Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
Interviews for Top Jobs at Sapient
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- No OfferNeutral ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4 weeks – interviewed at Sapient (Washington, DC) in May 2015.
There was a phone interview with someone in HR. Then a 3hr in person interview which involved a 'cultural fit'/personality interview (1hr) and a business case interview in which you have 1hr to prep and then spend an hour discussing the case with 'the client' (two staff members who act as the client).
- They asked about communication style, how you work with others, and thoroughly discussed the business case. Answer Question
- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied online – interviewed at Sapient.
I applied via the easy Linked In feature with just my resume and was promptly contacted by a recruiter. I had a general screening call with the recruiter which consisted of questions like--tell me about yourself; why are you looking for new opportunities; what are your salary expectations, etc.
The second step is a phone case study which takes about an hour. The interviewer reads the case study and asks a few questions to gauge your thought process. Very standard--missing information, no right or wrong answers.
After passing that round, I was brought in for an in-person interview which the recruiter prepared me for-- 1 hour behavioral, 1 hour to work out a case study, and 1 hour of debriefing the case study, answering questions, and some general behavioral and business/market questions. The behavioral interview was standard questions you can find on any website and is with 1 staff member. The hour of case study is done on your own. You are given a standard case study with lots of unnecessary info, missing info, and questions and are asked to white board a powerpoint presentation which you will then present to the next interviewer. If you have been in enough consulting projects, the case study resembles any client engagement methodology. The next interviewer comes in when the hour is up and asks you to present, asks some clarifying questions, then you just chat. Sometimes, a second interviewer comes in for either the behavioral or case study portion; this is an interviewer in training.
My recruiter was awesome and always available. After a couple of months of follow-ups, it looked like they found a position for me and I received an offer. All in all, I'd say this is more structured than other interviews, but not necessarily harder.
- All was very standard. This is a very Agile firm, so definitely know what it is and why it's beneficial over traditional approaches. Answer Question
I considered the full benefits package including 401k contributions, bonuses, healthcare expenses, employee paid parking, no expensing of cell phone bills and lunches, etc. That definitely tagged on quite a bit. Timing of bonuses and salary actions wasn't clear until starting; you generally don't get a raise a few months in, regardless of what anyone says during hiring. My negotiation was very straightforward; I received an offer, gave a counter, and received an updated offer.
- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 5 days – interviewed at Sapient (New York, NY).
- The hardest was to try to complete in the time given. Make sure you do the JS part. Talked to Naresh about AngularJS Answer Question
I don't remember. Probably could have asked for more.
Helpful (4)Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1+ week – interviewed at Sapient (Arlington, VA) in February 2014.
This process started with a recruiter who matched my skill set with an opening at Sapient. First was a phone screen with the recruiter, then a phone screen with senior management Sapient. Followed by an intensive in-person interview. I was aware of Sapient's good reputation and was excited to begin the hiring and interview process.
- The most unexpected question was during the client role playing exercise when the two "customers" inquired about unconventional IT systems and how they fit into the business plan. Answer Question
- Accepted Offer
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1 day – interviewed at Sapient.
Phone screen by company recruiter which led to an interview day where two interviews were conducted for each applicant, one behavioral and one case.
- The case was a technology case despite applying for a business consulting role so not really sure i was able to be evaluated correctly but got an offer nonetheless. Answer Question
Helpful (1)Declined OfferNeutral ExperienceEasy Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeks – interviewed at Sapient (Boston, MA) in July 2012.
I was first contacted by the recruiter via email regarding the opportunity. A day after my response, I was scheduled to speak with the recruiter to go through some basic screening and discuss about my experience, skills and technologies I have worked with.
After the first screen, I was required take up a skills assessment test online. The test I must say is designed well covers the depth and breadth of a specific technology that you are comfortable with. As long as your basics are in the right place and if you worked on that technology(could be Java, .Net or C++), you should be able to clear this stage.
I apparently made it and the the next stage was a telephonic interview with the manager. This round was completely technical and most of the questions were again technology specifics, design patterns and their applications. I was also asked to briefly describe my roles and responsibilities till date.
After this technical round, I was required to take up a behavioral assessment online. And it consisted of questions that did not have a correct or a wrong answer. They were related knowing what kind of a person you are. I would not worry too much about this, it should be a breeze.
Then finally, if you are past these stages, you will be scheduled for an in-person interview at their office. My interview was scheduled two weeks after I completed the behavioral assessment. It is an all day interview and I met four people during the day.
1st round: This round is with the HR manager to kick off the interview for the day. This interview was short and quick.
2nd round: You will be handed over a business requirement and given a laptop to develop an application. The time line is one hour and I was not able to develop the complete application. I was able to layout the design and develop the skeleton methods. It is not important to complete the problem, but, it is key that you design the application keeping in mind the scalability, flexibility and performance. You will be measured depending on the approach you took to develop the application.
3rd Round: You will have to present and discuss the design approaches that you adopted in the previous round and justify them. You can expect some follow up questions regarding 'what if' situations. The interview here was too focused on one specific aspect of the application and one specific technology/concept which I did not have enough experience on. But, I was honest and indicated that my strengths were not in this area and interviewer was good enough to recognize that switch topics. I was also asked a lot of basic OOP and DB questions in this round.
4th round: This round was more behavioral and revolved around my experiences and instances of conflicts I faced, the most memorable project so far and my most significant contribution. This should be easy to complete if you just derive instances from your experiences and relate to the situations.
5th round: This round was with the VP of Technology and this was a good sign. This round was more discussion where you get to ask a lot of questions about the role and I did ask a lot of questions and the feedback seemed very positive. There were couple of questions for me as what I thought about the role so far and why I am looking for change in role. By the time I left their office, I was pretty much sure that I had bagged the job.
Overall, the interview process was 'OK'. The best thing is that the response after interviews is super quick (usually within a day or two). The bad thing that I found was that the recruiting process could be a lot more professional. Most of the people I met were nice and professional but not everyone.
- Some questions were very silly such as, what namespace does Thread object exists or what arguments does a ThreadStart class constructor take in. I am not a big fan of questions that will test how much you can memorize stuff and the questions does not seem to test the thinking capability rather test how much can you cram, but that is just my opinion. 1 Answer
Reasons for Declining
My overall thought after the interview was something like this -
- Few people are very good, smart and helpful and there are some people who are not thorough professionals.
- Work/Life balance seems to be not that great.
- Good projects and opportunities to prove yourself.
So, my general bottom line was that if I get compensated reasonably well, I thought this could be a good place to be. But, I was offered a compensation that lower than my current compensation and that sealed my decision and declined it straight away. As a disclosure, I want to mention that when i declined this offer, I had about five in-person interviews lined up at five major companies and it made sense to me not to accept.
Helpful (4)Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3 days – interviewed at Sapient (Boston, MA) in November 2011.
A friend of mine, who works there, submitted a referral for me. A month or two passed by and then someone from HR contacted me to setup a phone interview. The phone interview wasn't very long, as it served just as an introduction with HR and to setup the next interview with a manager.
The phone interview with a manager was a general interview. He asked me to go over my resume, some questions about my skills and work experiences, and some behavioral questions too. Some of the questions that struct me were: " Tell me your strengths and weaknesses", "What do you fear the most about your current job" and "Tell me about your biggest failure on the job".
Apparently I passed that interview, because I was called for 1:1 interview in person. This one was for about 3 hours, where I met three executives separately, for an hour each. This was more difficult, as they asked me a lot of specific questions about projects, project management, databases, finance, technology, etc.
I would recommend that the candidates are honest and talk about their skills and experiences with a positive tone. For example, if you don't have an experience in something, indicate your willingness to learn and mention how you learned something in the past. For negative questions, such as "What was your biggest failure", the best tactic is to be honest and talk about something that went wrong in your experience, but finish with the steps you took to fix it. Also, research the company before going to the interview and prepare some good questions to ask them, they appreciate that.
They will send you an interview package email before the 1:1 interview, so make sure you read all the links in there. There are some Harvard and Yale Business Cases I found in there and they were very helpful.
For the company culture, I can only tell you what my perceptions are so far (I haven't started working there yet). The people seem very nice and willing to help out. They are also very smart and experienced, so you have what to learn from them. They work on projects for clients and that's what you are paid to do as well. In the current climate, it sounds like clients are pushing them for efficiency, which means do more in less time with less resources, so you need to be ok with that. I imagine there will a lot of days when you work long hours, and there is a lot of travel. Some of the travel is quick, like a day or two, and sometimes you can be asked to work 4 days a week in a different location (like another city) and then come back and work the 5th day from home or in the home office. It seems like they pay well and there are opportunities for advancement, if the client and your co-workers like you, so it seems like a good arrangement to me.
- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied online. The process took 2 weeks – interviewed at Sapient (New York, NY) in October 2010.
First had a HR phone interview for 1/2 hour, basic questions on why change in job and what is my experience and skills are. Then next day has a 1/2 hour phone technical interview. This was not much technical, just a chat on technologies that I have worked so for in my projects. Then came the one on one the 4 hour interview. The HR will call you give the details what your interview schedule is and whom with. Be prepared to present, code and talk.
- Explain your experience on working in team Answer Question
I tried negotiating but the hiring manager talked me out.
Helpful (2)No OfferNeutral ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 5 days – interviewed at Sapient (Arlington, VA) in January 2010.
I received a call from the recruiter from Sapient. I had a detailed conversation with the gentlemen. He explained what the company was about and its overall culture there. I was then brought in for a three plus hour long interview. The first part was personality exam. It was pretty standard (tell me about yourself, etc.) face-to-face initial interview. The second part was to solve a business problem that comprised of five questions. The third was to present your solutions to the team lead.
Overall, I think the experience was good. I just wished I had a bit more time to think about the business problems. It composed of data-model, writing psuedo-code, planning out the project, and also test cases.
To be honest, I initially thought I did very well. I was able to solve the problems and presented them accordingly to the team lead. The questions made you think at a very high level. Their feedback was that I lacked enough technical experience, which totally threw me off-guard. I just wished they would of asked more technical questions, show I can show them my experiences. I was disappointed about that.
- Solve a Conference Registration Business Problem. Come up with data-model, write some parts of the code, project planning (SDLC), system integration problem, user driven test cases. Answer Question
Helpful (2)Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4 weeks – interviewed at Sapient (New York, NY) in December 2009.
Initial phone screen with HR. Rapidly progressed to three 1 hour interviews in person at varying professional levels. Process was very straight-forward and open. First interview was to determine personality fit with the Sapient culture. Typical questions here about dealing with difficult coworkers, demonstrating situations in which you went above and beyond to persuade others, etc. Second interview was the determine domain expertise. In this area, Sapient domain knowledge is very deep - so I'd suggest being very sharp on your domain prior to the interview. Final session was the most informal with a senior member of the staff - who answers questions and helps you understand how Sapient may be a good fit for your career. So far, this was the most professional, efficient, and organized interview process I've ever been through.
- Do you think the banks are to blame for the financial meltdown? Answer Question
Slight negotiation before offer was made. Post offer is made, it is advised not to negotiate further.
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