Cerner
3.2 of 5 506 reviews
www.cerner.com Kansas City, MO 5000+ Employees

Cerner Software Engineer Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Apr 6, 2014
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No Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer

I applied through college or university and interviewed at Cerner.

Interview Details – I first had my first phone interview with a HR. And I received an email next day asked to schedule sometime the week after for another phone interview with one of their software engineers. I am now waiting for the next step.

As for the questions asked during the interview: there is this OO design of chess game, and if any inheritance can be used in my design. Another one is to compare the memory management between different programming languages.

Besides, at the beginning of the interview, he asked me to introduce myself and why cerner. Also, he asked me to describe the most difficult person I worked with and how I dealt with it.

Interview Question – Nothing unexpected from previous posts.   Answer Question

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No Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Arlington, TX

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Cerner in January 2013.

Interview Details – Contacted by Cerner recruiter to set up phone interview a week after the mail. Interviewer was very nice and friendly. She asked me very basic hr questions ex: behavioral q's like problem faced in a project, how you handle it. experience q's : describe your previous work and project . role in project. etc etc. At the end of the interview she asked me to give a time to set up second telephonic round (techinal ), its scheduled on 21st.

Interview Question – Nothing was unexpected as everything is already posted under Cerner interview thread   Answer Question

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8 people found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Cerner in November 2012.

Interview Details – Applied online - then got a call. They then scheduled a phone interview which simply going through the resume and some basic hr question, after that was asked to fly to kansas city after 2 weeks. Booked a room in Sheraton where i could stay overnight. Had a shuttle arranged in the morning to pick 15-16 people. Gave us a tour of the building and took us to our spots where the interviewer would come and take the interview. Had 3 1:1 interviews back to back asked various questions but mostly behavioral and scenario based. Below are some of the questions i could recall (not all of them though). At the end they gave all the people coming from other states a 50$ gift card as misc. expenses. I have been working as a contractor and I was desperately looking to get this job as my last project just got over and I have loans to clear but unfortunately, inspite of putting my best forward at the interview, the hr called me 4 days later telling me that they are not going ahead.
Hope this set of questions helps others going to interview there

Technical:
• arrays vs linklist
• what is RDMBS
• Code:unit test
• Code:find the null pointer exception
• concept of 1 to many relationships in databases with an example
• binary search to find number 9 in an array from 1 to 19
• complexity of binary search and its complexity in case of an unsorted array
• design a game of checkers using OOD
• Code for finding an output of an recursive program
• what are memory managed languages, name them
• what are the responsibilities of a programmer in a memory managed language
• Name and explain the various design pattens
• There is a class Car and a class Paint what is the relationship between them and explain
• What is database normalization and forms of it
• Various software testing levels and explain
• Deadlock, explain
•Write a program that prints foo, bar and foobar for numbers divisible by 5,7 and both 5 and 7 respectively

Behavior based: (All answers should be based on STAR technique)
•Tell something about yourself (Common in all three)
•Tell me about a time you had deal with difficult team member or members (Common in all three)
•Tell me about a time where you were given big multiple task and the deadlines for each of them were not extended, how you dealt with it and did you finish all the task in the given time
•Tell me about a time a team mate could not understand the task assigned
•Describe a time when you had a difficult manager and how you dealt with him
• What have you learn in your career as a java developer so far, and how do you apply
   those techniques
• Why do you want to leave your current job
• Whats is it you like and don't like in your present job (Common in all three)
• Why join Cerner
• What is the need for you for obtaining/learning new technologies outside of work, do you
  think it is necessary and why
• Why did you leave your last job (Common in all three)
• What was the challenging work in your career
• Describe a scenario where you tried to troubleshoot and you failed
• Describe a time when you had to get a work to be done outside your team
• Tell me about a time when there was an issue, not of your fault and how did you find it
   was not your fault and what step did you take to get it fixed.

Interview Question – what are memory managed languages, name them
what are the responsibilities of a programmer in a memory managed language
  Answer Question

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2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, KS

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 1+ week - interviewed at Cerner in March 2012.

Interview Details – I was contacted by email. They mentioned that they found my Resume online. I followed up by calling them up.
Phone interview: Very basic HR questions. Like why would you like to change jobs? What are you salary expectations? Experience description? Then they asked me if I could fly to Kansas City for in person interview.
In Person interview: Was interviewed by 3 interviewers. All in different teams. 40% of the questions were behavioral and description of previous job(s) experience. Eg, describe a difficult situation and tell me how you resolved it? How much experience do you have on so and so language? Describe some projects you worked on.
Remaining 60% were technical. Was asked to write a program to list prime nos. Was given a program which does recursion and was asked to write out the output after every iteration.
Was asked to design/program my favorite game like tic tac toe, chess, etc. Which was my favorite IDE, debugging tool, etc. Some sorting questions. Like explain bubble sort, insertion sort/ merge sort (don't clearly remember which but had prepared them all). Construct Binary search tree from given set of nodes {15,30...etc}. Explain insertion/deletion and traversal in BST.

The overall interview process was extremely easy. I had not slept for 2 days for preparation and went to different career questions/ answers sites including this one. I was expecting questions like find out time complexity, best case worst case, data structures - trees and traversal, searching and algorithm based questions. Was also expecting some bar raiser questions which need some complex/deep thinking and knowledge of advanced data structres and algorithms. However, no such questions were asked. I realized, it would be because, they just normal talent who fits in Cerner culture and has basic technical knowledge to write code.

During the in-person interview we were made to stay in Sheraton Hotel, which provides the view of the whole city. Flight arrangements and limo arrangements were good as well.
After, the interview, we were immediately sent back to the airport. I catched my flight and came back.

Got a call after 2-3 days that they had an offer for me!

Negotiation Details – I did not negotiate.

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1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at Cerner in July 2012.

Interview Details – The first step to the interview process was receiving a phone call from a Cerner hiring staff person. She was pleasant to talk to and made me feel confortable, which helped me ease into the process. We spoke briefly about the possibility of my employment with Cerner and scheduled a phone interview to happen about a week later. Then, I had a phone interview with a Software Architect who had been working at Cerner for ten years. He asked me about my previous programming projects and quizzed me on various topics, mostly involving Object-Oriented Design. One of the questions that stood out to me was this one - using OOD (in Java, presumably), how would I implement a game of checkers? It was a very broad question - just like most of his other questions. After the questions, I had the oppurtunity to ask him what his experience at Cerner was like. He said that beginning there is very difficult, as you have a ton of information thrown at you and little time to absorb it. I have found this to be mostly true so far, but not to the extent I expected.
About a week or so later, I was informed via the same hiring personnel that I was selected to participate in an on-site interview, for which all related travel costs would be paid by Cerner. I lived in Georgia, so the flight from Atlanta to Kansas City was covered, as well as a night at the Hilton President and a dinner at Gordon-Biersch (in the form of a $25 gift card). I scheduled the interview for a mere 5 days from the date they called me (since they gave me no other choice besides the next day). I flew in that night, arriving around 7 PM, enjoyed my dinner, then woke up early for toasty hotel-provided breakfast and the 8:30 AM shuttle to Cerner's Innovation Campus.
Rather than going immediately to the interviews, we were treated to about a 30-minute driving tour around Kansas City aboard a bus. We saw several landmarks in the city, including art museums and popular places to hang out downtown. It was enjoyable, but I'd say it only increased the suspense for the review due to its length.
The campus was certainly nice at first glance. And the farther into the building we went, the nicer it seemed. We were given a quick tour of one of the floors, which had "collaborative" style cubicles with low walls, and taken to a classroom of sorts, where we were briefed on the interview process, given iPads to use throughout the day, and given a folder full of Cerner-related documents and housing information for Kansas City. The iPads, sadly, were useful only for a Cerner app that was more or less a brochure. Besides that, I got very little time to use my iPad. It was spiffy, but not needed at all.
The interviews themselves consisted of two parts. One part was a technical assessment of sorts, asking mostly theoretical questions relating to computer science. The second was a more professional-oriented interview with questions relating to your career, future, and professional conduct. The interviews were conducted in small rooms that contained whiteboards and tables. Sitting directly across the table from your interviewer may be intimidating, but if you're a good student of Computer Science, there's no need to worry. The technical part mainly consists of questions relating to Java and databases. If you are good at OOD, data structures, and databases, this will be a breeze. In the career part, I feel this is more personal. Just relax and say things only you would want to hear from an applicant if you were the interviewer. Overall, I would say the interviews were not difficult, but you should study up just in case.
The interviews were exciting and fun. There was one hiccup that I should point out though, but maybe I just lack common sense. While at the hotel, the receptionist asked to swipe my debit card. Of course, Cerner was paying for the whole thing, so I thought it would be no problem if she needed it for some administrative reason. However, I was charged for my stay, and I had to call and have the charges removed. Again, this is not directly related to Cerner.

Interview Question – The most difficult technical question to me was a question about binary trees. This is personal to me however, since I at the time, had the types of trees mixed up. I was asked to put items in a binary tree, and I assumed it was to be balanced. However, the interviewer was totally confused by my first answer. The question was unclear, and I still don't know what he wanted, but I ended up getting the job. If you run into this question, do your best to explain what you are doing if you get it wrong. If the interviewer understands where you are coming from, you have a shot at getting his props even if the answer is wrong.   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

Declined Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Cerner in September 2012.

Interview Details – Interview is very basic. First you will receive a call from HR asking general information and some behavioral questions which one should be easily going through. After that, they will schedule an on-site interview at Kansas City. In that interview there will be three rounds of each 45 minutes. All the interviews are basic and cover the core concepts. I was interviewed for a Java position where they emphasized on DataStructures and Collections. Questions such as difference between an Arraylist and LinkedList, Heap and Tree Structures, Binary Search Algorithm, Different Sorting Algorithms. They also ask you to explain OOPS concepts and will ask you to develop a model using OOPS concepts possibly a game like chess/checkers. Apart from these, possible questions are recursive algorithm, finding bugs in a given program, writing a program to print some numbers - pretty easy stuff. Also, be prepared to answer the version numbers of all the tools or IDEs you have used. You can expect some behavioral questions viz. give me a situation where you had to deal with a situation and what did you learn from that, etc.

Basically, interview is all basic. Keep your answers short, simple and straight to the point. Be prepared to ask some good questions. Do you homework and go through the Companies web pages and locations they have around the world.

Interview Question – Why do you want to leave your current job?   View Answers (2)

Reason for Declining – Offering less than what I was expecting

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Employee
Kansas City, MO

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Cerner in April 2012.

Interview Details – Interview process was very good. Receive a call from HR and they ask you a few behavioral interview questions. If these are passed, they fly you out to KC for a technical interview in which all expenses are paid. There will be several people in your interview group. Goes without saying but make sure you wear a suit. You will have about 3 interviews with senior software engineers. Most questions are read from a pool of predetermined questions. Some questions are to spell Cerner using a binary tree, design an object-model for a chess game, write a simple function on a white board to output certain numbers, recognize a recursive function when you see it. They also have questions about object-oriented concepts. Sometimes the interviewers will go off script and ask their own unique questions and start chatting with you to get a feel for your personality, but mostly they will stick to the scripted questions.
The interview is generally pretty easy compared to some other companies who will only hire the rockstar programmers. Anyone with a CS degree should be able to pass the interview. However, be warned that the actual job will be much tougher than the interview.

Interview Question – The chess game object model would be difficult if you didn't think about it beforehand.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Did not negotiote.

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Cerner in October 2012.

Interview Details – I was contacted by HR i.e. first round and then flown to kansas city paid trip for 3 1:1 interviews. Pretty standard and easy. All of the questions were from previous posts.

Interview Question – Nothing   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Standard there is little scope for negotiation.

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Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied online and the process took 5 days - interviewed at Cerner in January 2011.

Interview Details – First there was 2 phone interviews - 1 general, 1 somewhat technical.
Then there was an onsite interview. The Interview was held in a nice place and started on time. 3 people in a row interviewed me, about 30 minutes each(with 5-10 min break). They all had mixed questions (technical + behavior). They were a team lead a manager and a senior architect.
The questions were very standard and the interview overall was super simple.
- Describe tree and heap data structures
- What is MVC
- When/why to use recursion
- name/describe java design patterns
- describe generics
- inner join VS outer join

Interview Question – None.
Most of the questions we pretty standard.
  Answer Question

Negotiation Details – They called me 2-3 hours after the interview and made an offer. For some reason I decided to accept it right away (which I regret).

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2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Very Easy Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
Kansas City, MO

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 days - interviewed at Cerner.

Interview Details – The recruiter got my resume from some career website, asked me to apply for their Velocity Software Engineer position, I did. She set up the first phone screen, asked me pretty normal questions like achievements, how would you go with type of questions. Then, she set up a technical 30 minutes phone screen with Senior Software Engineer. First 15 minutes he asked all behavioral questions listed on Glassdoor and other half was of technical like oops, checker game design, garbage collection, same as glassdoor questions. Then after half an hour the recruiter called, asked me to fly down to Kansas City after 2 weeks. They paid everything for the expenses.
They took us on the tour of kansas city, dinner, cerner campus tour, history etc. The interview was of one hour, half an hour of behaviroal and other half was technical. behavioral was consisted of the same type of questions like "tell me a situation where" , the technical was also very easy to crack..there wasn't a single question that I could not answer..preapre the questions from glassdoor :)
I got an offer just within 2 days, my recruiter called me up and offered me a job. Typically they take 2 weeks to offer a job but if you are exceptional among all other candidates they will offer you within two days.
Just be confident and do not exaggerate.

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