Prepare For The Interview Setting
You may interview in person, but the chance is just as high that you’ll do it over a videoconferencing platform like Zoom. Here are some tips for how to prepare for a remote whiteboard interview:
- Ask the interviewer which conferencing app youll be using and make sure you have downloaded it and are comfortable with its features.
- Choose a quiet, relaxed setting without distractions like your bedroom, an office, or even a side room reserved at a local library. A little background noise is unavoidable, but you want your interviewer to be able to hear you clearly.
- Get a notepad ready to take notes during the interview. You may want to write down things such as:
- The interviewer’s name
- Questions that come up during the interview that you may want to ask after the interview
Do More Than Just Read The Companys About Us Page
At this point in your career, youve probably had plenty of interviews before and you know to research the company, its history, products, services and industry reputation. But it would be in your interest to dig a bit deeper when preparing for your technical interview. Doing this will set you apart from the competition and help you feel more familiar with this company before walking through the door on the day of your technical interview.
What is the companys vision for the future and how does the role youre interviewing for fit with this vision? For instance, maybe it is changing its product or service offering in response to digital transformations in its industry, therefore it will need people with your technical skills.
And what about the culture? You may be used to relaxed and informal environments where you can turn up in jeans every day and work from a beanbag chair, but dont assume anything about this new opportunity. Your recruiter should have all of the key information about their client, so reach out to them, look on employer review sites and speak to anyone in your network who has worked at this organisation.
Make sure you also know the names and job titles of the people you are interviewing with. When you find out, use LinkedIn to look for similarities and common touch points but be subtle when using this information in the interview.
Analyze Your Learning Style
Before you can start experimenting with different studying methods, you need to understand what type of learner you are:
Is your memory associated to sound?
Maybe you can remember what you were reading when a particular song was playing? If this is your case, then you fall into the category of auditory learners.
If you want to start studying more efficiently, then it would be wise to record the lectures and listen to them instead of reading textbooks.
Do you relate information to visual content?
If you are a visual learner, you should implement images, graphs, charts, infographics, colorful lists, flashcards, and other types of visual content when you study.
Are you a physical learner?
If your learning style is not auditory or visual, then you might be a physical learner. Some students have too much energy they tap their feet or play with a pen during lectures.
A walk before a lecture will calm your nerves down. You can try studying or listening to audio lectures during a walk. That will help you remember the information more quickly.
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Understand The Interview Process
When preparing for the technical interviews at any specific company, the first step is to understand the formats and processes it entails. The best source of information here would be the HR person youâve been communicating with. Ask them what technical rounds and formats you can expect and if they have any recommendations on how best to prepare for them.
The next step is to go through the company website and look for interview related resources and guides. Some companies have key information such as interview prep questions, guides, and tips to prepare for interviews. Going through this will not only ensure a thorough well-directed preparedness at your end but also show your genuine interest in the company.
In addition to this, you can also refer to Quora or other online forums where past candidates have explained the technical interview processes of the companies you are interested in.
- The interview format
- How long each format can last
- How many rounds the tech interview has
- The kind of questions to expect in each format
Just What Exactly Are The Interviewers Looking For
Chandrasekharan offers this list to get you thinking of how to let your best traits shine through:
Your interest in the technology
Your ability to innovate
How well you think creatively
How you adapt to changing requirements
Your problem-solving approach
Your analytical thinking skills
How you handle feedback
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What Is Technical Interview
Programming interviews are full of infinite complexities. In fact, it is much like going to war, where we fight for the survival of our career and ego.
Like no war can be won without a game plan, no job interview can either survive without it.
My whole professional life I have missed such a game plan. I was rejected numerous times, feeling dead on the ground, I was broke and scared.
It took me a long time to get it, but now I get it. And now I want to tell you about the importance of such a game plan.
Following guide has helped me to survive the most terrible and brutal interviews in my career. And I am sure it will help you too, not just survive but thrive in your next interview.
Intimidated Dont Be Recruiters Share Tips To Help You Succeed
If youre excited about the possibility of landing a technical job at Microsoft, chances are you have a passion for coding, solving problems and the incredible things technology can do for people around the world.
A technical interview is your chance to show you have the skills to match.
But theres no question that coding on the spot, in front of the very people you hope to work for, can be daunting. What can you expect? How do you prepare? What are your interviewers looking for? Several Microsoft recruiters agreed to share their best tips including a few surprising ones to help you ace it.
- Seema Chandrasekharan, Recruiter at Microsoft
- Abby Arvanitidis, Recruiter at Microsoft
- Kenji Yamaguchi, Sr. Talent Aquisition Manager at Microsoft
- Kenji Yamaguchi and Seema Chandrasekharan on the Microsoft Redmond campus
Hiring managers generally want to see how you think, not just that you can, says Kenji Yamaguchi, a senior talent acquisition manager whose team recruits for various roles across Microsoft Office. They also want to see that you care about the quality of the product you ship and the experience our customers will have.
Technical interviews can vary depending on what team or role youre applying for, but they often involve questions related to problem-solving, analytical thinking and computer science fundamentals, as well as an open-ended problem youll solve through coding.
Getting ready for the big day
The coding portion of your interview
Your ability to innovate
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Practical Technical Interview Preparation
Less arduous and more straightforward, practical evaluations involve testing applicants on the subject matter most relevant to their would-be role. We all know that in the real world, Google and Stack Overflow are at your fingertips, and you will never have to build a red-black tree with nothing but a fistful of whiteboard markers and vague memories of your Algorithms 101 class. Instead, interviewers simply want to see that you know how to code and how to design solutions to practical problems.
For entry-level positions or unfamiliar technology, start with the tutorials on the official website of the language, library, framework, or technology you are studying. From there, and for more experienced individuals, seek out advanced tutorials and exercises from other sources. Then graduate to building projects you have designed. Think of an idea for a basic app using an appropriate technology stack, then wire up its views, data model, endpoints, and storage. Not only is this valuable coding practice, but it can also bolster your portfolio and GitHub pages.
Vendor sites cover the core principles behind their language, library, or framework. This also includes advanced topics specific to the subject matter, which can be important to know during an interview. If you are trying to become a React developer, you better know the flow of properties and state, and the dogma of immutability, before walking in the door. Take time to review this material prior to the interview.
Is A Second Interview A Good Sign Will I Get The Job
First of all, getting a second interview is always a good sign. Obviously not all candidates get a second interview so clearly the company is showing interest in you. Having said that, it depends on what exact stage of the interview process youre in and what kind of position youre interviewing for. For example, getting a second in person interview is more impactful than getting an in person interview after a phone interview Whether youll get the job after the second interview really depends on the position and company youre interviewing with. For important roles in large companies you could have a series of interviews.
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When Is It Appropriate To Denormalize Database Design
This is a more complicated technical interview question that is testing whether you know how to identify the pros and cons of choosing to use denormalization for database optimization. Because denormalization will have an impact on what a database can do, it is important to clearly explain the pros and cons of using this method and identify when it would be appropriate to use.
Example:“Denormalization is a database optimization technique used to improve a database’s performance for specific queries. Denormalization may be needed when improvements need to be made to a database for it to meet your application requirements. However, denormalization will have an impact on what your database is able to do, so it is important to make sure it is needed for scalability or performance before choosing to use it as an optimization technique.”
Research Your Potential Employer
Before your interview, research the organization so you can be knowledgeable about its accomplishments, goals and mission. Browse the companys website to learn about its history, recent announcements, executive officers, values and culture. Then search for recent news about the organization to study its latest achievements and future goals.
You can also search the company on Indeed Company Pages to read about the company and browse reviews, open jobs, Q& A and more. Doing your research will help you contextualize your interview answers. With knowledge about the organization, youll be able to quickly tie your background, qualifications and achievements back to the company.
Do Not Merely Focus On Technical Skills
Yes, you need to thoroughly practice and polish your technical skills before an interview. But, itâs equally important, if not more, to practice how to communicate effectively, interact and collaborate with others in a group, as well as present your thoughts, ideas, and approach to problem solving clearly.
Why Do You Want To Work Here
Interestingly enough, a lot of people dont have an answer to this question. Its designed to find out if youve actually done research on the company and if you are excited about this position.
When I ask this question, many people have told me something like because it looks like a good opportunity. I mean, can you be any more generic?
The key to answering this is to show youve done research on the company and that you are enthusiastic about the actual position. Companies want people that are excited to work there, not just someone that shows up for a paycheck.
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Meaningful Questions To Ask The Interviewer
Interviews are a two-way street. You should be learning about them just as much as theyre learning about you!
Asking thoughtful questions is also a good way to stand out in the interview. The age-old adage people dont remember what you say, but they remember how you made them feel is so true when it comes to interviews, says Refael . When a candidate keeps the flow going in a friendly conversation, instead of making me feel like I am conducting an interrogation, I will remember our brief time together fondly.
Of course, you should tailor your questions to the specific situation, but here are a few meaningful questions you can ask:
- What do you like most about working here?
- What frameworks, tools, tech stack, etc. does your company use?
- Can you describe the development process here?
- How do you test your code?
- Does the company offer opportunities for professional development, training for engineers, etc.?
- Whats the most challenging project youve worked on here?
The other upside: while youre listening to their answer, you get a little break from talking!
Where The Typical Interview Process Goes Wrong
So I’ve been asked to give an interview and ended up with a technical genius. This person was brilliant and breezed through all our technical questions.
Whiteboarding? No problem! They even knew the companys stack inside and out.
Basically, they Cracked The Coding Interview.
You would think we brought them on board ASAP, right?
Well, there was one big problem. They botched the non-technical interview. They were poorly dressed, arrogant, and didnt answer questions directly.
We are starting to see a trend where developers spend so much time dreading the coding interview that they undervalue the need to be personable.
As a result, we must often send an offer to someone with less technical ability but better soft skills.
The vast majority of developers interviewed do not receive job offers. We want to make sure that non-technical interview questions dont stop you from landing your dream job.
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Be A Conversationalist And Prepare To Ask Questions
In addition to being knowledgeable and showing demonstrable skills, being able to communicate with people professionally is important. Doing things like talking through your work, providing thorough, on-topic answers and arriving at your interview prepared to ask questions can make a big difference when it comes to moving forward in the process.
To better prepare for the conversation, have a few questions you’d like to ask the interviewer ready. This will likely require additional research on your part. Take some time to review the company and job description before the interview, and jot down any questions that arise. It’s also customary for candidates to hold their questions for the end of the interview, so consider that before jumping into your own pre-scripted questions.
Dont Hesitate To Ask For Clarification
It may be regarding a problem question or an assignment, but if you feel more information is needed for you to solve the problem or complete the assignment, be forthright about it. This is critical because your understanding of the problem or question is crucial in finding the right solution for it.
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Tips On How To Ace Your Whiteboard Interview
To help you prepare for your upcoming whiteboard interviews, we’ve compiled a list of tips that’ll help you showcase your technical, communicative, and problem-solving skills. Not only will they make for a smoother interview, but they’ll also help put your mind at ease. When you’re relaxed, nervousness is less likely to get in the way of clear thinking and communication.
Demonstrate Your Passion For Technology
Every team wants to work with people that love their job and are not merely working for the money. People that are passionate about what they do are constantly trying to expand and upgrade their skills. How can you demonstrate this trait?
Some of the ways include by participating in hackathons and other coding competitions. You can also contribute to open source projects on Stack Overflow, GitHub, and other online community platforms. This will show interviewers your passion for technology and that it extends beyond your work.
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What Are Common Second Interview Questions
Here are some interview questions that often come up during a second interview and that you should be ready for :1. What is it about this job that interests you?2. What do you want from your career and how does this job fit into that?3. Can you give an example of your problem-solving abilities?4. Can you give us what you think are your three most important qualifications for this position?5. Why should we hire you?
Potential Second Interview Questions
The biggest difference between first interview questions and second interview questions really lies in the type of question that you are asked.
Generally speaking, in the first interview the company will want to get a feel for the type of person you are, and the questions they ask will emulate that desire.
But in the second interview, you can expect there to be more specificity regarding the position itself as well as a bit more prodding to determine how well you will fit the culture of your potential new team.
Having said that, this is not set in stone.
Every company goes about the questions a little bit differently, so you really need to be prepared for any type of question in both the first and second interview.
Having fun yet?
One thing is for sure at this point in the game employers are really trying to make sure youre a good fit, so expect that these are going to be tougher than the first round.
Read through these questions and come up with your answers. Weve given an example answer for the first two to get you started. If you need some more help learning how exactly to formulate a perfect interview answer, head over to our blog post Job Interview Questions and Answers 101.
- Why should we hire you?
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