Google Staff Software Engineer Interview Questions

4 Interview Reviews

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Staff Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Kirkland, WA
Accepted Offer
Positive Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied through other source – interviewed at Google (Kirkland, WA) in May 2014.

Interview

Sent my resume to a few Google employees. Heard back from the recruiter the next day. Phone screen was very straightforward (basics in computer security, some programming etc.) Had a day-long interview in Kirkland (five 1HR interviews). I cannot really go into the details of the questions due to non-disclosure agreement. However, focus on data structures and algorithms. Hash, heap, graphs, and depth-first-search seem to be the favorites.

Interview Questions

  • None of the questions were what I had seen before. But none of them were very difficult either.   1 Answer

Negotiation

Initially they offered me a Senior Software Engineer position. I declined the offer. The hiring manager called me, and I told him that the offered position and salary is below my expectations. They came back with Staff Software Engineer, and increased the comp by about 20%. I accepted it at that time.

Other Interview Reviews for Google

  1.  

    Staff Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter – interviewed at Google (Seattle, WA).

    Interview

    Initial contact with recruiter via email; I had been contacted in the past and finally replied to a follow-up. I was able to skip the phone screen due to experience level and internal Google references. I had five on-site hour long interviews and a lunch interview/chat. The recruiter was good at follow-up and keeping me up to date on the status of everything. I highly recommend their "practice" sessions that are offered periodically to those scheduled for on-site interviews.

    Interview Questions

    • Most difficult: a question involving deep knowledge of map-reduce infrastructure; my background clearly showed that I did not have experience in that area.   Answer Question
  2. Helpful (4)  

    Staff Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Declined Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in October 2012.

    Interview

    Got contacted thru LinkedIn by a Google recruiter for their Glasses Team in Google X. Signed a NDA. Had a short 30 minute phone scan with an engineer - pretty generic, few basic questions on RF but unfortunately he couldn't answer any questions I had since he was not part of that particular team. After a month, was called for an onsite interview. Went to the "secret" Google X building on their campus (though I think some of their teams are spread out in other buildings). Got interviewed by 5 folks. The level of questions was not that bad and I had the impression that none of them were really well-versed in analog mixed signal RF. Anyhow, they seemed pretty secretive about what they do which was a bit strange especially after the 10th "we can't talk about that" response. I am sure they are doing cool stuff but so is rest of the industry - Apple, Intel, Microsoft, Samsung. Somehow some of their attitudes struck me as being way too elitist and smug as if being in Google X made them magically smarters.

    Interview Questions

    • How will you design an oscilloscope? It wasn't difficult in absolute terms but compared to the rest of the questions it was.   Answer Question

    Reasons for Declining

    1) There seemed too many folks with 'vision' and not enough folks with hands-on expertise or skills to really take things to the next level (like a viable commercial product rather than an expensive limited release proto). 2) Also, the attitude of some of the interviewers turned me off - they came off as too elitist and smug without having any basis for it (as evidenced by the technical questions they asked). It was like "we don't care if you have X years of experience in your field, we simply know better than you becoz we are in Google X!". Sorry but Google is a large company now and such attitudes don't make them attractive vs other competitors. 3) The offer was fair (not mind-blowing) according to Silicon Valley standards for my experience but it was (1) and mostly (2) which made me decline.

  3.  

    Staff Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 daysinterviewed at Google (Los Angeles, CA) in January 2010.

    Interview

    A week after applying online I received a call from a recruiter to understand process, receive tips, and setup up a technical interview. Another day I talked with an engineer at Google. Questions were not too difficult but I did take a while to figure out how to optimize - I should have been quicker. I

    Interview Questions

    • Talk about how to implement a function that multiplies a pixel color by RGB percentages. How could this be optimized if the RGB percentages where const for an entire image.   Answer Question
    • If I had unlimited resources, what computer program would I make?   Answer Question
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