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Microsoft Software Development Engineer Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Aug 17, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

67%
13%
7%

Interview Experience  

55%
31%
12%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
508 candidate interviews Back to all interview questions
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No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Microsoft in August 2014.

Interview Details – The recruiter had a quick chat with me before arranging for a technical interview for evaluating my problem solving/algorithms/programming skills. The technical interview was conducted over phone and collabedit. I was given a programming problem (to be solved in the language of my choice). I used JavaScript to write the solution. The interviewer pointed out the need for optimization and gave some hints. I quickly figured out a fairly optimized code.

The interviewer didn't sound too impressed with my performance. As the problem was fairly simple, he probably expected me to write a perfectly optimized code on the first shot. In my opinion, I exhibited the ability to discuss and think through solutions, rather than being well-versed in solving a certain class of problems.

There is no telling what works.

Interview Question – Nothing unexpected or particularly difficult. What is really hard is that the transparency is one way. You give your answers and you will never get to know what the interviewer was expecting to hear.   Answer Question


Declined Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 6+ weeks - interviewed at Microsoft in July 2014.

Interview Details – Contacted by recruiter, whole process took about 1.5 month. After phone interview, recruiter told me I 'll have 3 rounds for onsite, but I actually got five rounds, each one for 1h... All interviewers are really nice people.

Interview Question – Normal interview questions, not hard. 1. Search element in rotated sorted array. 2 Find top two biggest elements in array. 3. Inorder tree traversal (implement iterator). 4. LinkedList operation...Forget other questions, but they are all pretty easy.   Answer Question


2 people found this helpful

Declined Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied through college or university and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Microsoft in March 2014.

Interview Details – At the University job fair, I talked to a recruiter, who was impressed by my resume. He assured me he would recommend me for the position. A few days later, I got an email from the campus recruiter that I had been selected for the first round of interviews. The next step after my successful first round was to be interviewed on campus, but that was delayed (see later).

Interview Question – Given an array of integers, define an algorithm that deduces whether a given sum can be attained by adding two numbers in the array without using data structures.   View Answer

Reason for Declining – I didn't quite decline. I was interviewed in Spring of 2014, and they liked my interview. Unfortunately, they ran out of space for the Summer of 2014, so instead they promised to interview me in September of 2014 for the following summer (2015). It just so happens that I'm not looking for a software development job next summer anymore, and so I probably won't go for the second round of interviews.


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No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer
Bellevue, WA

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 7 weeks - interviewed at Microsoft in June 2014.

Interview Details – I wen through the full interview process, from recruiter screen up to the full day in person interviews in Bellevue (the position was for the Dynamics AX platform).

My initial technical screen was pretty standard, the question was determining if two strings were anagrams of each other. Aside from this I was able to speak with the senior engineer who was interviewing my about the position and some pro's and con's which was really great. He provided some good insight for me.

After the technical screen I was invited in for full day of interviews in Bellevue. I flew out to Seattle and stayed for 2 nights. The entire travel process was great, they covered everything and put me up
in a nice hotel. The interview day was long, I had a series of interviews each testing different areas.
All of the interviews were with senior engineers with 5 - 20 years experience.
The first interview covered SQL, I was given a schema and asked to point out any issues/improvements and then write some queries.
The next 2 covered CS based questions like algorithms, runtime analysis .. etc.
Next I had a lunch interview where I was able to talk with another engineer about his role and get a little more of a sense of the day to day life.
Finally I had one more algorithms based interview and that was the end.

Overall I found that the interview process was very well done and the hr staff at Microsoft were really easy to deal with. When it comes to the atmosphere at Microsoft it has a really corporate feel to it and truthfully it was not my top choice having been there but that's more of a personal preference.

Interview Question – Given a number write a function to convert that number to a string that would be seen on a cheque.
Example:
2376 becomes two thousand three hundred and seventy six.
  Answer Question


No Offer

Positive Experience

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied through an employee referral and interviewed at Microsoft.

Interview Details – This was a technical interview that I met with the person in his office.
He was nice, greeted me and asked a few questions about what I did in my previous jobs. While solving the problem, he helped me with some small hints or questions. I felt more like brainstorming with a work friend rather than being interviewed, which was nice. In the end he thanked and told he is going to let the lead know and they are going to follow up with me with details.

Interview Question – Given a database, where we know some portion of data (e.g. say 20%) is accessed more than the other portion of the database by the client. We have a frontend that client requests data from. Design a data structure that will increase the efficiency of access of objects. And we know that we can only hold on to n elements in memory.   View Answer


Declined Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied online - interviewed at Microsoft in February 2010.

Interview Details – standard questions about 5 hours. The interview process is not painful and some whiteboard coding and algorithm discussions. The hiring manager is very nice and discussed a lot about the team.

Interview Question – something about image processing which i have no experience   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

Interviewed at Microsoft

Interview Details – This is a phone interview, and It is about 30 minutes long.
There are some technical questions and basic data structure questions.Then there is a question about the course project I have done and some extended topics.

Interview Question – I applied online and set me a 30 min on phone interview. There are two data structure questions and some other questions about course projects I have done.   View Answer


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer

I applied through college or university and interviewed at Microsoft.

Interview Details – I applied from college and set me a 30 min on campus interview. It is a one to one person interview. Asked me to talk a database project. He gave me a pen and some scratch papers to tell the detail and asked me some basic SQL questions.

Interview Question – Just some basic questions nothing expected   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer
Madison, WI

I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Microsoft in May 2014.

Interview Details – 1. Given two tree. To judge one tree is another tree's subtree.
2. Given a maze (2D matrix have some block at some position), start position and end position. To find a path.
3. Given a binary tree. Find the length of the path with maximum path sum, the path may start and end at any node.

Interview Question – Too nervous to get a solution quickly and bug free.   View Answer


No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Software Development Engineer Interview

Software Development Engineer
Arlington, TX

I applied through college or university and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Microsoft in October 2013.

Interview Details – I was initially screened at my college career fair. My work in Computer Vision piqued the interest of an employee at the MS booth (they were all former students from my Uni). I was then set up for an on-campus screen.

On-campus screen: The interviewer introduced himself and eventually jumped into a coding question. I did badly and I was rejected as I very well expected

Interview Question – Make an exact copy of a linked list which has an additional 'random' node apart from usual the next node.   Answer Question

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