Netflix Senior Software Engineer Interview Questions

Updated Aug 22, 2015
50 Interview Reviews

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Senior Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Gatos, CA
No Offer
Negative Experience
Easy Interview

Application

I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Netflix (Los Gatos, CA).

Interview

For the first step, I got pinged by a recruiter. When I told them I wasn't quite sure about their culture, the engineering manager wanted to directly talk to me, so I figured they had some interest. I setup the phone screen, and passed. I went to the next onsite interview which had 3 technical rounds which seemed to go ok. (One made mistakes in his responses to my comments, but I didn't say anything.) Second onsite involved the HR, which was focused about how well I understood their culture deck, etc. Right after that, I met with the VP, who more or less took a complete 180 of their culture deck. He didn't believe in paying people what their worth (the whole baseball analogy that their culture deck pointed out). Mentioning that I was still interviewing elsewhere in case this didn't work out seemed to be a mistake, something HR and the VP brought up multiple times, although this contradicted their culture deck. He also mentioned tons of bureaucratic rules and regulations that were again, something the culture deck was trying to say made them different from companies like IBM, Apple, etc., but he more or less up front said they're the same. I figured since I love working on projects on the side that do not compete with the business, and constantly look for outside the box solutions that working on side projects bring, it would be a good fit culturally, but I guess I was wrong.

Interview Questions

  • What would one of your colleagues say is your biggest weakness?   Answer Question

Other Interview Reviews for Netflix

  1. Helpful (3)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Interview

    One of the worst interviews I have ever been too. Netflix managers seems like they are like low level thugs. I would never work for such managers who comes from 3rd tier bay area companies and act like thugs. I think there are better ways to do interview. I predict a pretty gloomy future for Netflix software engineering if all the managers are same I have experienced. Not worth interviewing and wasting your time period.

    Interview Questions

    • Nothing special. Just review easy to medium leet-code and review some basic design questions like load balancing etc.   1 Answer
  2.  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Netflix.

    Interview

    The manager sent email and then had quick chat. Then recruiter followed up requesting reading their 100+ page culture document. Then technical phone screen seems to be easy and feedback is good. I thought I will go onsite. The following day, recruiter sent email stating skill miss match. It is kind of wasting time to ask for phone screen if they knew the mismatch in the first place.

    Interview Questions

  3. Helpful (3)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took a week. I interviewed at Netflix in May 2015.

    Interview

    Got contacted by the recruiter. Setup a time to talk, went through the ~ 100 something slideshow. The recruiter said she was impressed with my skills, set up time to talk with the Hiring Manager. I spoke to the Hiring Manager who was nice to talk to, went over my background and skills in depth. He was particularly interested in knowing about my AWS experience and how I designed a scalable Metrics collection service . Overall was a positive conversation purely on background and experience. Next up, the Hiring Manager suggested a technical programming phone screen. And I setup some time for it. The phone-screen was awkward from the start. I google'd the interviewer's name before the interview and found out that he's the kind who runs blogs on interviewing questions and puzzles. While I particularly detest narrowing down Software Engineering to a bunch of puzzle type questions, I am well aware of what such kinds of interviewers are after. I prepped hard and going through Cracking the Coding Interview and other resources. When I saw the interview problem, I just had the gut feel that I could crack this, I went through the edge-cases and design ideas meticulously and wrote the code given below. 3 days later, I get an email from the recruiter saying that "my background and skills do not match". I tried to follow up but did not get concrete feedback. This was very weird and I felt frustrated, since I had already spoken to the Hiring Manager - and he'd okay-ed a phone screen - either the recruiter was lying or I was being used as interview target practice for someone on the team. For the record, I never head back from them on what skills they thought I was 'mismatched'. Overall I think it was a finicky process and a company.

    Interview Questions

    • Letter Combinations of a Phone Number   1 Answer
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  5. Helpful (24)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Gatos, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Netflix (Los Gatos, CA).

    Interview

    I think they are not serious about hiring and just browsing the job market to see how much other people are getting. Had the usual phone screen which was pretty easy , mostly questions related to HashMap and how its implemented in Java , why equals and hascode function are required etc. Then there was simple coding question. After that there were onsite interviews. First interviewer asked question about how to figure rectangles objects are equal and then HashMaps and how to implement hashcode function . He was pretty adamant about hearing catch phrase "strategy design pattern" even after providing the solution which was what strategy design pattern would have done. Second interview as 2 coding questions related to median of array and print level order , it was pretty easy. Third interview was a design interview. Forth was more behavioral with director. Fifth with HR, she tried to much to sell Netflix and asked questions about how much I am making, I told her I dont feel comfortable telling the exact figures but told her what my expectation is. She didnt let it go and said because they have to be on top of the market my exact figures are quite important, which i didnt get. Got rejection email after a day which was a surprise as my interviews went well. I asked for feed back but they never returned to me, I guess they got what the needed. Anyways wouldn,t have left my current job for Netflix because I kind of got the feeling about their culture which I am afraid close whats there on the Glassdoor.

    Interview Questions

    • Median of stream of integers, solved using two heaps min and max. Print tree level wise   1 Answer
    • There are 10000 servers and need to send a file of size 1 MB to each server, starting from laptop and there is only 1 MB bandwidth between each server. Shortest time in this is possible . Solved using tree and can be done in logarithmic time.   Answer Question
  6. Helpful (3)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took a week. I interviewed at Netflix.

    Interview

    I had applied on the job portal and was contacted by the recruiter who set me up for an interview with the Manager. It was pretty basic and I was asked for a coding interview. In the coding round I was asked to code one problem for which I provided two solutions (both working) one O(N) and another optimized O(1). I was pretty confident that I would go through to the next round but got an email telling me that my skill set wasn't an exact match for the position. Although the recruitment team is thoroughly professional I can't understand why the "perfect match" wasn't thought about after going through my resume itself. That could have saved a lot of time and energy that was wasted both mine and theirs.

    Interview Questions

  7. Helpful (15)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Gatos, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Netflix (Los Gatos, CA) in December 2014.

    Interview

    I was contacted by a Netflix recruiter on LinkedIn, and agreed to go ahead with an interview. First up, I talked to the recruiter, who told me about Netflix and the particular team, and asked me some basic non-tech questions about my past experience and salaries expectation. The usual recruiter staff. Then she schedule a 1.5 hrs phone call with the hiring manager for that team. I was told it was going to be a technical interview with coding exercise and all. First the hiring manager calls me before the call and tells me he was not going to make it on time and will call 30 mins later than actual time. Ok nice to get a courtesy call, appreciated. The actual interview was complete waste of time. He started by blabbing about his team and what they work on and which in reality was nothing exciting, a team of glorified Research Assistants. They own recommendation systems and basically needed a lot of working with machine learning guys and facilitating their A\B testing, and launching that one model that actually works. They he asked me to tell my own experience, so I described in detail different companies I've worked for and the projects I have worked. Mid-way he cuts me asks how was the transition from one role to another role, which I answered. Then he asked me what my team-mates would describe me. I answered someone with bias for action who get things done. Then he asked me if I had any question, and I asked a bunch of questions. He didn't asked me a single technical question. The closet thing to a technical question was "How would to rate your coding skills from 1-5", to which I said 4-4.5. Isn't that the whole point of this interview. Give me question to code and rate yourself. And then he goes on to give me the most stupid reason for not going ahead. "You don't have the number of experience". As a seasoned interviewer myself I couldn't believe he said that. I expect that from a small company run by a bunch of non-tech guys, but this was ridiculous beyond any reasoning. I understand if he didn't like something he saw, but seriously. I've worked for 3 years for one of the biggest tech company (13x Market cap compare to Netflix) and another year at a video gaming giant, and am currently working for the biggest online retailer. Hell, Netflix run on systems we develop. And he still somehow had the guts to tell me to keep in touch, and that I'm smart and definitely have the rights skills set, and should apply in a few a years. It was a complete waste of my time, and I don't know what he was trying to prove.

    Interview Questions

    • No technical questions asked. Tell me about your experience/ How from the transition from role A to role B? How would your team describe you? How would you rate your coding?   Answer Question
  8. Helpful (2)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through other source. The process took a week. I interviewed at Netflix in January 2015.

    Interview

    Brought in for a half day of interviews, mostly with other software engineers and technical managers. Based on my performance in the first half of the interview process, they decided to not continue with the 2nd half (which would have been with executives and representatives from HR).

    Interview Questions

    • Write a function that takes a string as an arg, and returns the same string with all duplicates removed.   Answer Question
  9. Helpful (1)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Gatos, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through other source. I interviewed at Netflix (Los Gatos, CA).

    Interview

    Phone interviews w/ hiring manager and an engineer on the team. They flew me in for a packed day of interviews. Went reasonably well, but one interviewer probed pretty deeply into operations issues / monitoring tools I didn't have direct experience with. Hiring manager said they were conflicted but my lack of ops experience was a deal breaker.

    Interview Questions

    • What, precisely, does the load average in `top` signify, and what does it look like if all threads in a pool are blocked?   3 Answers
  10. Helpful (21)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Los Gatos, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Netflix (Los Gatos, CA) in October 2014.

    Interview

    Recruiter contacted through Linkedin. They ask some basic engineering questions to weed out any mismatches. Then you have a technical phone screen with hiring manager. If that goes well, then there is an onsite where you meet the Hiring Manager, HR and other senior engineers on the team. If that goes well, you get called on for meeting at exec level to filter for a culture fit.

    Interview Questions

    • Very detail oriented. Be prepared to come up with design/product improvement based questions. Nothing difficult really, but the answer can get tricky as they deep dive further into the design/ architecture discussions.   Answer Question

    Negotiation

    They pay top of the Market. I did not feel the need to negotiate. Very happy with the offer. Also, they are very persuasive. They make you feel needed.

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