Google Software Engineering Interview Questions

Updated Sep 14, 2014
Updated Sep 14, 2014
908 Interview Reviews

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Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
Anonymous Interview Candidate
Application Details

I applied through an employee referral - interviewed at Google.

Interview Details

The interview was an phone interview, mostly technical and lots about previous projects which i have done, and also work flow of projects, technical questions were also mostly.. Most of the questions are logical thinking and puzzles

No Offer
Neutral Experience
Average Interview

Other Interview Reviews for Google

  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1 week - interviewed at Google.

    Interview Details

    First step was to submit an application through Google's online system, which included a resume and (optional) cover letter. I was contacted by a recruiter within 3 days (including the weekend) and set up an interview for 2 weeks from that date. It was two back to back technical phone interviews. The interviewers let you choose what language you wish to demonstrate your knowledge in. I chose Java for both.

    My first interviewer was great. He introduced himself and throughout the interview, was very proactive on trying to guide me through a difficult part of the problem or hinted if he wanted more to the solution. I had to constantly verbalize my thought process, as it was a phone interview, so he mainly responded to that.

    My second interviewer was not so great. He was 10 minutes late and seemed like he didn't want to help at all. Even after his "explanation" of the problem, including a confusion-inducing analogy, I was still a bit uncertain about the problem, so I just went with what I thought was right. It ended up being mostly correct until he literally started to yell at me over the phone for the last line, which was parsing an object to an int, then back to an object when there was another method that did what I was trying to do already (which he didn't explain, so I didn't know what it was, go figure). He seemed to not be paying attention at all, as there were multiple times where I asked a question, only to be answered with silence.

    After that, I received a follow up email from the recruiter, stating I would know the results in a week or so. I ended up not getting the position (most likely due to that second interviewer), but am not deterred from applying again. I will admit my Java was definitely not up to par, considering that wasn't the dominant language I programmed in for the past half year and only really "studied" for two weeks before the interview.

    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university - interviewed at Google in August 2014.

    Interview Details

    Recruiter was very helpful, but the whole process can take a few weeks. Usually 4-5 technical interviews about algorithms and data structures. Each one gave a problem with a specific question but it develops several concepts. Be sure to think outloud and start from something simpler if you are stuck. Pretend the interviewer is your colleague. Spend some time beforehand practicing code on a site like hackerrank.com so that you are comfortable writing code on command.

    Interview Questions
    • One of the reviewers was a bit cocky. Stay calm in situations like that, ignore whatever is bothering you, and just address the question at hand.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3. 29 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    I applied 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
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  5.  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 6 weeks - interviewed at Google in April 2014.

    Interview Details

    I was contacted by a recruiter for Google in February 2014 for a new graduate software developer position. The interviews were outlined as follows (but were punctuated with many conversations with my recruiter):

    1) Phone interview with recruiter to assess goals and ideal company culture. I'm sure that other topics were discussed, but it felt more like I was being sold on the company than being interviewed.
    2) 1 hour technical phone interview using a Google Doc. I was given a small problem that required a lot of thought and had multiple solutions. The problem itself only required basic computer science knowledge, but was heavily dependent on your problem solving abilities.
    3) 4 on site interviews in one day. I can't discuss what transpired, but I can confidently say these were the toughest interview questions I've ever encountered. The day felt incredibly long, and by the time I got to my final interview I was already mentally exhausted.

    Now in August, I'm still waiting to hear back from my recruiter.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1 week - interviewed at Google in August 2014.

    Interview Details

    Applied online and received an e-mail for a phone interview. I received some links and documents on how to prepare for the interview which are already in other reviews on glassdoor. The interviewer asked a programming question (to write a code for a simple game) which required the appropriate use of classes. The phone interview lasted around 45 minutes.

    Interview Questions
    • Going through the thought process aloud was quite difficult.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Difficult Interview
  7.  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    I applied through an employee referral - interviewed at Google in July 2014.

    Interview Details

    Google's actively seeking software engineers so it's not difficult to get an interview, but don't let that trick you into believing the interviewing process is easy. They're looking for engineers that have both good analytical and design skills.

    Once you're set up with a recruiter, he'll be your point of contact in terms of scheduling interviews. You'll first be given a phone interview and if you pass that, they'll bring you on-site for several 1:1 interviews.

    Interview Questions
    • Given a sorted matrix where the number below and right of you will always be bigger, write an algorithm to find if a particular number exist in the matrix. What is the running time of your algorithm.   View Answers (3)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  8. 12 people found this helpful  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 6+ weeks - interviewed at Google in May 2014.

    Interview Details

    Timeline:
    * Reached out to recruiter: day 0
    * Call with recruiter: day 2
    * In-person interview: day 15
    * Calls with managers: days 28 - 32
    * Three offer revisions: days 33 - 43

    In-Person Interview:
    A pretty standard affair with 5 45-minute inreviews and a lunch after the first 2. Most of the people seemed genuinly interested in the interview (save 1 person who seemed annoyed at having to do such a menial task) and were a lot of fun to talk to. I can't go into too much detail on the questions themselves (covered by NDA), but it's standard fare and if you know your stuff, you won't have any trouble.

    How to Prepare:
    Just brush up on your algorithm design (iterative/recursive algs, big-o, etc). It might be helpful to just read up on some really clever algorithms from your academic days since the thought processes for those can have a lot in common with algorithms you might be asked to design.

    Culture:
    The people who interviewed me seemed intelligent and very happy to be working at Google. One surprising factor for me was that every single person answered "what's you favorite part of working at Google?" the same way: "the people".

    Reasons for Declining

    I had a better offer from a competing company that was also a better culture fit for me. I took it.

    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  9.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 months - interviewed at Google in June 2014.

    Interview Details

    Was approached by a recruiter, we had an initial phone screen. From there, I had a technical phone interview with a SWE. The questions were pretty straight forward, nothing too difficult. After that, I had four on-site interviews. Two of them went very well, one went pretty well, and I did pretty poorly in the other. I signed an NDA, so I can't go into details, but my suggestion to anyone would be to prepare as much as you can.

    Interview Questions
    • Low level question, which I wasn't expecting (far from my area of expertise).   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online - interviewed at Google in November 2013.

    Interview Details

    They came to my school (UCI) and interviewed a good amount of people. Each candidate was given two 45 minute interviews. They ask difficult questions but not as difficult as a full time position. Then if you do well in that you go into host matching where they try to find an internship suitable for you after you give them your preferences. They described an internship and it sounded fun, but I later found out it was a very annoying project and was not satisfied with the initial description.

    Interview Questions
    • The conversion interview was at least twice as hard as the internship interviews.   View Answer
    Negotiation Details
    I was too excited to get the offer. I didn't desire to negotiate.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

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