Google Software Engineer Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Aug 25, 2014
Updated Aug 25, 2014
891 interviews

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Software Engineer Interview

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

I interviewed online. The process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Google in December 2013.

Interview Details

Recruiter send you mail asking if interested then calls you for time and date for interview then send you mail containing guidelines then Phone interview - on site interview (1-4)- final interview

Interview Questions
  • It was data structure related question.Is not hard but not easy too ?   Answer Question
No Offer
Positive Experience
Average Interview

Other Interview Reviews for Google

  1. 25 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I interviewed through a recruiter. The process took 4 months - interviewed at Google in March 2014.

    Interview Details

    I was not looking to switch jobs, but I was contacted out of the blue by a recruiter on LinkedIn. I was happy with my job that I held with the same company since college graduation (10 years). However, I decided to give Google a shot. If anything it would probably teach me something about myself.

    The recruiter set up a phone interview for roughly 1 month later. I apparently did well as the recruiter contacted me about 2 hours after the interview to say I passed. I was forwarded off to a recruiter in Mountain View that set up an on-site interview for about 1.5 months later. I'm sure the time frames here could have been quicker, but for each step I wanted time to study.

    During the on-site interview, I met with 5 different engineers (4 where feedback was taken and 1 lunch interview). Each interview lasted between 45 minutes and 1 hour. I interviewed with members from 2 specific teams, the potential ones I would be joining if offered a position. Despite the fact the lunch interview was not supposed to count, I was told that the lunch interviewer was instrumental in getting me hired.

    It took quite a long time after the on-site interview until I received an offer. It took 2 weeks to collect interview feedback and 1 week to get the go-ahead to put me through the hiring committee. It took 2 weeks to go through the hiring committee and an additional week to go through the executive committee. At that point I had an offer, but it took another day or two to negotiate the details. I initially wanted to decline the offer since I was leery of moving my family, but the recruiter gave me the weekend to think about it.

    I verbally accepted after the weekend. It took another two days to choose a relocation package and 1 more day to receive a formal offer letter which I electronically signed.

    I hope I made the right choice! I am worried that I took a step or two down in responsibility, but the compensation was a little bit better than what I was making even cost-of-living adjusted. If anything I'll have an interesting experience to talk about and Google on my resume.

    Interview Questions
    • However, I received 2 different dynamic programming problems which I didn't expect and I found to be quite difficult. 3 of the interviewers had me do whiteboard work but only 1 of them actually had me do any coding, which was a basic singly linked list type problem.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    I negotiated an additional $8K in base salary and an additional $5K signing bonus. Google would not budge on the RSU, though.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    I interviewed through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Google in April 2014.

    Interview Details

    Each of the questions were designed such that you will never get the perfect answer, especially on the first try. The problems were specifically made to stump you, and so you can continuously improve your design and show that you're curious to learn and improve.

    Interview Questions
    • They asked about servers and how networks functioned and I have no background with that topic.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I interviewed through an employee referral. The process took 2 months - interviewed at Google in July 2014.

    Interview Details

    45 minute phone interview: program a computational geometry problem, the phone interviewer did not ask anything else at all.

    onsite:

    preparation:
    I prepared for two weeks. I had been asked to brush up on my algorithms. So I basically took, the online versions of Prof: Tim Roughgarden's Algorithms class @ Stanford and parts of Prof. Erik Demain's class on Advanced data structures. @ mit. Also geeksforgeeks.org also helped me. Even if you don't get into google, I would say that taking these classes are very good for your future technical skills.

    5 people interviewed me, 45 minutes each. None of the 5 interviewers asked me any algorithm heavy questions. There was no topcoder style questions either. Most of the questions were related to my domain area viz: computer vision and machine learning. Since I had just switched into these areas, I was not an expert and my answers were often patchy. One of the interviewers asked me a question on large scale system design.

    I am just waiting for the results.

    Interview Questions
    • An open ended question on large scale system design, for this you need to be an internet programmer, knowing about issues related to data replication, data availability, large scale scaling etc. I was very patchy on all of these areas.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee  in  Los Angeles, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Application Details

    I interviewed online. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Google in July 2014.

    Interview Details

    Applied online and received an email within a few days by a Google recruiter. A technical screening interview was organized for the following week. A Google engineer called me and started by introducing himself and Google, then went quickly into the programming question. I managed to solve the problem using recursion within about 40 minutes with only a few hints.
    After 1 week, I received an email for onsite interviews which was organized for the second week after.
    The first onsite interview went well. I actually recognized the interviewer from my previous university. The programming task involved class declarations and pointers. I believe I did ok with this question but ran out of time to really give a solid solution. In my second interview, the interviewer gave me a few hints since I was not making progress and I eventually solved it. Then it was lunch with another engineer. My third interview was the worst. He asked me the same question as the 1st interviewer, and I said I had already been asked that question. He then asked a different question that I did not fully understand which direction he wanted to go and in the end it was an SQL command question. I made a mistake in the third question he asked: I started coding before I had fully considered the entire question.
    The 4th interview was a presentation of my work. This went smoothly and the interview was very cordial. The 5th interview went well although I ran out of time. 2 seemingly simple coding questions. Even though it was past time, this interviewer kept talking about the groups within Google so I thought I did well with this guy.
    Overall I managed to solve all the questions but with hints. I believe I did well with 3 interviews, 1 ok, and 1 bad.

    Interview Questions
    • How would you design a system to do such and such? I thought the interviewer wanted me to talk about functions and data storage but in the end he seemed he wanted specific SQL statements which I was not too familiar with.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  6.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Interview Details

    Google is remarkably quick at getting back to applicants when applying through directly on Google's employment opportunities page. I received an email two days after submitting my resume and was asked to schedule two back to back 45 minute interviews the following week. Each interview was technical in nature and I was asked to solve two coding questions by typing code into a shared Google document with my interviewer. After asking questions and coding my solutions, the interviewer and I went over my solution and discussed aspects of it such as the running time, security and readability of the code. I did not get past the first round but was pleased by the swiftness of the process.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Average Interview
  7. 5 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    interviewed at Google in May 2014.

    Interview Details

    Recruiter contacted me via email or linkedin, can't remember exactly. Asking if I would be interested in Google. I have a long resume and somewhat specialized set of skills in embedded systems so I said ok I will give it a go, but that I am not quite sure how my skills would be useful at Google. They waived the phone screen and moved me directly to an onsite interview. They send you a list of things to go over to prepare for the interview that looks like something out of college computer science course. I was really busy at my current job so I had little time to go over it, but it was fun revisiting the basic algorithms and data structures.

    Onsite was 3x45 miutes 1on1 interviews, lunch and 2 more 45 mins sessions. All back to back, no breaks other than lunch.

    1st session: Interviewer introduced himself gave me time to introduce myself for the 1st 10 mins. Then asked 2 questions. 1st was arrays didnt require to writ code, 2nd was dynamic programming asked to wrote code. I did well on both so we had 10 more mins to spare where I asked him questions.

    2nd session: Introduction took a really long time, interviewer talked at great length about himself and his work. Asked me if I am interviewing for real or just there to get some interview experience, because apparently thats what he did initially himself. When we got to the question there was only about 15 mins left. Tree related question, that in my opinion wasn't really presented very well. Code was required. I started solving it but he was basically walking me through every step. Not sure if he just wanted to pass me or realized that he already spent too much time talking. Got the correct solution, but I felt like I was being lead to it.

    3rd session: Embedded systems engineer, asked me a lot about my actual resume. In the end asked me a pretty basic question embedded system specific, asked to write code. Was really easy for me, did really well. Probably the most enjoyable session.

    Lunch: The weirdest part of the day. Interviewer only got notified the night before, didnt look like wanted to be there. Didn't even know where the closest cafeteria was. Ended up walking for about 15 mins around the campus. Dropped the tray when getting food and spilled lunch over clothes, got really upset. Then suggested we sit outside because its quieter there. But the day was hot and it was really uncomfortable, I was glad to get back inside.

    4th session: Usual introductions. General distributed systems question. Went pretty well in my opinion, but then I am not a distributed systems specialist, so cant really judge.

    5th session: The worst one ofthe day. Usual introductions. 2 Questions. 1st question supposed to be a warmup, really simple bit manipulation, but for some reason my brain just went into a feeze, not sure if it was the stress or the sun from the lunch. Anyway I worked manually through some samples and did come up with an algorithm and a correct solution. In fact the interviewer corrected something in my solution, but when I started running it through a test case it turned out my initial code was in fact correct, so we reverted it. Because 1st question took so much time, we only had about 10 mins for the 2nd one which was supposed to be the main question. So we didn't really finish it.

    Recruiter called me a week later saying that they decided not to go forward with my candidacy at this time. I am not really too bothered since I am pretty happy at my current job and this was more of a learning experience, but I admit that if they did make me a good offer, I would've seriously considered it.

    While driving home I did come up with a really good solution to that unfinished question from the 5th session. And then also found every single question that I got asked in my interview on programming websites. So looks like if I wasn't so busy and just spent more time preparing, the interview would've gone much smoother. I thought just experience would be enough to pull me through.

    Other than the lunch person and the 2nd session interviewer, everybody else was very pleasant and enjoyable to talk to.

    Interview Questions
    • All were unexpected. I didnt prepare for any, but was able to work through most of them. None really difficult under normal circumstances.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  8.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I interviewed through a recruiter - interviewed at Google.

    Interview Details

    Received email for interview & scheduled a interview date. The employer was very precise & called the date of the interview at the scheduled time slot. However during the interview when a question was being asked the interviewer gave very little time to answer or even think about the question or answer. The interviewer basically rushed me through the 2 questions. The interviewer also, didn't give me any feedback as to how the interview went or what else I need to work and practice more concepts on.

    Interview Questions
    • Answering the questions correctly within a timely order.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I interviewed online - interviewed at Google in January 2014.

    Interview Details

    I was offered this job as an employee referral,. I had a great interview with the interviewer. I was asked about the school project and what I did on my previous experiences. I waited about 1 week to be notified.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  10.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I interviewed through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Google in November 2013.

    Interview Details

    Only have one phone screen technical interview and then onsite interview. I only have three interviews onsite. One wass in the morning, then two in the afternoon. They also would arrange two persons bring you to their food center. The food there is so nice. The process was easy and fast.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

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