Mazars interview: the recruitment process explained (with examples!)

Mazars interview: the recruitment process explained (with examples!)

It is very common for students who want to work in finance to join an audit firm at the beginning of their career. Reputed to be particularly formative, an auditing experience within a large firm allows you to acquire strong rigor and work capacity. As these skills are essential in finance, it is understandable why many financial analysts start their career in auditing.

However, audit firms have specific recruitment processes, which often extend over several stages and require a significant investment from the candidate. Aware of the difficulties involved in preparing for an interview on your own, without any "given" information from people you would know within the company, the Trainy team has decided to present the recruitment process at Mazars. Discover all the steps of the recruitment process as well as our tips to impress the recruiters!



Read more: Audit at Mazars: a (simple) springboard to a corpo career?



How does the recruitment process work at Mazars?

First, it is important to understand that the company is constantly looking to improve its recruitment process in order to make it as efficient as possible, both for the company and for the candidate. The current process (as of the date of this article) consists of a half-day recruitment session during which you will go through a series of interviews and contacts. The session is usually held remotely, via Teams.

During this half-day, the format is as follows:

  • A one-hour motivational interview with an operational person (usually a senior auditor)

  • A "Live my life" situation for 30 minutes

  • A logical case and reverse interview for 30 minutes


Following this recruitment session, you will receive a personalized answer between 48 hours and 7 days later. In all cases, someone from the HR department will call you to give you feedback on your performance (opinions of the recruiters you met) and to tell you the next steps if the answer is positive.


1) One-hour classic motivation interview

The first part of the recruitment session begins with a motivation/personality interview. For one hour, you will discuss with an operational person your background, the reasons why you want to join Mazars, what you do in your current professional experience (or the last one if you are on a course) or your interests.

This first interview is quite classic; you will not be asked any technical or audit-specific questions. The recruiter is looking to understand your background, what led you to apply to Mazars, to see if your profile matches the company's values. The person in front of you will not try to trick you but, on the contrary, to get to know you better. You can therefore expect questions such as:

  • Tell me about your background.

  • Why Mazars and not another firm?

  • Why external audit today (compared to your career so far)?

  • What have you learned from your professional experience?

  • What are your interests and occupations when you have free time?



2) A 30-minute "Live my life" case study

The second part of the recruitment session is made up of scenarios and logical cases. The "Live my life" part puts you in the shoes of a Mazarien in a situation he or she might encounter in his or her daily life. This part does not require any specific skills or knowledge. It is mainly about how you interact in a more informal situation. This could be attending a trade show as a Mazars representative, having lunch with a colleague, talking to a client, etc.

Again, you don't need to know the audit world and all the specific techniques involved. You will mainly be involved in a conversation with the recruiter who will also take on the role of someone. This part is quite quick. The recruiter will give you the context of the situation, give you a few moments to put yourself in the role and begin the discussion. This is not a prepared exercise but an improvisation.


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3) The Einstein case and the 30-minute reverse interview

The last part of the interview is perhaps the most technical, although you will not be asked anything specific to auditing. In fact, the logical case takes the form of a simple question to which you are asked to provide a numerical answer. Let's take some examples:

  • How many hairdressers are there in the 10th district of Paris?

  • How many bottles of Coke are sold in the world each year?

  • How many round trips does the elevator of the Mazars Tower make?

  • How many solar panels would Paris need to provide energy for the entire city? 


The recruiter simply gives you the question orally and gives you 4-5 minutes to think and prepare your answer. You are not allowed to use the internet; the objective is really to see how you think. The first step is to make assumptions. Let's take the case of the Coke bottles presented in an interview by a candidate: Let's make the assumptions:

  • A bottle of Coke purchased is a bottle of Coke drunk (we eliminate inventory issues)

  • We consider only one-liter bottles of Coke (we eliminate the conversions from centiliter to liter, the different sizes, etc.)

  • There are an estimated 3 billion Coke consumers (world population of 8 billion, although Coke is the most drunk soda in the world, other sodas must be considered as well as natural considerations and the growing health impact of this type of drink. This is a very large estimate and most likely far from reality, but it is necessary to put a figure).

  • It is estimated that a person drinks an average of 2 liters of Coke per week (a figure that averages out the heavy daily consumers, the once in a while Coke drinker. Again, this is an estimate that includes a certain margin of error).



From these estimates, we calculate:

3 billion (Coke drinkers) x 2 (bottles drunk per week per person) x 52 (number of weeks per year) = 312 billion.

The recruiter then asked the candidate to explain how he determined his assumptions and what he would have done to refine his result if he had had more time. For information, the reality is around 500 - 550 billion bottles per year, an order of magnitude consistent with the candidate's answer.


Recruiters insist on this point, and we remind them here: the answer is not the most important thing, what matters is your intellectual path. These questions are deliberately vague and difficult to quantify so as not to be able to provide a result that is known in advance. The recruiter will mainly look at how you estimated your hypotheses, why you chose this way of solving the problem and not another, or what you could have anticipated doing if you had more time.


Finally, the reversed interview is a last step that puts you in the recruiter's shoes. The recruiter gives you one or two situations that he or she has experienced and asks you to ask questions about them. The objective is to succeed in asking questions that are of professional interest. This is mainly an improvisation exercise to see how you react in an unusual context.



Following this recruitment session, you will receive feedback from Mazars within 48 hours to 7 days.



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