To help us evaluate your skills for being a COMPLUS Professional Controller please be prepared to discuss issues related to the following questions, and more. If this looks like it might be a tough interview, that's our intent. Clients are looking for "seasoned pros," and I want you to be prepared when you represent our service mark.
CONTEXT ----- COMPLUS Professional Controllers serve clients (owners of "for-profit" businesses in the Chicagoland area - McHenry to Merrillville) which are too big for him/her to run with only a checkbook in the back pocket and too small to hire one of us full-time (generally 20-100 workers or $2-10 million sales).
- What are your preferable work-day lunch arrangements?
- What is your CPE strategy?
- The owner describes a series of "horror stories" about the accounting/office personnel and activities. (Companies seldom look for help when the situation is "under control.") He/she concludes with this question, "If I hired you for my CFO/Controller and gave you a 'blank check,' how much money do you need (for the next year) and briefly describe how you would spend it?" How do you respond?
- What's the most important question a banker should ask before making a loan?
- The owner comments and asks, "I bought my computer system (one with which you have no personal experience, yet) about a year-and-a-half ago. The vendor promised that it would solve all my accounting problems. I suppose that the other 3 or 4,000 companies that use this product are doing OK, but we're not. What can you do to help me?" How do you respond?
- A business owner friend asks, "I just got a proposal from Administaff; what do you think?" How do you respond?
- How do you differentiate between a "consultant" and a "spy?"
- The owner asks, "Can you make my decisions for me?" How do you respond?
- If a company pays professional society dues for employees, what should be expected in return?
- If I gave you a bank account reconciliation project (e.g., something you should be able to do in 2-3 hours), what documents would you need, and describe the appearance of your "answer."
- How would you teach a "new" Payables Clerk about when we can pay a bill?
By the way, if you're an employer looking for a CFO/Controller, you might find some of these questions helpful. Current laws and "best practices" demand that questions asked of a candidate be relevant to reasonable expectations for a successful applicant. COMPLUS offers "equal opportunity" and does not discriminate based on race, color, creed, national origin, gender, disability, etc., only on skill.