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Financial Examiner Interview
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15 Questions and Answers Written by Professional Interviewers

Question 1 of 15
What irritates you about other people, and how do you deal with it?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I have very good work relationships with my coworkers. I understand that people are different, and that we may work in different ways to arrive at the same solution. I understand people's differences, and I am able to to work with many different personality types. Unless the behavior is really extreme or behavior that does not belong to the workplace, then I would inform the person that their behavior may not be appropriate for the workplace, because it's quite possible that person may not realize what they were doing was inappropriate.
2.
The thing that irritates me most about other people is that they dont listen, and I handle that by just letting them finish speaking and making sure I have their undivided attention.
3.
People irritate me when they do not actually know what theyre talking about and are trying to tell me how to do my job. I deal with this by being direct, explaining what I am doing, and why I am doing it.
4.
If something irritates me I look for a solution right away. The team I am apart of should not be irritated with any of the team members because you are there to accomplish a task.
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Question 2 of 15
Tell us about a time when you had to defend a decision you made even though other important people were opposed to your decision.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I attended a 501 Settlement meeting which is part of our legal process. These meetings are called when a taxpayer has appealed their determination and has offered a settlement that is more than $50,000 apart from us. In attendance are the AG who would have to defend us in court, two commissioners, the division administrator, bureau chief, and the auditor (and myself, her supervisor). Without getting into details of the case, the AG was opposed to our position of declining the offer and going to court due to the tax type and arguments raised. Prior to the meeting, I had meetings with the bureau chief and DA, and had to strongly urge we go to court. Certain tax concepts can be hard to defend and there was a chance we could lose on this alone. However, even with a loss, there could be benefit in getting codes changed based on the judge's decision in order to strengthen the law. I used this same argument "upstairs". Yes we are going to court.
2.
When you had to defend a decision you made even though other important people were opposed to your decision.
Question 3 of 15
How do you stay focused while reviewing financial documents?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Examining financial documents is like most other research: you are looking for patterns and following trails. When you find hints of what you are looking for, it is hard to stop until you reach a level of satisfaction that you can let go or document your findings. If I begin to lose focus, it may mean time to take a mini-break and return able to stay on task.
2.
That's easy. I enjoy looking over financial documents, it's fun to read them, and you can learn a lot about a business through reading their financial numbers and their disclosure statements etc.
3.
By making sure I zone everyone out for the time being.
4.
To stay focused I break the financial documents into sections, working solely on each part and moving onto the next. By not just bouncing around randomly I can stay focused at the task at hand.
5.
While reviewing financial documents I pay close attention to the little details because something can be easily missed and can ruin the report you are working on.
Question 4 of 15
How do you typically handle discrepancies in financial documents?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I usually make a determination between are they material to the investigation or do they need follow up. That follow up can include examining additional records and personal interviews.
2.
After finding discrepancies the first step is to confront the person in charge at the financial institution being examined. It is important to be direct and explain what is missing or what is wrong with the documents and work with the person in charge to get to the facts of what is really going on.
Question 5 of 15
Give me an example of a project that best describes your organizational skills.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
A couple of my coworkers and I volunteered to be part of the project to revise our audit manual. Our group was assigned several sections, and we were to free to get these sections done within unspecified reasonable amount of time. I took it upon myself of serve as the person leading our revision meetings for our group. I scheduled meetings and reserved rooms for our group, divided each manual section into parts so we could each work on a different part of the manual. We were able to complete all the sections first drafts within two weeks, while still maintaining our regular workload. Besides this work example, I am also the chair person for our Holiday Party Committee. Which means I have to facility assign work to volunteers regarding venue selection, price negotiation, caterer selection, activity planing, securing employee donations, plan and execute fund raising events, draft communication for all activities and efforts to the agency employees. I have planed two successful holiday parties in the last two years, and I am current working on this year's planing. I usually like to stay on top of due dates and deadlines, and work hard to meet or beat any timeline related to my work.
2.
I was assisting my supervisor plan our grand opening for our book store. So having me incharge my job was to keep up with sales and inventory as far as what we ran out of and what new items we may want to add. I had a table that I created that has all the inventory and information regarding our profits if we sold a certain amount of shirts.
Question 6 of 15
How do you make the decision to delegate work?
Question 7 of 15
How would you define success for someone in your chosen career?
Question 8 of 15
What kind of events cause you stress on the job?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Lack of time to finish audit when statute is closing soon. Last minute change in procedure and we were expected to adhere to the new procedure with no chance to ask questions.
Question 9 of 15
There are times when we are placed under extreme pressure on the job. Tell about a time when you were under such pressure and how you handled it.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
When April 15th approaches each year, we face pressure on completing our audits that the statute of limitation are about to expire on. We are usually aware of the statute before we start our audit, but unforeseen, or lack of taxpayer cooperation, or last minute referral could put us in situation where we may lose our audit to statute. I learned that we may not audit everyone and everything, so when I find myself nearing a statue, I have a few tools and solutions. First, if situation was caused by the taxpayer delaying in responses, I may ask for a statute extension, which we have the legal authorities to do so. If it’s due to last min referral or unforeseen situations, I would priorities and try to finish up my current audit, to pick any low hanging fruit first. And go on to work up as many remaining referral as possible.
Question 10 of 15
Give an example of a problem which you faced on any job that you have had and tell how you went about solving it.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
When I first started working at the Tax Commission as a processor, we processed tax returns. A group of us had several mentors, and we all had the same supervisor. There was a particular issue on the tax return that was under questions, and my mentor was telling us to interpret it in a certain way. After reading through the code sections, I was certain that her interpretation was incorrect. I brought my concern to her attention, but she was not willing entertain my interpretation of the code. Because, this is a active issue, I had to decide whether to continue to do what I am told, or do it right. I approached my supervisor, and brought the code section to him and ask for his interpretation, and he agreed with me. He then passed down the interpretation for the particular issue to everyone, and the issue was resolved. Because I approached the whole situation, as trying to solve a problem, rather than who was right or wrong, and did not point fingers, the problem was solved, and I still have a very good relationship with my mentor at the time.
Question 11 of 15
How do you like to keep up on new financial regulations and compliance issues?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I enjoy doing research on touch issues regarding code or law. I also take initiative personally and regularly to signup for free online training on current issues and topics related to the financial industry. I think reading financial journals and regularly attend training and seminars is a good way to keep up with the ever changing financial regulations.
Question 12 of 15
Tell me about a time when you demonstrated too much initiative?
Question 13 of 15
Tell me about a time that you had to work on a team that did not get along. What happened?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Most of the teams that I have worked on were functional and effective. I have had some teamwork experience where issues with an under-performing individual were present. As a team, we communicated our concern to the individual and the individual corrected his behavior, and our project and final presentation were a success, we were one of the only two A project - presentation for our period. I think in a professional work environment, everyone on the team are all working towards a single goal (project success), but it’s important to make sure everyone’s voice are heard, and that people should not take other’s comments or suggestions personally, but rather to understand that most time people are just trying to help to make the team project a success.
Question 14 of 15
Tell us about a time when you were particularly effective on prioritizing tasks and completing a project on schedule.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
A couple of my coworkers and I volunteered to be part of the project to revise our audit manual. Our group was assigned several sections, and we were to free to get these sections done within unspecified reasonable amount of time. I took it upon myself of serve as the person leading our revision meetings for our group. I scheduled meetings and reserved rooms for our group, divided each manual section into parts so we could each work on a different part of the manual. We were able to complete all the sections first drafts within two weeks, while still maintaining our regular workload. Besides this work example, I am also the chair person for our Holiday Party Committee. Which means I have to facility assign work to volunteers regarding venue selection, price negotiation, caterer selection, activity planning, securing employee donations, plan and execute fund raising events, draft communication for all activities and efforts to the agency employees. I have planed two successful holiday parties in the last two years, and I am current working on this year's planning. I usually like to stay on top of due dates and deadlines, and work hard to meet or beat any timeline related to my work.
Question 15 of 15
Describe a situation when you demonstrated initiative and took action without waiting for direction. What was the outcome?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Opening up the book store was a challenge because my boss travels. He keeps all of the money and credit card information. So it was a week we had to open the book store and with me not having anything I took the initiative to create an account just for the bookstore and buying a swiper for our credit transactions.
2.
I was given a loan denial to work on, when the loan officer brought me the paper work for me to complete a customer walked in and the loan officer had to go into a meeting. While not knowing while the customer was getting denied I review the loan worksheet and the credit report I was able to input the information correctly and understand why the loan officer was denying the customer.
3.
I was working with a taxpayer regarding an examination. I made my determination based on the initial information found and sent out the determination letter. The taxpayer called me to discuss payment options and through asking questions, I found some additional information that made me to question my determination. At this point, the taxpayer was not challenging my determination, but to be fair an equitable to the taxpayer, I took additional steps to investigate the situation. The specific issue was related to retirement benefits, through talking with the attorney with the City of Boise, and obtaining additional supporting document from the City Hall, I found out that our audit procedure was incorrect on this very type of retirement, and that it needs updated. I communicated my finding to my supervisor, revised my determination which reduced taxpayer liability. I have since started working on an addition to our audit manual based on my findings, and I have established contacts with the HR manager and the attorney for City of Boise so I could obtain a list of certain retirees to avoid future inconveniences to the taxpayers.

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