How to Face Compliance Job Interviews

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Interviews are crucial times for every prospective compliance job candidate, and many are on tenterhooks when they have to undergo the process. Similarly, employers have the difficult task of recruiting the best candidate for the compliance job in their company. In times of recession, the problem of recruiting potential candidates increases due to the rising number of job cuts in the industry. This article puts forth some compliance job interview guidelines with the goal of helping to secure a worthwhile compliance career.

Compliance officer job interviews are held by HR managers or company heads and are conducted in a variety of ways that are sometimes analytical and sometimes strange. The employer might ask the compliance job candidate relevant questions pertaining to Sarbanes-Oxley rules and the latest compliance measures or about the last time he or she went out on a date. If the compliance job prospect is applying for a high-profile position, then chances are that he or she will be sweating with apprehension and nervousness. Let’s explore the various questions and issues that might come up in a typical compliance job interview.

Avoid Self-Centeredness

The first and foremost interview blooper when applying for a high-profile compliance job is to answer the interviewer’s questions with phrases such as ''I want,” ''I’m looking for,” etc. These answers clearly demonstrate how desperate the candidate is for the job, and might even convey self-centeredness on his or her part. Instead, it is essential to provide responses that highlight the ways that you can help benefit the company’s interests.

Showcase Relevant Experience

Never say anything irrelevant or out of context when asked about your proudest achievements. It is idiotic to mention that winning a sack race was your proudest achievement, even if it happens to be true. Rather, you should take this opportunity to showcase your talents. An anecdote about a success you had in one of your previous roles will prove to be both relevant and measurable in terms of potential benefits for a future employer.

Deal Sensitively with your Reason for Leaving your Previous Job

Never tell your prospective employer that you left your previous job because you did not have a healthy rapport with your boss. Avoid answering those questions which might seem too personal; if you have to provide an answer, give a response that illustrates that advancing your career was the sole motivation behind leaving your previous job. This advice applies to interviews in compliance or any other field.

Present Your Weaknesses with a Grain of Salt

If you are asked about your strengths and weaknesses, don’t insist that you have no faults. That will only make you seem over-confident and arrogant. Think of some real faults that you have, and also of the steps you take to curb them. Also refrain from downplaying your good qualities in an effort to sound humble and down-to earth. Instead, state your positive qualities with temperance and control. Don’t be over-excited when telling your potential employers about your previous successes. Avoid bragging, and provide examples that demonstrate your good qualities with dignity and depth.

Maintain a Proper Interview Attitude

Be calm and controlled when answering the interviewer’s questions. Avoid being stiff, stubborn, reticent, or aloof when answering questions, as it might keep you from connecting with your potential employer. Pay attention to the body language of the interviewer as well, and respond accordingly. Listen carefully before answering; if the questions are dealing with compliance issues, answer them briefly and to the point. Don’t embellish too much or go off on tangents.


All employers have different sets of interview questions. The best strategy to employ when facing compliance job interviews is to be true to yourself but also shrewd and alert to the proceedings. It is very important to adapt to each situation and alter your replies accordingly. Finally, while you should not succumb to unnecessary post-interview stress, you must make sure to follow up and inquire about your job prospects.
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 compliance  industry  employers  potential  benefits  recession  Sarbanes-Oxley Act  HR  interests  errors

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