Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
Interviews for Top Jobs at Google
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- No OfferNeutral ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1+ week – interviewed at Google in October 2014.
I got internal referral, and interviewed with a Sr. product manager through the phone. The interview lasted for 1 hour and I was asked around 10 questions. The entire interview process is efficient and the HR and interviewers are very nice.
- tell me about yourself, favorite products, how to add family feature to google plus, what technology do you use, what do you think about google shipping express, and a couple of coding questions. Answer Question
- No OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
interviewed at Google in October 2014.
Applied online and had an initial phone screening, then an onsite second round with 3 more interviews. All the interviews were similar except for one technical interview. The rest were all design questions and estimation questions.
- The interviewers give very little feedback. Expect estimation questions. Answer Question
Helpful (27)Declined OfferNegative ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeks – interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).
My interviews consisted of a phone screen and in person interview at the Googleplex
My phone screen consisted of a product design / brainstorming question which was a lot of fun. The interviewer was a new PM and very respectful.
I met with five PMs on campus. My reaction of the interview process is negative.
The good: Coordination was good. Recruiter was in touch throughout the process. The lunch interview was the highlight of my day.
The bad: The interview panel was not very diverse - in fact was largely white/male, former CS or Management Consulting background. Google's penchant for the tricksy interview questions is alive and well.
Most of my interviewers were arrogant (with two notable exceptions). However what gave me pause was the uniform response from all of the PMs on the panel that "PMs only focus on execution", "Engineers hold the power here at Google", "Engineers need PMs only when they need to launch products", "Engineers look down on PMs that only focus on the front-end". This was very unexpected from my (external) perception of Google.
Apart from the "pirates on a deserted island" set of questions, the rest of the questions were Product Design or Product Analytics focused. These were fun but I got the sense that they were going down a checklist without probing too deep. In fact, it almost seemed like they had made up their mind to reject anyone who doesn't fit a certain mold. I walked away very underwhelmed.
1. Engineers have come to you with a cool new feature. What ideas can you come up with that incorporate this feature?
2. Design an app around your interest. How will you take it to market? How will you evaluate success?
3. How will you launch Android Wear?
4. Brainstorm some unique ideas for a vending machine
5. Estimate the bandwidth needs for You Tube for one year
There were no technical or coding questions on my panel. Not sure if this means that Google has done away with the coding questions.
- "On a scale of one to ten, how difficult was this question? " Answer Question
Reasons for Declining
Google's process is geared at identifying very junior PMs.
PMs on my panel seemed arrogant. The tidbit about being engineering led and only focusing on execution was very unexpected. There was also a candid observation shared that successful PMs at Google optimize for the short term rather than the long term. One of the PMs very arrogantly contrasted his startup experience and mentioned that he had never ever worked at a company where everyone was of a really high caliber - which is usually true of large companies.
Finally, given the makeup of the interview panel, I am not sure I would be very comfortable in a PM culture that is not diverse nor values different perspectives. I also did not walk away with a sense that they were particularly engaged or happy at Google.
Helpful (1)No OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter – interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in September 2014.
Super professional recruiters and interviewers. Interview was done by peer but could tell that I was on speakerphone and being interviewed by a committee. Very interesting questions in that they wanted to know who you are as a person.
- How do you bring a product to market? 1 Answer
Helpful (7)No OfferNegative Experience
I applied through an employee referral – interviewed at Google.
First step is a phone interview with a random person (who in this case was using some type of video conferencing system with a lot of echo that disconnected a couple of times.) Questions: 0) Tell us about yourself; 1) What is the total bandwidth used by a gmail server?; 2) Discuss a non-technical product you've used. What did you like about it? What would you improve? 3) The bounce rate on youtube videos is too high. how would you improve it?
The overall feedback was very limited: good technical solutions, not enough focus on the user.
- None of these questions are difficult or unexpected. 1 Answer
Helpful (6)Accepted Offer
I had a 30 min screening interview over the phone, followed by half a day of on site interviews at the Googleplex in Mountain View. Some of these were in person, while others were over video conference
- Optimise search algorithm to create an ordered list 6 Answers
Helpful (1)No OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
The process took 2 weeks – interviewed at Google.
Overall, I thought that the HR department at Google was very helpful and easy to work with. However, it seems that for APM they are still using Fermi Questions. Overall, I was not happy with my performance on the interview, but much of that has to do with not knowing what to prepare in the first place. It didn't seem like going over technical skills helped at all. The first round was a Fermi Question (below) and other questions like
- If scientists said that phone batteries could not get any better. What would you do to make a better phone experience? 4 Answers
Helpful (10)No OfferDifficult Interview
I applied online. The process took 2 weeks – interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in May 2014.
One guy was literally yawning all the time at around 11AM, which is very unprofessional. I was like, dude, doesn't Google serve coffee or sth?
I won't share specific interviews questions (I don't think they actually help much), but I will share some of my observations (which may not be 100% true):
1) Google seems to maintain a pool of interview questions. I was asked 2 of the same questions listed on glassdoor. But sometimes the interviewer just make up questions on the fly.
2) On-site consists of 5 rounds, 3 peer PMs + 1 PM director + 1 engineer, you'll have lunch w/ a lunch buddy after the first 3 peer PMs (food is actually so so). Meanwhile, your recruiter will gather quick feedback and make a snap judgement about whether to proceed w/ the PM director and engineer. If you don't make it to the after-lunch session, it is a ding for sure.
3) You need at least one 'strong hire' recommendation from the 5 rounds. It is not unusual for someone to get 5 'hire' recommendation but get dinged. So try very hard to really impress one interviewer.
- Design app stuff. I was killed by 2 of those questions. 1 Answer
Helpful (6)No OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks – interviewed at Google.
Contacted by recruiter through LinkedIn. Phone screen scheduled with recruiter about a week later where we covered my work history, and discussed particular areas of Google that might be of interest. Scheduled a phone interview that occurred about 2 weeks later. During phone interview we covered my background and work history, then was asked two questions. First was estimating, second was brainstorming for NPD.
- Estimate the required bandwidth for a college campus. 3 Answers
Helpful (4)No Offer
Recruiting was professional, and most of the interviewers were asking questions that were good at delving into one's competencies. Unfortunately, All it takes is to have one bad interviewer to screw up your job prospect.
- How would you design a dictionary lookup for Scrabble? 1 Answer
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