Ace Your Fixed Assets Interview: The Complete Guide

Interviewing for a fixed assets or fixed asset accountant role? You’ve come to the right place. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the most common fixed assets interview questions sample answers and expert tips to help you ace your interview.

Whether you’re interviewing for an entry-level or senior fixed asset accountant position, the interviewer will want to assess your technical knowledge, analytical skills, attention to detail, and communication abilities. We’ve got you covered on all fronts. Read on to learn how to master your responses and impress your next potential employer.

Overview of the Fixed Assets Interview Process

Let’s start with what to expect during a typical fixed assets interview. Here are some of the most common types of interview questions you’re likely to encounter

  • Behavioral questions – These assess your soft skills by asking you to describe specific situations and how you responded. For example, “Tell me about a time you detected an error in fixed asset records. What actions did you take and what was the outcome?”

  • Technical questions – These test your understanding of accounting principles, standards, and best practices related to managing fixed assets. Questions may cover topics like depreciation, impairment, disposal, revaluation, and more.

  • Situational questions – These present you with a hypothetical scenario and ask you to outline your approach. For example, “If you noticed a change in usage patterns for a major fixed asset, how would you adjust the depreciation schedule?”

  • General experience questions – These inquire about your overall background, knowledge, and competencies relevant to the role. For example, “What experience do you have in the fixed assets field?”

It’s crucial that you have strong answers prepared for all of these question types. We’ll cover examples of each in the sections below.

4 Go-To Behavioral Interview Questions and Sample Answers

Behavioral questions aim to understand how you’ve handled situations in your past experience that relate to the fixed assets role. Here are some common behavioral questions with example responses:

Question: Tell me about yourself and why you’re interested in this fixed asset accountant position.

Sample Answer: As a certified public accountant with over 7 years of experience in asset management, I possess a strong foundation in managing all aspects of the fixed asset life cycle. In my current role at XYZ Company, I spearheaded the implementation of a new fixed asset management system, enhancing tracking and reporting efficiency by 18%. I’m adept at maintaining detailed asset records, conducting audits, analyzing depreciation schedules, and ensuring accurate financial reporting. This fixed asset accountant opportunity appeals to me because I’m looking to expand my technical expertise in areas like impairment testing and IFRS revaluation. I’m excited by the chance to manage fixed assets for a larger portfolio with more complex accounting treatments. My background makes me confident that I can quickly ramp up and add value in tracking, analyzing, and optimizing your company’s sizable asset investments.

Question: Tell me about a time you made a mistake in your fixed asset accounting work. How did you handle it?

Sample Answer: Early in my career, I once recorded the incorrect purchase date for a newly acquired equipment asset. Because the date was off by one month, it threw off the entire depreciation schedule. I didn’t catch the mistake until an audit months later when the depreciation expense looked unusually high. As soon as I became aware of the error, I took full accountability. I reworked the depreciation calculations, made the necessary adjusting entries, and provided my manager clear documentation explaining the correction. Although small, it was an important learning experience for me. I became much more diligent about cross-checking dates while entering new asset acquisitions. I also implemented more rigorous self-auditing prior to submitting depreciation schedules. Being proactive about catching my own errors prevented future mistakes. It taught me attention to detail is critical in fixed asset accounting.

Question: Describe a time you had to interact with someone who was dissatisfied with your work. What steps did you take to resolve the situation?

Sample Answer: In a previous role, a department head reached out to me with concerns about some missing computer equipment. After reviewing my last asset audit, I realized two laptops had been miscounted as active assets when in fact they had been disposed months earlier. I took full responsibility for the oversight and apologized for the inaccurate record-keeping. I let the department head know I would conduct a full physical inventory audit immediately to validate the fixed asset register. Within two days, I had pinpointed the source of the issue and updated the register to reconcile with the true equipment inventory. The department head appreciated my rapid response and transparency about the process. We agreed upon more frequent audits going forward to prevent similar issues. This experience reinforced that open communication and prompt action to correct errors is essential, especially when others are impacted. I learned to over-communicate during asset inventories and remain engaged with stakeholders.

6 Technical Fixed Assets Interview Questions and Answers

You’ll need to demonstrate your functional expertise during the interview by fielding technical questions about accounting standards, depreciation, valuation, and more. Here are some examples with sample responses:

Question: How would you determine the useful life of a fixed asset if you were new to the industry?

Sample Answer: Even in an unfamiliar industry, I can apply my strong foundational knowledge of asset management and accounting standards to make reasonable useful life estimates. The key is thorough research. I would consult industry reports, regulatory filings, equipment manufacturers, and engineering data to understand average asset life expectancies. For precedent, I’d review fixed asset schedules from competitors or industry benchmarks. I’d also look for any factors that could shorten the useful life, like intense usage patterns or risk of obsolescence. Combining this quantitative data with the qualitative insights from my research, I can make an informed estimate of useful life that adheres to accounting standards and aligns with industry norms. Of course, I’d document my methodology clearly and revisit the estimate annually to adjust if needed as I gain more familiarity with the assets and operations.

Question: How would you test a fixed asset for impairment under IFRS? Walk me through the process.

Sample Answer: Consistent with IFRS, my approach to testing fixed assets for impairment would begin with assessing indicators of impairment, such as obsolescence, physical damage, or declines in performance. Once an indicator is identified, I would estimate the asset’s recoverable amount, which is the higher of the asset’s fair value less costs to dispose and its value in use. Calculating value in use would involve projecting the expected future cash flows generated by the asset over its remaining useful life and discounting them to present value. If the recoverable amount is below the asset’s carrying value on the books, an impairment loss exists. I would immediately recognize this loss on the income statement and write the asset down to the recoverable amount. All assumptions and data points used in the impairment testing would be clearly documented for auditing and transparency. Staying up to date on the latest IFRS guidance is essential for accurate compliance.

Question: If you noticed a fixed asset was being under-utilized, how might you adjust the depreciation to reflect this?

Sample Answer: Declining utilization could be an indicator that an asset’s useful life needs to be reassessed. I would analyze the factors driving the usage decrease and whether they are likely to persist. If the change appears permanent, I would dig deeper into the asset’s updated value in use and remaining service potential for the company. I may involve operations leaders to discuss adjusting usage through reallocation or seek approvals for early disposal. If the asset warrants an extended useful life, I would revise the depreciation calculations, stretching them over the new longer life with correspondingly lower annual depreciation expense. Ensuring depreciation accurately reflects actual asset utilization is key. These adjustments would comply with GAAP and IFRS guidance requiring depreciation methods reflect the consumption of economic benefits. My goal is always to optimize depreciation schedules based on the most current data, keeping stakeholders accurately informed through transparent reporting.

3 Situational Interview Questions with Sample Responses

Situational and scenario-based questions evaluate your judgment, strategic thinking, and ability to apply your skills in hypothetical real-world contexts. Here are some examples with possible responses:

Question: Your company is considering investing in new machinery that costs $1M and has an estimated useful life of 10 years. As the fixed asset controller, how would you evaluate whether to expense or capitalize this purchase?

Sample Answer: With capital purchases this large, I take a comprehensive approach focused on the long-term perspective. First, I’d verify whether the expenditure meets the criteria for capitalization under GAAP and IFRS, considering the nature of the machines, their useful lifespan, and intended purpose. Assuming it qualifies, I’d work closely with operations to fully grasp how these machines would be utilized and their expected impact on production capacity, revenue growth, and cost savings over their lifetime. I’d request engineering evaluations on upkeep costs and lifespans. Comparing this data to the capital budget and targets would indicate if the investment aligns strategically. From a financial reporting lens, I’d model the impacts on the balance sheet, income statement, and ratios like ROA if purchased versus leased. This analysis would provide me a complete picture to present to leadership with a recommendation on the optimal treatment of this purchase. My goal is to balance accounting compliance, operational



What are the 3 types of fixed assets?

Fixed assets are often referred to as property, plant, and equipment, or PPE—the three most common kinds of fixed assets. For example, the fixed assets of a frozen cookie dough manufacturer might include a corporate office (property), a cookie dough factory (plant), and machines that make cookie dough (equipment).

How do you explain fixed assets?

Fixed assets are physical or tangible assets a company owns and uses in its business operations to provide services and goods to its customers and help drive income. These assets, which are often equipment or property, provide the owner with long-term financial benefits.

What are the interview questions for a fixed asset accountant?

Below is a list of our Fixed Asset Accountant interview questions. Click on any interview question to view our answer advice and answer examples. You may view six answer examples before our paywall loads. Afterwards, you’ll be asked to upgrade to view the rest of our answers. 1. What have you done recently to become a better accountant? 2.

What are fixed assets interview questions & answers?

Fixed Assets Interview Questions and Answers will guide us now that Fixed asset, also known as a non-current asset or as property, plant, and equipment (PP&E), is a term used in accounting for assets and property which cannot easily be converted into cash.

What should you include in a fixed asset management interview?

Use examples from your previous work history, but if you haven’t worked in a fixed asset management role before, consider including any accounting or financial experience you have. Example: “In my previous roles as a Fixed Asset Accountant, I have had the opportunity to manage a wide variety of assets.

Do fixed asset accountants work with other financial professionals?

Fixed asset accountants often work with other financial professionals to ensure their company’s accounting is accurate. An interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your communication skills and how you collaborate with others. To answer, think of a time when you worked with another professional on an important project.

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