Google Interview Questions in San Jose, CA | Glassdoor

Google Interview Questions in San Jose, CA

Updated Oct 19, 2017
1,721 Interview Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1658)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in April 2014.

    Interview

    Direct onsite because I interviewed in the past and did well that time. From the time I sent my resume to interview day: 2 weeks. From interview day to offer over the phone: 2 weeks.

    The syllabus for the interviews is very clear and simple:
    1) Dynamic Programming
    2) Super recursion (permutation, combination,...2^n, m^n, n!...etc. type of program. (NP hard, NP programs)
    3) Probability related programs
    4) Graphs: BFS/DFS are usually enough
    5) All basic data structures from Arrays/Lists to circular queues, BSTs, Hash tables, B-Trees, and Red-Black trees, and all basic algorithms like sorting, binary search, median,...
    6) Problem solving ability at a level similar to TopCoder Division 1, 250 points. If you can consistently solve these, then you are almost sure to get in with 2-weeks brush up.
    7) Review all old interview questions in Glassdoor to get a feel. If you can solve 95% of them at home (including coding them up quickly and testing them out in a debugger + editor setup), you are in good shape.
    8) Practice coding--write often and write a lot. If you can think of a solution, you should be able to code it easily...without much thought.
    9) Very good to have for design interview: distributed systems knowledge and practical experience.
    10) Good understanding of basic discrete math, computer architecture, basic math.
    11) Coursera courses and assignments give a lot of what you need to know.
    12) Note that all the above except the first 2 are useful in "real life" programming too!

    Interview 1:
    Graph related question and super recursion

    Interview 2:
    Design discussion involving a distributed system with writes/reads going on at different sites in parallel.

    Interview 3:
    Array and Tree related questions

    Interview 4:
    Designing a simple class to do something. Not hard, but not easy either. You need to know basic data structures very well to consider different designs and trade-offs.

    Interview 5:
    Dynamic programming,
    Computer architecture and low level perf. enhancement question which requires knowledge of Trees, binary search, etc.

    At the end, I wasn't tired and rather enjoyed the discussions. I think the key was long term preparation and time spent doing topcoder for several years (on and off as I enjoy solving the problems).

    Conclusion: "It's not the best who win the race; it's the best prepared who win it."

    Negotiation

    You can and should negotiate politely. You are in a stronger position if you have another offer, but even otherwise, you should ask for more of every type of payment!


  2. Helpful (549)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in July 2015.

    Interview

    The interview went seemingly smoothly, except for a couple quirks in the code on the whiteboard. The questions were way easier than I expected. The interviewers were not intimidating at all and did not try to make the process stressful. I felt like I passed and according to HR, the overall feedback was positive. My application went to the hiring committee which, in turn, rejected the offer.

  3. Helpful (24)  

    Associate Account Strategist Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).

    Interview

    After you're contacted by a recruiter he/she will set up an initial call that's about 15-20 minutes. That first discussion is really just to get to know you a bit and make sure you're qualified to move forward. Be prepared to answer why you're interested in this job specifically (not just because it's google) and why google (the perks alone probably isn't the best answer).

    Round 2 is 2 30 minute phone interviews with a manager and current Associate Account Strategist that involve behavioral and hypothetical questions. You're given info on what that means and how to prepare but basically behavioral is "tell me about a time when..." and hypothetical is "what would you do in xyz scenario?" Preparing for the behavioral is time consuming if you're really looking to nail them but not difficult. What I recommend is looking at the job posting and writing down all the traits/skills they're looking for, then turn those into potential questions to prepare for. For example, if the job says they're looking for someone who's creative, then be prepared to answer, "tell me about a time when you came up with a creative solution to a problem." Prepare for about 10-15 of these and eventually you'll realize you have a handful of practiced stories that can be applied to multiple types of these questions. Definitely practice these out loud before your interviews and don't expect to be able to read a story pre written on the spot. For the hypotheticals it's more about your thought process than your answer. Just try to be natural, confident and enthusiastic.

    For me the more prepared I was the more relaxed I felt and the more I was able to have fun with the interviews while still conveying my relevant qualifications and competence. You'll also be expected to have a basic knowledge of adwords (also look up Adsense just because you should know the difference) but I didn't get any direct questions about these. It's just good to know beforehand. Remember, this is about getting to know you not whether or not you're an expert in their topics yet so don't go nuts studying this. You're not expected to be an adwords expert. After round 2, you go to the office and have 2 30 minute onsite interviews (same question types and prep as the previous round). Make sure you have good questions ready for all rounds, and consider asking something that gets the interviewer to open up a bit. For example, "what's the coolest project you've gotten to work on at google?" Or "what do you think is the toughest thing about this job?" Try to get them thinking, sharing, and seeing you as someone interesting to speak with. After that round, you're info goes to the hiring committee, which objectively reviews all your interviewed feedback and resume. That takes about a week. The whole process start to finish is about 6 weeks but my recruiter was incredible in speeding up the process because I had other interviews simultaneously. I told her right away that because google was my first choice I wanted to move through the process as quickly as possible before getting an offer from someone else. She absolutely could of have been better about that. I cannot say enough good things about googles recruitment process. From start to finish, they work with you and give you all the info you need right away. Also, my recruiter was so great about answering all my questions and acting as a supportive cheerleader throughout the process. Such a strong recruitment team and I am so grateful!


  4. Helpful (8)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    The process took 3+ months. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).

    Interview

    Extremely unimpressed with Google, in every area I had expected a lot better. Inattentive, lazy recruiters. Incorrect prep and advice videos. Poor interviewers. Incredibly slow process for no reason (I knew this going in)

    The interview was actually very easy, but about half of the interviewers were not asking questions that would let you judge talent. Following their own advice about interviewing turned out to be a mistake - their interviewers didn't follow it! Everything they said to study never actually came up. I made it to the final stage, was wanted by a team manager, and the mysterious final hiring committee rejected my application. Ridiculous. This experience made me sell my Google stock.


  5. Helpful (1)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).

    Interview

    The phone screen was pretty straightforward and easy as always is for most companies. The engineers were very polite and asked reasonable questions.

    The hiring manager was awful and made me feel like walking out. He walked in opening with a ‘I didn’t even bother looking at your resume but maybe I did months ago.’ Big red flag to me. If a candidate walks in unprepared it’s a show stopper, and if an interviewer/manager does that then it is the same way.

    I had very good questions from the rest of the team and did solid on the coding interview. They do however need to make sure their hangouts have been properly set up before clipping 8 minutes of my coding time and stop offering coding challenges in Google Docs. It’s not cute and very unprofessional. Every other company uses a proper code editor without the perks of an IDE.

    Overall this was my second bad experience with Google where it felt like they didn’t even care. The first time, the engineers seemed more interested in making themselves look smart. I won’t be applying again in the future and I’d rather work for a place where I makena difference, not just a number.

    Interview Questions

    • How do you deprecate an asset and use the newest version for a web page without changing the name and with concern to caching.   1 Answer

  6. Helpful (293)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in September 2015.

    Interview

    Awesome process. Very simple questions. Keep your nerves cool. Don't worry about very complex questions on the Internet. Do basics and you should be good. I screwed up two simple questions and not expecting offer. I will apply again next year .


  7.  

    Software Engineer(Internship) Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in October 2017.

    Interview

    I was first sent a snapshot which had two problems (1 easy, 1 hard). Then I had two back-to-back technical phone interviews where I coded on google docs with my interviewer. Still waiting to hear back, but will update when I do.

    Interview Questions

  8. Helpful (1)  

    Product Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).

    Interview

    I participated in an onsite interview loop for product manager. The interviews were in Mountain View. I had 4 interviews back to back (1 software eng manager, 3 PMs), then lunch with a PM, followed by 1 more interview (with PM) via Google Hangout after lunch. With 4 back to back interviews it was a bit exhausting so might be an idea to practice to get accustomed to it.

    The information on Glassdoor as well as the prep info from the recruiter gives an excellent idea of what to expect. There weren't much surprises for me, but the tech interview seems to vary a lot so I didn't know what to expect there.

    Each interviewer seemed to focus on a certain area, eg. tech, estimation, product design, etc. I spent most of the time in each interview tackling the main question, and then the interviewer followed up with a few behavioral type questions. I found the interviews to be fun yet challenging. It was a lot of talking and white boarding.

    Everybody was very respectful and helpful with hints if I went astray. Personalities of course were different with some being more friendly, but it was a pleasant experience with everyone. The recruiter was wonderful and responsive in answering questions and assisting in any way she could.

    One downside is the abundance of prep info and material out there makes it difficult to prioritize what to tackle. If you were to actually go there all of the material suggested by the recruiter you'd probably be prepping for months. I think the material is a good guide to calibrate where you're at and understand what would give you an edge if you already possess that knowledge/skill, rather than actual "training" material.

    Interview Questions

    • How would you improve product x..   1 Answer

  9.  

    Product Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA).

    Interview

    The entire process was well structured. The recruiters made it feel like white glove service. For the final on-site round, there was a last minute switch for my first interview, and that threw off the scheduling so that I had less time with my first interviewer. However, all else went smoothly.

    Interview Questions


  10. Helpful (2)  

    Product Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Google (Mountain View, CA) in September 2017.

    Interview

    Fast-paced interview with minimal feedback from the interviewer. Be prepared with standard template questions - What are your favorite products and why? How would you like to improve them. Practice! Practice Practice and Memorize the answers

    Interview Questions

    • What are your top 3 favorite apps you like? and Why? No specific feedback when queried further.   Answer Question
    • Describe 3 features that you would like to improve in Amazon app.   Answer Question

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