Google Programmer Interview Questions

Updated Apr 22, 2015
15 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Creative Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 7+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in March 2015.

    Interview

    Applied online. Weeks later I had a phone call with the recruiter. Then I had one interview with an engineer. Next they set up a trip to Mountain View. Out there I talked to 5 people, 3 of those were video conferences to the New York office where I live and where the position actually was going to be. On-site interview was on a Thursday and I got a call with the decision on the following Tuesday. Most of the interviewers were friendly, but the recruiter not so much. It would have been nice to interview at the location where the job was based.

    Interview Questions

  2. Helpful (3)  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Google.

    Interview

    Recruiter reached out to me via email claiming to have been looking at potential graduates from my college. She invited me to a casual phone interview where she asked me various questions about my interests. She asked me for available times to do a technical screener before coming on site. We planned out a call a few days later and the interviewer had me on Google Docs programming a solution to his question. The question was regarding an algorithm applied to search trees. I started off well creating the necessary data structures and taking the input tree, started the algorithm, but stumbled a bit towards the end. The interviewer passed me a few hints and asked me a few questions, but I didn't fully complete the whole problem. Very nice guy. Phone call about a week later informing me they would fly me out, rental car and all, expenses paid. About a month later I was in person interviewing the early morning. The whole interview process in person took 5-6 hours total and there were 4 seperate interviewers. The first session started out kind of rough. Gentleman came in and expressed he wasn't supposed to be the one actually interviewing me, and that the other one called in sick. Because of that, he realized he couldn't submit his work to launch a project so it would be delayed. He seemed very frazzled and we hadn't even started. But, I put it out of my mind when he got to the question and tried to not care. He presented me a string manipulation/search question and I progressed through it the best I could. He was very responsive, always asking me what I was trying to do at every step and I felt encouraged to talk out loud even if I was facing the whiteboard trying to do the problem. Time ran out, but I had a basic solution. We didn't get around to answering a whole optimized solution. He let me ask questions about his job. Out of everyone, he was the most enthusiastic and encouraging about working at Google. The next interviewer came in and she explained that someone would be joining us as a shadow, learning how to perform interviews. He sat there quietly the whole time and took notes. She, however, felt very off putting even compared to the first interviewer. She asked me a question and I proceeded to replicate what I did with the last interviewer who encouraged me to think aloud. I couldn't tell if she was listening though. She would stop me and ask me to explain what I was trying to do, even though I had just explained out loud! So there was a bit of tension. Coupled with the fact that I had never encoutered her first question, she pushed me away from the problem mid-strategy and provided a second problem. Which I felt I did okay with instead but she still exhibited that same behaviour. At that point, I went to lunch with someone from the Search team. He was very nice and answered all my questions. He, however, never really seemed enthusiastic. Neither did the previous 2 interviews I noticed. No one was showing me ENERGY that they wanted to be at Google or how fantastic it was or how they loved their job. No one was gushing, and it seemed like everyone, even at lunch, was just being herded around. I started to get cold feet... Lunch was pretty good otherwise. The third interviewer sat down and asked me a question I had kind of dealt with before. It was a pairing algorithm and I felt I did much better with this one. He, however, was on the computer for the most part typing away like he was working on something else. I don't think he ever looked at what I was working on while I did it. He sat in a position where he probably couldn't even see what I was doing on the whiteboard. Which concerned me. He chimed in maybe once or twice to 'check in' on my progress. But he never let me ask questions about what he did either. He took a picture of the board before leaving. The last interviewer was just as enigmatic. He was very nice though and provided me a bunch of questions - mostly identifying and replicating unique array traversal patterns. I went through them and he responded to me as if I had nailed them all. He even went 'overtime' to provide more questions, and he was all 'yes yes very good'. He showed me out a backdoor, and I was in the middle of the Google campus by myself. No recruiter followed up to see how it went or anything. I just.... meandered out. I explored a bunch of the beautiful campus, but it was an odd ending. I got a phone call about a week and a half later - the only contact I had since. And they said try again next year. In fact, she expressed I "came close". I'd reinforce that the questions were fair, everyone seemed nice (especially the recruiters themselves by the way), but no one was bursting with energy about the place or their work. No one tried to encourage me in a way that was like "you want to and should work here!" like many other companies I've been to have shown. It was definitely an interesting experience...

    Interview Questions

    • Given a string of input of any length of letters, any unique substring can be converted into unique numbers. Plan and write out code to determine how many unique number combinations any given string can have.   1 Answer
  3.  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Google.

    Interview

    They called me for an interview and I already had another offer. I interviewed with them. The questions they asked were pretty generic but I guess it was pretty apparent that I didn't really have a genuine interest in their organization. Questions included 1. why google 2. why comp sci major 3. most challenging course at my school 4. why programming. They decided not to hire me and I can't really blame them.

    Interview Questions

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  5.  

    Entry Level Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Google.

    Interview

    I was contacted by a Google recruiter on LinkedIn. He got me in touch with another recruiter who was more suited to my level of experience. The recruiter explained everything to me. The only part I can attest to is the technical interview though. I had a phone interview with a Software Engineer from Google. We were both on the same Google Doc where he pasted a problem. I was allowed to answer it in any language I was comfortable with (the Software Engineer assigned to interview me knew all the languages I had claimed to be experienced with). It was my first interview of this kind ever. I cracked under pressure. I gave a correct answer, but it took time and it was definitely not the best answer. The recruiter called me a week later and told me to keep working on my skills and knowledge and try again in a year or two.

    Interview Questions

    • There wasn't anything surprising. Be ready to analyze the time and space (especially time) complexity of your answer.   Answer Question
  6. Helpful (1)  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Declined Offer

    Interview

    I received an initial phone call from Google. They were interested in acquiring my product and integrating it into Google. We had a few initial emails followed by a phone conversation.

    Interview Questions

    • There were no difficult or unexpected questions. They wanted to find out more about me and my company.   1 Answer
  7.  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Google in May 2013.

    Interview

    Had an phone interview with a woman, just normal HR question. What's the biggest challenge you've face? How did you solve it? What's the different between linkedlist and array?

    Interview Questions

    • How would you test the success of the feature you discussed?   Answer Question
  8.  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    The process took 5 days. I interviewed at Google (New York, NY) in March 2011.

    Interview

    I met with the hiring manager, a nice guy. We discussed programming and my history as a programmer, including my capabilities. It was pleasant and cordial and I thought I would get the position. There are many great programmers out there so you can imagine how competitive it is to get a spot at google. I went through two interviews and I received a call the next week and was informed I wasn't getting the position

    Interview Questions

  9.  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Google in May 2009.

    Interview

    phone interview first, and then on-site interview.

    Interview Questions

    • I forgot. answered most of the questions. but they required exact coding correctness.   Answer Question
  10.  

    Programmer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 2 days. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in February 2009.

    Interview

    two rounds of phone interviews, and another phone interview.

    Interview Questions

    • How to find the top k items from n distributed servers, with min network communication, but computation local at servers is ok   1 Answer
  11. Helpful (2)  

    Programmer Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Hyderābād (India)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Hyderābād (India)) in June 2012.

    Interview

    Very tough to crack and need to keep a lot of patience.the initial rounds were tough to crack and do were the last rounds but enjoyable and awesome experience.

    Interview Questions

    Negotiation

    Just be simple and keep smile always.

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