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Eaton Vance Corporation Interview
Questions

27 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brunner

Published April 24th, 2020 | Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.
Question 1 of 27
What statistical analysis tools do you have experience working with?
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How to Answer
As a successful and resourceful Data Analyst, your interviewer at Eaton Vance is expecting you to be knowledgeable and well-versed in the many tools available to you. In your answer, be sure to show diversity within particular programs like SAS and SPSS while also explaining that you are very proficient in Microsoft Excel. On top of the programs, talk about any experience you have with programming and database language like SQL and Python.
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Top 25 Eaton Vance Corporation Interview Questions
1.
What statistical analysis tools do you have experience working with?
As a successful and resourceful Data Analyst, your interviewer at Eaton Vance is expecting you to be knowledgeable and well-versed in the many tools available to you. In your answer, be sure to show diversity within particular programs like SAS and SPSS while also explaining that you are very proficient in Microsoft Excel. On top of the programs, talk about any experience you have with programming and database language like SQL and Python.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current role, most of my analysis is handled in SAS and I've really grown to appreciate the program's ability to to manage large data sets and create predictive modeling in the financial field. From a past job, I have experience on SPSS and also with the SQL programming language to build robust databases. Of course, I have received expert level training in Microsoft Excel and consider myself a master of the program."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Having been in the field for over 15 years, looking back at the technological advancements in the tools that we use is very amazing. I consider myself very fluent in both the Sisense and KISSmetrics programs. I also have a good amount of experience in Crystal Reports."
2.
We are looking for the most motivated individuals to join the team here at Eaton Vance. Where you would you like your career to take you in the next five to ten years?
This common interview question put you in a tough spot where you should talk about your ultimate career goals while also balancing the needs of the position that you are interviewing for and the needs of Eaton Vance. Prior to your interviewer, try to research the job and Eaton Vance to the point where you can match your career goals with they Eaton Vance offers. While your interviewer is looking for a long-term fit for the position they are interviewing you for, it is okay to set your sights higher as long as your goals meet that of the organization's goals. If at all possible during your answer, point out that long-term success with Eaton Vance is vitally important to you.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Now that I am to the midway point of my career, I am looking for my next move to be my final move in finding my work home until I retire. As a successful Financial Advisor today, I want to focus on continuing to grow my skills in advising clients on retirement and private wealth management and it sounds like I'll have that opportunity here at Eaton Vance. As I continue to grow in my skills and prove my worth to you, a long-term career goal is to be in management where I could oversee the work of Junior Advisors and mentor them towards success."
Ryan's Answer #2
"A career in risk analysis has been a dream for some time and this opportunity with Eaton Vance is really my dream job. If hired here, my goal for the next five to ten years would be to continue to hone my skills and help the work of the department to a point where it is growing and becoming more effective. Down the road, I'm really in a position to be an open book when it comes to where my career with Eaton Vance would go from there."
3.
In your work as a Portfolio Administrator, what kind events cause you the most stress on the job?
The high demands of a position as a Portfolio Manager or Administrator bring a lot of stress. Market volatility, greed, underperformance and tough clients can all contribute to a high level of stress in this field. For this question, your interviewer is looking to gain insight on how you handle these stress factors on the job by having you talk a bit about what types of things cause you stress. While you talk openly about what it is that causes you stress or discomfort, make sure that you also talk through how you handle that stress in a safe, healthy and good for business manner.

Ryan's Answer #1
"While overall market volatility does stress out a lot of Portfolio Administrators, I have a very good way of explaining this volatility to my clients to the point where it doesn't stress me out. For me, any stress that I feel is usually put on me by myself in having very high expectations for my work with clients. To help alleviate this stress, I've learned over time that the goals and expectations that I put on my work have to be realistic and attainable when they sometimes weren't early on in my career."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In reality, our work as Portfolio Managers for our clients is almost like trying to do the impossible. We are relied upon to make sound decisions for clients based on insufficient information, all while trying to maintain confidence in our decisions. This in itself is a daily stressor on the job and one that I don't take lightly. To help myself with this daily stress, I've learned to accept mistakes as they happen, own up to them with clients and work hard to alleviate those mistakes to put my clients back in the best position possible."
4.
When would an investment in commodities make sense for a client that you were working with?
Prior to your interview, it is important to prepare for very market specific questions like this one where your interviewer will be looking to get a sense that you have the knowledge about particular markets like commodities, annuities and private equities. When you answer a question like this, try to give your interviewer an answer that shows that you understand the basic details of the market, when it is useful and what its downsides are to prove that you know situations where it can be very beneficial to a potential client.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my experience, commodities have made the most sense to use as a hedge when I am concerned about a potential upcoming crisis. I've utilized the gold market at times and it was very effective during the recession back in 2008. Gold prices have always tended to rise when the markets fell and some very high profile clients I worked with at that time were very pleased with their results while others lost a substantial amount in the market."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Commodities are always an interesting consideration because of their spectacular performance at times. But, because they don't receive dividends and aren't a great hedge bet over time, there are only a few scenarios where I utilize them. Crude oil markets are a great example of a short term buy in commodities when a production increase or decrease is announced."
5.
How do you stay on top of new trends in the financial services industry?
The interviewer would like to know that your passion for financial services goes beyond your work hours. Do you keep on top of industry news and trends on your off time? Assure the interviewer that you are well immersed in the industry.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I stay on top of financial service trends through a variety of blogs, news sites and financial magazines. My favorite finance news site at the moment is businessinsider.com."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I believe that it is crucial for me to stay on top of news in the financial services industry if I hope to be a success. I have joined multiple meet up groups to network with industry peers. It has really helped my network and given me insight into how other financial service professionals are making their careers flourish."
6.
How would you define what working capital is for a company and what does its measurement mean?
As a Financial Analyst with Eaton Vance, you will be asked to help measure working capital of organizations. In your definition that you provide to your interviewer, ensure that you give them at least the basic definition of the calculation being current assets minus current liabilities. Then, talk about real situations that you've used the measurement to make critical decisions in the work that you've done in the past. This will confirm with your interviewer that you have the ability to use the measurement in this job.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current role, we measure working capital to gauge the ability of a company to pay off its debts quickly. In working with many industries, from retails to the public sector, the determination of a company's ability to do so based on calculation can differ greatly from industry to industry. To calculate, a range of line items from the company are used to take their current assets minus their current liabilities. In the retail industry, seasonal spikes in business create the need for a much higher working capital and if hired for this role, I have a great understanding of each industries specific needs."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In a very broad sense, working capital is found by subtracting an organization's current liabilities from their current assets. In my current role, I utilize a more focused calculation of adding accounts receivable plus inventory and then subtracting accounts payable. The more focused calculation give a better idea of total working capital for organizations when trying to get a better overall picture of their health and efficiency when projecting out towards the future."
7.
At Eaton Vance, our clients are the lifeblood of our business and we do everything in our power to make them happy. What does the term customer service mean to you in your work?
No matter what position you are interviewing for at Eaton Vance, your interviewer is looking to hear what customer service means to you in your work and how you apply that philosophy in your everyday work life. In essence, they want to hear your story as to why solid customer service is important to you. Prior to your interviewer, be sure to really think about this question to apply what is important to you in how you go about your work. Whether you talk about problem solving or making people happy, this should be reflected in the work that you do.

Ryan's Answer #1
"A pursuit of a career in the financial field really suited my two passions in life of mathematics and problem solving. In this role, helping clients solve problems in an efficient manner and with a smile on my face would be the drive to succeed that I need. At the end of the day, if I see that my work helped a client grow their wealth and achieve their financial goals, I know that it was a job well done."
Ryan's Answer #2
"As a people person by nature, I have an innate ability to do what is needed to give customers the best experience possible when I'm working with them. This means that I reflectively listen to their needs and concerns and do what is necessary to help them based on what I heard. In my interactions with customers, I am positive, pleasant and nurturing by nature and I've found that customers are very receptive to my style off communication with them. If hired for this role at Eaton Vance, you'll quickly find that dedicated customer service is one of top qualities that I will bring to you team."
8.
What statistical models are you familiar with and which do you feel would best apply to the financial field here at Eaton Vance?
Financial Engineers and Quantitative Analysts are relied upon in the financial industry to utilize complex algorithms and math to predict the trading market's immediate future. For this question, your interviewer will be looking to get the sense that you have the skills to apply statistical model in finance by having you talk about the models that are familiar with and have worked with in the past. While being honest about your experiences, be sure to point out that you are aware that some apply more to finance and the market to set yourself apart during this question.

Ryan's Answer #1
"As a data nerd, I love the realm of statistics and I am very familiar with all of the unique statistical models and how to best apply them to different situations. I've applied linear regression when predicting the outcome based on two historically known data points. I've also applied multivariate models when looking at the distribution of multiple data points. Having dabbled a bit in the market myself and now looking to bring my quantitative analysis skills to the financial field, I am very familiar with the Gaussian model for predicting market changes and would love to bring the knowledge that I have of this model to your team here at Eaton Vance."
Ryan's Answer #2
"As you can see from my prior experience in data engineering and financial analysis, I have extensive experience in time series modelling that utilized both univariate and multivariate models. Multivariate time series modelling has proven to be very effective when looking at and predicting the S&P 500 performance and I think my skills in this arena would greatly benefit your team."
9.
Give an example of a time that you had to resolve a difficult situation with a client or customer. What were the keys to coming to a successful solution?
In a front facing role with Eaton Vance where you will be interacting with clients on a daily basis, your interviewer wants to be ensured that you have the skills to resolve client issues with ease and they'll look to do so with this question. In your answer, let your interviewer know that you can take ownership of any situation by talking about a specific time where you did what was necessary to alleviate a difficult situation with a client. Talk about the resources that you used and your interpersonal skills that helped turn a potentially bad situation into a successful one.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Having worked in customer service for one of the areas largest auto dealership for the last six years, handling difficult customers was a situation I had to learn to handle pretty quickly. Just a few weeks ago, I was covering our front desk on a Saturday afternoon when our sales staff was still open for business. I recognized the person approaching the door as a customer that had recently purchased a new vehicle. He stormed through the door, placed his keys on the counter in front of me and said that he demanded a refund on his new purchase because the check engine light had already come on inside of the car. Knowing off the top of my head that his new vehicle was under a full warranty, I calmly let him know that his car was under warranty and that I'd have a member of our sales staff come out and take a quick look. I also let him know that our service department was not working that afternoon and, if needed, we could schedule him for a diagnostic test at his earliest convenience. After our salesman went out to take a quick look and not seeing anything obvious, we ended up giving him a loaner vehicle so his new car could be taken care of on Monday morning. He ended up leaving pretty happy that day and I know that my patience in hearing him out really helped."
Ryan's Answer #2
"A couple of years ago, I was asked to work with a very high profile client for his financial advising services when he came to our firm because my CEO trusted I could handle what he felt would be a difficult task. From my first meeting with the client, he demanded that we provide more returns than the previous firm that he worked with and he was rather rude with our front desk staff. I took the approach of taking the time to listen to his needs and speak to him more about what my firm could provide. I laid out my experience and track record for him to help him build his trust in me. I knew that with him, I would need to take time to walk through my decision making processes for his investments and he really appreciated that. As of today, we are still working strong together and his wealth is growing."
10.
In this role with Eaton Vance, we will rely on your organized and methodical approach to provide financial analysis reporting. What does your current reporting process consist of?
Providing the clients of Eaton Vance with detailed reports will be a key part of this position and your interviewer will be looking to gauge your ability to be organized and detailed while also utilizing your critical thinking skills to provide the best reports possible. In your answer, keep a focus on the techniques and tools that you use to do your job in ensuring that clients are receiving the most accurate and detailed reports possible. As well, let your interviewer know that you are willing to learn new ways and new technologies to help onboard yourself to their team quicker.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current role, I utilize the Tableau program to provide live, up to date information to my clients. After using a simply built Excel program for many years, Tableau provides beautiful and easy to understand reporting that my clients can take and run with to make important decision. The connections and automations within the program have save me time and effort, allowing me to take on a much more robust client base. If hired for this role here at Eaton Vance, I also have familiarity with SAS and Spotfire and consider myself a very quick learner if I need to learn a new program."
Ryan's Answer #2
"When I need to provide reporting to clients or my firm, I ensure that the reporting includes all key risks and valuation. Today, we as Financial Analysts have so many great tools available to us and my current preference is a statistical program like Crystal Ball. When paired with the advance Excel sheets that I have created, and have been commended, my clients are always happy with the insight that I am able to provide."
11.
As a consultant here at Eaton Vance, you will have the opportunity to work with many accounting departments on tax filing for their business. When called upon, how would you go about verifying the accuracy of an accounting department?
No matter the size of the business and their accounting department, human error can lead to costly mistakes down the road if accuracy is not verified on the financial statements and books of a company that you would be consulting in this role. In your answer, talk specifically about your methods for verifying data entry and make it clear to your interviewer that this a step that you do not take lightly or overlook.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In any tax consulting project, data verification and sampling is of utmost importance to me and a step I would ensure happens with every client here at Eaton Vance. Depending on the accounting and finance department's books and how they are kept, my data verification could be as simple as printing documents and verifying samples against filed information or running the data verification through a program. I have extensive experience running both methods of data verification and wouldn't hesitate to use either with the clients here."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I fully realize that my work in advising businesses on their tax filings comes down to verifying their income statements, balance sheet and cash flow statements. To verify, I would have to work with leaders in reconciling their financial statements with bank records, credit card statement, invoices, receipts and any other documents that show physical proof on financial statements. Realizing that this can sometimes be a difficult task with businesses that don't keep accurate records, have segregated finance departments or multiple physical locations, I would leave no stone unturned in this initial verification process with your clients."
12.
This position at Eaton Vance has generate a lot of interest from applicants. What do you feel is the one quality that sets you apart from others we are speaking with about this position?
This question is the perfect opportunity for you to highlight the one key quality that makes you the best person for this position, so be sure to really think about what this one quality is ahead of your interview. While there are many ways that you can take you answer to impress your interviewer and seal the deal for you in getting the job, be sure to avoid making assumptions about the other candidates in your answer. As well, be sure to avoid anything in your answer that points to this job being convenient for you personally or the fact that you'll be getting compensated for this work. Those are quick ways for you to go to the bottom of the candidate ranking list.

Ryan's Answer #1
"As I've talked about during this interview process and from what you can see on my resume, I have all of the technical skills needed to grow your financial advising practice here at Eaton Vance. What sets me apart from my competition is my drive to succeed in this industry and I'd love to bring that drive to Eaton Vance to help working with your highest profile clients possible. Growing up and continuing to this point in my life, I've always been a very competitive person. I've played many team and individual sports my whole life and my drive to win in those has definitely carried over to and been a huge benefit in my work as a Financial Advisor. I'd love to bring this competitive spirit to your team."
Ryan's Answer #2
"From what I understand about this role in Client Services with Eaton Vance, my day to day work will include a lot of client interaction and I really feel like the job description was written with my skills and abilities in mind. But the thing that will really set me apart for being the perfect fit for this role is my experience on the sales side of things where I spent five years of my working career in the retail sales industry. In sales, I have developed key skills like product knowledge and selling skills that would be very beneficial to this role."
13.
In working with financial data here at Eaton Vance, what are the steps you would take in the data validation process as part of your work?
Your job as a detailed and proficient Data Analyst requires you to take proper steps in the data validation process to ensure that data used is accurate and clean. Bad data in the financial industry can have a costly impact and your job will be to ensure that doesn't happen. For your answer to this question, discuss the importance and your method for both data screening and data verification as part of the validation process. Also, be sure to talk about any programs that you utilize during the validation process.

Ryan's Answer #1
"With any large analysis project and performing data validation, my first step is to create a detailed plan for the data needed. This plan will define the required data to be validated and set the way for the remaining steps. The next steps are to validate the information in the database and then the formatting of the data. Finally, prior to validating the data, sampling needs to be done to ensure that a small sample meets the requirements of the project. Being very proficient with many validation programs, I consider myself very proficient in both QuerySurge and Datameer but remain open to learning any new programs here at Eaton Vance."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Here at Eaton Vance, your Financial Advisors rely on the most accurate and up to date data to present to clients and I would take great pride in my job as a Data Analyst to provide the best data possible. To validate data, the two important steps I would take are data screening and data verification. I am very confident in my ability to work with algorithms that screens large sets of data for their accuracy. On top of that, I have worked with a few of the different data verification programs like Experian and Sage Intacct."
14.
In your current work, what are the important steps you take in the data validation process?
Depending on your training and your past roles prior to interviewing at Eaton Vance, you may be familiar with one or two of the many trains of though regarding the steps of a data validation. Whatever formal process you are familiar with, be sure to check the boxes of discussing data screening and data verification as part of your process. Your interviewer will be looking to hear that you check those boxes as they are imperative in the software field.

Ryan's Answer #1
"As I embark on a data validation process in my current role, my first step is to roadmap a detailed plan to keep on task. I utilize benchmarks and the expectations of key stakeholders as my guide. Once underway, I validate the database and the data formatting to ensure that data is properly screened for its overall health. Then, by finishing with sampling, tests are performed to hopefully show that the data is useful within the system."
Ryan's Answer #2
"The most important steps in a data validation process are determining the data to sample, scouring the existing database and validating the final data format. My first step is to use my best judgment to determine if I will validate a sample or the entire data set. This determination is based on overall size of the set and the timeframe that I have to work on the project. Then, I take the time to screen data in the existing database to calculate the number of unique ID's and records to come into the system. Last, I have to verify that the source data matches the schema within the targe"
15.
How do you believe your coworkers would describe you?
The interviewer would like to know how you are seen by your colleagues. Select approximately three words that truly define who you are. Be sure to choose words that radiate positive thoughts!

Ryan's Answer #1
"I believe that my coworkers, if asked, would describe me as a reliable person who is always ready to submit the best work possible. My work ethic has never been questioned, and I am very proud with the work that I have submitted in my career, so far."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Here are some other great keywords you could use:

- Encouraging
- Caring
- Knowledgeable
- Reliable
- Focused
- Honest
- Assertive
- Tenacious
- Motivated
- Ambitions
- Conscientious"
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