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Microsoft Principal Interview Questions

Updated Nov 26, 2014
Updated Nov 26, 2014
16 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Principal Program Manager Security Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through other source. The process took 4 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    I was approached by Microsoft recruiter and after several email and phone discussions, a video interview is scheduled with the Director. The Director cancelled out at the last minute and had to reschedule. During the interview, the Director seems to be not interested on my technical and processes skillset, but how I can "fight the battle" with other teams for ensuring they follow Microsoft security protocol. It seems to me that she is looking for someone to fight HER battle.

    After the interview, I heard nothing from the recruiter. No email. If I didn't get the job, that's OK, just send me an email courtesy. I was expecting a much more professional recruiting process from a company like Microsoft, but it is actually worst than other much smaller companies I have interviewed with.

    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Principal Service Engineering Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    It was a typical MS interview process, though I knew the hiring manager, so was probably a bit more relaxed than some. I had 6 one hour interviews over the course of one day, mostly focused on team leadership and operational excellence. My past experience was a good match for the position, and overall team fit was good, so it ended up being a very positive experience, and good outcome.

    Interview Questions
    • Most difficult question was around expanding view of service management to the consumer space, and how to think about typical ITIL type theory on a consumer level.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
  3.  

    Principal Researcher Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral – interviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    These positions are industry lab research positions with qualifications similar to university research positions. Two days of back-to-back interviews with other researchers, most of whom are in your research are, some who are not.

    Interview Questions
    • It's not difficult, but many people will ask why leave academia for Microsoft?   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    Negotiation entirely with hiring manager and recruiter.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
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  5.  

    Principal Enterprise Strategist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5+ monthsinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    Multiple phone screens plus two in-person interviews over the course of five months. An extremely long and arduous process with little to no communication. Applied online directly through MS recruiting and was quickly contacted by 3rd party recruiter. Next step was three phone screens over the course of two months which then led to in-person round deemed "finals". Three weeks after "finals" I was told there would be another round. Weeks later another "finals" round was scheduled in-person. After this there was radio silence for almost 6 weeks despite reaching out to my contacts twice. On the last attempt was told requirements for the role changed and therefore I no longer was a tight fit despite being a "top-tier" candidate.

    Interview Questions
    • There were no difficult or unexpected questions. Very casual interviews.   Answer Question
    No Offer
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Principal Software Development Lead Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Relatively simple programming and design questions

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    No negotation
    Accepted Offer
  7.  

    Principal Developer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Application Details

    I applied in-person. The process took 3 daysinterviewed at Microsoft in January 2013.

    Interview Details

    Questions focused on ability to build high performance and scalable application design. Heavy emphasis on writing lower level algorithms in C#. i.e. data structures.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    Principal Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft in January 2013.

    Interview Details

    The process started from a recruiting company which found me and thought I had a good skill set from linkedIn. Two interviews with recruiters and then two phone interviews with Microsoft internal. Each about a week apart. Full onsite interview was scheduled for a few weeks later. The entire day lasted 8-9 hours at the headquarters in Redmond. 6 individual interviews all were one on one. Good mix of technical questions and program management questions. Many repeating questions on how to deal with other groups that need to interact with. Lots of program management technique questions. A lot of examples asked and make sure to have plenty of detail to give. Most of the folks dig into things until they get what they want. Some questions will last 20 minutes. Know your technical area that you are trying for. Even if it is a management position you will be expected to know quite a bit about the technical piece. The day went very well overall. I got to the last interview which was not scheduled. I was told it went well and felt the same way. Left feeling like an offer would come. Never heard from them again so it was very strange. I felt like I nailed most of the interview and knew the areas very well. I have no idea what else they could have been looking for. I would love to have understood what drove that decision.

    Interview Questions
    • Asked about scenario's in terms of tests failing in production and how to handle it with lots of revenue on the line and also how to communicate to team and to senior executives about the issue.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9.  

    Principal Solution Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral – interviewed at Microsoft in April 2011.

    Interview Details

    The hiring process is very similar to other large technology companies. It certainly helps to have an inside reference. An HR recruiter calls to do initial screening and then you can expect to have a phone interview. If the phone interview goes well then you're invited for an onsite round of interviews which takes a full day. I completed 6 interviews on a Friday one day and received a job offer the following Monday via a phone call from the HR recruiter.

    Interview Questions
    • The onsite interview day is very exhausting and you can expect to be asked the same set of questions over and over. Be careful how you answer the questions as the interviewing team compare notes!   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    The offer met my expectations, so I didn't negotiate.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Principal Platform Sales Specialist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft in July 2010.

    Interview Details

    This had to be one of the most organized recruitment processes I experienced. I was initially contacted by their HR Recruiter via email in reponse to my online application. We arranged for a prescreen interview. At the end of the prescreen she book time for me with the hiring manager for a phone interview the following day. Within three days I was contacted again to arrange an onsite interview, which was far more interesting. I was set up in my own interview room (this was interview day so other candidates had their own rooms, too) and three different interviewers came through. They would target about forty-five minutes each and then they appeared to convene as a group to compare notes before switching to other candidates.

    Interview Questions
    • Some IT departments attempt to keep their vendors from talking to line of business people. Tell me about a time you had to manage a situation where the IT department wanted to restrict access to the end-users and how you overcame that.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    Principal Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, OR
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, OR
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft in April 2009.

    Interview Details

    It was an internal transfer. I knew several people on the hiring team, but I still had to go through a full interview process. I got grilled on both business and technical skills, as well as soft skills like communications and cross-group collaboration. When I got the job, I needed all those skills, so the broad range of questions was justified.

    Interview Questions
    • A programming question; something to do with calculating all the prime numbers between 0 and n.   View Answer
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

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