested. This section also went further into detail about my education and thus the testing of certain areas of mathematics ensued.

    At the end, I was given the opportunity to describe why I should be chosen over other candidates and what makes me stand out.

    Most difficult question

    Describe a situation where you have failed and had to complete a compromise within a strict deadline?

    Where would you use a Beta Distribution (Statistcs-based question)?

    When was the last time you had to lead a team and came across an annoying or unhelpful individual? What did you do to rectify the situation? How did the team's project or work conclude? Was it a success?

    If you were the leader of a team, what would be the 3 things you would look for in your employees beneath you?

    Explain a time when you were put into a new situation with no prior knowledge of the industry or project you were put in? How did you react? What would you change if you were to do it again? What recommendations would you give an individual in your shoes for this sort of scenario?

    Interview tips

    Go into detail of your degree and modules chosen. Learn up on little tips that could be tested in the interview.

    Read up on all your personal experiences.

    Go through a vast number of possible interview questions.

    Expect the unexpected! (as regards interview questions)

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    Unfortunately, didn't get as far as the assessment centres for PwC.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 4/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 4/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 5/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 4/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 3/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 3/5
  • 
  • Trainee Auditor

    4.7143/5 | Interview date: June 2013 | Job offer? Yes |

    Was this helpful? Yes 6

    Sectors: Accounting

    Difficulty rating 60.0 / 100

    Interview process

    Application started with competency questions, very typical: describe a time when you have: team work, leadership, overcome fear etc. Following this was a numeracy test and logical reasoning test (the sequence type you do in IQ tests). Once you have successfully completed this stage, it's the telephone interview. Naturally I swatted up on the company, however this was not necessary. It was entirely competency based with one question regarding the ACA exams, (just 'what do you know?'). The rest of the questions were what I had answered in the application process, however they had my answers in front of me so I had to have different examples.

    My feedback was that she liked my honesty, if I said I didn't know or asked for more information on the type of answer she required, she saw that as a positive.

    Through this stage, was an assessment centre, which contained a group task (to see team work), a numeracy test, logical reasoning test and written exam, all lasting 20 minutes. The written was the hardest as you are pushed for time. Just ensure it is in the form of a report as that is what they are looking for, content wasn't too important.

    Final interview is with a partner or senior director. Mine was surprisingly informal, chatting about secondments and opportunities within the firm. This was to see how easily I held a conversation with a senior member. Again, I was asked very typical questions: what do you expect from PwC, where do you want to be in 5 years etc. Lasted around 40 minutes, 20 minutes of questions, 20 minutes of informal chat. Not a strict interview.

    Most difficult question

    if Alan Sugar gave you £250,000 of investment, what would you do?

    Interview tips

    Google typical competency questions as through the process you will be asked them all! Ensure you know what the role you are applying for does and read up on PwCs clients (they may ask). I also know someone who got asked about a recent news story they were interested in, so be prepared to answer that (if it is about one of their clients they are even more impressed). Be confident and don't be afraid to say that you don't know. At the end of the day, every graduate they take on is there to be trained. You don't need an accounting background, in fact the more diverse the better, gives you more to talk about.

    Experiences at the assessment centre

    The assessment centre contained a group task (to see team work), a numeracy test, logical reasoning test and written exam, all lasting 20 minutes. The written was the hardest as you are pushed for time since you also have to read a 16 page booklet in this time. Just ensure it is in the form of a report as that is what they are looking for, content wasn't too important.

    The group task (for me there were 6 people) was how to make a company more sustainable. We were all given a sheet to read to the group and we had to decide how we would invest the company's money to bring the highest publicity with the best economic options. They were not really interested in what we picked, it was how we came to the decision and the balance of listening and giving our opinions that they were interested in.

    We then had lunch (where they say you are not assessed). While you are not assessed, still be on your best behavior and ask insightful questions as I have since sat in as an employee and once the candidates have left, I have been asked by management who I thought was good enough for the job.

    If you score highly enough on the exams (you get the results through the post) and impress in the group presentation, you get through to the final interview. It is rare if you get to this stage to then no be offered a job.

    Interview steps

    Interviews

    • Phone
    • 1:1
    • Group / Panel
    • Senior Management
    • Video

    Tests

    • Numerical
    • Personality
    • Verbal reasoning
    • Psychometric

    Other

    • Assessment centre
    • Group excercise
    • Background check
    • Presentation
    • Competency based questions

    Rating the interview

    • How would you rate the pre-attendance information? 4/5
    • How well was the interview organised? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the organisation? 5/5
    • What was your overall impression of the selection process? 5/5
    • Did the interview reflect the overall values / culture of the organisation? 5/5
    • Would you recommend this company to a friend? 4/5
    • Did you want the role following your interview? 5/5
  • 

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