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Accounts Payable Clerk Interview
Questions

24 Questions and Answers by
| Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.

Question 1 of 24

When have you had difficulty with a coworker? How was the situation resolved?

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Accounts Payable Clerk Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    When have you had difficulty with a coworker? How was the situation resolved?

      Walk the interviewer through the situation: Explain why you had difficulty with this coworker, your plan of action to resolve the issue, and the outcome. This situation could a personal matter or be regarding a specific project/task. It is important not to make your description of the situation overly negative - keep it neutral because the interviewer is looking at how you function in the workplace and how you could potentially fit into their company. You want to show that you are a team player and that you can work through difficult situations.

  2. 2.

    Describe a time when you delivered more than was expected.

      You should answer this question that shows your flexibility and willingness to go the extra mile to make sure things get done. You want to prove to the interviewer that you are hardworking.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my previous job, my coworker and I were both responsible for preparing and mailing out invoices to our customers. One day my coworker had a family emergency. I offered to stay late to complete her remaining invoices so she wouldn't have to worry about them being processed on time."

  3. 3.

    Tell me about a time when you had to assist a coworker.

      The best way to answer this question is by telling the interviewer a story. You should start with explaining the overall situation: tell them about the project/task, what your coworker's responsibilities were, what they were having trouble with/needed assistance with, how you helped them (specifically) and the result/outcome of your collaborative work. It is important to show the interviewer that your assistance contributed to the success and/or completion of the task/project.

  4. 4.

    What could you tell me about our organization?

      Organizations want to know that you've done research about what they do and their culture. Our suggestion is to do an online search of the organization and go on their company website. Go to the company's "About Us" and "Careers" pages. It is key to familiarize yourself with the organization's history, primary function, mission statement, and values. It is important to show that you have a well-rounded knowledge of what they do. In order to do this, you should watch any career, management or social media videos that the company has posted. Many times these videos provide insight into the company from its top leaders. While reviewing the information, write down or keep in mind key points that you want to bring up in the interview.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "About Us"

  5. 5.

    Why is this accounting position right for you?

      You should talk about what aspects of the job you are qualified for - you want to highlight the parts of your skill set that are associated with this job. Explain why you are excited to join the accounting team at this particular company - talk about what you know about the company and why you want to work for them. For example, you can say you resonate with the company's mission statement or you feel that their culture is a good fit for you and what you're looking for.

  6. 6.

    Tell me about your relationship with your previous managers.

      The key to answering this question is to keep your response positive. It is important that you do not speak negatively of previous management as it will most likely be viewed as unprofessional. You need to show that you can work as part of a team and that you can effectively communicate with management. Discuss the management style of your previous manager(s) and how you responded to their leadership techniques. Be specific when talking about what aspects of their management style you found most effective and what you learned from him/her. For instance, "I was lucky to have a manager who was clear about what my responsibilities were and of her expectations. She was also very supportive in my role and showed me appreciation when I did a great job."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I was lucky to have a manager who was clear about what my responsibilities were and of her expectations. She was also very supportive in my role and showed me appreciation when I did a great job."

  7. 7.

    Tell me about a time when you had to deal with an irate customer?

      It is a good idea to think about this type of question before your interview. It requires you to think back to a previous situation when you had an unhappy customer. You want to give the interviewer a full story when explaining the situation - this means explaining why the customer was irate, how you dealt with them and how you resolved the issue. The interviewer wants to know that you have the skills to be able to handle any situation in a professional manner.

  8. 8.

    Why is an Accounts Payable Clerk a vital position to any organization?

      The interviewer is trying to see if you know the importance of an account receivable position to a business. Pick out specific responsibilities you have as an AP Clerks and explain to the interviewer why they are crucial for any organization to function properly.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Accounts payable clerks serve a vital role in the success of any company. We are responsible for dealing with the company's outgoing money - we keep track of the money that is being paid out for bills, invoices, utility payments, employee expense accounts, etc..."

  9. 9.

    We use the accrual method for our invoicing. Are you familiar with this process?

      You want to confirm you familiarity with accrual invoicing by explaining what it is and how you have used it in past jobs. Define the accrual process: "When using the accrual method of accounting the expense is reported in the accounting period in which the service occurred, not the period in which it is paid..."
      More importantly, get specific when describing your job responsibilities and experiences that involve using the accrual method. This is the best way to show the interviewer that you are comfortable and confident with using this method and that you can use these skills to benefit the company if you're hired.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "When using the accrual method of accounting the expense is reported in the accounting period in which the service occurred, not the period in which it is paid..."

  10. 10.

    How do you manage stress in your daily work?

      You can spin this question and tell the interviewer how you seem to work better under pressure or that you tend to be reactive to stressful situations instead of dwelling on them. This is a good way of showing the interviewer that you work well under pressure. Give a specific example of a stressful day in your past job and how you handled it. It is important to highlight your ability to complete your tasks in spite of the stress.

      You can also include how you use extracurricular activities to help manage work stress - this could include going to the gym before or after work, cooking, playing sports, doing yoga, etc.

  11. 11.

    Describe your most ideal work setting.

      Before you answer this question, it is important to be aware of what your ideal work setting really is. The answer to this question is almost limitless - you can discuss your preferred company size, the type of company culture you are looking for, and you can add aspects of what you want personally like a work-life balance - you might not want to take your work home with you.

      Some examples of appropriate responses include: "I want to work in a setting that allows you to learn and grow"
      or
      "My ideal work setting is to be part of a team and collaborating with others"
      or
      "It is important for me to work in an environment that is positive and supportive. For me, positivity is key to a healthy workplace"

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I want to work in a setting that allows you to learn and grow"

  12. 12.

    What type of boss gets the most productivity out of you?

      This question takes into account what type of management style you work best under, what type of boss motivates and inspires you and the qualities your ideal boss possesses.
      Firstly, discuss your ideal management style, whether you are an independent worker and don't need much managing from your boss, or if you need your boss to be frequently available for questions. Feel free to use examples from past jobs when answering this question - you should mention the company you worked at and the name of your boss.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "My last boss gave me a task, direction, and a deadline, then let me complete it without constantly checking up on me. This allowed me to concentrate on my project and finish it before the deadline. She also acknowledged me for doing a great job!"

  13. 13.

    What accounting systems and software are you familiar with using?

      The purpose of this question is to see what specific programs you are accustom to using. You should be able to describe the tasks you can perform on each software platform, how often you've used them in previous jobs, how long you've used them and your proficiency level. Be prepared to answer any questions the interviewer might ask you about using any of the platforms you list.

      For example, you can say "I am proficient in using SAP. I used it in my previous position to process vendor invoices on a daily basis."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am proficient in using SAP. I used it in my previous position to process vendor invoices on a daily basis."

  14. 14.

    What are you best at as an Accounts Payable Clerk?

      This question is pretty straight forward. Think about the tasks you were responsible for as an AP Clerk and choose which one you are best at. This can be a task you are most comfortable with. You should explain why you are so good at this particular task and provide the interviewer with positive results or recognition you were given because of your good work.

      For example, if you're best at processing and collecting invoices, explain your process and why it is so effective. You can also mention your successes with this task.

  15. 15.

    Where do you hope your career will progress to in the next few years?

      This is the time to discuss your career goals. Discuss your plan for your career with the interviewer. For example, if you want to gain experience to become an AP Manager, explain how you would prepare yourself to be eligible for this type of position. You want to show that the job you are applying for is playing a part in your overall career goal and that you are committed to a long career at this company. Express your enthusiasm for the job and how you see potential with growing with the company.




  16. 16.

    What was a major accomplishment you had at your previous employer?

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  17. 17.

    Tell me about a situation you encountered where there was no rule or precedent in place for how you should tackle the situation.

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  18. 18.

    How will you measure the success of your work?

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  19. 19.

    How do you manage your time on a typical day?

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  20. 20.

    What is your experience with using Microsoft Excel?

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  21. 21.

    What is your greatest weakness?

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  22. 22.

    What techniques do you personally use to avoid mistakes?

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  23. 23.

    Walk me through a typical day at your last job.

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  24. 24.

    Why did you choose a career as an Accounts Payable Clerk?

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