Super day interviews are the last step towards securing your offer for a summer analyst or analyst position in investment banking. The main objective the firm has when conducting super day interviews is to determine which candidates to provide offers to.
The super day is typically a back-to-back series of interviews with multiple members of the investment banking team. These interviews create high-pressure environments and are designed to judge candidates’ ability to cope with the demands of the job. These interviews can last from 3 to 5 hours and consist of speaking with bankers of varying seniority. Most individual interviews last 30-45 minutes with small breaks in between interviews. Pre-COVID super day interviews were often in person, however most are now face-to-face interviews on applications such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams.
Candidates will interview with bankers that have a range of personalities and interview formats. Throughout the course of a super day, you will be asked a mix of behavioral, technical, and situational questions. Super days offer firms a full look at candidates from multiple perspectives. They will be assessing if your past experiences have prepared you to bring valuable work experience to the table and provided you with a sufficient knowledge of finance that can be strengthened through on-the-job tasks. They are also assessing if you are a good-natured person who accepts responsibility, handles high demands well, and if you are someone they would enjoy working all through the night with.
Even though super days provide several hours of interviews, each interview will still provide you with a limited amount of time to present your candidacy for the role you are seeking, so it is important that candidates provide answers that are succinct and dense. It’s important you demonstrate your motivation for the investment banking industry, your understanding of the investment banking analyst role, the personal qualities that will make you a valuable member of the team, and your interest in the firm. After initial pleasantries, interviewers usually provide an introduction about themselves and their time at the firm, and then turns their attention to you. A common way interviewers start is to say “tell me about yourself” or “walk me through your resume.” Some interviews in a super day might skip behavioral questions and focus more on technical questions.
All interviews in a super day could contain some technical questions or there might be a single interview that is solely dedicated to technical questions. Either way, be prepared for technical questions that are more in depth and dig deeper into your technical knowledge than a first round interview. Interviewers will ask you to walk them through valuation methods, navigate the three statements, recite formulas, and explain your assumptions, logic, and approach to certain financial models. Interviewers also may ask you to explain concepts such as free cash flow or enterprise value. If you are interviewing for a specific industry group, having a good grasp of recent news and major firms in that industry is expected.
There is no better preparation than to actually learn these concepts through real applications. The Adventis FMC Program, conducting valuation on stocks for projects or clubs, and case competitions are great ways to learn since you retain information better and can walk someone through the exact process of deriving a value from these analyses.
Towards the end of each interview, candidates are typically provided with an opportunity to ask questions. You should strive to have good questions that display an understanding of the industry and legitimate interest in the firm you are interviewing with. Provided you will have multiple interviews in a super day, it’s important you are prepared with a longer list of questions. You don’t want to ask the same question to all the bankers you interview with. You should also strive to tailor the question to the person you are interviewing with and the conversation you had during the interview. If your interviewer is very conversational, they may even take this time to talk more about your interests outside of work or school, which will take the pressure off of you and open the door for a memorable interview experience. At the end of the interview, be sure to thank the interviewer for their time.
Since super days are the final round, you should expect to hear back from the recruiting team anywhere from several hours to several weeks after the interviews are concluded. You should make the recruiting team aware of any outstanding offers from other firms so they can prioritize your results. It’s also recommended to send thank you notes to your interviewers immediately following your final interview.
You should expect to put in significant preparation for super day interviews. Since the stakes for super day interviews are high, a good impression in all interviews is critical. Not only does this come from the effective delivery of your answers, but being able to hold a natural conversation and demonstrating active listening skills throughout all interviews.
If the super day is remote, make sure you find a quiet place to conduct the interviews that is free of distractions and background noise. You should dress professionally. While interviewing, refrain from reading from a script, as this will likely be more obvious to the interviewer than you may think. Finally, act naturally and think of your interviewer as another human being wanting to know more about you.