Small Accounting Firms


Has anyone got any experience with interviews for smaller accounting firms?

I have an interview with an accounting firm in my home town next week and don’t really know what to expect.

Also, does anyone have any views on the pros/cons of joining a small accounting firm as opposed to one of the big 4 or mid sized firms?

Thanks for any help.


I was going to ask this exact question, got an interview with a small localish firm tommorrow morning

I don’t suppose people will reply on time here so I’ll post my experience tommorrow or sat if it helps.


Yeah that would be great, thanks. Sounds like a similar post to what I have an interview for. Trainee Accountant in a local accountant.

Good luck in your interview!


Cheers mate,

I can;t see them being much like large firms or corporations in terms of they probably don’t have a dedicated HR department, so I’d imagine it will be more along the lines of what PKF was.
PKF was 2 interviews, one initial one with a few competency q’s and going over CV then second was partner doing same + a case study, but that’s a medium sized firm. In a small firm I’m not even sure if there are partners, probably an owner then staff?
So I’d imagine, or I’m hoping that tommorrow I’ll go up and meet with the person I have been in contact with through phone/emails and it will be more like a general interview? perhaps some competency q’s but more trying to see what I’m like and if I would fit into the company and be cool with clients etc?

That’s what I’m hoping anyway, I can’t see them bothering with all those numerical tests etc, not because they can’t or shouldn’t, just because I don’t find them particularly relevant for the situation, fair enough when you have 1000’s of applicants and your trying to narrow that down, or where you have a general vacancy to squeeze someone into, but when it’s a small firm taking on 1 or 2 people I’d imagine they would make the decision based more on YOU, than what a numerical percental score says?



Thats the same kind of thing that i’ve been thinking. I think the place i’m being interviewed for has 4 partners. I’d be interested to find out what kind of interview it will be…like a group interview or what, or if there will even be more than one interview saying as its a small firm.


Just back in there, I thought it went ok.

Was along the lines as I expected mate, no real competency Q’s or anything, just getting to know me and what I was like. Asked what my biggest challenge has been to date and what I have experience in, situations etc but no specific “tell me about a time…” q’s.

Was a good chat really in a professional context. Hopefully hear back next week if I have got through to the last interview!

good luck


Thanks, thats kind of what I was expecting.

A friend was talking to someone who trained with the firm I have the interview for, and they said its likely that I could get an aptitude test. Wouldn’t have expected that with a smaller firm. Anyone have any idea what this test would entail??


Had my interview today. Don’t think the actual interview part went great…but not terrible. Think they expected me to know more about the training and the work they do in greater detail.

But then at the end i was given an exercise invloving drawing up the nominal ledger for different transactions. I wasn’t expecting this at all. I do an accounting/finance uni course, but haven’t done anything like this in at least a year. Hadn’t a clue what to do so couldnt complete it and what i done was probably completely wrong.

A bit gutted to be honest because i really wasn’t expecting this kind of exercise.


That’s pretty harsh mate, although reminds me of the assessment I went to for NorthLan council, they hit us with a public sector exam Q that I haven’t tried in ages, thought I’d flopped it but got past, you might have shown enough to get by