Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
Interviews for Top Jobs at Opower
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- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a staffing agency. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Opower (San Francisco, CA) in September 2015.
Very enjoyable, straight-forward. About 3 rounds total including the on-site. The recruiters were very nice throughout the entire process. Every single engineer I met with during the interview process was very pleasant to speak with and the company itself has a great vibe and environment amongst the team members.
- Q: Test procedures regarding Databases Q: Questions regarding Set data structure Q: Question regarding standard arrays Answer Question
Helpful (5)No OfferNegative ExperienceDifficult Interview
As others have said, the process involves at least (1) a phone screening in which you are asked to complete a coding exercise and to discuss your interests in and experience with software development generally and (2) a day-long on-site interview spree with various team members. The phone screening part of the process was great; the discussion with the interviewer was pleasant, and the coding exercise was at just the right level of difficulty for the position (there was, fortunately, no "FizzBuzz" here). The on-site portion of the process was less great, mostly due to details involving the particular position for which I (thought I) was applying and the way in which the on-site, two-hour-long coding session played out (so, my experience may not generalize, although some of the other responses here seem to suggest that it does). Without getting into too many details, I can say this: for the on-site coding session, I was seemingly expected (unexpectedly!) to be proficient with certain niche tools and languages -- well, they were niche at the time -- that were neither mentioned on the job advertisement for the position nor mentioned at any other point during the interview process. Since I was *not* proficient with these things (and never made any pretense otherwise), the result was a very awkward coding session that was probably, for the most part, a waste of everyone's time. Since Opower expects so much of one's time during the interview process (and asks a decent amount of their own employees in this regard, as well), I would have liked for them to have been much more up-front about this. Because they were not, I was left with an overall negative impression of their interview process. (I should say that it's *possible* that part of this process was intended to test how well I was able to "roll" with unexpected challenges and to learn on the job. However, no real indication was given that this was the case, and, given that I was able to learn the aforementioned tools to some degree on-the-spot and complete some of the coding challenges, but still received no offer -- every other aspect of the interview process had gone very, very well -- I have some doubts that this is so. What's more, I know that the tools that they tested me on are tools that the company uses in production, so it still seems that it would have been sensible to mention them on the job advertisement, in any case.)
- No OfferNegative ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Opower in August 2015.
Recruiter reached out through LinkedIn. Did initial phone screening with HR and then a 45 minute interview with the hiring manager. During both calls, I felt like the interviewers were not paying attention. The hiring manager would pause for a while after i responded to a question like he was reading emails, and then just ask the next question on his list. There were no follow up questions from the initial question. Communication with HR was adequate, they would usually respond with 4-5 days after an interview.
- Basic resume and background experience questions Answer Question
- No OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Opower in August 2015.
The interview process took about 2 months. I didn't mind the standard Opower interview structure: HR screen call, hiring manager call, homework assignment, in-office interview. The phone calls weren't hard. The take home writing assignment was pretty intense and ended up taking me 8+ hours, even though they recommend 4-6. The in-office interview was about 6 hours long and consisted of 5 different interviews, one of which was a topgrading interview. The company culture seems pretty relaxed. Free lunches on Fridays, mandatory Silicon Valley ping pong table, people riding around the office on scooters. The most positive part about the process was the recruiters. It was about three weeks until I heard a final decision (from my in-office interview) and my recruiter kept me updated on the process and encouraged me to ask questions and reach out. In the end, although they thought I was a good fit, the position got absorbed into another function at the company. My recruiter encouraged me to reach out if I saw any other positions I was interested in and offered to refer me.
- What would you do if you had two assignments of equal importance due on the same day and you didn't have enough time to finish them both? Answer Question
Helpful (3)Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Opower (Arlington, VA).
Opower has a rigorous, but predictable interview process that involved a screen, phone interview with hiring manager, homework assignment, day of on-site interviews, and the negotiation phase. The process took about 3 weeks, and throughout that time an HR recruiter kept in close contact with me to provide updates and answer questions. Overall, if I have to point out any one thing that stands out, it's how helpful the recruiters are. A good anecdote: on the day before my lineup of on-site interviews, the recruiter gave me a call after hours to talk me through what to expect and answer my questions. It was a nice touch. In general, I got the sense that the interview process was more about cultural fit than assessing technical expertise, but that is almost certainly because I work in comms (as opposed to product engineers, whose interviews get very technical from what I hear). All that said, it's worth noting that Opower is pretty intense during the negotiation phase, and definitely doesn't expect to have to leverage compensation to win candidates. They make it very clear that they *know* Opower is a special company that attracts top talent. All said and done, though, the total comp including equity is slightly above market and the lively office environment provides a foil to a lot of the higher comped DC consulting shops.
- What are your thoughts on Opower's content marketing - is there anything you would improve? Answer Question
- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Opower (San Francisco, CA) in July 2015.
I applied online and received an email to set up a phone screen. After this there was an evaluation exercise to be completed at home. Then a 30-minute phone interview with the recruiting manager, followed by 2-3 hours of on-site interviews with various members of the team. There was one final phone interview with a senior staff in Arlington before the offer was made.
- Tell me about a time you took initiative to do something that wasn't asked of you. Tell me about relevant past experience and specific projects. Answer Question
Helpful (4)No OfferNegative ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Opower (Arlington, VA).
Incredibly drawn out, unpleasant, almost combative process. Left a very bad taste in my mouth. I would not recommend this company to friends or colleagues (including at utility co's...). They put me through at least 6 rounds of interviews, including an all-day round of interviews at their headquarters. To their credit, they paid for my travel and hotel. To their discredit, they asked very strange questions that were not germane to the job (i.e. about my childhood). They came across as disinterested and rude. They claim to be very interested in culture fit but then discredit any job applicants who come from an environmental/energy efficiency background in favor of pretty much anyone else (especially management consulting).
- They asked me what kind of kid I was like in high school... 1 Answer
- Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied online. The process took 6+ weeks. I interviewed at Opower (Arlington, VA).
The selection process consisted of 4 steps: 1. Screening interview with HR. General behavioral and company related questions. They also provide additional information regarding the position and requirements at this stage. 2. Excel assignment. After completing step 1, you'll receive an email with assignment which you should complete in 24 hours. Assignment is relevant to the job description and overall gives you an overview of what kind of work the department is doing. It's not too hard if you are good with Excel. Took about 6 hours to complete. 3. Phone interview with the manager. Combination of the behavioral and job related questions. All questions are related to job description. Again all questions are relevant and test both company and skills set fit. 4. Face-to-face interview with the team members. If you pass to the last stage all of the team members will ask you both behavioral and job related questions. All of the questions were very professional. The interviewee also gets a chance to understand the dynamics of the team, try out your personal fit to the company environment. Be ready to comment on every single bullet point of your resume. Overall all the interviews were conducted very professionally. I think i is great idea that not only the hiring manager but all the members of the team get to decide whether the interviewee will be a good fit for the team.
- Why do you want to intern for Opower? What are you proud of? Give an example when you have non-cooperative team member and how you dealt with it? Examples of forecasting, planning. Answer Question
- No OfferNegative ExperienceDifficult Interview
I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at Opower (Arlington, VA) in June 2015.
All accept 1 of the 5 interviews were all highly technical. The series of interviews were at their offices from 11AM to 5PM. I was asked to write code on their loaner laptop for random, subjective scenarios with unclear instructions that made quickly answering the question rather difficult at time. A team member told me, during lunch, that the interview exercises were something new they were working on and I was their “guinea pig”.
- Write a function that accepts a single argument that returns a flattened array regardless of what argument type was passed in. 1 Answer
- Write code that allows a user to go to a specific url and returns a JSON object containing the name and version of the current package (this was inside of their app that is in/near production and using the KOA framework---not Express) 1 Answer
- Write pseudo code for a function that accepts a Board class that contains three public methods and will return whether the Board passed in is “solvable”. The three Board methods include “canMove” that accepts a direction parameter, move() that accepts a direction parameter, and “isSolvable” that returns a boolean of whether or not the board passed in is “solvable”. 1 Answer
- Verbally explain how you would write unit tests for the function I wrote in question 3. 1 Answer
- No OfferNeutral ExperienceAverage Interview
I applied online. I interviewed at Opower in June 2015.
Recruiter contacted me through LinkedIn or Indeed.com. Had a talk with recruiter, followed by phone technical interview with engineer. The phone interview involved coding tasks using collabedit. Still waiting for Onsite interview call.
- Phone technical round was done using collabedit to do some programming questions. 1. FizzBuzz program 2. For an array of numbers, count how many times a number appears in an array . print as -><number> : <count> (answer: Solve using hashmap, more efficient) What is the bigO for this? (answer: 1) 3. How would you process a huge amount of data in parallel? (answer: MapReduce) 4. Print all primes from 2 to 1000 Answer Question
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