I applied through college or university and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in December 2012.
Interview Details – campus recruitment
Interview Question – 43. Describe a creative solution to a problem you faced?
44. What was the last technology you learned? Answer Question
I applied through other source and the process took 1+ week - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Interview Details – After an initial interview with the external agency and online MS Office skills assessment, multiple 1:1 interviews were held on campus with the members of the team with whom the selected candidate would be working. The campus is stunning, and everyone was professional and welcoming. LinkedIn was part of the post-interview due diligence, but none of the supplied references were contacted.
Interview Question – All questions were related to perceived lapses in experience or skills with respect to the duties and responsibilities of the position, offering the opportunity to clarify and elaborate upon the information contained in the resume. Answer Question
Very Easy Interview
I applied online and the process took 4 months - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in November 2012.
Interview Details – Applied online August 2012. Received first phone call 3 months later from hr recruiter for first screen. She spent the precious interview time to discourage me to pursue the process since I mentioned I had another opportunity coming soon. She was supposed to contact me back to answer some questions but she never followed up. I learned online I was not selected...never ha'd opportunity to discuss my interest or background. If you want to get a chance to reach the hiring manager....consider to lie on your current working status.
Interview Question – Not expecting to have to deal with a purely administrative question.... The interview was supposed to review my credentials and interest.... I had to deal with unprofessional hr staff. Answer Question
The process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in February 2010.
Interview Details – Initial phone screen by HR, then a phone screen by the hiring manager, then a long day 8+ hours of 1:1 interviews. It was exhausting.
The foundation tends to hire on skills rather than issue knowledge, at least for the Policy and Advocacy Groups. If you can tell compelling stories that demonstrate those skills while peppering in some Global Health or Global Development knowledge, you will be better served than trying to play up yourself as a subject matter expert.
Interview Question – Tell me about a time when you were able to change someone's mind on a particular issue. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – I attempted to negotiate salary, but was not able to.
At the foundation it's difficult to negotiate salaries for any title Program Officer and below. This would also include Associate Program Officer, Program Coordinator, and Program Assistant.
With titles like Senior Program Officer, Deputy Director, and Director, there's much more ability to negotiate.
The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in April 2011.
Interview Details – * Contacted by a recruiter.
* 1:1 phone interview with recruiter.
*1:1 interview with Gates HR recruiter.
*1:1 phone interview with Director.
* Series of in person interviews with 6 staff members.
The campus is absolutely awesome. It is LEED certified gold. The work space is open and only the higher levels have closed office space. However, there are a lot of Focus Rooms where you can go to work. They have a great cafe in a beautiful atrium. There is a coffee bar and a great selection of food. All food is organic. However it's not particularly cheap.
The people, hit or miss. Seems like the average age is 28-38. There are a ton of folks who were at Starbucks or Microsoft.
Interview Question – What can you offer our team, which is already staffed with experts? Answer Question
Negotiation Details – The relocation package was stellar, but they increased the signing bonus after reconsidering the impact on our family.
* Relocation includes:
- corporate housing (domestic location usually includes 30 days; international relocation varies. also your level of hire impacts if you eceive relocation coverate)
- signing bonus (amount varies and seems to be negotiable)
- moving (packing and unpacking, as well as 30 days storage)
- week long trip with the family to Seattle (includes airfare, hotel stay, costs during stay)
- school consultant (if you have children to relocate) and reloaction agent (real estate agent)
The process took a day - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in October 2011.
Interview Details – I received an email advising a request for a phone interview. On the phone interview the recruiter immediately set my expectations that they are reviewing several candidates and that any information would not be relayed to me for a few weeks. The interview lasted about 45 minutes and consisted of general resume questions and scenario questions.
The process took a day - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in May 2010.
Interview Details – I responded to an internal university posting for a graduate research assistantship at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The announcement asked for a resume, cover letter, and a list of references. Two weeks after the closing date of the announcement, I was contacted by phone to schedule an interview. The HR representative disclosed that it would be a panel of three interviewers, and that the interview should take approximately one hour. I wore a suit and brought copies of my resume, along with a pad of paper and a writing utensil. The questions were scripted, with some room for follow-up questions, as necessary. As anticipated, the interview took about one hour. I was contacted one week later, being informed that I did not receive the position.
Interview Question – Where do you see yourself professionally in five years? Answer Question
The process took 6 weeks - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in July 2011.
Interview Details – Applied directly on the Gates Foundation website. One week later I received an email from HR to schedule a phone interview with a senior HR person. All my interactions with the Gates Foundation during the interview process, was professional friendly and helpful, even when telling you you didn't make the cut they were friendly. The only issues I had I was the waiting 6 weeks to find out I didn't make the cut to move on the next level.
Interview Question – All questions related to experience on your resume. Answer Question
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 6+ weeks - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in April 2011.
Interview Details – I first heard from a recruiter about two weeks after applying online. I emailed a contact I have there as soon as I applied, and I think the referral I got from her helped me to get through the resume screening process (the recruiter later told me they had hundreds of applicants for the position). The recruiter set up a time to talk to me and told me to plan for about a 45-minute call. We ended up talking for less than half an hour, and it was all very basic (i.e. questions about my resume and background and lots of time for me to ask questions). She told me I would hear back the next week and the following week I got an email to set up a time to talk to the hiring manager. This conversation was around 45 minutes and was more questions about my resume and experience. A few days after that I heard from a different recruiter who set up a time for me to come in, and I spent four hours at the Foundation the following week (this is now a month after the initial contact). I spoke to the people I will be working with as well as higher-level people and the recruiter. Most of the questions were again about my background, and everyone I spoke to gave me time to ask questions as well. This is not an interview where anyone will try to trick you, and it's much more about making sure the person they hire is a good fit and is dedicated to the mission of the organization. It was overall a good experience and I would recommend focusing on why you are qualified and what you can bring to the position.
Negotiation Details – Keep in mind that the benefits here add a LOT to the offer. The extraordinarily generous retirement contributions and top-notch health coverage mean you end up with more money in your pocket, and the support they give their employees can make a slightly lower salary worth it.
Very Easy Interview
I applied online and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in January 2009.
Interview Details – One phone call interview from HR. 4 1:1 interviews in a very McKinsey style. Now interview process consist of many more 1:1 interviews. They can be very repetitive.
Interview Question – Some questions seem a little silly, but they are designed to observe your logical thinking. View Answer
Negotiation Details – I was told that these were standard scales and there was no negotiation. But it is possible to negotiate!
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Pros: “Great opportunity for impact, networks, wide range of experiences and the chance to grow and develop as an individual contributor.” “Great opportunity for impact, networks, wide range of experiences and the chance to grow and develop as an individual contributor.” – Full Review
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