Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
Interviews for Top Jobs at Google
- Software Engineer (1314)
- Product Manager (165)
- Intern (138)
- Software Engineer Intern (84)
- Software Developer (80)
- Associate Account Strategist (75)
- Senior Software Engineer (64)
- Account Strategist (57)
- Software Development Engineer (55)
- Associate Product Manager (49)
- Site Reliability Engineer (49)
- Software Engineer In Test (48)
- Software Engineering (47)
- Account Manager (46)
- Software Engineering Intern (37)
- Administrative Assistant (35)
- Technical Program Manager (32)
- Engineering (30)
- Program Manager (29)
- Adwords Associate (29)
- Quantitative Analyst (24)
- Engineer (23)
- Senior Product Manager (22)
- Analyst (22)
- Interaction Designer (21)
- Product Quality Analyst (21)
- Business Analyst (20)
- Technical Account Manager (20)
- Systems Engineer (18)
- Financial Analyst (18)
Product Manager Interview
I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks – interviewed at Google (London, England (UK)) in October 2014.
I applied online. No reply for 3 weeks. Things started moving after I contacted a sourcer asking what’s the status. It took 2 weeks to arrange the phone interview. Some materials were sent, asking me to prepare and study for the interview. Who has time for that nowadays?
I was interviewed by another product manager. The interview was rushed. It felt like the interviewer was following a script. After a brief introduction, I was bombarded by several abstract open-ended questions. For example:
* What advice would you give to the CEO of Google?
* Pick something that annoys you about a product and describe how would you eliminate that?
* How do you calculate how many calories are in a grocery store?
Having years of experience in product management for another globally known consumer company and having interviewed product managers myself, I tried to demonstrate critical thinking and my approach to problem solving, but apparently it was not enough. Perhaps I hesitated a little bit or didn’t describe my approach well enough. I was not sure what the interviewer was looking for, so it was hard to elaborate. It felt like he got stuck with his questions, he didn’t probe enough.
I guess I’m not the fastest thinker when being asked random abstract questions, but then again, this is not a critical factor in succeeding in almost any role. I don’t think the interviewer asked the right questions to evaluate my skills and knowledge.
Finally, he didn’t leave almost any time for questions to him. I usually allocate at least 1/4 of time for questions when I conduct interviews.
Considering the time and effort to go through the interview process and the randomness of getting through the interview, it’s no wonder they miss out on many talented people, who join startups instead.
PS. They declined my suggestion to use Google Hangout for the interview and opted for a phone call instead. I mean, we are in the 21st century already, why not have a video call using their own product?
- How many calories are in a grocery store? 7 Answers
Other Interview Reviews for Google
Product Manager InterviewNo OfferNegative ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3 weeks – interviewed at Google (London, England (UK)) in March 2013.
In March 2013 I applied for a Product Manager role in Europe.
I had a preliminary screening call with one of their recruiters, which was really useful. In fact, I found the recruiters to be really helpful throughout - sending through cheat sheets for the interview, etc.
I then had a call with a London-based Product Manager who had been in the role for 4.5 years. It was supposed to be a 45 min call but he rang late, so the whole thing felt really rushed. He didn't really refer to my CV at all, but seemed to be following a script. All throughout it felt like a game of fish - I obviously wasn't giving him the answers he was after. It was a frustrating experience.
I got rang the next week and told that I didn't have the product management experience needed at Google's scale. That was a frustrating answer, I thought they were interested in me precisely because I didn't fit the standard profile (I was the CEO of a UX firm).
Product Manager InterviewNo OfferNeutral ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied online. The process took 3+ months – interviewed at Google (London, England (UK)) in March 2010.
The interviews were by engineers on technical knowledge and basic programming skills (e.g. understanding recursion and iteration), as well as product managers who covered business models, strategy, approach to designing products, and a lot of mental modelling and calculation exercises, to see how a candidate breaks down a problem and figures out a rough answer - in one or two cases a precise numeric value was required, not just a description of the variables that would be used to calculate it.
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