Application hints and tips

Find out what to expect
when you apply

Our recruitment process

HSBC’s application procedures vary according to the role you are seeking and the country where you are hoping to work. They will typically include the stages outlined below, depending on whether you are applying for a general role or a student and graduate role.

General application details

Candidates for roles at HSBC will usually be taken through a number of steps, from submitting their CV and completing online assessments to telephone and face-to-face interviews.

We aim for an inclusive work environment where everyone can reach their full potential. If you require any adjustments to our recruitment process please let us know. Examples of such adjustments might include supplying materials in large print or Braille or providing assistance to attend our assessment centres.

Your CV is an important part of your application to HSBC and is your first opportunity to demonstrate your qualities and achievements. It also enables us to consider you if another suitable role comes up in the future. In addition to your CV we may ask you to complete an application form.

Begin your CV with a brief summary of your skills, accomplishments and career goals. Follow this with your employment history and work experience, starting with your most recent role. Include full details of your employers, dates of employment, job titles and responsibilities. Make sure you give examples of your skills and achievements, relating these to the role for which you are applying where possible.

Next, give details of the university, college or school you attended, your qualifications and grades and any work-related courses taken. Start with the most recent and work backwards, using bullet points or a table. Finally, mention any hobbies or interests that have a particular relevance to the role for which you are applying. Ensure your contact details are up to date and that the CV is no more than two pages long.

Once you have successfully completed your application, we may send you a link to a website containing some online assessments. These are designed to identify whether you have the skills required for the role and to assess your suitability for working at HSBC. The number and type of assessments will depend on the role for which you are applying.

You can take the assessments at any time within a fixed number of days, as specified in the email. You should complete some of the practice questions supplied before you begin, and start the assessments only when you are sure you can give them your undivided attention.

We often conduct a short telephone interview to assess candidates’ compatibility with HSBC’s values, as well as their general skills and motivation for applying. This will last approximately 30-60 minutes depending on the role and is conducted by an accredited interviewer. You should put in the same amount of preparation as you would for a face-to-face interview.

In both telephone and face-to-face interviews we will ask you to tell us about specific occasions when you have demonstrated a particular skill. Know your strengths and be prepared to give examples of when you have demonstrated relevant skills. Focus on your role in these situations and the outcomes. These examples don't have to be drawn from work. For each example, explain: the situation you faced; the specific task required of you; the action that you took; and the result of this action. If you don't understand a question that is asked, ask the interviewer to repeat it.

The interview is your chance to make sure the interviewer knows that you are enthusiastic about the opportunity to work at HSBC. If you are successful in the interview, we will contact you and let you know what happens next.

Student and graduate application details

(duration 3:06) Watch the video to learn about the application process and ensure you are as prepared as possible when applying for one of our global internships or graduate programmes.

If you are applying for an entry-level position in the country where you live or the Global Graduate Programme, please check with the local recruitment team for information on the recruitment and selection process.

Our internship and global graduate programmes develop the most talented students and graduates to achieve their fullest potential within HSBC. We need forward-thinking, driven and perceptive students and graduates who are open to different ideas and cultures, and who enjoy being part of a team. For these programmes we have a Graduate Success Framework to ensure that we recruit the best candidates in each country. The process may vary slightly by country to accommodate cultural and legal requirements.

We encourage people from all backgrounds to apply. We have created a process to give all applicants the opportunity to excel. For example, we don't rely on CVs but use an application form to assess applicants.

We aim for an inclusive work environment where everyone can reach their full potential. If you require any adjustments to our recruitment process, please let us know by contacting your local recruitment team. Examples of such adjustments might include supplying materials in large print or Braille or providing assistance to attend our assessment centres.

The first stage of the process is to complete any local requirements and the application form. The form consists of short questions regarding your eligibility to apply for the role. It doesn’t matter what your degree discipline is or where you studied: the most important part is that you meet our eligibility requirements. You will also be asked to complete some questions that we use to report and monitor equal opportunities and local country requirements will be followed. This information will not be visible to anyone throughout the recruitment process or after and is treated in confidence, you do have the option not to provide information within these questions

Once you have successfully completed the application form and met our eligibility requirements, you will be invited to take the Online Immersive Assessment.

During this assessment you will get an insight into the life of graduates working at HSBC through a video documentary and will be asked questions that will assess your behaviour and cognitive skills.

Once you have successfully completed the application form, you will complete two online assessments. The first is an online immersive assessment which will provide you with additional insight into HSBC. During the assessment you will be asked to identify how you would respond to a range of work situations, and analyse written and numerical data. We recommend that you become familiar with these types of written and numerical reasoning tests on the Capp candidate practice site (opens in new window) (opens in new window).

Should you be successful, the second stage of our online assessment is a Job Simulation that will provide you with insight into the specific business area you have applied to. You will be presented with fictitious information and be asked to analyse numerical data, provide written answers and record verbally in response to the questions presented.

We will contact you to let you know whether you have made it through to the next stage of the recruitment process.

Depending on the Global Graduate Programme or Internship that you have applied for, you may be invited to take part in a half-day Assessment Centre or “Super Day”.

You will be assessed by key members of the relevant business area in a face-to-face Strengths-based interview(s) and a series of assessment exercises. All of these exercises and interview(s) are founded within the Strengths-based methodology and as such have been designed to encourage you to demonstrate your potential and suitability for HSBC.

To support your preparation for the final stage assessment we recommend that you consider why you have applied to work at HSBC, but also think about the situations where you truly excel and the achievements you are proud of.

If you are successful at the Assessment Centre/Super Day, we will contact you and let you know what happens next.

If you have applied to a vacancy on one of our graduate or intern programmes, you can find contact details for your local team on the careers contacts  page. Please do not send your CV or any sensitive information to these email addresses, as they are for handling application and selection queries only.

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