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National Institutes of Health GS-560 Budget Analysis Behavioral Interview Guide

NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Budget Analysis Behavioral Interview Guide

Behavioral-Based Interview %verview
Behavioral-based interviews focus on discovering how a candidate performed in specific work related situations. This interview technique seeks to uncover how a potential employee actually did behave in a given situation; not on how he or she might behave in the future. The premise behind this technique is that a good predictor of future performance is how someone performed in the past in a similar situation. Behavioral-based interviews are becoming more common throughout industry and government and many candidates are familiar with this technique and are well prepared for these interviews. Candidates can and should draw on previous work related experiences as well as non-work related experiences e.g.! school pro"ects! community involvement# that are relevant to the interview questions.

Behavioral Interviewing Suggested #roto!ol
$. %s much as possible! all questions should relate to experiences that have occurred in the last &-' years best for recollection of behavioral details#. &. %ll behavioral interview questions should focus on what the interviewee did! said! felt or thought in the past. The interviewer should be looking for phrases such as () did*.+! () said*.+ etc. '. ,o not ask questions about what the interviewee would do in a given situation or what they would have done differently. The focus is on what the interviewee actually did-said-thought-felt in the past. )f the interviewee uses such phrases as () would!+ the interviewer should probe by saying! (.hat did you actually do at that time/+ 0. The interviewee should focus on what he-she did! rather than what (we+ did. .hile working as part of a team is very common and desirable! it is important to understand what the candidate1s individual role was. The interviewer should probe the interviewee if (.e+ is used in describing actions. 2or example! if the interviewee says (.e implemented the new payroll system by*+! it is the interviewer1s "ob to ask the interviewee what his-her role was and what he actually did as an individual#. 3. 4rior to delving into the detail of each question! ask the interviewee to provide a brief '5 second# overview of the situation by highlighting the beginning! middle! and end. This helps the interviewer to keep the interview on track. 2or example! if you feel lost in the discussion! you can pause the conversation by asking the interviewee where you are in the story beginning! middle! or end#.

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Budget Analysis Behavioral Interview Guide

Suggested Introdu!tion to the Interview
• This is a behavioral interview! which may be different from interviews you have had in the past. % behavioral interview focuses on what you have done! said! felt and thought in past experiences. 4lease use the first person as much as possible because ) am most interested in what you have done! said! thought and felt in the situations. 8o if you use the term (we+ rather than ()+! ) may interrupt you to clarify what you did in the situation versus what others did. • ) am going to ask you specific questions about your experiences and will ask that you try! as best as you can! to only discuss experiences that have occurred within the past & or ' years so that you will be able to recall the details of the situations. • ) will ask follow-up questions to get as many of the details around what you were doing in the situation. )magine that ) am making a movie of what you were doing in the given situation. ) am interested in everything you did! said! thought and felt. 69T:; The information provided above offers suggestions for conducting behavioral-based interviews. )nterviewers should use this information as a tool and tailor the interview to meet the needs of the individual organi<ation.

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

Budget Analysis
Com eten!y
Budget Cal!ulation

"efinition
Compiles! analy<es and summari<es probable financial income and expenditures over a specific period! as well as allocates funds for a specific purpose within a given time frame

'ederal Budget #ro!ess

=nderstands the 2ederal Budget process! including budget formulation! presentation and execution
%naly<es quantitative and qualitative financial data effectively to manage and achieve results! and identifies organi<ational trends through a variety of sources %cquires and applies critical financial concepts and practices! based upon a thorough understanding of the 2ederal >overnment ,evelops models or pro"ections based on studying past results! relationships! outcomes and data ,evelops and monitors processes and organi<es resources to achieve desired results

'inan!ial "ata Analysis

'inan!ial &anagement

%rgani(ational 'ore!asting

#ro!ess &anagement

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

Budget Cal!ulation
Compiles! analy<es and summari<es program and financial information over a specific period! for the purpose of informing the allocation of funds for a specific purpose within a given time frame

)ey Behaviors*
• • • • • • • ,iscusses the purposes and benefits of budgeting :xplains the planning and control functions of revenue budgeting %pplies strategies to analy<e financial statements and uses related information in budget preparation =ses guidelines for establishing effective budget ob"ectives ,emonstrates knowledge of various types of budgets )dentifies the appropriate budgeting strategies for a variety of situations :xplains complex budgeting calculations i.e. pricing indexes#

Interview +uestions*
$. 7ow have you used program information! financial statements and related information to prepare a budget/ &. ,escribe a time when you had to calculate and recommend a budget for your organi<ation for a specific purpose within a given time frame. .hat type of budget did you establish and what guidelines did you follow/ '. ,escribe a situation in which you had to apply the appropriate budgeting strategy for a specific purpose. 7ow did you determine which strategy to use/ .hat was the outcome/

Candidate ,es onse*

Interview Summary*
Summari(e the situation- .ehaviors demonstrated and out!omes/ 0hen rovide an overall rofi!ien!y rating for the !om eten!y as defined in the Administrative %ffi!er !om eten!y model/ 8ituation;

Behaviors;

9utcome;

9verall Competency 4roficiency ?ating;

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

'ederal Budget #ro!ess
)dentifies! prioriti<es! and manages resources e.g.! people! systems! space! budgets! contracts# to foster productivity and deliver solutions

)ey Behaviors*
• • • • • =nderstands the hierarchy of financial authority within the 2ederal >overnment 4ossesses knowledge of current laws! regulations and guidance affecting the 2ederal budget process =ses written strategic business plans to support program and financial assumptions =ses historical data forecasting assumptions and program knowledge to prepare budget plans 4resents the program and budget planning-budgeting process and-or program and budget model to a variety of audiences i.e. co-workers! new employees! Congress#

Interview +uestions*
$. ,escribe a time when you used a strategic business plan to support program budget assumptions/ .hat was your strategy for resolving competing interests/ .hat challenges did you encounter/ 7ow did you overcome those challenges/ &. 8hare a time when you presented program and budget information to a variety of audiences. 7ow did you tailor your presentation to each audience/ .hat challenges did you face and how did you handle them/ '. 4rovide an example of a time when your understanding of the 2ederal budget process helped you accomplish a task. .hat was the outcome/

Candidate ,es onse*

Interview Summary*
Summari(e the situation- .ehaviors demonstrated and out!omes/ 0hen rovide an overall rofi!ien!y rating for the !om eten!y as defined in the Administrative %ffi!er !om eten!y model/ 8ituation;

Behaviors;

9utcome;

9verall Competency 4roficiency ?ating;

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

'inan!ial "ata Analysis
%naly<es quantitative and qualitative financial data effectively to manage and achieve results! and identifies organi<ational trends through a variety of sources

)ey Behaviors*
• %naly<es financial data in order to make comparisons! draw conclusions! and make decisions • =ses established financial models and tools for analy<ing quantitative and qualitative data • )dentifies key performance issues and establishes cause and effect relationships to solve complex financial problems for the organi<ation

Interview +uestions*
$. 9rgani<ations gather and interpret financial data in order to make comparisons and be able to solve complex problems. 4rovide an example of how you used financial data from a variety of sources to identify and resolve an issue. &. ,escribe a time when you applied your skills in data analysis to make a recommendation on an issue or decision. .hat process did you use/ .hat obstacles did you face/ 7ow was your recommendation received/

Candidate ,es onse*

Interview Summary*
Summari(e the situation- .ehaviors demonstrated and out!omes/ 0hen rovide an overall rofi!ien!y rating for the !om eten!y as defined in the Administrative %ffi!er !om eten!y model/ 8ituation;

Behaviors;

9utcome;

9verall Competency 4roficiency ?ating;

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

'inan!ial &anagement
%cquires and applies critical financial concepts and practices! based upon a thorough understanding of the 2ederal >overnment

)ey Behaviors*
• • • • • :stablishes and maintains realistic budgets ,raws accurate conclusions from program and financial information =ses program! financial and other quantitative information to manage resources provided for a pro"ect )nterprets and analy<es the meaning and implications of key program and financial indicators =nderstands overall program and financial performance of the organi<ation and the resulting capacity to manage supported pro"ects • =ses program and financial analysis to evaluate strategic options and opportunities and recommend effective and practical alternatives

Interview +uestions*
$. 8hare an example of when you used external financial information and-or other program relevant indicators to make strategic recommendations for your organi<ation. 7ow did you approach this endeavor/ 7ow did you gain support for this effort/ &. 8hare an example of a time when you used financial information and-or other program relevant information to support or drive an organi<ational decision. .hat challenges did you face and how did you handle them/ '. ,escribe a time when you had to prioriti<e activities in order to meet budget parameters. 7ow did you manage competing interests/

Candidate ,es onse*

Interview Summary*
Summari(e the situation- .ehaviors demonstrated and out!omes/ 0hen rovide an overall rofi!ien!y rating for the !om eten!y as defined in the Administrative %ffi!er !om eten!y model/ 8ituation;

Behaviors;

9utcome;

9verall Competency 4roficiency ?ating;

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Grants &anagement Behavioral Interview Guide

%rgani(ational 'ore!asting
,evelops models or pro"ections based on studying past results! relationships! and data and anticipating future trends-events

)ey Behaviors*
• ?eviews information and data being used to generate forecasts • Conducts analysis utili<ing various forecasting tools and methodologies to assess actual performance and quantify risks • ?eviews forecasts for soundness • 4repares forecasting tool to help frame policy discussion • 4repares forecasting reports-communications and disseminates them to various stakeholder groups as required

Interview +uestions*
$. ,escribe a time when you were required to prepare a forecast tool and-or report/ .hat was your approach/ .hat factors did you consider/ .hat sources of information did you use/ &. ,iscuss a forecast methodology that you have used for an organi<ation to guide the future direction of the program. 7ow was it effective/ '. ,escribe a time you had to implement a forecasting tool and-or communicate a forecasting report you developed. .hat feedback did you get/ 7ow did you address the feedback/

Candidate ,es onse*

Interview Summary*
Summari(e the situation- .ehaviors demonstrated and out!omes/ 0hen rovide an overall rofi!ien!y rating for the !om eten!y as defined in the Administrative %ffi!er !om eten!y model/ 8ituation;

Behaviors;

9utcome;

9verall Competency 4roficiency ?ating;

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B

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Budget Analysis Behavioral Interview Guide

NIH Com eten!y #rofi!ien!y S!ale S!ore
6-% 5

#rofi!ien!y 1evel
Not Applicable Not Demonstrated

"es!ri tion
Cou are not required to apply or demonstrate this competency. This competency is not applicable to your position. Cou have not demonstrated this competency and likely have not had related training or experience. 8hows basic knowledge and understanding sufficient to handle routine tasks. 2ocus is on learning. • Cou are training or on-the-"ob training; beginning to develop this competency and have completed formal • Cou understand and can discuss terminology! concepts! principles! and issues related to this competency; • Cou utili<e the full range of reference and resource materials in this competency. 7as depth-breadth of knowledge to handle non-routine situations. Begins to take initiative. 2ocus is on applying and enhancing knowledge or skill. • Cou have applied this competency in occasional situations and still require minimal guidance to perform successfully; • Cou understand and can discuss the application and implications of changes to processes! policies! and procedures in this area. %n expert who can handle broad organi<ational-professional issues; works independently; has long-term perspective; coaches! guides and empowers others. • Cou have consistently provided practical-relevant ideas and perspectives on process or practice improvements which may easily be implemented; • Cou are capable of coaching others in the application of this competency by translating complex nuances relating to this competency into easy to understand terms; • Cou participate in senior level discussions regarding this competency; • Cou assist in the development of reference and resource materials in this competency.

Baseline $ theoretical knowledge#

Progressing & limited practical application and experience#

Proficient ' practical application and experience#

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NIH Com eten!y "evelo ment #ro$e!t Budget Analysis Behavioral Interview Guide %n expert whose advice is sought out by others! from both within the 6)7 and from the ,epartment or other organi<ations; 8hapes the organi<ation-profession; is visionary; focus is strategic; copes with the unknown. • Cou have demonstrated consistent excellence in applying this competency across multiple pro"ects and-or organi<ations; • Cou are considered the (go to+ person in this area from within 6)7 and-or outside the 94,)E; • Cou create new applications for and-or lead the development of reference and resource materials for this competency; • Cou are able to diagram or explain the relevant process elements and issues in relation to organi<ational issues and trends in sufficient detail during discussions and presentations! to foster a greater understanding among internal and external colleagues and constituents.

Master 0 recogni<ed thought leader# %ll criteria must apply

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