Hiring Guides

Financial Analyst

Specific duties of a Financial Analyst can vary from business to business — along with factors like company culture, work environment, and team dynamics — it’s vital to tailor any template-based description to your company’s needs and expectations.

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Why you should hire a Financial Analyst

Financial Analysts help companies achieve success by analyzing their financial data to forecast financial performance. Their work is integral to informing strategic, financial, and investment decisions in order to ensure profitability for the business.

In this hiring guide, we'll provide everything you need to hire a great Financial Analyst.

Top skills for Financial Analysts

Solving Financial Discrepancies

Financial Modeling and Analysis
Analytical Thinking

Communicating Financial Data and Analyses

Data Presentation
Verbal Communication
Financial Reporting

Teamwork and Collaboration


Business/Industry Knowledge

Strategic Thinking
Business Acumen
Market Research

Sample Financial Analyst job description

Financial Analysts are responsible for analyzing financial information and predicting the future performance of a client or company. More specifically, they examine data from past transactions and investments to forecast a future financial state including revenues, expenditures, budgets and overall models of capital structure. Their duties include writing financial reports, communicating financial information to stakeholders and management, conducting market/industry research, tracking market fluctuations, preparing risk profiles among others. Performing this role effectively requires strong financial knowledge and technical abilities as well as excellent communication skills and an attention to detail.

Sample interview questions for Financial Analysts

Question 1

Imagine you’ve discovered a discrepancy in the detailed supporting data across various financial sources in preparing a profit and loss statement for a Budget/Forecast. Walk me through the steps you would take in response to assessing and resolving the issue

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Alecia H.
Director of Finance - 16 years professional experience

What does this question reveal?

Candidate has the ability to analyze information to solve problems effectively and completely

Answer tips

  • Double checks data to confirm errors/ inconsistencies
  • Isolates the most relevant information required to solve the problem
  • Takes time to develop a comprehensive understanding of both ‘what’ the issue is and ‘why’ it occurred
  • Understands who to consult (finance and non-finance) and what to ask when gathering information
  • Views issue from the perspective of other functions (e.g., sales, operations, finance)

Question 2

If you identified a financial discrepancy, what would you do to ensure you developed a comprehensive understanding of the issue?

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Senior Financial Analyst — 13 years professional experience

What does this question reveal?

Candidate has the ability to be thorough and detail-oriented when solving problems

Answer tips

  • Recaps/clarifies details of the discrepancy with stakeholders before going into details
  • Consults different stakeholders to gather information about the ‘what’ and the ‘why’ behind the problem to determine areas of key focus
  • Isolates and focuses on the right details that will result in value-added outcomes / solutions
  • Organizes and reviews complete information and evaluates it relative to the problem at hand

Question 3

What are the key aspects of building a forecasting model that is easy to maintain? How do you monitor the accuracy of a pre-existing model?

Alycia Damp's portrait image
Hireguide I/O Psych Validated
Alycia Damp, PhD IRHR

What does this question reveal?

Candidate has the ability to influence business decisions by establishing and maintaining credibility

Answer tips

  • Outlines a structured approach to assessing the quality of an existing model
  • Examines whether the old model is used to make any decisions
  • Highlights the challenges of measuring the accuracy of an old forecasting model
  • Considers how deviations can occur in the forecasting power of an old model
  • Discusses ways to keep forecasting accurate and simple