AOL Interview Questions & Reviews
Getting an Interview
- Popular Job Titles:
- Software Engineer (14)
- Intern (5)
- Senior Software Engineer (5)
- Marketing Manager (5)
- Business Analyst (4)
- Manager (3)
- Analyst (3)
- Project Manager (3)
- Associate Software Engineer (2)
- Account Manager (2)
- Product Manager (2)
- Senior Business Development Manager (2)
- Business Development Manager (2)
- Senior Director (1)
- Accountant (1)
- Applications Analyst (1)
- Architect (1)
- Legal Administrative Assistant (1)
- Summer Intern (1)
- Information Security Analyst (1)
- Interactive Designer (1)
- Research Manager (1)
- Human Resources Director (1)
- Service Delivery (1)
- Production Coordinator (1)
- Brand Marketing Manager (1)
- Marketing Program Manager (1)
- Senior Software QA Engineer (1)
- Ad Sales (1)
- Associate Editor (1)
Managing Editor Interview (Positive Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 months - interviewed at AOL in February 2011.
Interview Details – Recruited from LinkedIn Profile by New York HR team. That led to phone interview, and in person interview locally; then to panel interview in New York office. Very professional and positive experience, although it helped they were recruiting me more than me applying to an opening.
Interview Question – Among interviewers is someone serving as cultural ambassador who primarily wants to assess your attitudes about change...which makes sense because AOL is a place where your cheese can be moved quickly. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – They had their salary limits, but there was an honest exchange and effort to give me more than I was making in the market to bring me in. I was in a stronger position since they were recruiting me. W ould be differently if one was applying for opening.
Analyst Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at AOL in November 2012.
Interview Details – I was just reading through some of the Glassdoor reviews on AOL and one poster mentioned that the company lacks standard policies and procedures. I can see why this statement was made based on my experience.
I saw the initial job post online and applied (resume and cover letter). About a week later I heard from a recruiter requesting a phone screen. A few weeks later we finally got on the phone. I felt that the recruiter was using somewhat of a combative tone when discussing my perceived lack of experience related to the job and my salary requirements. I got off of that call feeling that I had little chance of getting a call back. I got an email the next day stating that the hiring manager wanted to talk to me.
I spoke to the hiring manager later in the week. It was a pretty straightforward conversation…quick walk through my resume, questions around what I wanted to do in my next position, and more information about the position. I received an email the following week to schedule in-person interviews on the Dulles campus a couple weeks later.
I was scheduled for 6 onsite interviews (some were actually video interviews with people offsite). The interviewers were in adjacent groups and from the manager through VP level, including another talk with the hiring manager. The interviews mainly consisted of me talking about my related job experiences and what I was looking for in a new position. There were some questions about AOL, it’s product offering, and my impressions of how the company should proceed moving forward. Make sure you know some of the basic facts of the company like CEO, stock price, product offering, competitors, etc. A couple of the interviews also had case-like questions with one breaking out into a full-blown case. Be prepared for the possibility of case questions, bring a pen/paper and be ready to do some math…nothing too strenuous though.
A few days later, I was scheduled to do another phone interview. That call was pretty pleasant as most of the time was spent with me asking questions. I got off of this call feeling pretty good and expecting to hear next steps pretty quickly. A week, then 2, then 3 went by with no word from AOL. At the 4 week mark I decided to email the recruiter and ask if I was still being considered for the position. The recruiter immediately responded and said that they would circle back with the team to get more information. That was 4 weeks ago…so it has been a total of about 8 weeks since I have heard anything official.
At this point it’s safe to assume that I am off of their radar, but it’s very TACKY and UNPROFESSIONAL of them to put me through all of those interviews, then not have the decency to communicate with me and let me know what is happening with the process, or at least keep me in the loop. It says a ton about how things probably operate internally there.
The people that I interviewed with were all nice, pretty laid-back, and seemed to really enjoy working at AOL. The offices were well-lit and colorful…more of a start-up environment than that of a company that has been around for decades.
Interview Question – What is the P/E ratio of AOL? Do you think this is high or low? View Answer
Senior Research Manager Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at AOL.
Interview Details – I worked with a recruiter who submitted one of my very old resumes to the hiring manager and VP of the group for both of my first phone interviews. The old résumé was from four years prior when I applied to a completely different part of AOL. This happened once with the hiring manager, and then again with the VP a week later, even after I called this old resume submission to the recruiter's attention. Needless to say, I had two very awkward phone interviews in which I had to explain my current company and all my current responsibilities.
When I reached out again after not hearing anything, I received what looked like a copied and pasted explanation of why I didn't get the job. It was vague, speaking to the fact that I didn't have "digital" experience (even though that's all I have), and the email signature was repeated (demonstrating to me that this was copied from another email).
Really disappointing experience with a company I've had an interest in for a while. I'd recommend being overly explicit with their recruiters, as some of them are obviously prone to error.
Marketing Manager Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at AOL in November 2012.
Interview Details – First, there is the phone interview to filter through the real candidates.
Then, you will have to come in for an in-person interview that will typically take 2 - 3 hours. The talent acquisition team has a comprehensive interview process the focuses on behavioral questioning. You need to be consistent with your answers with every interviewer you have. There is an entire booklet of questions that hiring managers can choose from to have his or her team ask you.
The cultural ambassador interview is probably the most unpredictable. You will be presented with scenarios and your response will be judged on how well they align with AOL's values. SO, LEARN AOL's values (www.corp.aol.com) prior to your interview. The cultural ambassador actually gives you a grade and it can affect your compensation. They take this stuff seriously.
Interview Question – How have you exhibited AOL's values in your previous position(s)? View Answer
Negotiation Details – There isn't much negotiation. So be prepared to play hard ball.
Marketing Intern Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through college or university and the process took 1 week - interviewed at AOL in May 2012.
Interview Details – HR interview then interview with supervisor - a lot of behavioral question from HR then the interview with supervisor was chill
Interview Question – not much, regular behavioral Answer Question
Video Producer Interview (Neutral Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at AOL in January 2010.
Interview Details – Very informal. One on the phone, one sit-down. Trial run for a month.
Interview Question – Same one - where do you see yourself in 10 years. View Answer
Negotiation Details – Simple - they offered a good salary and that was that!
Account Manager Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at AOL in September 2012.
Interview Details – Phone screen followed up by in person interview. I was supposed to interview with four people, starting with a peer and then finishing with the most senior. Instead, I interviewed with the most senior person first. It went well, but be prepared for questions designed to trip you up if you haven't done your HW (who is AOL's CEO?). Pretty easy, but also be prepared to answer questions seemingly unrelated to the role (why did you decide to go to the college you went to?).
After that, I was supposed to meet with this other guy who was on the phone. He was obviously not interested in our appointment, because his call went well into our scheduled time. After five minutes of them fumbling around trying to figure out what I should do next, I was put in an office and given a number to call to conduct a phone interview with someone who was working at home that day. Pretty standard. The most annoying part was that the guy I was supposed to be meeting with basically barged in while I was on the phone, and forced me to interrupt the call just to let him know I who I was speaking to. It was totally obnoxious.
After the phone call, oddly enough, I was told that the other people I was supposed to talk to were busy. Including the guy who interrupted me. What a coincidence! I saw him on the way out and he didn't even say hello or sorry or acknowledge me. Pretty rude.
I didn't even get a follow-up message. I emailed the recruiter a week later and she said the role had been filled. Gee, thanks for the update :)
Interview Question – Who is AOL's CEO? View Answer
Visual Designer Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 days - interviewed at AOL in July 2012.
Interview Details – The 6 hour interview process went smooth, but I felt my personal portfolio presentation was overly analyzed by people who didn't even have their own work public. Everyone was generally more critical than they should of been considering only 2 out of 8 of the interviewers had portfolios. I was shocked that I never received feedback after several attempts as to why they passed, even the recruiter didn't really know. Strange experience
Interview Question – So explain your process when dealing with engineers who have their own way of interpreting your designs View Answers (2)
Systems Administrator Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at AOL in February 2008.
Interview Details – First was two phone interviews with questions focused primarily on technical skills and experience.
Second was an in person interview by committee of several Sr level SA's within the department, including my prospective team, which focused more on personality, deeper into experience, and thought process of how to handle problems and solutions.
Next was an in person interview (immediately following previous) with two Sr. Technical Managers, including my prospective manager also focusing on thought process for problem solving skills.
Interview Question – I was asked to design an architecture to solve a problem that had nothing to do with the technologies with which I would be working with. In this case:
How would you design a badge-entry door system with a central DB for user authentication and be failproof against connectivity problems with the central system but still get updates. View Answer
Interviews for Top Jobs at AOL