General Atomics

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General Atomics Interview Questions

Updated Mar 1, 2015
Updated Mar 1, 2015
109 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

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Candidate Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Test Engineer I Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Rancho Bernardo, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Rancho Bernardo, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at General Atomics.

    Interview Details

    Received a screen call from one of the lead engineers in the group and answered very basic questions. I was brought in about 2 weeks after the initial screen. I was first interviewed by an HR recruiter who asked very basic questions about my career goals. From there, we went to an interview room where I was administered a written exam and given 45 minutes to complete it. Questions involved identification of basic discrete components, op-amp formulas, digital components, and power systems concepts. Some questions were very easy, some were difficult. After that, i was interviewed (non-technical) by a lead engineer from the TE group for about 15 minutes. Waited an hour, then was interviewed by a manager from the field engineering group. He opened up some schematics for a flight board and pointed out various circuit components (mostly op-amp based) and asked me to identify them. This lasted about 15 minutes. Waited another hour, and my final interview (non-technical) came from the manager of the group. The entire interview process lasted from 8am to 1pm. They gave a tour of the facilities following the interview. Received an offer 2-3 weeks later, and accepted.

    Interview Questions
    • Identify various Op-Amp based circuits on a schematic.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Avionics Tech Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Angeles, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Angeles, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at General Atomics in February 2015.

    Interview Details

    First you have to pass the Phone interview. Then Practical Test. Then Person-to-person interview which its pretty hard but its not really about knowledge more about personality. Ask you to describe any kind of avionics systems of aircraft that you used to work. What if?? questions.. most of the questions is about how you dealt with situations happened to you before.

    Interview Questions
    • Talk Alot of yourself and systems. Practice to describe any kind of system specially avionics that you used to work before.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Software Developer Interview

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

    I applied through college or university. The process took a weekinterviewed at General Atomics in February 2015.

    Interview Details

    The interview process is pretty straightforward. I only had one phone interview which was both technical and behavioral. The manager I spoke to was friendly and seemed pretty laid back and was actively trying to keep the interview professional and yet seem like a conversation at the same time. A few days later, HR reached out to me and said that they'd like to continue the process which involved me sending in 5 references and them doing a background check on me. After everything checked out, they said they'd extend an offer to me sometime in the middle of March and my offer would be contingent on my GPA and a drug test.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
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  5.  

    Technical Writer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral – interviewed at General Atomics.

    Interview Details

    Interview lasted from about 10-4pm. Rotated between a small panel, a tour of the manufacturing facility and finally a meeting with the Director of the department. Very well-rounded evaluation for knowledge, company fit and candidate engagement. To-the-point, thorough, but not grinding. It's a long day by design. If you are looking for a "placeholder" job, they will figure that out. Employee retention is high, so they are ensuring that you are right, because they hire for the long term.

    Interview Questions
    • Director expected me to draw out systems from an aircraft I had not flown in over 2 years.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Engineering Intern III Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5+ monthsinterviewed at General Atomics.

    Interview Details

    Took 2-3 months for HR phone interview where they asked about my resume and a few behavioral questions, next week was a phone interview with hiring manager where a few basic fundamentals were asked (recommend having your resume, job description and pen and blank piece of paper ready) and then scheduled a on-site interview the following month. It was about five hours and was with several people involved in different levels of development.

    Interview Questions
    • Was required to assemble a twelve piece gear system from a supplied drawing, solve a FBD and was questioned to establish my ability for three dimensional visualization of parts (had to draw them after).   View Answer
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  7.  

    Avionics Interview

    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a weekinterviewed at General Atomics.

    Interview Details

    Online interview is 3 parts. 2nd part is mostly aptitude. Failed 2nd part so 3rd part will not commence. Found it difficult since most questions were unrelated to avionics. Part 1 is basic conditions to the job. 3rd part is more technical

    No Offer
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    Mechanical Engineer II Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Poway, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Poway, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at General Atomics in December 2014.

    Interview Details

    Overall process was quick, given the holiday break in between the process (would have only taken 3 weeks but the holiday schedule and my busy schedule stretched it out 2 months). Began with a 15 minute HR phone screen followed by another 30 minute phone screen with the engineering lead the following week just before the holiday closure.

    I was contacted two weeks after the holiday break to schedule an onsite interview where I was then tag-teamed by HR and 3 engineering managers, consecutively (about 30-45 minute interviews each). Finally, after feeling a little mentally fatigued I was given a facilities tour which was actually pretty awesome!

    Each of the one-on-one interviews were completely different. Most questions were extremely technical, while some really grilled on work ethics and personality. Everyone seemed extremely professional while still being approachable and friendly.

    Offer was fair. Was asked for background check and told to wait until it was completed before

    Interview Questions
    • Disclosing technical questions would give an unfair advantage to the next candidate that I did not have. I will say that they their strategy is good at separating real engineers from paper pushers. Best advice, ask enough during the phone interview about the job so you are not caught by surprise with their questions.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation. Any hints at steering the conversation that way was dismissed with an "in is what it is" attitude.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9.  

    Environmental Services Aide Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at General Atomics in November 2014.

    Interview Details

    Phone Interview - Recruiter made sure that I was aware of the location of the job, she made sure that I understood the length and cost of my commute. She asked basic legal questions to determine my eligibility. Then she asked a couple of more in-depth questions, listed below. She was able to answer my questions about this position, and also answered questions about another position for which I also applied. She was friendly and non-robotic.

    Interview Questions
    • Tell me about a time you made a mistake and
      Tell me what sets you apart from other applicants
       
      View Answer
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  10.  

    Avionics Technician Deployable Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at General Atomics in October 2014.

    Interview Details

    Filled out a couple of applications with GA-ASI online on a whim, but wasn't getting my hopes up. I was actually surprised when I received an email back several weeks later informing me that they wanted to move forward with one of the jobs I applied for.
    Aced the 3 online tests that I had to take (well, one was basically just a questionnaire about living in harsh conditions, being deployed to combat zones, etc). The other two were basic avionics and electronics questions: Boolean logic, Coulomb’s law, troubleshooting practices, FOD control, that sort of thing. Then came the phone interview with the head of hiring at the facility that I was to be working out of. Pretty much just a short version of the questions that they would ask more in depth later on: education, employment history, tell a story about a time that you had to perform a difficult task, describe in as much detail as possible an avionics system that you're familiar with. The person doing the interview most likely will not know what you're talking about, but it is recorded and reviewed by a manager from the relevant department who will understand, so don't try to BS this part.
    A few weeks later I received a phone call letting me know that they were moving forward with my application and we set up a date for me to fly out for a face-to-face interview. They put me up in a local hotel for 3 nights, paid for my flight across the country, paid for a rental car, and reimbursed me for food and other expenses.
    I arrived at the facility at 6am and the interview with the hiring manager began at around 7am. He was a congenial enough guy, and we spent almost as much time with banter and personal chatting as we did about job related matters. After the initial chit-chat, I had to take another 20 question test, with an hour time limit. This is just to make sure that you didn’t cheat on the online test. The questions were almost verbatim from the online tests, with some of the numbers changed around. This test however is a strict go / no-go deal. If you fail it, the interview is automatically over.
    After that I talked again with the hiring manager for about 30 minutes about the rest of the process. I was taken to an empty hangar where I had to perform a hands-on practical test with a very rudimentary test bench set-up while an avionics instructor silently evaluated me. The biggest things that they look for are attention to detail, ability to follow instructions and obviously FOD and tool control. If you're a former military tech, this is all second nature to begin with.
    Having passed that, I met with an assistant manager from the avionics department, then my would-be supervisor for some small talk and general questions. Then the real interview started with the manager of the avionics department and the supervisor. The questions start basic enough and become more advanced. Things like: describe the systems you are familiar with, what is the frequency range of VHF and a lot of hypothetical and personality questions. Have plenty of stories to tell them, and be as detailed as possible. Normally I'm used to having to dumb down things when I explain them to the people in charge; this was the first time I've ever had to sound as technical as possible. After almost two hours of straight talking and answering questions and asking a few of my own, they joked that the hard part is usually getting people to talk, but with me that was certainly not an issue.
    By this point it was about 1pm so they bought me lunch at the cafeteria, and afterwards I talked about what the job would require and what I would be doing with the same assistant manager. She then brought me back to the HR manager’s office where we discussed where we go from there. He checked to make that my security clearance was still active and explained the benefits and what they would do to get me moved out and settled in. After all of this, he gave me a starting salary that honestly was a lot more than I was expecting, and I signed the employment agreement to begin the day after I graduated in December. By the time I left it was after 4pm.
    Being a few months from graduating college I was extremely relieved to have secured a job and began making preparations to move across the country and start my new life.
    After almost 1 month of no contact from the company I was getting a bit anxious. I then received a phone call from the same hiring manager who had run my interview and hiring process informing me that they had decided to rescind their offer of employment, and he refused to give me any reason, in spite of me asking several times for further clarification. To lose the job had upset me, but the fact that they strung me along for almost 2 months under the impression that I had secured a job when I could have been applying to other companies was extremely unnerving. Several months later and I still have never received any reason for the withdrawal of the offer, which makes it even worse.

    Interview Questions
    • Explain in as much detail as possible a system that you have extensive knowledge of. Be as technical as possible.

      Describe a time when you have been asked to perform a task that you were uncomfortable or unqualified to perform, and how did you handle it.
       
      Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiating, a number was offered and that was it.
    Accepted Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    Project Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Interview process started with a phone screening. Fairly standard format of resume walk through and what my interests are. On site interview was also fairly straight forward with questions about positions held on resume and walk through of Project Engineer role. The interview process consisted of phone screen plus the on site interview.

    Interview Questions
    • Pretty basic interview questions. Why General Atomics? Questions about job transitions, etc.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

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