Banking and Finance Graduate Application & Interview Tips

This page provides you with application and interview advice provided directly by graduates working in Banking and Finance

Application Advice: Be yourself; this is not a company that likes receiving applicants with no personality.
Interview Advice: Be open, honest and read up! It's important to do your research and be prepared to answer questions about the product and why you find it interesting.
Customer Support and Operations Champion, Customer Support and Operations at Curve
Application Advice: Be yourself.
Interview Advice: Be open minded.
Customer Champion, Customer Support at Curve
Application Advice: You don't have to be from a financial background, to the contrary a varied academic background adds more character to your application which doesn't go unnoticed. That being said, familiarise yourself with at least a basic understanding of finance and the investing world (stock markets, stocks, bonds, commodities, FX, very basic economic awareness) and brush up on recent financial news. Make sure you embrace any opportunities to show personality as it's a crucial part of the job, don't be shy.
Interview Advice: Questions I can remember: "Given £X,000, how would you invest it?" - establish a picture of the financial markets at the time of your interview and formulate a logical (can be very basic) investing strategy with this in mind, i.e. after Brexit - invest in currency forwards that favour a declining pound and rising USD perhaps? "What's your biggest weakness?" "Favourite university subjects and why?" In general at final interview stage they already like you, don't give them any reasons to change their mind and offer well thought out, competent answers.
Consultant, at FactSet
Application Advice: Become aware of the Bank's objectives and priorities and read some of the articles available on the Bank's public website.
Interview Advice: Take time to think before answering a question, structure answers using STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result), highlight any additional Bank-related reading that you did and found interesting.
at Bank of England
Application Advice: Make sure you know which area you are most interested in: IM, IB or FI...consultancy in those broad areas can differ significantly in terms of daily workflow, complexity of projects and the type of clients you deal with.
Senior Consultant, Investment Management at FactSet
Application Advice: Do some research on the different areas within the Bank before you apply and make a shortlist of areas you'd like to work in. Once you know what kind of issues they work on/questions they are working to answer, you can better write an application that will make those areas want to interview you. The Organisation Chart which details the different divisions and directorates in the bank is available under "Who We Are" on the Bank of England website (see "Related Links"). Research the areas you're interested in. What does 'success' look like for that area? What questions do they need to answer in order to succeed in their objectives? What challenges might there be in answering those questions and/or achieving their goals? What recent work do you know they've done? Doing this is doubly important when you know which area is interviewing you.
at Bank of England
Application Advice: Read about the Bank (website, working papers/policy documents for area you are interested in) and prepare for both competency and technical questions.
Interview Advice: Technical questions like: How would you model mortgage default rates? What do you think the impact of having both the financial stability and monetary policy at the Bank of England is?
Analyst, at Bank of England
Application Advice: Be out-going, not afraid to speak to people internally and externally (clients) who have a much higher position. Be enthusiastic and have an interest in the financial markets.
Interview Advice: Listen carefully to questions being asked, don't be afraid to say you don't know but will find out. Honesty is a lot better than trying to wiggle some sort of answer. Be proactive and enthusiastic.
Consultant , Business: Investment Banking at FactSet
Application Advice: Always do what you like.
Interview Advice: Study development!
Site Reliability Engineer, IT at Curve
Application Advice: Read up on Swiss Re and on sustainability.
Interview Advice: Showing you're a nice person is more important than showing you know lots - the people in front of you are imagining what it's like to work with you everyday.
Junior Sustainability Risk Management, Sustainability at Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd