Top 45
Payroll Specialist Interview Questions

1. Describe to me any payroll process that you have developed or revised?
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1. Describe to me any payroll process that you have developed or revised?

Best Answer

None. The management is settled with the payroll process we have.

2.

No timesheets were in place. I got my wage clerk to develop a timesheet on excel and was implemented in the company and used successfully.

3.

I converted a semi-monthly payroll process to a bi-weekly payroll process.

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2. What have you done to improve your verbal communication skills?

Top Answer

Taken 2 English college courses.

Second Best

Being a great listener and paying attention to detail.

3.

I have been listening to people what words they use and how they use, and I keep reading to improve verbal communication skill.

4.

Daily practice of verbal communica.

5.

Read newspapers and books.

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3. What is the largest payroll you have been in charge of?

Top Answer

85 employees part-time and full-time and contract. 10 self employed.

Second Best

A staff of 58 employees, both full-time, party-time, and contracted.

3.

12 employees in office and 50 to hundred on paper depending on the size of the current construction project assigned to me.

4.

10 people

5.

The largest payroll I have been in charge of was a manual payroll project using excel and the firm consisted of six employees.

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4. Give me examples of the payroll reports you have prepared?

Top Answer

New Hire reports, Wage Type, Additional Payments report, Deductions report,Separations Report, LWOP Reports, Leave reports, and other Statutory reports.

Second Best

New hire reports, Promoted, Leave/Absences/Tardiness/Undertime Reports, Leave w/o Pay reports, Approved Travel Reports, Deductions Reports, Adjustments Reports, Statutory Deductions etc.

3.

Master data, payment transactions, month end reports, and vendor balance.

4.

One of the payroll reports that I prepared is the deduction listing, statutory report.

5.

I have prepared Time Labour Entry Audit reports that reflect Job codes, wages, Gl accounts, time repoting codes, rates.

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5. What is a fiscal year?

Top Answer

Financial Year.

Second Best

The business year of a company.

3.

financial year

4.

A 12 month rolling year that does not necessarily start in January.

5.

12month period for budgeting and reporting

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6. Which accounting applications are you familiar with?

Top Answer

Debit, credit, reconcile, deposits, deductions.

Second Best

Quick books

3.

Agresso financials efin cedar accounting system sage account.

4.

Debit, Credit, balance sheet, income statement, cash flows, reconciliation.

5.

ADP, Paycor, Paychex, JDEdwards and the original manual.

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7. How do you keep updated on all the payroll rules and techniques?

Top Answer

I have registered as a member of the organization that regulates Payroll issues in general, and I keep myself updated by attending seminars offered by such entity.

Second Best

I research and get updated before the beginning of each quarter.

3.

Our sage software is being updated every year when the new legislation are there.

4.

I am looking into a membership with the American Payroll Association so that I can stay up to date on the changes that affect payroll from year to year.

5.

By taking classes offered and reading latest data on payroll for school districts.

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8. How does higher management benefit from payroll reports?

Top Answer

The higher management will know the strength of the company in terms of budgeting and how are employees being paid.

Second Best

It helps them make an informed decision with regard to budget, and it also give them an indication of how many employees are in the business and how are they paid.

3.

Payroll reports gives upper management the numbers they need for budgeting purposes.

4.

The higher manager will know how employees are been paid and how to budget.

5.

They can view payroll to make sure it coincides with the amount of employees they have and the pay they are receiving. This will also help them find out if they have set the correct budget for payroll for the year.

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9. Why are you interested in this position?

Top Answer

Payroll job is the most tricky job and there is so much to learn in payroll. I enjoy working in payroll team.

Second Best

Why are you interested in the payroll specalist position?

3.

I have always enjoyed working with numbers and i like structure of payroll, rules, regulations and policies.

4.

Describe how would you familiarize yourself with our payroll system?

5.

since from my higher secondary level i have grown of dreaming of being in this position in a certain day and that's also the reason y i chose commerce as a stream..

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10. We have 9 major union contracts, each with unique special pay items, How will you ensure that everything is paid correctly and on time?

Top Answer

Set up a pay schedule for each contracts, process a dumie check and compare the items that should come out of check it the dumpie check is correct, then i can run it fully doing the paycycle. in other words take a few extra minutes to make sure their checks are corrects.

Second Best

I will make a check list, according to check list i will double check my work through supporting documents for perfection and as well as pay on time.

3.

Review each special pay against hours/time cards to ensure policies and hours are reported correctly.

4.

Will do my best

5.

Firstly i will inform them that we have one paydate and that according to our policies and procedures we will require a shedule with all the relevant details of the employee according to our pay system, which will allow for quick and accurate payments when we do a upload instead of loading peole one by one which can save lots of time and allows for accurate payment.

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11. What salary are you seeking?

Top Answer

Payroll Specialist earn between $30,000 - $42,000 depending upon experience, education, and company size.

Second Best

22,500 minimum

3.

For this position I feel like the salary should be comparable to the qualifications, experience, and knowledge as well as what is required to successfully complete the duties. I would think $32,000 would be the minimum.

4.

I like to have 35,000 year.

5.

I would consider a salary of 30,000 pounds.

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12. Can you explain when you would want to pay an employee through accounts payable rather than payroll?

Top Answer

First we need to finalize salary sheet based on attendance sheet and other HR documentations i.e. Memo from HR for deduction or Addition. after preparation when all the approvals will be done then we will book accounts payable and we can pay to those employee only whose salary is finalized in salary sheet all others will be paid other than accounts payable.

Second Best

When you have trial the employee and the payment is less than 100 or the employee can provide and prove self employed status in accordance to hmrc guidance , contract of service rather than service under contract.

3.

I would pay an employee through accounts payable only if the department forgot to submit the employee's timesheet and they need money right away. I would calculate there pay manually and give 90% of the net pay only. Or another reason would be for advance pay and only if the employee has banked vacation time.

4.

Employee is self employed and using 1099.

5.

You would pay an employee through payroll if it is for time worked, vacation, personal, sick, or travel. You would pay an employee through accounts payable if it is a reimbursement.

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13. Have you had responsibility for state and federal tax payments?

Best Answer

Annual leave.

2.

I was responsible to register with states, pay taxes on state sites.

3.

No I haven't, but willing to learn.

4.

Yes, weekly and bi-weekly tax deposits and quarterly tax deposits.

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14. What are the payroll inputs?

Top Answer

Hours, paid time off, bonuses, sick leave, bereavement leave, jury duty,

Second Best

The payroll inputs are salary, allowances, acting, compensation a. D any other allowances.

3.

Changes in salary, new joinees or resignees.

4.

Time worked, hourly salary, fica deductions and benefit deductions.

5.

Payroll inputs include monthly, yearly, adjustments.

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15. What is the general ledger?

Top Answer

A ledger in which all different accounts r maintained (EXCEPT DEBTORS,CREDITORS,CASH,PVT LEDGERS coz such accounts r separately maintained in respective ledgers).

Second Best

This is a ledge that you record all transaction that takes place with in the company.

3.

Is the list of all accounts transactions: assets. Liabilities, equity, revenues.

4.

Regular end of period financial statements are kept in a separate book.

5.

A general ledger is a complete record of financial transactions of the company.

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16. If you have done bookkeeping in the past for small businesses, tell me about your experience doing that

Top Answer

I was recording each and every transactions and doing some reconciliations if needed.

Second Best

I have always used quickbooks for small business.

3.

Havent done bookkeeping. Been responsible for reconciling payroll related accounts.

4.

No bookkeeping in the past.

5.

I kept the Galax-Grayson Ambulance service books. I did all the billing for this service. I would reconcile accounts receivable each month.

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17. What experience do you have implementing a new payroll system?

Top Answer

In my current position we switched over to a new time system. We were using Time Tracker but we are now using NetTime. It was a little bit of a nightmare at first due to the managers entering incorrect information, but we are working out the kinks.

Second Best

I have been instrumental in converting from one system to a new system as well as applying updates and patches.

3.

I have no direct experience but we did change our payroll process before my employment ended with CASE. They were transitioning everyone over to SAGE.

4.

Implemented ADP run for the entire company.

5.

I have implemented a few new systems-paychex, quickbooks.

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18. Describe to me your familiarity with the administration of 403b or 457 plans?

Top Answer

A 403(b) plan is a U.S. Tax-advantaged retirement savings plan available for public education organizations, some non-profit employers (only Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3) organizations), cooperative hospital service organizations, and self-employed ministers in the United States.The 457 plan is a type of non-qualified tax advantaged deferred-compensation retirement plan that is available for governmental and certain non-governmental employers in the United States. The employer provides the plan and the employee defers compensation into it on a pre-tax basis. For the most part the plan operates similarly to a 401(k) or 403(b) plan most people are familiar with in the US

Second Best

Both are different names of 401K plans and one is employer part and the other is employee part.

3.

These are retirement plans.

4.

These retirements are for 501c.

5.

403b is a us tax advantage savings plan and 457 is a deferred compensation employee/change form.

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19. For payroll, how would you calculate gratuity if needed?

Top Answer

Gratuty = baasic+DA(15/26)*No of years of service.

Second Best

This information will come for the credit card report to see how much was given to each employee.

3.

Gratuity is calculated by the employees basic pay and the years of working experience.

4.

The last drawn basic payroll.

5.

Yes if an employees contract is terminated for unusual circumstances or.

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20. Explain to me the different types of payroll?

Top Answer

Some organizations may have multiple entities.

Second Best

they are fifferent type of payroll on required the company stranded or company policies

3.

We have accounts payable and accounts receivable. There is employee payroll and then there would be insurance payments as well as workers compensation. There are different types of payments that go out for several types of charges.

4.

Monthly, semi and weekly.

5.

Manual, In House computerized and Outsourced.

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21. Describe how would you familiarize yourself with our payroll system?

Top Answer

Will train my self

Second Best

By working on the system, accessing manuals, asking questions, training classes.

3.

I am a hands on learner so i would like to do some mock payrolls and ask questions as needed.

4.

Spend some time with user manuals and a test system work through different scenarios that would assist in producing the final payroll.

5.

Will to train myself by working with the system, accessing manuals, asking questions and training classes.

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22. Tell me about the payroll forecasting you have been responsible for?

Top Answer

I was responsible for forecast according to the number of employees and the amount of hours how much we will need to cover for payroll.

Second Best

Payroll forecasting is depends on the growth of employees number and wages.

3.

Forecasting estimates what your fixed and variable expenses might be.

4.

Created spreadsheet based on prior years and increases and new positions.

5.

I have been responsible for indicating the nursing total hours for the fiscal year.

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23. Do you plan to open up your own accounting or payroll firm?

Best Answer

This interview question is simple to answer. I would obviously begin by picking out a work related problem I have faced and that I knew turned out to be a problem that I was able to solve.

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24. From your past experiences, describe a typical payroll day?

Top Answer

Add up each employees time and vacation time used. Check to see if they have Vacation time to use. Input the info into ADP.

Second Best

Checking hour with time cards making sure the calculations are correctly, input of the hours in the system checking the hours before they are summited.

3.

Answering employee questions.

4.

Processing payroll, taking phones call staff requesting PTO and printing schedules for clinical staff.

5.

Staff payroll is typical payroll to have full knowledge of payroll as it help you to go through full payroll cycle.

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25. Define a bad employee?

Top Answer

One that doesnt show up for work on time or at all and one that complains about everything without offering a solution.

Second Best

My view of a bad employee is one who does not contribute to the company.

3.

okay a bad employee can be define as a person who is careless of his\her work n dont have a leadership quality within himself n who earmarks the mistakes...

4.

Bad employee is the who intensinelly annoy management.

5.

I would describe a bad employee who is not contributing to the business in any positive way.

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26. What payroll software do you use?

Top Answer

ADP Payroll 4 Windows.

Second Best

SAP ECP_400

3.

Biometric Fingertrak Terminal for Timekeeping Software while Windows Based programmed use Visual Basic 6.0 for Payroll Software.

4.

I have used adp pay specialist, HR information, ceridian, a av anti, Oracle HR, Payroll, Benefits, Pension and Time and Labour, some exposure to Kronos time and attendance.

5.

I have worked with QuickBooks briefly but we submitted our payroll through Excel which was then uploaded to Sage.

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27. Each of our buildings has a designated payroll timekeeper, who reports bi-weekly. Two reports are late, what do you do?

Top Answer

IMMEDIATELY CONTACT THEM TO SEE WHY AND OBTAIN THEM

Second Best

Contact them for an explanation and to offer solutions or help if possible.

3.

Generally runs bi weekly.

4.

I would call the timekeepers and ask them what the delay is and is there any way I can help them meet their deadlines.

5.

Input everybody else and email the payroll timekeeper for the reports, meanwhile I make aware to the supervisor of this employees of the situation so they can get help to finish the reports.

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28. Tell me about the most challenging payroll you have ever done?

Top Answer

Preparing payroll semi-monthly is always challenging because you must be keen to details for accuracy, must be released on time and you should be open for changes from time to time.

Second Best

Most challenging payroll was the one I did during weather related closing of our office and had only very few time to finish, but I was able to finish successfully.

3.

Merge three different payroll frequencies into one.

4.

When we lose power and most of the hours are manually entered, put all turn out perfect.

5.

Staff payroll for about 4000 employees.

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29. What is retro pay?

Top Answer

it's pay for work that's already been done. Retroactive, or retro, pay is wages that were due to someone for work hours in the past. For example, if you worked seven hours of over-time last month and were only paid your regular wages, you would be eligible to get retro pay for the over time now.

Second Best

Back pay due.

3.

it's pay for work that's already been done. Retroactive, or retro, pay is wages that were due to someone for work hours in the past. For example, if you worked seven hours of over-time last month and were only paid your regular wages, you would be eligible to get retro pay for the over time now.

4.

Retroactive pay is a delayed wage payment for work already performed at a lower wage rate. It is distinguished from back pay.

5.

Retroactive pay is hours owned to and employee form previous paid date.

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30. What is your definition of business?

Top Answer

A firm or organization involved in trade of goods or services.

Second Best

Is a organization with a minimum of 5 employees.

3.

Business is an organization or economic system where goods or services exchange for money or each other.

4.

Enterprise agency or firm involved in the provision of goods.

5.

Means running a own company.

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31. What sorts of things have you done to become better qualified for your career?

Top Answer

I have the experience working at my last three jobs but I have completed my Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. I want to further my knowledge and opportunities.

Second Best

Webinars and keep up with the new laws.

3.

Keep updating my knowledge.

4.

TKen several college courses in IT and accounting.

5.

My education has focused on not only learning the fundamentals, but also on the practical application of the information learned.

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32. 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.

Top Answer

I am currently in that situation. I am all accounts payable for SabeRex Group. We have 5 divisions with 5 separate books. I handle all intercompany billing for each division. I am also an event coordinator for the non-profit and I am back-up for the Administrative Assistant in the front lobby. I am great with time management and work well under deadlines and pressure.

Second Best

Last minute change of health insurance, I handle it by doing teams to obtain the information and input it correctly to avoid any mistakes by the deadline.

3.

I never had experienced such situations, but I always focused on my job and do my best.

4.

I work better under pressure.

5.

At my previous job I worked in HR and had to fire one of my closed friends. I handled it at professional level and she understood it is business.

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33. Can you describe the use of forms W2, W4, and 941?

Top Answer

A W2 is the form that is received by the employee that details the annual income and withholding taxes for a particular year. The W4 is a form used by the employee to report the number of exemptions to be deducted from their income. The 941 is the form used by the employer to report quarterly payroll taxes.

Second Best

W4 is the form they fill out for the employee to with old . W2 is the form the employer give to teh employee for taxes. 941 is the quarterly federal employers tax return.

3.

W2 reports the amount of federal, state and other taxes withheld from a paychek. W4 is using to change tax withholding allowances of an employee. 941 is for employers quarterly federal tax return form.

4.

W2 is a summary record given to employee showing their earnings taxes paid and any other deductions, W4 is what the employee fills out letting the payroll department know how many depending they are claiming, 941 is the report filled out each quarter and year end showing everything paid and deducted through payroll.

5.

W2 is what you will use to file your taxes. W4 is used for employees how many deductions they are claiming doing the year and 941 is employers that holds federal tax income tax on employees.

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34. What are your future plans with the company?

Top Answer

I would like to take on further responsibility and make both the company and myself successful.

Second Best

I plan to be withe the company indefinitely. I plan to learn the job and become and exceptional ps so that I can successfully move up within the department.

3.

I plan to be withe the company indefinitely. I plan to learn the job and become and exceptional ps so that I can successfully move up within the department.

4.

My future plan is to become a good employee of the company in the top position.

5.

I would like to enhance my skill in payroll and be a manager in the company.

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35. Discuss your experience with payroll?

Top Answer

I just graduated from the Payroll Specialist program and currently a canadidate for the payroll practitioner certification. This particular position is my stepping stone into the career.

Second Best

I take in all time sheets. Verify they are accurate. Work with employees to insure they have vacation time and submit their vacation requests. I then submit all time to the agencies and every other week I turn in our full time payroll to our Controller who submits it to SOI. I then bill all int.

3.

I have done payroll for 3 different companies with different types of needs and different industries. This has help me to adapt quickly.

4.

Running payroll, doing funding reports and general ledger, doing W4 changes, benefit deductions garnishments, time and labor and FMLA.

5.

I started my career in payrolll since 2006 and I still like to do payroll.

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36. How did you get started in payroll?

Top Answer

write

Second Best

I first got started with taking payments when I was in the insurance business. I would also make daily deposits for Nationwide. I then went on to the Head Start program and started doing their payroll in 2008.

3.

Get started as an Accountant in payroll.

4.

Started as HR secretary and learn payroll along the way.

5.

I started fresher in payroll as a payroll verifier, then became payroll administrator and then senipr payrol administrator.

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37. What is your knowledge and experience using payroll software?

Top Answer

Descripe your experience in supporting automated programs and multiple operating systems.

Second Best

I have extensive knowledge of ____ and ____ software.

3.

I like your company, and I have several years of experience working in this field.

4.

I have registered as a member of the organization that regulates Payroll issues in general, and I keep myself updated by attending seminars offered by such entity.

5.

I have 8 years of experience and have used ADP and cerdian.

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38. What information do you require before you approve payroll?

Top Answer

Salary rate hours worked.

Second Best

The payroll reports should be checked by HR Supervisor, signed and approved by our Head Superior.

3.

Verification that the funds are in place and approval from the authorizing manager for process the payroll.

4.

Enough funding to meet all expenses.

5.

The managers in other department are finish with their portion.

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39. What courses did you like the best in your preparation in accounting and payroll?

Best Answer

I really enjoyed the Payroll Compliance Course. I found it interesting to learn about all the provinces and how each province deals with taxes.

2.

All the courses in preparing the payroll was good for me.

3.

Seeing everything gone soomthly and everyones got paid.

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40. What are the most important attributes a person should have for this position?

Top Answer

Honesty, trustworthiness, accountability.

Second Best

Keen to details, Data Organization, Flexibility, Customer Service & Multitasking.

3.

The number one attribute for any position is confidentiality. Someone working with money should also be honest and trustworthy.

4.

Accuracy, pay attention to detail.

5.

He or she shoud be very attentive, calculative, sharp quick learner.

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41. Do you have experience with any computerized payroll systems?

Best Answer

Yes I have experience with a computerizes payroll sysytems.

2.

No I do not. But I am more than capable of learning any new system.

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42. We spend considerable time editing our time sheets to ensure no errors, if you find one, what do you do?

Top Answer

Research the error and get it fixed.

Second Best

Need for double-checking through coordination with concerned personnel, checking thru cctv, and addressed it to the Superior of the concerned personnel. And need to tackled it to my Supervisor for solutions and approval if needed for editing.

3.

I would go back to my original calculation to figure out the error.

4.

I go directly to the manager or employee to verify time.

5.

If an error is found it will be deducted from the individual gross pay the month that the discovery takes place.

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43. Describe to me a difficult situation at work and how you diffused it

Top Answer

When an irate employee went to our office and hysterically approached us regarding his net pay. I let him settle first then identify the problem, discuss and come to a solution both agreed.

Second Best

One difficult situation that happen was managing conflict how that was dealth with is that the situation was presented before all the individuals and a resolution was brought in to play the handle the matter at hand.

3.

When census is at a low, staff is not happy if we have to go to a flex schedule. I offer to have staff to work other days other than their schedule day to get their hours.

4.

It was to do with maternity, someone left for maternity and payroll wasnt informed about it employee was overpaid, had to put in loads of efforts to calm the employee down and arrange payment plan to reslove this.

5.

An associate that feels they have not been paid properly. Walk through the calcuations of the payroll. Never become offensive. Listen and respond openly.

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44. Can you work under pressure in stressful business situations?

Best Answer

Yes, dealing with stressful situations can bring pressure however I attack the situation with an understanding of what is required and simply prioritize each task to ensure completion.

2.

No problem with working under stress.

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45. What cost-cutting measure have you been in charge of implementing?

Best Answer

How we can reduce the cost of supplies, such as reducing the amount of paper we utilize. Finding solutions in reducing waste and finding different methods to help in saving the enviorment.

2.

On how staff will flex their schedule.

3.

Helped to interview and select benefit providers.

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