General Atomics Interview Questions & Reviews
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Security Suppost Specialist Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at General Atomics in July 2013.
Interview Details – Initially applied online and got a call from the recruiter about one month later. She called and executed the screening interview where she also asked my salary expectations. Next, she scheduled me for a phone interview with the hiring manager. After that, she sent me a survey link to send to five references and set up the in person interview with two hiring managers and the recruiter. The recruiter explained benefits, hiring process, and asked a few general questions (i.e., worst and best previous management style, why do you want to work for GA). Next, I met with one hiring manager who basically told me more about the department and position. After that, I met with the hiring manager that I originally had the phone interview with. Overall, this seems like a great company to work for with wonderful benefits and a high potential for growth, but unfortunately I did not have what they were looking for.
Interview Question – Pretty standard questions for the position I was applying for. Answer Question
UAV Specialist Interview (Negative Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at General Atomics.
Interview Details – Hiring process was long. From start to final about three months. After initially telling me that a job offer was coming and after a few "awaiting final offer signatures" email correspondences, HR backed out citing a department restructuring and competency changes in the requirements. This I assume is code for we're divulging that information. My HR contact fought for me to stay in the loop but was told that the head HR manager/executive nixed my offer letter. Communication adequate but I felt I was led by the nose. Very poor show.
Interview was easy, nice people nothing difficult or mentally challenging. Was assigned a project by the top interviewer and spent a a few evenings putting together the required information.
HR departments, in most companies, have too much influence in the decision making process. I believe you need to leave it up to the department leads rather than folks who have no idea of what's required. If the department likes you they should have the last word. The tell tale sign in my interview was when the director said, "If HR makes you an offer take it." So even if they want you some HR bean-counter has the last word.
Interview Question – No real difficult questions Answer Question
Software Developer Interview (Neutral Experience)
I applied online and interviewed at General Atomics.
Interview Details – Phone Interview. Recruiter could not tell me if its was discussion only with manager , or will be a technical interview with a Panel. There were 3 people (including manager). No Introductions from their side except their names. Seemed rude & unprofessional. Manager asked me to introduce my background . Once I was done, asked the team to ask questions. There were very specific product related questions down to program / Functions , flag variables level. Answered tons of the questions correctly, & for some I explained the approach not specific answer. Not sure if the interviewer was a contractor trying to save his job.. For someone with many many years in the industry, I have never seen such specific questioning. Seemed more like they were going thru motions to eliminate. Manager told me that recruiter will get in touch with me , although I doubt it.
Interview Question – What is the field flag value in order exit. Answer Question
Software Engineer Interview (Positive Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied through college or university and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at General Atomics in June 2012.
Interview Details – First and only interview was over the phone. Was asked to go over information on resume, and then asked a couple of technical questions which were not too difficult. HR contacted me a week later letting me know they were interested in hiring. Overall the process was not difficult, and they seemed to be more interested in if I understood basic concepts rather than intricate details.
Interview Question – bit manipulation question: if we want the second and fifth bit of a number how do we extract those bits? Answer Question
Management Assistant Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 4 months - interviewed at General Atomics in September 2010.
Interview Details – THe interview and hiring process is tedious and very very slow. I met with 6 people in a 4 hour time window. Each person offered water, but there was no time built in between interviews for a restroom break or even to breathe. There is not a lot of communication during the process and WEEKS go by without a word. A follow up phone call is met with "we're still working on it...decision soon." That's frustrating for a candidate.
Negotiation Details – I was able to negotiate a higher salary. The offer was already a bit above what I had been making, but they met my desired salary, since it was reasonable.
Engineer III Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at General Atomics in September 2010.
Interview Details – Pretty standard interview it seems for the engineering world. Met with an HR rep first and discussed the usual perks and got a little tour of the campus. Met with several Program Managers to discuss interests and previous experiences and talked about their projects. Then met with the Director of the group and discussed the group in general, and which project interested me the most.
Interview Question – Didn't really have any difficult or unexpected questions Answer Question
Negotiation Details – They offered a salary that was more than I was expected, and I took it, though I feel I could've asked for me.
Engineer Interview (Negative Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied online and interviewed at General Atomics.
Interview Details – Called me in for an interview. There was no phone interview, which was odd. I don't want to say what kind of engineer since i am not sure yet if they are going to make an offer.
I first went to the HR building which was down the street from the building i would be working at. Talked to the HR lady who was about 10 minutes late. She spent the whole time about how wonderful it was to work there and that no one has been laid off ever and how excellent this guy was that was going to be interviewing me, and how great the benefits are etc.
SHe asked what I was making and i told her, and her first question after that was "If we were to offer you that, would you take it?"
I explained that I have an offer pending from another company so it would have to depend on what that other offer was. These people will clearly try to lowball me if they were to make an offer.
Then i got to get back into my car and drive to the other building which was about a mile away. Some lady met me up front and took me to a conference room, gave me a written test to fill out, came back in an hour and picked it up.
5 minutes later a guy who i am assuming was a senior engineer walks in and proceeds to tell me in great detail what the questions on the test that i got wrong were, and basically seemed like his main point was to prove how smart he was. He didn't seem at all interested in my experience or what I had to say.
Asked me some other questions and went on his way. I did pretty darn good on the quiz, i got 16 right out of 19.
i waited about 20 minutes alone in the room twiddling my thumbs and eventually another older gentleman walks in and asks me some other questions about what i worked on and completely was apparent he was reading my resume for the first time. On his way out he gets my name wrong.
10 minutes later, the woman who escorted me walks in and tells me that the other guys who were going to interview me had to go to a meeting, and that I was done for the day.
Never heard back from them until I got an offer from another company and let GA know that i got an offer and wanted to give them a chance, but they said "it was a tough decision but we decided to move forward with another candidate".
Hmm, k , suit yourself.
A simple phone interview could have prevented me from wasting my time.
Interview Question – SOme op amp circuit that you learn in college and quickly forget View Answer
Graphic Illustrator Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online - interviewed at General Atomics in November 2012.
Interview Details – I was called for an impromptu phone interview while at work (I took a break to take the call), and was interviewed on the spot by the Hiring Manager and the Lead. They went over my experience, where I am currently employed which also most directly pertained to their need. It was about 20 minutes and went very well. I really liked the guys I spoke to. I was informed by email I'd get a call from the HR/Recruiter later that day.
The next day I got the call from HR. She instantly went over the resume again, which was fine. She went over their very extensive benefits package, which is impressive. However they could not match my current pay, much less top it. I have really good benefits now though I must admit GA's were better. I essentially said I needed to at the very least make what I make now, and have relocation or a bonus (some kind of motivation to take the position). The HR person then talked about overtime being "10% of the pay" and that would help. Personally I loathe OT, I work it when needed (have made 4k this year in OT) but that was not a selling point to me. She kept talking about the great bennies and it was San Diego. I mean great, it's a nice city. However, I lived in Cali for 6 years and I specifically left it because it is over priced. So that also was not a selling point. The fact I was expected to leave my current better paying job in a less expensive area for their job was an odd play. GA gave me zero motivation to want this position other than the good vibe I got from the people I would have been working for and learning some new tech.
I told her if they could do something, a bonus or anything if I was offered the position I'd come down for an in person visit (on my dime no less). In a week I got an email invite for the in person visit, but never a response to my initial compensation questions. I called and was told I was still the "lead candidate" but they wanted to explore local people first. I can respect that. I was told I would be called with an update, which I never was and they re-posted the position 2 weeks later. Sadly, GA are taking advantage of the economy. I had the qualifications they desired but they wanted to give me entry level pay. A shame because they really had everything else going for them and I would have done it if not for the low compensation offered.
Reason for Declining – Low compensation that did not match my current pay, no bonus or relocation offered and expected me to pay for the flight down to visit the facility.
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Pros: “Seems like a good opportunity Great locations to work Nice 9/80 work schedule” “Seems like a good opportunity Great locations to work Nice 9/80 work schedule” – Full Review