Microsoft Engineer Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Microsoft Engineer Interview Questions

Updated Apr 26, 2017
2,803 Interview Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA) in January 2017.

    Interview

    Microsoft came to my university during a career fair where I gave my resume. 2 weeks later they called me for an on-campus interview. The interview was short (~30 mins) and I was asked one simple coding question (Rotate array from middle) and one system design question (Design Amazon.com). I fumbled a little on the system design part as I wasn't prepared much for it. My recruiter sent an email saying I was selected but the interview slots got over (in November). I followed up in January and fortunately, they called me for on-site interviews.

    On-site Interview 1: Given an array A, find the count of the ordered pairs. An ordered pair is defined as any number A[j], such that A[j]>A[i] and j>i. You have to do this in optimal time.

    Interview 2: Given a 2d matrix containing 0s and 1s, count the number of shapes in the matrix. A shape is represented by adjacently connected 1s either horizontally or vertically, but not diagonally.

    Interview 3: Design a data structure which represents both a stack and a queue and all the operations (pop, push, enqueue, dequeue) are performed in constant time. Some behavior questions during this interview as well (Accomplishments, Why Microsoft?)

    Interview 4: Given a 2D matrix with 0s and 1s, find the cost of the shortest path from the top-left to bottom-right where the 0 and 1 represent every cell's cost

    I couldn't get the offer as I went blank during my 4th round even though the question wasn't hard. Practice LeetCode and CTCI and you should be good to go.

    Interview Questions

    • Given an array A, find the count of the ordered pairs. An ordered pair is defined as any number A[j], such that A[j]>A[i] and j>i. You have to do this in optimal time.   1 Answer

  2. Helpful (1)  

    Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 6 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (New York, NY) in January 2017.

    Interview

    Was very difficult and long, but worth it! They asked a lot of skill and experience questions. Defintiely research before. I would look up all the skills and memorize those because that is what they want and are looking for. I think it is a great expereince to go through this interview.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell us about your past experience?   1 Answer

  3.  

    Support Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Dallas, TX
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Microsoft (Dallas, TX) in January 2017.

    Interview

    1. Submitted my resume online under customer facing technology division. About a month later heard back from a recruiter that I was selected for an initial phone interview.
    2. Phone interview lasted about 30 minutes. Standard behavioral interview questions were asked: Why Microsoft, How would you teach your grandma how to use a computer, How do you know when to stop, Show me your passion for technology, etc.
    3. About 2 months after I was notified I was selected for an onsite interview at Las Colinas, TX. There were about 50 of us in the afternoon session ( another 50 in the morning session). The flight, hotel and all travel expenses were covered by Microsoft. I was individually interviewed by 4 Microsofties, from SEEs to managers. Most of the questions were behavioral, such as tell me about this project you've completed, tell me about yourself, why Microsoft, etc. I had to do several role-plays, such as handling a frustrated customer who doesn't want to talk to me or an angry customer who demands reimbursement, etc. I was asked to explain a segment of code in C++ ( because I listed it on my resume) and explain which hardware component in a computer is most brittle. Some other interviewees also were asked questions like guess a number from 1-20, what would you do if tomorrow is the end of the world, etc, but I weren't asked such questions. Make sure you ask the interviewers questions too!
    4. Got a phone call the day after the interview and I was told that I was extended an offer. I am so happy and excited to join the team soon!!!

    Interview Questions

    • Why Microsoft, How would you teach your grandma how to use a computer, How do you know when to stop, Show me your passion for technology, tell me about this project you've completed, tell me about yourself, explain which hardware component in a computer is most brittle, guess a number from 1-20, what would you do if tomorrow is the end of the world, [ int *p = 0; p += 200; fprintf("%u/n, p), what is the end result? ]   Answer Question

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  5.  

    S/W Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person. The process took a week. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in January 2017.

    Interview

    I had 30 to 45 minutes phone interview. After that I met a dev manager for another 1 hour tech interview. After that I interviewed with 4 people. They all asked tech and coding questions.

    Interview Questions

    • 1. Describe difference between Array and LinkeList in terms of Memory and Computation.
      2. Design a system to store and return a list of index containing a certain string.  
      Answer Question

  6.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in January 2017.

    Interview

    The entire process was about 3 months long. (November-January). Applied online and heard back within a month for a phone screening. After moving on through the phone screening, I went to the onsite interview. This was a 3 day process in January. The first and last days were allotted for travel, and the second day was mainly for the interview. The 3-day trip to Seattle was a very fun experience, but being at Microsoft for one day was not.

    The onsite interview was an extremely grueling process; both the candidate and the interviewers were completely drained by the end. 4 interviews total, at about 45 minutes each with a 10 minute break in between each one. After these interviews, a decision will be made about your offer in two weeks.

    After having gone through many interviews for technical roles, I found Microsoft's process to be needing the most improvement. The employees interviewing seemed as though they disliked the job via their demeanor and and answers to questions posed about work-life balance, as well as the average hours a Microsoft employee will work per week. Furthermore, Microsoft did not offer much in terms of "selling" their company to a future employee, as compared to other company's candidacy process. No tour throughout the campus, no Microsoft gear to take home, and no real connections to any of the current employees.

    Overall, this process made it seem like Microsoft was a very demanding corporation that did not offer much for employees with a life outside of work, but the trip to Seattle was a fun experience.

    Interview Questions

    • How you would create a service to provide Microsoft updates to over a billion devices?   1 Answer

  7.  

    Premier Field Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through other source. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft in January 2017.

    Interview

    Initial interview was to determine if your a top candidate for in person interview. I was flown to Redmond and conducted 5 more interviews in person. I am still pending results from interviews.

    Interview Questions

    • Describe FISMO roles and what are they.   1 Answer

  8.  

    Principal Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA) in January 2017.

    Interview

    it is tough but smooth overall, it takes a couple of hours to finish and at the end, really exhausted to answer any more questions,it is tough but smooth overall, it takes a couple of hours to finish and at the end, really exhausted to answer any more questions

    Interview Questions

    • traveral a tree in different ways   1 Answer

  9.  

    Principal Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Bellevue, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at Microsoft (Bellevue, WA) in January 2017.

    Interview

    Applied online got a call from HR(who was pretty professional and nice) and was scheduled for an interview in 2 days. I immediately had a feeling that the interviewer was absolutely not interested in either conducting the interview or had already made up his mind not to select the candidate. He asked me a very basic question, which I did in 40mins with test case and all but it is now a m9nth and have not heard back from them. The HR should have at least had the courtesy to give a feedback. I suggest having two or more people on the phone interview panel so that people can not manipulate the process of hiring talented and hardworking candidates.

    Interview Questions


  10.  

    Software Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview

    On campus interview that consisted of 30 minutes of pretty casual conversation with a few problem solving questions that heavily emphasized the process involved. Unfortunately I didn't hear back for two months, only to find that while I had passed the initial screening, Microsoft had already booked all of their interviews for the rest of the year. Microsoft is very big, and it seems pretty easy to fall through the cracks if you don't wow your way onto the high-priority list (some of my friends have had similar experiences).

    Interview Questions

    • How would you design a function to do X? (I don't remember exactly what the task was, but it was pretty simple)   Answer Question

  11. Helpful (5)  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 4+ months. I interviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA) in December 2016.

    Interview

    All interviews are technical. Started with an on campus interview in September, but there was a hold on submitting candidates to final round that got lifted in December. Flew out to Seattle for a 4 more interviews (spaced out with a 15 min break)

    Interview Questions

    • Print out all the nodes in a binary in order without recursion.   Answer Question
    • Return the longest palindromic substring.   Answer Question
    • Print nodes in balanced tree level by level and reversing the print order every other level.   1 Answer
    • Get k largest elements in a list, extremely large list (doesn't fit in memory), write actual test cases.   Answer Question
    • Determine if a linked list is circular (give upper and lower on runtime bounds given the choices made/optimal ratio)   1 Answer

See What Microsoft Employees Are Saying

Positive

Star Star Star Star Star   Former Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA

Pros: “Good ability to get things done. Strategic vision has been sharp, execution has been good. Steering a giant ship takes effort and skill.”“Good ability to get things done. Strategic vision has been sharp, execution has been good. Steering a giant ship takes effort and skill.” – Full Review

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