Questions you might be asked:
The most important think is to make sure you can answer questions with concrete examples (STAR analysis-identify the Situation, Task, Action you took, and Results). Also, think about what value you can add to the company, how you fit in with the company, why you are interested, and what sets you apart from others. Again, try to use specific examples. Here is a sample of more common questions:
- Tell me about yourself.
- Why are you interested in actuarial science?
- Insurance vs. consulting?
- Life vs. P&C?
- What are you strengths? Weaknesses?
- What was your favorite class? Why?
- What are your short and long-term career goals?
- What do you look for in a job?
- Why are you interested in this company?
- What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
- What do you know about this company?
- Group projects that you have participated in and what were your roles and the outcomes of the project?
- Tell me at time when you persuaded group members to do it your way.
- Team work vs. individual?
- Tell me about a time you had to adapt to a difficult situation or person?
- Time working under pressure-what was the situation, what did you do to handle all of it (they are also looking at your organization skills here), and finally, results.
- Leadership experience (roles/ times you have exemplified good leadership qualities)
- Communication experience you have had?
- Describe a time you had to deal with a difficult customer?
- Analytical experience (this is a tough one, but try to get in the quantitative/technical and qualitative/subjective aspects of the problem)
- Why would you be a good candidate (don't just say you have a particular skill, provide an example)?
Obviously, there are many different questions they could ask and you cannot prepare for every one. Make sure you have thought about past events you have participated in (school projects, work, student orgs., ect.) and be able to describe the situation and your role. By knowing these, you will be able to relate one of these events to any question you are asked.
Questions you should ask:
It is important to ask questions specific to the organization you are interviewing with. This will show that you are prepared for the interview and will help you in making a decision if you get a job offer.
Have at least 4 or 5 questions ready for the interviewer. You may not be able to ask all of them, but you will have a large enough "stock" should the interviewer answer some of them during the early part of the interview. Second round interviews usually involve 3-5 interviews so it would be a good idea to have as many questions as possible.
It's usually best not to ask questions that have easily available answers such as products the company sells. This shows you did not take the time to research the company before hand. Look at the company website to get an idea about the products they sell, number of employees, corporate headquarters, ect. You're not expected to be an expert, but know enough to show you took the time to look into it.
General First Interview Questions:
- Can you describe the position further?
- Can you give me an example of a project I might work on?
- Describe your exam system?
- Could you tell me briefly about the people I will be working with?
- What is a typical day like in this position? What is a typical week/quarter/first year assignment like?
- What are the most important characteristics of a successful person in this position/in this organization?
- Could you describe the typical career path for this position?
- How would you describe the corporate culture?
- What trends do you see affecting your company?
- What do you find satisfying about your job?
- What are the company's strengths? Weaknesses?
- How often will I work independently and how often will I work as part of a team?
- How would you describe your management style (asked to the person who you will report to). What is it like to work here?
- What is the next step in the process (last question)?
General Second Interview Questions:
- Has anything changed within the company or department since we last talked?
- What is the next career step for you?
- When will I hear from you regarding this position?
- What is your background and how did you get to your current position?
- What do you think the most challenging aspects of the job would be for someone with my background just starting out in the company?
- What training will I receive? How does the company develop employees for the long run?
- What type of performance reviews can I expect? Frequency?
- How am I evaluated and how often?
- What do you find most satisfying about the job and the company?
- What, if anything, do you dislike about the company?
- What are the key competitive issues facing the company now?
- What would my first responsibilities be?
- Describe what would happen in the first few weeks?
- What is expected of new hires in their first year?
- What is a typical career path? What is the realistic time frame for advancement?
- What does the company do that is different and better than its competitors?
- What are the most important day-to-day activities or responsibilities of this position?
- What are the company goals for the next five years and how does this department fit in?
- What are the organization's plans for future growth?
- What is your corporate culture/leadership style/problem-solving model/decision-making process?
You can always use other resources such as monster.com and your college's career office. A mock interview with the career office can be very helpful, especially if you have never been on a real job interview before.