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Microsoft Interview Questions

Updated Jan 26, 2015
Updated Jan 26, 2015
3,874 Interview Reviews

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  1. 37 people found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

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

    I applied through college or university. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    I initially had a on campus interview at my university. It was short 30 minute interview where they went over my resume and had a quick technical question.
    I heard back around 3 weeks later, mainly b/c I had a offer that was on the verge of expiring. They flew me out to the Redmond campus that same week.
    The day of the interview, I arrived on site around 8am and had a quick chat with HR. They told me which team I was interviewing for and sent me to the building for the interviews. I had 5 interviews and 1 lunch interview. This lasted until around 3PM.
    I received a call the next day and was extended an offer.

    The technical questions asked:
    On-campus interview:
        remove duplicates from an unsorted array
    On-site interviews:
        implement strtok
        reverse string(ie. hello world => world hello)
        find lca for bst
        find first non repeating character in string
        given a list of characters and the function toLower, implement toUpper
        check for palindrome in string and singly linked list
        check if binary tree is bst

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    I did not negotiate, the compensation package was good enough
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  2. 4 people found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university – interviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    I went through the college recruiting process. Microsoft was among the companies that set up stations at our computer science major recruiting fair where I signed up. The first round was on campus: lasted about 40 minutes, and was easy for a computer science major. About a week later, a recruiter emailed me to tell me that I was being invited for on-site interviews in Redmond (Seattle), WA. The recruiters are extremely fast and helpful in communicating; interestingly, Microsoft's recruiting process outdoes other companies (Google, FB etc) completely in efficiency and generosity. You're flown out to Redmond and stay in a really comfy hotel with a generous spending budget.

    Now, it's good to know how on-site interviews work: you begin your day early by meeting with your recruiter, who you should befriend since they are "on your side", so to speak, and their input can matter in the decision process. Then, you have consecutive technical interviews lasting about an hour each. You don't have to do perfectly in all of them, but I had a very strong feeling that the first 2 are the most important. The first one is particularly important. If you are doing well, you will get a 4th and sometimes 5th technical interview. If you're lucky, you will afterwards get a final interview with a manager of sometimes, like in my case, a really impressive big boss type person. This big boss can basically hire you on the spot, and its pretty cool that you get to meet someone like this.

    Don't forget that for Microsoft, as well as other companies, several things matter for college recruiting; your interviews, first and foremost, but also your coursework, projects, grades, internship experiences, etc. Also, knowing more math than average CS majors helps.

    The next day I found out that I was getting an offer, and the next business day after that my recruiter called me with the details over the phone. Microsoft really, really wants smart new grads. The company and culture has REALLY been improving the past few years, and they want smart new grads to keep that up. Offers are actually more generous than at other competing companies.

    In my case, you might really like the people you meet or have a personal connection with the big boss type person at the end, in which case your offer could potentially be for the team you actually interviewed with. In this case, you have a choice whether you want to be with that team or go back in the general "hired" pool which is distributed into teams at some later point.

    Interview Questions
    • Thing of a simple O(n^3) algorithm for finding the longest palindrome in a string. Now a O(n^2) one. Now a O(n log n) one.   Answer Question
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    Referred by a friend. Then received an phone interview invitation from an engineer. The interview was fine. Coding problems like two-sum, possible paths from top-left corner to bottom-right corner, etc. Some basic machine learning questions.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    The process started at my university career fair where I gave out a resume. They gave me a t-shirt

    They got in touch a week later to schedule an on-campus interview at the university career services building. The interviewer asked one general thinking question (not coding) and one coding question. They also asked about my resume and research.

    Three or four weeks later I was contacted by an interview scheduler to setup an interview in Redmond. Due to the holiday season, I wasn't able to schedule the interview until a month later in January. The scheduler was not my recruiter and just was setting up the travel and timing. They flew me up and back and put me up in a hotel for 2 nights / 3 days.

    On their campus I first met with my recruiter in their recruiting building number 111. They informed me of which team I was interviewing with and stated that I should expect 4-5 hour long interviews (with one extended to 90 minutes to include lunch). In the recruiting building, while waiting to meet with a recruiter, you can play Xbox games, try out Windows Mobile products, and speak with a concierge who can help with sightseeing in Seattle or nightlight or transportation.

    The interviews were each with someone from a different sub-team inside the group I interviewed with. Each person had me do a coding question, and some also asked algorithmic or conceptual questions (which didn't require explicit coding). Everything was on the whiteboard. I had 5 total interviews, and had time in 4 of them to ask questions of the interviewer about their team.

    After the interviews I met with the recruiter again, and explained that I had immediate deadlines. They agreed to get in contact with the team and get back to me while I hung out in the lobby and relaxed. They came back and informed me that the team was very interested and would be making an offer.

    The offer arrived the next day, with fairly standard compensation and bonus/stock. I ended up declining the offer.

    Interview Questions
    • Describe how you would count the words in this newspaper [pointed to a physical newspaper]?   Answer Question
    • How would you search a database for a matching string ignoring certain punctuation/special characters? What pre-processing would you do?   Answer Question
    • Determine the best move for a player in a probabilistic game, with given probabilities for each outcome of each player's move.   Answer Question
    Reasons for Declining

    Compensation was fairly standard, lower than the Bay Area, but normal when factoring in cost-of-living differences. I decided to go with a different company/team.

    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  6.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    I gave my resume to recruiters at a career fair and received an email a couple weeks later for an in person interview. They asked me a couple questions based on my resume as well as a few design questions. I thought the interview went well. However, I did not advance in the interview process.

    Interview Questions
    • How would you design an alarm clock for a blind person?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  7.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Applied at my university career fair. Got an on campus interview call in a week. The interviewer asked 2 technical coding questions and was not concerned with the syntax of the code. Focus more on logic and efficiency.

    Interview Questions
    • Gave me a solution to a question and asked if its possible .
      Solution was is it possible to find if two strings anagrams by doing xor operation between them ?
       
      View Answer
    No Offer
    Average Interview
  8.  

    FInance Rotation Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    Applied online. The process took about 3 months. First phone interview screening was about 45 minutes. 90% behavioral questions a lot of them are redundant. Couple technical question like how do you calculate gross margin.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Average Interview
  9.  

    Strategy Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    Microsoft had been pursuing me for a few years and finally an opening was sent my way by the recruiter. I was asked to ignore the title and focus more on the role description. Interestingly enough, the role had four roles within one big umbrella.

    a. Practice Building
    b. Business Development
    c. Solutions Architecture
    d. Delivery Oversight

    Having been in past leadership positions, I was well aware to conduct my necessary due diligence. I was only interested in pre-sales and business development vs. post sales. The previous person had left the role as they were more of a solutions architecture focus vs. any of the other three areas.

    It was very evident that neither the recruiter nor the management had good comprehension of what it takes to make a combination like the above make successful.

    It turned out prior to my interview the management team had severe overhaul. A technical guy was asked to lead the team and during the interview process the sales manager was monitoring the technical guy on what to say and what not to say. It was more of a staged session.

    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Easy Interview
  10.  

    Explore Program Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview Details

    Very quick. I was flown out to Seattle. There I did three interviews, one technical and two problem solving interviews. I have to say they will make you feel like a rockstar for the days you will be interviewing with them which tells me they really have an interest in their interns, the obviously want to sign you instead of losing people to Google or Facebook. They responded three days after my last interview which was very fast. They told me all the details of the contract and gave me around two weeks to respond.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    I was contacted by a campus recruiter to do an on campus interview. The interview was very non-technical and afterwards I was invited to interview on-site for an SDET position. They flew me out and paid for food and housing, then I spent a day interviewing. The interviews themselves were fine, not terribly difficult, but I wasn't set out to be a SDET so I didn't prepare and showed that in the testing specific interviews.

    Interview Questions
    • Lots of "is this ready to ship to the world" questions, can't remember specifics.   Answer Question
    No Offer

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