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Google Technical Program Manager Interview Questions

Updated Jan 17, 2015
Updated Jan 17, 2015
22 Interview Reviews

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Technical Program Manager Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
Anonymous Interview Candidate
Application Details

I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Google.

Interview Details

My first phone interview needed to be rescheduled because the interviewer had to leave for an emergency. It would have been nice that I was informed about this, so I would not wait for hours to receive the phone call. The second interviewer called on time. The recruiter was helpful through the process.

Interview Questions
  • If you can ascend a staircase two different way, i.e. one step at a time or skipping one step, how many possible ways to climb this staircase?   Answer Question
  • If you find a very critical bug in software on the day before its scheduled release date, how would you handle this situation?   Answer Question
No Offer
Average Interview

Other Interview Reviews for Google

  1.  

    Technical Program Manager 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.

    Interview Details

    Initially contacted via HR phone call. Set up 2 rounds of phone interviews and an onsite interview. HR person responded within a week to each interview. Overall good experience and will likely reapply when I am better suited for future roles.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  2.  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at Google in December 2014.

    Interview Details

    Four entire process included an initial phone interview with the boss that lasted probably 45 minutes. The actual forma interview consisted of four 45-minute interviews with lunch with the boss in the middle. Each interviewer was supposed to focus on a different area but I noticed that many of the questions were the same.

    Interview Questions
    • What are the top five things that go wrong during a project?   View Answer
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 8 weeksinterviewed at Google in November 2014.

    Interview Details

    I was initially contacted by a recruiter when our company was being considered for a merger/ acquisition. Coordinating an interview took nearly 6 weeks, as the recruiter informed me they were having trouble finding the appropriate interviewers. When I finally had my phone screen the interviewer wasn't even aware of the role I was applying for. The M&A process fell through and I never heard back from the recruiter. Overall the experience and felt disorganized.

    Interview Questions
    • The questions for the TPM roll or not that difficult for me as I have an engineering background. Most questions were about thinking programmatically and algorithmically. None of the questions were real world examples they were all hypotheticals.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
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  5. 19 people found this helpful  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Kirkland, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Kirkland, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 6 weeksinterviewed at Google in August 2014.

    Interview Details

    I was contacted via email from an in-house Google recruiter working out of Mountain View. He was very interested in my breadth of experience and felt I'd be a strong fit for a technical program manager role in their Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) group.

    This process took a LONG time. To save space I'll just outline the timeline:

    Day 0 - recruiter email, I reply same day giving my availability to talk

    Day 1 - I have a 20 minute chat and recruiter asks me some classic computer science trivia.

    Day 2 - I have another 20 minute call with a different recruiter who specializes in the program management space. This again was a solid conversation. He seemed really pleased that I could gives the pros/cons of agile, and could cite numerous real world examples for successful and failed projects (15 years of experience will see all kinds of projects). So this ended well and the next step was a series of "real" phone screens.

    Day 16 - I had 2 separate 45 minute calls scheduled with a 15 minute break between. The initial recruiter had sent me some study suggestions in advance, which was really nice of him. So for the 2 weeks leading up I practiced various academic programming exercises. Stuff like implementing Hashmaps from scratch in java, various sorting algorithms, traversing trees and other tedious stuff I hadn't done since college.

    Tech interview: linux system internals. The questions started with easy stuff like run levels, permissions and some file system stuff that was a bit harder. Then we got into low level CPU/arch stuff involving context switching etc. We concluded with a java coding exercise, that I didn't ace, but I did get working before the time was up. Overall I'd say I scored a 75% or so. Not awesome, but for a TPM role I thought this proved I had a clue and could interact with engineers well.

    TPM interview: I can't even remember all the questions, but I was able to address each question with a real world example. The guy absolutely loved my anecdotes. He was very quiet and spent a lot of time typing, so I wasn't sure how we was receiving me until the end.

    Day 20 - Orig. recruiter contacts me and says TPM interview was "the best they had ever seen". Bad news was I didn't cut the mustard with the technical. However he said it wasn't fair to have asked me all those linux internal questions, and they would like to re-do the technical interview AGAIN with more of a traditional CS/programming focus. Well, I agreed because that was better than getting rejected outright.

    Day 34 - Technical phone interview part II. Audio quality was rough at first. Speaker phone in apparently an open environment, as I could overhear folks walking and talking. Interviewer had a strong eastern European accent, which I'm used to now, but it didn't help with the background noise, echos and other interference. I will say this interviewer was very encouraging and friendly. He never called me out for being a goof, he would say instead "is there a better way?".

    In hindsight my implementation was a little bit sloppy, but it functionally got the job done before the time was up. I felt I did better than the first time, so was content.

    Day 35 - Recruiter says he has sent all feedback to hiring manager(s) and will have feedback early next week.

    Day 38 - Recruiter calls me.

    I'm still the best technical program manager google has ever seen (tell that to by current boss), but even though I clearly know how to code and work through technical problems my coding is not of the rock star level they require. This is a little discouraging, as I'm interviewing for a role where I'm not programmer on a regular basis, though I would do design, architecture and code reviews.

    Then he dropped a weird suggestion - while I wasn't smart (my word), enough to work on the SRE team in Seattle, he suggested that there may be many other roles at the Mountain View, CA headquarters. Perhaps one of the various teams back at HQ had lower standards where I guy like me who didn't actually major in Computer Science would be accepted. I politely declined that, but asked to be contacted for future local positions.

    I realize this may sound like sour grapes (it could be a little), but I spent nearly 6 weeks JUST to get through the phone interview process. I also dislike the mixed messages along the way. I'm awesome, but there's a technical requirement that I absolutely must meet and that's there policy.

    Now I can empathize with excellent waitresses that don't get hired because they are attractive enough.

    Interview Questions
    • I had no brain teasers. No fluff like estimating the number of gas stations, round manhole covers, or grains of rice in China. They expect excellent CS fundamentals: algorithms, data structures and solid coding ability.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Technical Program Manager 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 3+ monthsinterviewed at Google in July 2014.

    Interview Details

    Started with a phone screen from a sourcer, then did two phone interviews with Google employees. This was followed by a trip to mountain view for 5 face to face interviews. Google Treats its interviewers with as much respect as they treat their employees. It was overall a very positive experience. Thanks Google for showing me your company. Was very impressed with the site and all the people I met. The interview was a fair evaluation

    Interview Questions
    • Don't believe in giving out others questions. With Google, you either know the subject matter or don't. Especially for this position. If you want to prep, study Map Reduce and related problems.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  7. 7 people found this helpful  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Typical interview process. Started with a recruiter and then had a phone screen with someone in a product team. That was followed a couple of weeks later with an on-site interview. The interview process was long and tiring. It is a full day of meetings where they want to know two things. 1) do you know your stuff technically. 2) do you think and communicate logically.

    Interview Questions
    • Design a the server infrastructure for gmail.   View Answer
    Negotiation Details
    I negotiated for signing bonus.
    Accepted Offer
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

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

    I applied online. The process took 8+ monthsinterviewed at Google.

    Interview Details

    The interviewing process is disorganized and painfully slow. I was contacted by a recruiter about 6 months after I submitted my resume. Then I was scheduled to do a phone screen with a peer who was also a technical program manager. It took one month to schedule that phone interview because the interviewer called in sick or took the day off, after it was scheduled two weeks in advance. Then it took about another two weeks to reschedule to speak with him.

    The interview lasted 45 minutes and we talked a lot of general responsibilities and scenario based questions. Then it took about 5 to 6 weeks to hear back from the recruiter to see if another interview would be scheduled if there was an interest. During that time I followed up about every two weeks until finally they sent me an email to let me know they were pursuing other candidates

    The craziness was in scheduling the interviews with people who did not have it as their priority and took their own sweet time. Imagine if it took me so long, i.e., one month to have a phone interview that they were taking forever to schedule other phone interviews with other candidates and dragging the process out.

    Interview Questions
    • I was asked if Google bought another company and those employees didn't want to move to the Mountain View campus how would I merge these two locations together via networks and systems. Also, questions about programming vulnerabilities such as cross site scripting and information security risk management.

      Did I think I knew everything? No. Did the interviewer know everything? No. This goes to show you that interviewers are biased and think in their own little world, they ask a broad range of questions that they've already researched in advance and knew the answers to, but if I asked the interviewer my own set of questions he wouldn't be able to answer all of them either. We're even.
       
      Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  9. 8 people found this helpful  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeksinterviewed at Google.

    Interview Details

    Applied online and within a week I received an email from the recruiter. The recruiter asked for a couple of date/times for a phone interview with a team member from Google. Had the phone interview, but it was very hard to hear the person as they were on speaker phone. This really created a bad reverberation effect on the call. The person said they really enjoyed the call and said I should move onto the next step in the process. After waiting a couple of days, I reached out to the recruiter and they said they should know something in a few more days. After 10 days went by the recruiter sent email saying they decided to go with other applicants.

    Interview Questions
    • Nothing really difficult, just situational types of questions. What did you do on x project, etc. No brain teasers.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Technical Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 6+ weeksinterviewed at Google in January 2014.

    Interview Details

    Communication and followup were really poor.
    Interviewing was quite broad based technical but not commensurate with day-to-day function

    Interview Questions
    • How would you figure out how many gas stations there are in the US   View Answer
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

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