Palantir Technologies Software Engineering Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Palantir Technologies Software Engineering Interview Questions

Updated Mar 20, 2017
153 Interview Reviews

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Helpful (81)  

Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
No Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (New York, NY) in August 2016.

Interview

Steps 1 and 2 were a typical online coding challenge and a tech phone screen.

3. On-Site Interviews Part 1
- Informal 1-on-1 chat with a current engineer, which they called the "Palantir 1 on 1."
- 1st coding interview. Standard coding interview with a team lead engineer. We talked about a backgrounds a bit, he actually asked me to go into a fair amount of detail about my current work and I even ended up drawing a diagram on the whiteboard to explain some system design stuff I ended up talking about. Then he asked me an easy coding question.
- 2nd coding interview. Less background, went into the coding problem fairly quickly. The interviewer was only a couple years out of college and seemed a bit inexperienced technically. When talking about runtimes I actually corrected the interviewer about some python API runtimes, which the interviewer seemed to appreciate and seemed to regard as a positive.
- 3rd coding interview. This was stated to be a "decomp" (decomposition) interview, which is basically Palantir's version of the design interview, but was essentially no different from a regular coding interview. The question itself was technically easy
- Informal lunch chat. My host for this seemed pretty distracted and was on her phone a lot and even interrupted to take a few phone calls in the middle.
- 1-on-1 Product demo. It essentially turned into another informal 1-on-1 chat.

4. On-Site Interviews Part 2

I was invited to more on-site interviews, which wasn't a surprise. I was surprised however when the recruiter said that they wanted me to do one more coding interview (in addition to the hiring manager interview) because some of the feedback indicated that my coding was a bit slow. Fine, but I'm not sure how much faster they expect you to code if they also want you to properly explain everything you're doing.

- Another informal warmup chat to start, with a team lead engineer
- The coding interview. Jumped straight into the question.
- Hiring manager interview. First half of this was going through my resume and asking about my background. I did not major in CS in college, so they really wanted to understand my switch from physics to CS, my previous job, etc. They were also very focused on understanding why I wanted to join Palantir. The second half was another decomp question, this time no actual coding, but just talking about the problem on the board with rough diagrams.

The recruiter called me a couple days later to tell me that all the feedback was "very positive" and that my coding, culture fit, behavioral questions, motivation for joining Palantir, etc. were all extremely positive. However, this is when stuff started to get weird for me. Instead of proceeding with an offer (which is what I had been led to believe would happen after the 2nd round of on-site interviews), the recruiter asked me if I were interested in a Forward Deployed Software Engineer role instead. This role requires lots of travel directly into client offices, and is essentially just being a consultant. I had been very clear since the very first recruiter call (right after the online coding challenge, but before the tech phone screen) that I was not interested in this position and that travel was a big no for me. At that time, they had clearly understood my desire and said that I would be proceeding with interviews in consideration for the regular Software Engineer role. So I was surprised that they seemed to be trying to do a bait-and-switch for the FDSE role instead at this late stage. I pushed back--I asked if this was a choice or if it was being forced onto me--and the recruiter backed off a bit, although she still said they would have to talk more about it. Another review here on glassdoor has said that Palantir is desperate for people to fill the FDSE role, since it doesn't seem to be very popular. I really felt this when the recruiter tried to gauge my interest for the FDSE role.

A couple of days later the recruiter gets back to me and says that they would like me to do yet another interview, this time with a Team Lead Software Engineer so gauge my fit for the regular Software Engineer role. At this point I am starting to get uncomfortable flags in my head. I had already talked to two Team Lead Software Engineers in my interviews--why weren't they able to get the feedback they wanted from those guys?

Continued in "interview questions" section

Other Interview Reviews for Palantir Technologies

  1.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took a week. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies in March 2017.

    Interview

    Applied online and got a link to complete the coding challenge "Catching an Insider Trader" which is pretty easy. After completing this challenge I got a email to set up a phone interview with a HR, where she asked me about my previous experiences and why I want to join Palantir.

    The HR didn't even seem interested in taking the interview and called me 14 minutes after the scheduled time and she kept yawning during the whole interview.

    Interview Questions

    • 1. What do you know about Palantir?
      2. Previous experience?
      3. Why did you choose Computer Science?  
      Answer Question
  2.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies in March 2017.

    Interview

    I received an email to take a HackerRank Test.
    I completed the test within time where all of my test cases passed.
    Two days later I receive a rejection email.
    Not sure what more can be done in an online HackerRank Test.

    Interview Questions

  3. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Palo Alto, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeks. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (Palo Alto, CA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    The hiring process for interns is the same as for full-time engineers. After an initial auto-graded coding challenge on hackerrank, they gave me a phone screen, then a phone coding interview. At the end of the phone coding interview, they immediately told me they were going to recommend me for an on-site. It took less than two weeks to go through the process up until here.

    The on-site was pretty standard: demos, three coding interviews, lunch, more demos. At the end, they had me interview with the hiring manager, which I thought was a good sign. In fact, I felt like I did quite well all day -- I solved every problem I was given, and I thought I did a decent job of explaining my thought process. They contacted me after a week and a half to say they weren't going to make an offer. Not real sure what went wrong, but the interview experience itself was pleasant.

    Interview Questions

    • The decomposition problem was to sketch out an implementation of Asteroids.   Answer Question
  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Interview Review


  5. Helpful (1)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Houston, TX
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took a week. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (Houston, TX) in February 2017.

    Interview

    I applied online and got the reply in about a week. It was an OA invitation on hackerrank. Basically you need to finish it within five days. You can pick whatever date and time you like but you need to let them know ahead of time and finish it within 75mins. The name of the quiz problem is also given ahead of time called catching an insider trader. My suggestion is to read the questions "Carefully" because there were usually slightly subtle change of the problem statement compared to those you find online.

    Interview Questions

    • It's a mid size quiz called catching an insider trader.   1 Answer
  6. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took a week. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (New York, NY).

    Interview

    I interviewed with a recruiter from the NYC office. Initial communication was positive but it quickly became clear the only purpose for the interview was to conduct competitor research. The interview was extremely focused on particular details about one specific previous employer. I recieved a reject shortly after. Internal feedback was positive, as reviewed by a senior referrer.

    It's really scummy that Palantir is using interviews to conduct corporate espionage. Be careful if you're interviewing there. Clearly Palantir is a company that does not have hiring ethics listed in their corporate culture dictionary.

    Interview Questions

  7.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Interview

    Pretty standard. Phone screen then phone interview then Onsite. Three interviews onsite. Everything went very well, though. My recruiter was friendly, the interviewers were friendly. Everyone understood how difficult the process is. They were willing to work with me.

  8. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3+ months. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (New York, NY) in December 2016.

    Interview

    I had a phone interview, and then an onsite (3 interviews + demo).
    My main recruiter essentially didn't contact me aside from scheduling. I had another recruiter ask for a phone call with me as a follow-up to my phone interview, which was kind of random as my original recruiter didn't say anything about this. It went well but had to be rescheduled twice, once without notice (where I was only told the day after).
    I was not given any details about the onsite prior to getting there except the FAQ and some other documents, and the time I would be starting. The FAQ said my recruiter would contact me prior to the onsite with more information regarding the day, but they never did. I was also left in the interview room with no idea of when my interviewer would get there or when my next interview would start. The interviewers were pleasant for the most part, although felt really rushed and on a time crunch. They all seemed to be running late though. I wasn't given an office tour, with the exception of here's the dining area and the rooms are all named after a theme. My recruiter didn't seem to enjoy my presence. The demo was pretty good though, I learned a lot more about the company and the answers the presenter had to the questions asked seemed genuine.

    Interview Questions

  9.  

    Software Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Palantir Technologies (New York, NY) in December 2016.

    Interview

    I applied for the internship on the website. After 2 weeks they answered me by an email with a link for a code challenge on HackerRank. The challenge wasn't so hard.

    Interview Questions

  10. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Interview

    I applied online and was rejected with a note saying "We are only taking juniors and beyond for our intern class". However, this is an objectively false statement as there have been plenty of sophomores who received interviews and even some that are working/have worked there as sophomores. I have previous experience at two of the Big 4 companies and was at least expecting a first round interview.There was no need for them to tell such a white lie; if they felt that my experience was not what they were looking for they could have just said so and avoided this review from me. Their disingenuous response is just another red flag against a company that is already in deep trouble with the federal government for unscrupulous practices. Stay on your toes with this company and don't be surprised if they pull the same stuff on you.

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