Microsoft Software Engineer Interview Questions

Updated Jun 2, 2015
73 Interview Reviews

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Helpful (2)  

Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
No Offer
Positive Experience
Difficult Interview

Application

I applied through college or university. The process took 5 weeksinterviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in May 2013.

Interview

I first applied for the position while a recruiter was at my college for a job fair event. After that, I was contacted about a month or so later and scheduled a phone interview (or rather an online phone interview). The phone interview was all business, no personal questions. The interviewer asked me to start writing something that seemed somewhat simple, in whichever language I preferred. After a sufficient amount of time coding and asking questions (roughly 45 minutes) he had me stop and asked a couple of questions on my thought process in coding the answer. I was contacted a few days later and asked if I could fly out for an interview. I accepted and went to their headquarters in Washington.

The day starts relatively early, around 9:30AM and goes "until you're finished". The basic process is they hand you the location of your first interview, either walk you there or get you a ride there, and continue handing you off between Microsoft employees that you will potentially be working with. Usually each person asks you a couple of personal questions and at least one coding question. Some people may seem like they're ignoring you or acting strangely around you, but I believe that's all part of the interview process. Asking questions is a vital part of the process, as they want someone who is willing to understand something from top to bottom before they attempt to write code for it.

As some other reviews have said, towards the end of the day you may or may not meet with your fifth interviewer in the event that they may "be busy". Whether or not this is truly an indicator of your progress, I'm unsure. All I can say is I interviewed with four out of five people and did not receive the offer. Fortunately, I heard back the very next day, so there wasn't too much anticipation.

Interview Questions

  • Most of the questions were difficult. Expect a lot of questions that really challenge your grasp on more advanced CS fundamentals.   Answer Question

Other Interview Reviews for Microsoft

  1.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer

    Interview

    I submitted my resume at an university technical fair. I got an interview a couple weeks later. The interview was at the career center and it lasted about 45 mins to an hour. Interview was one-on-one. The interview, in general, was pretty relaxed and the interviewer was friendly. Interviewer initially went through my resume and asked specific questions based off it. Afterwards, interviewer asked the more technical questions and asked if I had any questions in general.

    Interview Questions

    • There weren't really any difficult questions. However, there were some on various algorithms that were tricky.   Answer Question
  2.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at Microsoft in February 2013.

    Interview

    One phone interview from recruiter, then onsite interview and there was four interviews onsite, most of the questions were programming related,one question on past projects. All interviewers were nice but after performing good, i felt i am getting the job, but at they said that they are sorry!

    Interview Questions

  3.  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in January 2013.

    Interview

    Initial communication occurs through email. All communication until the trip to Seattle occurs through email. My interview coordinator was very pleasant, helpful, and quick to respond back. Microsoft will take care of the entire process for you (and even get you a rental car if you choose). Once in Seattle, you'll have to visit a designated area (mine was Building 111) at a certain time (mine was 8:30AM). Microsoft will keep you in Seattle for up to 2 nights.

    Day of interview process is pretty well organized. You'll meet with an interview coordinator (different than the email interview coordinator) and he/she will explain the entire day to you and which team you are interviewing for. I found this person (I may have lucked out) to be very pleasant to work with. Afterwards, he/she will put you in a shuttle to go to your first interview. Microsoft told me I'd be interviewing from 8:30AM - 5:00PM, but I was instructed that I'd be done at 3:00PM. Microsoft will handle all travel to the different interview areas. This depends on your team. I was in one building the whole time.

    After each interview is completed, you'll be told who you'll interview with next, where, or sometimes they'll just go get him/her for you. I interviewed with 4 people that day on one team. Each interviewer generally started off talking about himself and then began with the questions (except the last one). My last interview was pretty awful. He showed up late, unprepared, hit me with random questions until he was prepared, and then threw a technical question at me. It flustered me a little.

    Interview Questions

    • None of the questions were difficult per se. There was 2 object oriented design questions, 2 array-related questions, and 1 binary tree question. I tripped up on the binary tree question (it was with the last interviewer that flustered me up). It's an easy solution. I got it down conceptually, I just had two more lines of code to put in there.

      The question was -- Find the common ancestor of two given nodes.
       
      1 Answer
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  5.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Bloomington, IN
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Microsoft (Bloomington, IN) in September 2012.

    Interview

    There was a career fair at my university ( Indiana University). I just dropped my resume and after a few weeks received an email saying that they would like to interview me.

    I was asked general questions in the interview like which Microsoft Technology would I like to work on and why ?

    It was a short 20 minute interview, covering mostly general question and 1 programming question

    Interview Questions

    • Write a program to implement the Integer.parseInt() function.   1 Answer
  6.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA) in February 2012.

    Interview

    I applied online and was contacted for a first round interview 3 months later when they visited my college. It lasted 30 minutes

    Interview Questions

    • If you're given a finite large amount of money, what will you do with it?   Answer Question
    • Tell me the project you did that you think was most interesting. Why is it interesting?   Answer Question
    • Give you a matrix filled with letters (a-z) and a list of words, give an algorithm to find each word in the matrix (or print out message if not found).   Answer Question
  7. Helpful (4)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter – interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in November 2011.

    Interview

    phone interview and onsite

    Interview Questions

  8.  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeksinterviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA) in November 2011.

    Interview

    There is phone interview first. It helps people in each side to know other better. Candidate also gets chance to ask about details about the work.

    Then there is onsite interview with 3-4 rounds. Candidates are asked about algorithm, coding, design questions. Algorithms are not so hard, but need some thinking to come out good solution. Candidates are asked about understanding about programming language and database.

    If everything goes good, candidates will see the hire manage at last. Then wait for 1 - 2 weeks for the offer.

    Interview Questions

  9.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Berkeley, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Microsoft (Berkeley, CA) in February 2011.

    Interview

    It took me just one on-campus interview. I contacted them through a career fair. It was one software engineer from a network engineering team interviewing me for about 45 minutes. The first 10 minutes, he spent asking me questions on my previous work experience and projects. Then the next 10 minutes, he asked me an open-ended question on how to design a coke vending machine. During the last 10 to 15 minutes, he asked me technical questions.

    Interview Questions

    • Write a C++ code to reverse the order of words in a string, without using any additional buffer.   1 Answer
  10.  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA) in January 2011.

    Interview

    4 programing skill test.

    Interview Questions

See What Microsoft Employees Are Saying

 Current Software Design Engineer in Redmond, WA

Pros: “- Competitive base pay - Good bonus and stock for higher levels (Senior band and above) - Excellent benefits - probably close to the best around - Product organizations are highly…” Full Review

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