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Sandia Interview Questions in Livermore, CA

12 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Software Development Intern Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

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

    Interview Details

    Began with two very long email questionnaires from a hiring manager asking about my past programming experience. Specific questions also showed up related to the project I was applying for. After those emails, a 90-minute interview with someone working on the project. Questions varied from behavioral to technical, designed to see how well you critically think.

    Interview Questions
    • During the telephone interview. A series of deceptively simple questions such as "Tell me about a time you used Vectors." "When have you used inheritance". The second one really threw me off because it seemed so basic. They want you to have elaborate answers that show that you know more than its definition.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 5+ monthsinterviewed at Sandia.

    Interview Details

    Interview with a university representative. All questions concerned my research (Ph.D. student) and future career goals. I had a follow-up phone interview with my potential advisor; again, all technical questions about my research. The hiring process is slow, so apply in the fall for a summer internship. The government lab environment is very similar to academia. I had an advisor, and we collaborated on a research project together. Pay was commensurate with my education, and the location was great for sight-seeing around the SF bay area.

    Interview Questions
    • All technical questions related to my research, and the behavioral questions were typical of any C.S. interview.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation for internships.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Strategic Contracting Representative Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at Sandia in June 2012.

    Interview Details

    15 minute phone screen with hiring manager rep followed two weeks later by a 1 hr panel technical phone screen with team. Final round was all day in Livermore CA 6 wks after last phone screen.

    The final interview consisted of a 40 minute presentation on yourself to a panel and a full day of one-on-one interviews. I was extremely impressed with the whole culture and team at Sandia but regrettably was not extended an offer.

    Interview Questions
    • Why do you think you will be a good fit here and this is the opportunity for you?   View Answer
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
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  5. 4 people found this helpful  

    Senior Member of Technical Staff Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5 daysinterviewed at Sandia in April 2011.

    Interview Details

    Applied online, was contacted by the hiring manager to schedule a phone interview. Phone interview was fairly brief, mostly looking at the fit between my experience at the position. After that, was contacted by HR to schedule on-site interview. They paid for the flight, the hotel room, and the car rental (nothing out of pocket except meals/taxi to airport from home which were reimbursed). After getting to California, drove myself to the hotel, had dinner with some of the staff members that evening. Seemed like a very congenial crowd. Next day started at 7:30am, drove to the lab, was badged in under 20 minutes, and then went to HR. Very informal HR interview, mostly telling me about the benefits I would receive if hired. Some behavioral interview questions but very easy.

    Technical part of the interview started next. Was met by my prospective boss's secretary and followed him in my car back to the lab. They had to escort me everywhere as I did not have security clearance. I had sent them my presentation beforehand (personal computers not allowed) and it was setup for me in a smallish conference room. About 8 people attended the seminar. Some general interest questions followed. No one asked any malicious questions, but one person did have to show off how much she knew while asking hers.

    After the seminar, there were a series of 1:1 interviews and a panel interview over lunch. Maybe it wasn't supposed to be a panel interview but it certainly felt like it. I was brought to each person's office and spent 25 minutes talking. The people I talked to represented a variety of levels and careers -- some mid-level managers, some technical peers, some technical direct reports. These interviews lasted roughly five hours. At the end, there was one more dinner with a small group of people (who I would work with closely). Overall, a very standard interview experience.

    Interview Questions
    • For an experimental mechanical engineering position, I did not expect to be asked chemical engineering computational questions. "Speaking generally, how would you model reactor flow in this case? How do you justify the boundary conditions you chose? At this arbitrary point, can you derive the governing equations?"   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation allowed by HR
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  6.  

    Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    The process took a dayinterviewed at Sandia in February 2011.

    Interview Details

    The interview process at Sandia was very pleasant. I had the opportunity to go on site and meet with some of the different groups that I would potentially work with. As part of the interview process I gave a brief presentation on my previous work (some of my research projects). Everyone was very nice, however the pace seemed a little too slow for my current stage in my career.

    Interview Questions
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  7.  

    Member of Technical Staff Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a dayinterviewed at Sandia in October 2010.

    Interview Details

    The interview consisted of a full day of 1:1 interviews plus a group presentation and a lunch with two other staff members.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Postdoctoral Appointee Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    The process took a dayinterviewed at Sandia in March 2010.

    Interview Details

    Interviews: After applying to an advertised post and having a few phone conversations with my future group leader, I was invited for a site visit. Most candidates interview in a full day of 30-min one-on-one interviews with the hiring manager, staff in the hiring department, and staff and managers in other departments you'll be working with. I think the idea is for as many people as possible to provide their impressions of the candidate, the interest level of the candidate, and his/her fit with the group. You're interviewing with the technical staff you'll be working with, so the interviews were more conversational and focused on the technical work to be done on the job than your typical formal screening interview. The day includes lunch and dinner with staff, so be prepared for a long day! I've heard there is the option to break it up between 2 days, though.

    I found all the staff I met with to be open and honest about what they do and don't like about working at the lab, although you can pretty much guess what those things will be (government lab, so funding and research programs are at the mercy of congress, but you have a good work-life balance, etc).

    Job talk: Candidates also make a 45-min presentation to staff, including those who will be interviewing you. This is a good opportunity to persuade them that you can communicate a technical topic to an audience of technical people who may not be experts on your subject. It doesn't matter if it's different from the field you are interviewing for. I think the point is to show that you can assess a technical problem, propose a solution based on sound principles, and tell them what you found - and more importantly, what it means!

    Be aware that this is a national security lab and most positions involve various security screening. Ask your HR contact and the hiring manager to check into the security requirements for the specific position you're interviewing for. Do you need a security clearance (not everyone does)? Do you need to be a US citizen (not everyone does)? What if you have a dual nationality? It's their job to interpret the rules, after all!

    After: My future group leader and manager were up-front with their interest and keen to know my interest right away. They kept in contact with me all throughout the post-interview process of getting the offer through HR, checking references and education, etc.

    Interview Questions
    • One manager wanted to confirm that I would not have a problem with my work supporting the engineering of nuclear weapons.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation possible for the postdoc position - the salary and benefits are same for all. Maybe staff candidates can negotiate within the pay bands.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Postdoctoral Fellow Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 daysinterviewed at Sandia in December 2009.

    Interview Details

    Applied online, got an email back asking for a phone interview. Got a call the same day, talked for about 30-45 mins about my thesis work as a whole and the specific relevant experience and how it matches with the position description. On-site interview a few weeks later.

    HR is fantastic! Very organized, got all of my paperwork to me (overnight FedEX) with return envelope provided. Very quick turnaround on questions and also genuinely nice people.

    Standard job talk format, 1 hour presentation followed by panel interview and 1:1's, lab tour. Fairly well attended for a job talk. Not many questions asked during my talk, but several afterward. Very polite interview, low stress. About 25 mins of questions and formal interviewing followed by a quick lab tour. Took me out to lunch and then back for a few more meetings. HR followed up with me about my impressions and kept me updated on the status of my application.

    Manager made a verbal offer several weeks later (I've been told this is very typical; I got nervous and then kind of forgot about it). HR emailed an offer package and followed it up with a hardcopy via FedEX. Drug testing was done at a local sample collection facility. Background check was pretty standard-- pulled my credit report, character references from folks who have known me >=10 years. My friends/family told me that the investigators were very polite and professional.

    The culture is a nice mix of academic freedom with corporate mission (and budgets!). Expect the standard couple of big fish to throw their weight around in your interview. I'm convinced if they aren't talking they aren't breathing. Most of the other folks on the interview won't pay too much attention to them, seems like a quick test to see if you can handle being heckled.

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    Salary is fixed on a division basis, no negotiation possible if this is your only Sandia offer. They will, however, match offers from other divisions.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  10.  

    Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Employee in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took a dayinterviewed at Sandia in September 2009.

    Interview Details

    Met recruiter at college career fair and had initial on campus interview. Got email notification for on site visit and interview. Had several one on one interviews and a group interview gave a presentation on my research. Answered several questions regarding my research. Was given tours of various labs and talked about what they did there.

    Interview Questions
    • What conflicts have you have with coworkers and how did you resolve them?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    Member of Technical Staff Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Livermore, CA
    Application Details

    The process took a dayinterviewed at Sandia in November 2008.

    Interview Details

    I knew someone working there and submitted resume through him. Whole day of 1:1 and 2:1. Very bright people. Liked to talk about their projects. They were more interested in whether you could potentially contribute to a problem they were solving than any specific questions on programming syntax. They are also very concerned with education.

    Interview Questions
    • I got a bunch of math problems from one of the interviewers.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

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