Genentech Interview Questions & Reviews
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Senior Manager, Product Public Relations Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Genentech in November 2013.
Interview Details – I was introduced to the new position by a recruiter and was contacted within a week via phone by the hiring manager. We had a great conversation and she shared many details about the role. Most of the questions asked involved my experience and why I was interested in working for Genentech.
We both decided it looked like a good fit and I was invited to come down for an interview. First with the Director and then, a few weeks later, with several members of the Corporate Communications / Product PR teams as well as Human Resources.
The first interview was very casual in a small conference room. The Director was wearing jeans and a nice sweater. I was in a suit and felt a bit overdressed. He made it clear that his team was bright, creative and very good at their jobs. After introducing himself, he said that he had just one question: "Why do you want to work here?" My answer must have been sufficient because he followed up with several other thought provoking questions before saying, "It really doesn't matter so much what I think. My team is great and they'll be the most challenging interview you've had."
I left the conference room 20 minutes later feeling anxious about what was to come next...
A few weeks later, I was invited to meet with five members of the team in a much larger conference room - one on one. Each interview was scheduled for 30 minutes but all went about five minutes over, so the last interview was cut short.
Beyond the usual questions [e.g., Tell us about yourself? What makes you the best candidate? Why Genentech? (again)], each interviewer seemed genuinely interested in 'talking' - and by that I mean a real conversation about my experience, my values, their challenges and how we would work together.
I received a call about three weeks later from the HR representative sharing that they had decided to go with a contractor who had been with the company for a while. She also shared feedback provided by the individual team members. It was constructive, positive and raised curiosity as to why I wasn't presented with an offer.
I had a few more questions and reached out to the hiring manager for clarification. Again, the information provided was detailed, candid and very helpful. End result: It's difficult to compete against someone who knows the product well from the inside and has already been doing a great job as a contractor.
The experience was time-consuming (two months) but overwhelmingly positive.
Interview Question – Unexpected question: "What would you expect your annual bonus to be?" View Answer
QA Specialist III Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Genentech.
Interview Details – Round 1: 1hr phone interview with hiring manager (boss)
Round 2: 3hr onsite interview with 4 different employees from varied departments.
Round 3: 0.5hr interview with HR
Interview Question – Why do you think you will be successful at this job? Answer Question
Negotiation Details – 1 week to decide on offer. A little back and forth with HR and hiring manager.
Biostatistician Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 5+ weeks - interviewed at Genentech in December 2013.
Interview Details – From online app to phone screen: 1 month, phone screen to interview: 3 weeks. On site interview includes a technical presentation and one to one meetings with other biostatisticians. Expect for this to last the whole day. Overall process is streamlined, and people are very pleasant. A very positive experience overall.
Interview Question – Most difficult questions came up during the presentation, mostly about why you chose a particular approach, challenges your assumptions, etc. Tough but fair crowd. Answer Question
Finance Intern Interview (Neutral Experience)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Genentech.
Interview Details – Contacted via email for a phone interview. The interviewer was very pleasant. He asked questions about why I wanted to intern in the finance department, why Genentech, etc, and the remaining were behavioral questions. Although I didn't receive an offer the process was very efficient and I'd still like to work at Genentech in the future.
Interview Question – Name a time when you didn't achieve a goal Answer Question
Biostatistician Interview (Neutral Experience)
Interviewed at Genentech
Interview Details – I applied a few different positions in the online system. After about one month, one manager sent me an email to set up a phone interview. The interview lasted for 30 minutes. The manager introduced the biostatistics team, detailed information about the job responsibilities and the requirements. Questions mainly focus on resume.
Interview Question – What is your advantages and diadvantages Answer Question
PDRP Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through college or university and interviewed at Genentech.
Interview Details – It was a long process, met with 7 interviewers total. Each interview was 45 minutes long. Mainly asked about my research experience or behavioral questions.
Interview Question – Why Genentech? Answer Question
Bioinformatics Intern Interview (Neutral Experience)
Interviewed at Genentech
Interview Details – The interview lasted about 20 minutes. The first part is all about resume, all kinds of random questions from resume. The second part is behavior questions.
Interview Question – Nothing really difficult. Answer Question
Research Assistant Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through a staffing agency - interviewed at Genentech in May 2012.
Interview Details – I had an initial phone interview and then two in-person interviews for this position. First part of the interview was with a supervisor one-on-one from three different groups within the department. Second part was with a panel of three technicians. The people were super friendly and the culture was very respectable.
Interview Question – The tech panel asked very detailed situational and scenario questions. One such question: "if you were doing a project with a given deadline, would you try to crunch it out to get it done by the deadline or be past the deadline with better results?" Be prepared to know what steps you would take to troubleshoot an issue with some process. Provide as many details and examples of you using your technical expertise. They were looking for someone who was technically adept as well as a good team player and collaborator. View Answer
Negotiation Details – Unfortunately, I did not know the salary was negotiable and simply accepted the offer they gave me.
Senior Research Associate Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Genentech.
Interview Details – phone interview with recruiter and the hiring manager, then a full (9 to 5) day of interviews ( ~50 min per person) including one hour seminar
Interview Question – none, but the day felt extremely long and I had trouble Answer Question
Negotiation Details – I was able to negotiate up (additional~ 5%) based on my work experience
Market Insights Interview (Neutral Experience; Difficult Interview)
I interviewed at Genentech in December 2013.
Interview Details – Hiring Manager phone screen followed by in person interview by individuals and panel via VC
Interview Question – Behavioral interview style. Tell me how you would ...... Answer Question
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Pros: “Company has great career opportunities. You learn how processes run most efficiently in the industry. Online and classroom training is abundant, employees should take more advantage of…” “Company has great career opportunities. You learn how processes run most efficiently in the industry. Online and classroom training is abundant, employees should take more advantage of that. Excellent pipeline. Company constantly reminds you of helping the patients; you always feel like your work is rewarding. Employees are highly motivated and intelligent. Great company to have on your resume, too.” – Full Review