Financial Services Interview: Common mistakes and how to avoid them

Financial Services Interview: Common mistakes and how to avoid them

Knowing what common interview mistakes could trip you up when interviewing for a Financial Services role will help ensure you avoid making them! Interviews can be stressful and nerve-wracking but being well prepared and informed can be the difference between landing your dream job or it being offered to someone else.

Interview Punctuality

First impressions are everything! Being punctual and arriving on time for your Financial Services interview is crucial to make sure you make a positive impression. It demonstrates an appealing level of professionalism and suggests to the interviewer that you have respect for their time and their business.

External factors could affect your ability to arrive on time such as heavy traffic. Reduce the likelihood of this happening by planning your route in advance and giving yourself plenty of time to navigate any unexpected delays. However, it is possible external factors outside of your control could cause you to be late. When this happens, it is important you stay calm and composed. Inform the interviewer as soon as possible so they are aware of what is happening and can adapt their schedule accordingly. Apologise, but make sure not to overdo it! Convey your sincerity but avoid waffling. A flood of apologies and excuses will only prolong the negativity of the situation. Therefore, it is best to address the circumstances then move on as quickly as possible.

Research the Company and Role

Preparation is key. Arming yourself with some background knowledge on the company and a robust understanding of the role is vital when interviewing for a Financial Services position. The interviewer will likely want to see that you are well prepared therefore to avoid any awkward hesitation, do your research beforehand. Showing up uninformed suggests laziness and a disinterest in the business which will negatively impact their impression of you. Research the company’s background, history, values, and competitors. Much of this information will be readily available on their company website and social media channels. You could even do some research into the person conducting your interview or your potential future manager.


Interviews are not interrogations! You are engaging in a dialogue with your interviewer, and it is important that you get the speed of your communication right. Talking too much can come across as thoughtless rambling, but not talking enough can suggest a lack of confidence. Get the balance right to ensure you are giving the best possible impression and presenting your skills and knowledge to the fullest advantage. If you struggle with this, consider conducting a few mock interviews to help improve your communication skills.

It is also crucial to get the dialogue between you, the employer, and the recruiter right before, during, and after the interview. Make sure you are responsive, returning emails and calls quickly as a lack of response from you could lead to the employer or recruiter thinking you have lost interest in the role. If you receive a call from an unknown number after applying to roles, answer it as this could be your potential next employer wanting to interview you. If the company is struggling to get a hold of you they may not want to wait around and instead will move on to the next candidate.

Less is More

Finally, aim not to apply for lots of roles in a short space of time by sending off your CV to multiple companies. This can cause you loo lose track of each role you have applied for, leading to an awkward and unprepared conversation whilst you work out what vacancy you are discussing. This can negatively impact the impression you give, especially if you progress to interview, as it makes you appear uninvested in the role. Select a few attractive vacancies that you are genuinely interested in and focus on pursuing them fully before attempting to apply to more roles.


A Financial Services interview is your opportunity to demonstrate your skills and knowledge, and to give the best impression possible. Set yourself up for success by learning the common mistakes and knowing how to avoid them!

Looking for a role in Financial Services? Take a look at the wide range of roles we have available on our website!