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S&P Global Interview
Questions

27 Questions and Answers by
| Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.

Question 1 of 27

Give me an example of a time that you had to solve a problem without having all of the necessary information at hand to do so. How did you handle that situation?

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S&P Global Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    Give me an example of a time that you had to solve a problem without having all of the necessary information at hand to do so. How did you handle that situation?

      For this question, your interviewer is looking to test your ability to be analytical and resourceful in a specific situation where you had to dig further to solve a problem. Prior to your interview, try to think of a time in the past where you encountered this specific situation and talk through it by laying out the problem and walking through the step-by-step approach you took to solve the problem. Try to be as detailed you can as you explain how you thought the problem out and worked hard to use the resources you could to help solve the problem. Your interviewer will be relying on these fine details to truly see how you will perform on the job with S&P Global.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Back when I first joined my current organization, I was taking a role that had been vacant for many months and I had to start with a backlog of work along with the regular daily activities. This customer service role included logging daily visitors and calls and the interim rep only kept brief notes. After taking the time to walk through training and getting running on my own, I realized that the current workload wouldn't allow me to catch up on the backlog of work that had been missed. While I had ideas of how to play catch up on the work, I approached my supervisor with a few ideas and we settled on having me log hours from home on our system as overtime to get caught up. I worked with our IT staff on getting set up on our network from home and was more that willing to help out with some extra hours."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Working for a large financial institution, our advisory staff help cover for each other when we are on vacation, sick or simply out of office for the day. We typically team up in group of three to help provide coverage for each other. A couple of months ago, I fielded a call from a colleague's client while she was away on vacation and completely out of phone coverage. The client had several questions about their personal finances that I couldn't help resolve off the top of my head. I let them know that their advisor was away on vacation but I would take the next hour to research their questions and get back to them shortly. This was a very acceptable path of action to the client and I took the time to get their questions answered quickly."

  2. 2.

    What would you do in this role with S&P Global if you could not get in touch with a debtor that owes money?

      This question gives your interviewer the opportunity to see how you will handle a very real situation in the role that you are interviewing for and gives them a chance to test your ethics and legal understanding of the FDCPA. In your answer, be sure to reiterate that you are able to stay levelheaded in your approach while also having the ability to think outside the box and be creative in every effort to find a solution.

      Ryan's Answer

      "If hired for this role, I fully realize that it will be a common occurrence to fail to make contact with a debtor. In my past roles, I have found that people with significant debt often change phone numbers and make efforts to avoid important mail. I would always follow company policy in my attempts to make contact through formal letters and phone calls. If necessary, I would scour public records for current address and contact information for the debtor."

  3. 3.

    What tools do you currently use to help you be a more efficient and effective Business Analyst?

      While the tools that Business Analyst use can vary greatly between industries and even companies, your interviewer is looking to get the sense that you are a resourceful employee that has a good working knowledge of many different types of software programs. While being honest in your answer, try to show diversity in your answer by talking about data specific software, word processing software, presentation software and any other programs that you see fit for this role with S&P Global.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Being very computer proficient, I consider myself an expert on the Microsoft products like Excel, PowePoint, Access and Outlook to help perform my job effectively. As well, I have very good knowledge of SQL databases as well. If hired here at S&P Global, are there any standard software products that I would be required to work on and learn?"

      Ryan's Answer

      "In recent years, my department has started using Tableau and it has been amazing with its ability to visualize data for our internal and external customers. I've had many hours of training within the program that was tuned for business analytics and I can't say enough good things about the program. On top of Tableau, I also use Microsoft Excel and Crystal Reports on a regular basis."

  4. 4.

    As a Business Analyst at S&P Global, you will be tasked with working with diverse teams of stakeholders on different projects. How do you handle stakeholders that are difficult and bullheaded?

      Leading a project team will put you in front of many differing personalities and you need to have the ability to work with every type of personality to be successful in this role at S&P Global. While your interviewer may not be telling you that you will work with a difficult person because they know of a few, they're more looking to see how you utilize your communication and problem solving skills to make the situation better for everyone. As you answer this question, feel free to use an example from the past that highlights how you used your interpersonal skills to work effectively with a difficult person on a project team.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Honestly, one of the things that I love the most about being a Business Analyst is the mix of people that I get to work with and if I took an honest look back over time, I'd say that every team that I was a part of had at least one difficult person to work with. In those situations, I rely on an empathetic approach that really tries to narrow down what makes that person tick on the job. With that knowledge in hand, I can then touch them in a relatable manner and even provide them with work that suits their needs the best."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Just recently, an executive with my company was the final decision maker and stakeholder on a sales project and she had some very unrealistic expectations for the project from the start and she wasn't afraid to let me know. To best handle this situation, I listened to all of her thoughts on the project and asked a lot of follow up questions to get her sense of the project. After that, I asked for a couple of days to rework some design of the project. When we had our follow up meeting, I educated her on a few legal aspects of the project that wouldn't fit into her mold. She thanked me for the insight and we were off on the right path from there."

  5. 5.

    What do you feel is one unique skill or trait that you could bring to the auditing team here at S&P Global?

      This question is your opportunity to set yourself apart from your competitions as it gives you an open door to match a skill or trait that you have with the exact details for this position. Prior to the interview, be sure to read and research as much as possible on the job and S&P Global to find something unique about yourself that can help benefit the team. Whether you talk about a job skill or a personality trait that you possess that you feel sets you apart, be sure that you are able to talk about this confidently to your interviewer.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Being comfortable in my skills and experiences as well qualified internal auditor, I am confident that my attention to detail is one trait that will set me apart from anyone else you are talking to about this position. I am a very organized person that keeps an orderly desk, email inbox and to do list. As well, I know that this position will require me to work with data that goes above and beyond the everyday life of your average auditor and my attention to the minute details will make me an asset to S&P Global."

      Ryan's Answer

      "If I was fortunate enough to join the team here at S&P Global, my ability to work independently and make decisions on my own from the start would be a huge asset. You'll find that I don't let outside influence or others influence decisions that I'll make as your auditor and I won't let my own personal judgments influence any of my decisions. As well, I am comfortable working with all levels of an organization, from the C-Suite to the day to day operations staff."

  6. 6.

    At S&P Global, our Financial Analysts have to often work under a tight deadline. Talk about a time you had to work under a tight deadline in the past. How did you handle that situation and what made it a success?

      The financial field can sometimes be chaotic and stressful for analysts working on high pressure deadlines and the work life at S&P Global is no different. To test how you will perform in these situation if hired for this role, your interviewer will be looking to hear about a time where you did just that. No matter what the situation is that you discuss, be sure to show how you remained calm, focused and on-task to get the job done. Try and stress how you are resourceful and willing to utilize a team effort if necessary.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current role, I'm tasked with preparing some reports for our leadership team's bi-weekly meeting. Upon first taking that responsibility, I made sure that I kept myself organized during each work day and saving and prepping relevant information needed for their report. A couple of months ago, I was informed first thing in the morning that the meeting was being moved a week up to later that day due to some conflicts and vacation time for some of the team. Right away, I moved some things on my calendar to make this a top priority. From there, my regular organization of the materials needed made it easy for me to complete my job."

      Ryan's Answer

      "During my last semester of my MBA program last spring, I was nearing completion of my capstone project. The project was a case study of mergers within the manufacturing industry and was a great overall project to learn from. During the semester, my full-time job I was working to put myself through school was becoming much more demanding and parts of my project got postponed to a point where I was fearing not being able to complete it to the best of my abilities with the final due date approaching. Right away, I rearranged my work schedule to work half time and began plugging away at the final pieces of the project. To complete it, I had to sacrifice some outside weekend events with friends. While sad to do that at first, I learned some great lessons on time management, project management and sacrifice."

  7. 7.

    At S&P Global, we are building a massive machine learning program and your role as a Data Scientist will be an integral part of that project. What experiences will you bring to that side of this job?

      In the financial services field, machine learning is being used to automate processes, provide information security, create algorithms for trading and to assist in credit scoring. S&P Global is looking to stay at the forefront of their field and this role as a Data Scientist will play a huge part in making this a reality. Talk about any experience that you have in working with data to create a robust machine learning tool. What was your role in the project and what can you bring to the team at S&P Global?

      Ryan's Answer

      "Over the course of the last two years, I've been working on a machine learning tool that monitors online pricing from thousands of different retailers. The tool analyzes thousands of data sources simultaneously and pulls the information into a real time database. My job was in the build of the program and the database while working with other colleagues that built out the sourcing for the websites we would pull data from. I think this experience would fit nicely with your team looking to extract real time market data and trading data on a minute to minute basis."

      Ryan's Answer

      "May experience in AI and machine learning as a Data Scientist has been in paperwork automation and cybersecurity. I recently helped my organization tweak our system to isolate cyber threats and the new tweaks are working perfectly. As well, I've helped my organization save thousands of labor hours by creating a program to review contract information from vendors. If hired for this role here at S&P Global, know that I remain open to learning new techniques in machine learning to help your organization grow and prosper into the future."

  8. 8.

    We are looking for the most motivated individuals to join the team here at S&P Global. 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 S&P Global. Prior to your interviewer, try to research the job and S&P Global to the point where you can match your career goals with they S&P Global 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 S&P Global is vitally important to you.

      Ryan's Answer

      "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 S&P Global. 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

      "A career in risk analysis has been a dream for some time and this opportunity with S&P Global 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 S&P Global would go from there."

  9. 9.

    What statistical models are you familiar with and which do you feel would best apply to the financial field here at S&P Global?

      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

      "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 S&P Global."

      Ryan's Answer

      "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."

  10. 10.

    Have you ever run into a situation where a company had a positive cash flow but was still in critical financial trouble?

      At the heart of this question, your interviewer is looking to dive in and take a look at your critical thinking skills. While positive cash flow is usually a very good sign of a company's overall ability to settle its debts and handle future financial challenges, there are some situations where all isn't as it seems when looking at a company with a positive cash flow. Whether you have run into this situation or not, it is important for you to point out that you are aware of situations where a positive cash flow can be misleading.

      Ryan's Answer

      "If hired for this position, you can rest assured that I know all considerations necessary when looking at cash flow for an organization when determining their overall financial health. A cash flow statement can often show positive cash flow when they take on new cash from loans or long-term debt. While these items do show up as positive on the cash flow, they don't accurately reflect the profitability of the organization."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I have come across this situation with a company that was selling off a large chunk of inventory. At the same time, the company was delaying their payables. This showed a very skewed positive cash flow but the real story behind the curtains showed a company that was in serious trouble of keeping its doors open."

  11. 11.

    How can S&P Global motivate you on the job?

      Every employer should know how each of their employees is best motivated. Talk to the interviewer about the variety of ways in which you are best motivated on the job.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I am best motivated through words of praise and recognition for a job well done. I do like to know that my efforts are noticed. In my current position, we have a leaderboard, and I do like that concept because it creates a healthy bit of personal competition for me as well."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I am a natural salesperson, so the best way to motivate me is through performance incentives. In my current position, I have been in the president's club for the past three consecutive years. I am highly motivated by the vacation that I am awarded annually."

  12. 12.

    If hired for this role at S&P Global, I want to be sure that I'm hiring a motivated individual. What motivates you in your daily work and your career?

      In the financial services field, you should have strong personal motivation to succeed in your work and your interviewer is asking this question to see what it is that make you tick while on the job. While being open and honest in how you stay motivated on the job, make sure that your answer doesn't include collecting a paycheck every week or two. While money is certainly a motivator in this field, make sure that you use it in an appropriate context if you decide to talk about the financial piece of this business as being a motivator. In the end, your interviewer is looking to get a sense of how he or she will be able to keep you hungry for more if you are hired for this role.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I find myself the most motivated on the job when I am being challenged and when I can continue learning new things. From what I've learned in talking to others that currently work here at S&P Global, the fast paced environment and continuous changes in the industry would keep me very motivated in my work and you'd never have to question if I were truly enjoying and being motivated in my work."

      Ryan's Answer

      "At a young age, my father taught me to do what I love and love what I do and I know that as I approach the middle years of my career that I made the right career choice. The personal finance field has really blended my love of helping others succeed and my passion for statistics and computers. In this role with S&P Global, I'll be working with your clients everyday on helping them achieve financial success and that alone is all of the reason I need to get out of bed every morning."

  13. 13.

    At S&P Global, we expect our Business Analysts to put extra emphasis into the risk management aspects of their project work. How have you performed risk mitigation and risk avoidance in your previous roles as a Business Analyst?

      The financial field is often posed with great risks and Business Analysts must always factor potential risks into the equation of any project that they work on. To get a better idea of how you will do this if hired at S&P Global, your interview is giving you a chance to talk about your knowledge of risk and how you have worked with risk mitigation and risk avoidance in your previous positions. If new to the financial services field, it is important to show that you know that common risks can be systematic, operational, legal and credit related.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As you can see from my resume, my Business Analyst experiences come from the software and manufacturing industries where common risks were associated with systematic and operational faults. Similar to the finance industry, I also have experience in helping mitigate legal risk. In my current role, I mitigate legal risk by working with a team of legal experts to know the laws and then develop a series of what-if questions to propose potential scenarios. Based on the what-if scenarios, we can implement specific requirements into the project to help minimize potential risk."

      Ryan's Answer

      "From an early point in my career as a Business Analyst, I learned that a solid analysis process is the key to reducing any risk in a project. Two areas that apply the most are scope creep and impact analysis. To reduce scope creep and avoid any risks associate with it, I ensure that all stakeholders understand the scope of the project from the start and that I check in to validate the requirements as frequently as I can."

  14. 14.

    This position at S&P Global 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

      "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 S&P Global. What sets me apart from my competition is my drive to succeed in this industry and I'd love to bring that drive to S&P Global 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

      "From what I understand about this role in Client Services with S&P Global, 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."

  15. 15.

    What is the most attractive thing in your eyes about this role with S&P Global?

      For this question, your interviewer is looking to gain insight into what you know and like about S&P Global and how they will be able to help you meet your career goals. In your answer, try and stay focused on the alignment of your values with the organization's values and demonstrate that you've done your research on S&P Global and the job you are interviewing for. To try and maintain positivity in your answer, try not to talk bad about a previous employer as that can make you sound like a difficult employee and raise a red flag for your interviewer.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Over the past couple of years, I've had an eye on pursuing a career with S&P Global because of your reputation as a forward moving financial institution and your commitment to the communities that you do business in. As a person that believes in togetherness and helping others out where possible, these are values that I hold very high and would bring to the team here."

      Ryan's Answer

      "As I enter the midway point of my career, my job search has been focused on finding an employer that I can spend the rest of my career with and someday retire from. Looking at the history, culture and growth of S&P Global, this is definitely a place that I'd love to be a part of as you continue to grow and prosper into the future."

  16. 16.

    Talk to me about a challenging situation you had to handle on the job that involved another colleague. How did you handle that situation?

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  17. 17.

    Among the common issues that are faced by Data Analysts in their work, which one or two problems do you feel really challenge analysts in the financial industry?

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  18. 18.

    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?

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  19. 19.

    How many boxes of macaroni n' cheese were eaten in the United States last year?

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  20. 20.

    List the top 3 skills that you have acquired in your last role.

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  21. 21.

    Tell me about a time where you had to analyze information in order to make a recommendation.

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  22. 22.

    What are some common excuses that you think you will face from debtors in this role and how to you think you would handle them?

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  23. 23.

    In your experience as a Financial Analyst, what do you feel is the best metric to gauge a company's future stock performance?

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  24. 24.

    At S&P Global, 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?

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  25. 25.

    How do you stay on top of new trends in the financial services industry?

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  26. 26.

    In working with financial data here at S&P Global, what are the steps you would take in the data validation process as part of your work?

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  27. 27.

    Are you familiar with vouching and how it is used during auditing processes?

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