PwC first interview



I have my first interview with PwC next week and am wondering what to talk about for the business focus section. I have applied for tax, and so assume it should be something relevant to tax?

In my application, I put that Lloyds TSB would be an ideal client, due to the proposed takeover with HBOS, but am now wondering what I will be able to talk about for this at an interview?

Any help would be appreciated.



Andrew - read up on Obama’s plans to increase taxation and regulate offshore tax havens see my blog post on [[How Obama will change the city (and city jobs)]] too!

Afraid I don’t really know anything about the tax implications of HBOS/Lloyds - good luck - let us know how the interview goes!


Thanks, I have looked a Obamas plans to increase taxes, and as it plans to increase the tax on the wealthy people generally earning over $200,000. Surely these are the people that can afford the accountants and advisors, so is this likely to increase work for advisors, as wealty individuals and corporations seek new ways of avoiding tax.

I was also hoping to talk about Lloyds TSB in the sense that as a result of the takeover, they will hold a majority market share, which under normal competition law would not have been allowed. I therefore feel they will face greater financial and governement regulation. In particualr Obama is highly in favour of moving towards a regulated economy, away from the free market. I feel this will be passed on to other governments, such as the UK, which may see a move towards stricter compliance procedures, such as the Sarbanes Oxey Act for US companies, resulting from the Worldcom and Enron scandals, both involving the same auditr.

Do you think this seems reasonable to talk about, as I do not know a huge amount about the tax implications either, and am hoping I will not be expected to as this is likely to be a hugley complex area.

Many Thanks, I’m getting nervous about my interview now, its on Monday, and then have a KPMG one on tues, a hectic weekend



I think your ideas are good, don’t worry, i also have an interview on monday, wish us good luck!


Thanks Chen, Good luck for Monday


I’ve also got an interview on monday too for audit. Like you, I’m concerned that I don’t have enough to expand on the points I used to answer the question on my preferred client. I talked about Sony.

I’m hoping the interviewing concentrates more on the latter part of the application!

I actually got to final round last time, would it be cheeky to mention it during my interview at some point?


Thanks for the reply and also the private message, it hopefully will put my mind at ease, i seem to have done so much research so hope its all gonna b worth it. sorry i dont know an awful lot about sony, im sure uv got plenty to talk about tho, u must of done something right to get through last time. im not sure if its cheeky to mention it, i guess not, but mayb as long as you can say what you have learnt from last time and how you have improved this time round.

good luck for monday mate, ul hav to let us kno how u get on


I’ve had my interview this morning with a senior manager and it was very different from what I expected actually. Firstly, there were no commercial awareness questions at all. Not even the usual ‘are you interested in any recent business news?’ and regarding competency I was slightly suprised at the real lack of these type of questions too.

The competency questions that I was asked included ‘tell me about a time you worked as part of a team’, ‘tell me about a time you provided feedback and the response was positive’, ‘tell me about a time I provided feedback and the response was negative’, ‘tell me about a type I was provided with feedback and how I took this on board and responded’, so yeah, a kinda feedback over load! which was very suprising and I was struggling to think of examples in the end although I put something together.

and that was it! with regards to commercial awareness and competency which I found very strange. I made sure all my answers covered as many competences in each one I gave and I saw him scribbling away a fair bit so I guess thats a good sign.

Also it was odd that I was asked questions all from my application form, such as what it is that pwc do, my preferred client, and was slightly under the impression that my interviewing had not actually been through my form until right before he asked a question and I was answering his previous one! but just in case I provided different examples to those I had down on my application form.

With regards to the my preferred client he read that I had written about Sony and asked why I had chosen them, I responded with the fact that I originally wanted to do it about something I was passionate about, football, but decided to play it safe and went for a household brand. This seemed to impress him actually, and we began talking in terms of a football club and what services pwc could provide them with. He responded in the end by saying that he thought my football answer was actually much better than my sony one.

Once again, It was very much a conversation rather than an interview and this is something he stressed whilst we were walking towards where i got interviewed in the sense that he wasn’t going to grill me as such, more get to know what makes me tick and what going through the application form really

Hope to hear back in 1 or 2 days, but with the nature of the interview I’m not too sure how well I actually came across, but fingers crossed I guess!


hello mazmazcool,
sorry for the PM, just saw your update now.


Thanks very much for that Mazmazcool. Got an interview this week (audit for me too) and I’m starting to get a bit nervous about it. Had a stinking cold over the weekend so I haven’t done as much reading or research as I would like but hopefully I get on the case later today.

I picked a football club too ;). Well, I never actually picked a specific club, but I said I’d like to combine my love of football with my work and talked about football clubs in general and how they could work with PwC. Hopefully I get an interviewer like yours!

Good luck in hearing back from them


Just got the call, though to AC next week.

very positive feedback with no development points at all so I must’ve aced it. So i’m pretty pleased and the focus now turns to commercial awareness for next week :stuck_out_tongue:


wel done mate, i got thru aswel. havent had my feedback yet an not sure wen my AC is, but think its next wk or the wk afta. it was like u sed, was much more like an informal conversation about the application form than set formal questions


wow, that’s cool, I also got through to the accessment centre. congratulations to all of us!
any one have an idea of what kind of group discussion it would be for the AC?


No idea as yet, but with the aid of the experience of those from wikijob i’m sure we’ll have a decent idea before too long

My one last year was about a firm who wanted to join the FTSE4GOOD index, so it was all based around csr. Discussion ranged from what they can do to improve their reputation, what services pwc can offer and impact from the point of view of many stakeholders


Mine a few weeks ago was a CSR one. Some company having to meet certain guidelines to be granted a status they needed to get a bank loan. Its all quite topical now


Thanks a lot, amzamzcool and edinburgh_dave!
Is that group discussion ends with a group presentation?
what is that best way to look at the topic and how can I get more information on this topic?
from where shall I start to analysis the case?
Would any one kindly give me some hints on the above questions? Many many thanks!!!


no presentation
you can’t prepare, all the information you need is given to you at AC and you get 20mins to read it before the discussion. you also have your own piece of unique information.
as each discussion group will have a different case study its impossible to tell how to approach it until the day. thats the idea behind the task.


So do PwC call you when you pass the first interview, and an email means you didn’t pass?


Dave, with regards to commercial awareness did they ask you about a specific case you were interested in, or was it more of a general chat about what’s going on in the economy at the moment?



the09, i got a phonecall when i passed. couldn’t say if they just email when you don’t pass though.

imiliano, i just had a more general chat about what was going on in the economy. at the time that was a little bit about iceland banks, $700bn rescue package in USA and something about lloyds tsb - hbos.