Palantir Technologies Interview Questions & Reviews
Getting an Interview
- Popular Job Titles:
- Software Engineer (63)
- Forward Deployed Engineer (53)
- Embedded Analyst (21)
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- QA Engineer Intern (2)
- Business Development Operations Analyst (2)
Software Engineer Interview (Positive Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Palantir Technologies in June 2014.
Interview Details – Very good experience overall.
Applied through the website, there was a coding exercise to complete within 2h.
Not too difficult if you are trained to interview and you know your algorithms well.
After a couple days, first contact with HR, a phone screen with some coding/algorithm.
Onsite a week after with interviews all day. If you are doing well, you will know along the way, engineers/hr seem to communicate between them.
At the end of the day I met with a funder and I had an offer the next day.
Interview Question – Nothing difficult, everything standard and straightforward if you know basic algorithms + data structure. Answer Question
Product Quality Engineer Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Palantir Technologies in June 2014.
Interview Details – I shot my resume into Palantir's job portal on a Thursday night and heard back from a recruiter <24 hours later. I was quite impressed by how it's not a black hole.
Schedule was as follows; I always heard back for the next steps within one week.
Recruiter phone screen: Wednesday
1st phone interview request: Thursday
Phone interview with PQE: Wednesday
2nd phone interview request: Tuesday
Phone interview with PQE: Friday
Invitation for on-site interview: Monday
On-site interview: Friday
Phone call from recruiter with no offer: Wednesday
The on-site interview consisted of a brief check-in with the recruiter, three 1:1 45-minute interviews with PQEs in the morning, lunch and office tour with two PQEs, then a product demo (which started late that day due to technical difficulties, so the other candidates and I were left waiting in the lobby for maybe 20 minutes). I was pulled out of the demo early to interview with a fourth PQE. After this, the recruiter came, gave me a T-shirt, and told me she would call me next week with an update. In total, I was on-site from 10am - 4pm.
No luck this time in getting a job offer. I still had a positive experience interviewing, though. The recruiter was timely in her responses, the employees I met seemed happy with their work, everyone who interviewed me gave me their undivided attention. I enjoyed the office tour -- I requested to see all the dogs, and my tour guide happily obliged. :)
Interview Question – All interviews began with behavioral/fit questions, led into a technical question (test some physical object or program, write a function), and ended with "Do you have any questions for me?" To be honest, I thought the questions were fair and not too difficult. I suppose my answers didn't stand out enough compared to other interviewers, though. View Answer
Site Reliability Systems Analyst Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Palantir Technologies.
Interview Details – Lengthy! 14 total interviews with no job offer. I was informed on Thursday that I was moving to a final interview with one of the company founders. The following Monday they changed their mind. No reason or feedback was given concerning that change.
Interview Question – No curve balls. Answer Question
Forward Deployed Software Engineer Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Palantir Technologies.
Interview Details – I was given a take home programming assignment, which I had to take within 5 days. Once I started the assignment, I had two hours to complete it. The assignment consisted of two coding problems that I was allowed to solve in any language. The first problem was a twist on a sorting problem, the second involved writing an efficient algorithm to sum certain elements in an array. I was able to run my code in their GUI against a test suite that they provided -- after both of my solutions passed all of the tests, I submitted.
I heard back from the recruiter and was then set up with a phone screen with a Forward Deployed Engineer. We spoke for about 10 minutes on behavioral / background, and then proceeded to another real-world problem that he had encountered as an employee.
Interview Question – The phone screen problem involved efficiently deleting a large number of duplicate files on a LINUX server. I struggled and eventually came to a correct solution, but did not make it to the next round. Answer Question
Writer, Business Development Interview (Negative Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Palantir Technologies in August 2012.
Interview Details – I was referred for an interview by a friend who works for Palantir. The communication with HR and the interviewer was good and prompt. Interview had a very "holier than thou" attitude and mentioned the fact that he attended Stanford repeatedly.
Interview Question – Interviewer was someone on the team I would potentially join. Did not seem like he had experience interviewing (first time perhaps?). He came off as very arrogant and not friendly. Questions included: "How would you describe what we do to a 3 year old;" "what is the Internet?"... Answer Question
User Researcher Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Palantir Technologies.
Interview Details – The role was the first dedicated user researcher position for Palantir.
I applied online and received a phone call from the recruiter several days later which turned into a mini technical interview. I hate receiving a call and then suddenly launching into interview but the recruiter was very pleasant so it wasn't a huge deal [I am curious how it would play out if I didn't have time to take the call!]
It was extremely difficult to find anything on current client designs that were not marketing speak, or much on the product operations itself besides older youtube videos demos.
A couple days later a phone screen was set up with a senior designer. It ended up being a generic technical interview with a couple of interesting points. Describing research projects, background etc. It was blatantly clear they were looking for someone on the extreme qualitative and generative side of the house to mentor and foster the team in this discipline. Doable but not particularly exciting to me personally.
The culture did sound rather appealing, and from the sounds of it the team has a lot of freedom to explore new ways of changing the product which is cool.
However it was particularly clear that my answers were not interesting to the interviewer, his tone changed toward the end. A couple of days later, I received an impersonal form email saying I was not a match. The feeling was mutual.
Interview Question – Extremely specific questions about how I set up my interview process: recruiting, setup, planning, execution and synthesis. Answer Question
Very Difficult Interview
Software Engineer Intern Interview (Positive Experience; Very Difficult Interview)
I applied through college or university and the process took 1+ week - interviewed at Palantir Technologies.
Interview Details – Apply on University job board. Got an email to do the code challenge. HR gets back the next day and schedule an phone interview. Another phone interview and then the thank you letter. The two interviewers were nice and walk me through the problem. But I didn't figure out the second problem(run out of time).
Interview Question – Coding questions are all on Graphs. Answer Question
Forward Deployed Engineer Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Palantir Technologies in March 2013.
Interview Details – The initial communications were good, the phone interview went very well, and the local interviews were good. When I was sent to California to do the second round of in-person interviews, however, it seemed like a different tone. Their leadership was interested in different technical areas than other people had been asking about, so it was odd to have the shift of focus.
Interview Question – I forget the specifics, but they were algorithm related questions. Answer Question
Reason for Declining – It was for an uninteresting position.
Very Easy Interview
Financial Operations Analyst Interview (Neutral Experience; Very Easy Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 1+ week - interviewed at Palantir Technologies in May 2014.
Interview Details – Conducted one phone interview with a current Finance Operations Analyst. He seemed really uninterested with the conversation and asked basic questions. In addition, he was ten minutes late to the call and ended the call 5 minutes earlier. Overall it was not the best experience for a company that received good reviews for their work. Perhaps the interview process is a bit flawed.
Interview Question – What was the most challenging day at my current job. Answer Question
Software Engineer Interview (Neutral Experience)
Interviewed at Palantir Technologies
Interview Details – Got contacted by phone after a campus job fair.
two phone interviews + three onsite interviews.
The interview was not easy for me. But I like Palantir's atmosphere and its location. For onsite interview, it includes breakfast and lunch.
Interview Question – The most difficult question is about a algorithm question, and the ways to test it. Answer Question
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Pros: “Very Hard to get in, so you know the people inside are some of the smartest algorithm students in the country.” “Very Hard to get in, so you know the people inside are some of the smartest algorithm students in the country.” – Full Review