Facebook Interview Questions

Updated Oct 23, 2014
Updated Oct 23, 2014
1,148 Interview Reviews

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in September 2008.

    Interview Details

    I applied online through the Facebook website and heard back from HR within 2 weeks. After speaking with the recruiter, we setup a phone interview with one of the engineers. The phone interview was about 20 minutes long and consisted of 2 questions which were algorithmic in nature, one of which was reversing a linked list. I heard back from them about a week later and we setup a time for an on-site interview. I was alotted $1000USD for travel expenses to travel from Toronto, ON to Palo Alto, CA. The on-site interview lasted 4 hours and was split up into 1 hour interviews with a different engineer. The questions were mostly abstract, and language independent. Content of the questions varied from riddles to database design. My impression of the first three engineers was good, they seemed like nice guys, and knowledgeable. The last interviewer came off as pretentious, I felt as though he wanted me to fail -- just my opinion!

    Overall, the office culture seemed relaxed and the problems they are solving there are interesting ones. I'd recommend interviewing with them if only for the chance to visit Palo Alto!

    Interview Questions
    • You have two lightbulbs and a 100-storey building. You want to find the floor at which the bulbs will break when dropped. Find the floor using the least number of drops.   View Answers (24)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in June 2009.

    Interview Details

    The recruiting department is incredibly cool. After the interview the recruiter actually called me to tell me my skills were NOT good enough. This is very unusual in the job hunting world.
    Also, facebook doesnt really care about a degree if you have experience even if they say they require one.
    However, without computer science knowledge you will fail the interview.

    Interview Questions
    • Pass a list of word to a function
      [car, rats, arc, star]
      and have the function group the words which are anagrams of eachother.
        View Answers (5)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Sales Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in February 2010.

    Interview Details

    Received an inquiry from a recruiter after sending resume. Basic questions about Facebook's business and my background. Was followed with by another recruiter who setup technical interview. Consisted of writing psuedo code to perform basic functions. Other questions about troubleshooting API issues and how you would go about it. Next step would have been an onsite but don't think I will get that.

    Interview Questions
    • How does Facebook make money?   View Answer
    • Given an API call that returns a null value and no error message, how would you go about troubleshooting the problem?   View Answers (2)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
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  5.  

    Software Engineering Summer Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through other source. The process took a dayinterviewed at Facebook in January 2009.

    Interview Details

    I had a 45 minute phone interview. Then they flew me out to CA, where I had a 3 hour interview, 1 hr with each of the interviewers. It was a very technical interview- logic puzzles and writing code. They didn't ask about my work experience or leadership experience, but did ask about some of the larger projects I'd done in school.

    Interview Questions
    • 25 racehorses, no stopwatch. 5 tracks. Figure out the top three fastest horses in the fewest number of races.   View Answers (7)
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in March 2010.

    Interview Details

    I applied on facebook/careers and was contact by their HR for a screening test which consists of some behavioral questions and a few simple questions about c/c++ & Algo, such as what's a virtual destructor. And then they scheduled me for a tech phone interview during which I was asked to do two programming questions on Collabedit.com.

    Interview Questions
    • Implement stack using a queue   View Answers (3)
    • Print out all combinations of k numbers out of 1...N
      e.g. when k = 2, n = 4
      Print out 12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34
        View Answers (2)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  7.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in October 2009.

    Interview Details

    Multiple interviews. Very heavy CS/discrete math based questions. They are definitely hiring only the smartest people! Also, long waits between interviews. Other than that, they were very professional and employees were open in sharing their experience while working at Facebook (lots of energy and enthusiasm in general, mostly because its a lot of young/college kids)

    Interview Questions
    • Given two events, each with a start and end time, implement a boolean check to see if they overlap.   View Answers (4)
    • Reverse a string in-place using C.   View Answers (2)
    Declined Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    Applications Operations Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through other source. The process took 4 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in June 2010.

    Interview Details

    The interview process was fairly straightforward, though extremely slow. A single phone interview before being brought onsite. Apparently I was brought onsite and skipped a phone interview.

    The interview at Facebook's University Ave site was a bit odd. Employees are crammed in like sardines. More packed than most startups. It was very loud.

    I went through two sets of in-person interviews (a total of five or six people). The interviewers had extremely good / difficult interview questions. Nearly all the people I spoke with seemed extremely disinterested by the interview process. It was very difficult to figure out what working there would be like.

    Interview Questions
    • Draw out Facebook's infrastructure.   View Answer
    • Programming test, take an arbitrary text input and transform it to a specified data format.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9. 5 people found this helpful  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at Facebook in April 2010.

    Interview Details

    This was probably one of the longest interview processes I had to go through. The recruiter was wonderful. She was always very professional and responsive. First I had a phone interview with the hiring manager. It was a very straight forward conversation and he asked me to give him some pseudo code on how to square a number using their online tool. Standard algorithm questions which I answered correctly. Afterward, the recruiter said it went well and that she would be in contact with me about what the next steps are. A week goes by and she calls me back telling me I have to write an Adobe Air or Java application using the Facebook API's.

    I thought it was a little bit much for them to ask me to spend my time writing something I would not be getting paid for. I really wanted to get the job and impress the hiring manager though so I spent my free time, over a two week period making something that looked great and worked really well. It then took them two months to review the application. To me this was totally unprofessional and kind of a slap in the face. The recruiter was in contact with me the whole time and told me they were all busy with their big change to the privacy features.

    Finally the hiring manager looked at the application but the recruiter told me they wanted someone else internal to look at the code as well. She told me they were impressed with the application and had rejected a lot of other candidates applications right away. I sat in limbo another few weeks while another person looked at the application. The recruiter then calls me back to tell me that the position I was applying for was dropped. Not that they hired someone else, but that they changed the role I was applying for completely. I think the software engineering interview process has hit an all time low.

    First they make the engineer jump through hoops of logic games. Then spout out algorithms and uses of design patterns like robots. Finally you have to spend your free time writing something that they are only going to throw in the garbage. We have all really fallen to a sad state.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Application Details

    The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in April 2010.

    Interview Details

    It's a tough company to get in. I had to do a recruiter screen, another phone screen with a team member, one in house with 3 team members, and another in house with 2 team members - including the director of the group. Mostly behavior with a few analytical situational questions.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  11. 50 people found this helpful  

    User Operations Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeksinterviewed at Facebook in December 2010.

    Interview Details

    If you are interested in applying for a position with Facebook or you’re already engaged in the interviewing process, you may find my insight helpful.

    A Facebook recruiter contacted me within two week after submitting my resume to schedule an online writing sample. One week after I took the writing assessment, my recruiter contacted me to schedule a 30-minute phone interview.

    Takeaway#1: For the writing assessment, be clear, concise, and manage your time effectively.

    My first phone interview, which was more of a screening call, was with a Facebook recruiter. The call lasted around 30 minutes and entailed a discussion of my resume. She was very thorough and asked very detailed questions about all aspects of my experience. I was surprised at the level of detail sought, considering she didn’t work in the area for which I was applying. After the screening, she told me to expect a follow-up call from someone working in the department for which I applied.

    Takeaway#2: Be prepared to discuss your resume in detail and relate your experience to the Facebook job for which you are interviewing.

    The next day, a recruiting coordinator from the local Facebook office e-mailed me details for the next phone interview, which was with someone working in User Operations. This phone interview was more traditional and lasted around 30 minutes. I received an e-mail from my recruiter the next day inviting me to an on-site interview. I accepted.

    Takeaway#3: Know what Facebook is all about, express your excitement, and be prepared to articulate in detail what makes you a good fit for the position AND Facebook in general.

    The on-site recruiting coordinator contacted me to schedule the two-hour on-site interview. She also asked me to complete the Facebook employment application and nondisclosure agreement and bring both to the interview. Upon my arrival on-site, she took me to a very small room, with just enough room for three chairs, and asked me to wait for the first interviewer.

    The first interviewer arrived with her laptop in-hand, and proceeded to ask me standard interview questions, typing notes as I gave responses. The interview lasted 30 minutes. In fact, all subsequent interviews lasted 30 minutes.

    Takeaway#4: Be prepared to provide interesting stories about your most positive and negative work-related experiences, including lessons learned. Make sure you don’t throw anyone under the bus!

    The second interviewer’s questions were about personal and professional goals, why I was interested in Facebook, why I wanted to leave my job, etc.

    Takeaway#5: Be prepared to articulate the importance of life goals, why you’re interested in Facebook, what you will offer Facebook in the first 90 days/five years, and what skills you will take away from working at Facebook.

    The third interviewer’s questions focused on the position and asked philosophical questions about what role Facebook should play in ensuring safety on the site. He also asked for specific solutions to scaling User Operations support as the business continued to grow.

    Takeaway#6: Be prepared to offer suggestions for improving the Facebook user experience for both novices and experts.

    The final interviewer was older than the previous ones. The other interviewers were in their early 20s to very early 30s. I’m sure he was a manager in that office. His questions focused on team dynamics. This entailed what kind of team I prefer, what role I fill in a team, what I think is destructive for a team, etc.

    Takeaway#7: Be prepared to reveal professional criticism you received from peers while working on a team, and explain how you dealt with the criticism.

    This was the end of my interviewing experience with Facebook. The recruiting coordinator told me I should receive word from my recruiter in about a week. A week later, I received an e-mail from my recruiter indicating I was not the right fit.

    Final Takeaway: If you didn’t receive an offer, find something positive from the experience. It’s only natural to feel the sting of rejection when losing out on this kind of opportunity, but rest assured that you wouldn’t have made it that far in the interview process if you didn’t have the right skills. They simply found a personality that would be a better fit for the team they’re trying to build (or you were too old – kidding – sort of).

    My goal here is to share a more complete understanding of Facebook’s interview process so others may spend less time trying to anticipate the process and more time thinking about why they are right for Facebook.

    I am more than happy to share other aspects of my interviewing experience with Facebook. Feel free to ask questions in the comments section below...I will respond there so everyone has the benefit to learn from my experience. Remember, it’s anonymous…

    Note: Some things I will not be able to comment on due to my NDA with Facebook.

    Interview Questions
    • What skills will you take away from your experience working for Facebook?   Answer Question
    • What do you hope to accomplish in your first 90 days working for Facebook?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

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