Zynga Principal Software Engineer Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Zynga Principal Software Engineer Interview Questions

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Helpful (2)  

Principal Software Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
Declined Offer
Positive Experience
Difficult Interview

Application

I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Zynga (San Francisco, CA) in April 2012.

Interview

Zynga has a great interview culture - one of the best I've ever been exposed to. Things started with a call from an internal recruiter, who had been poked by a friend of mine. He arranged a phone screen, which served as a poseur filter ("Reverse a linked list!", "DFS a tree!"), and was efficiently conducted. I was brought in just a few days later for in-person interviews, which worked through issues at the operational ("How would you handle proactive hardware provisioning for a giant web application?"), strategic ("Sketch a million-user presence system!"), and tactical ("Implement a distributed hash table!") levels. Every interviewer was on-time and showed evidence of having read my resume and thought it through. That level of preparation warmed my heart, since I had been the "tech interview guy" for years at a previous employer, and finally got a little karmic reward.

Interview Questions

  • How would you proactively provision hardware for a large LAMP application? Discuss monitoring, cost planning, and how you'd estimate the marginal value.   Answer Question
  • Suppose you need a chat system with 10M concurrent users, with a dense adjacency matrix. How would you implement a presence and chat system that scales to that kind of user base? Discuss tradeoffs among reliability, complexity, latency, and cost.   Answer Question
  • Implement a distributed hash table. Discuss how it will scale horizontally, how it might implement redundancy, and what kind of reliability guarantees it can make.   Answer Question

Reasons for Declining

It wasn't my best offer, in money terms, and I wound up with a more technically challenging position elsewhere, with the only company that did a better interview process.

Other Interview Reviews for Zynga

  1.  

    Principal Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Zynga (Seattle, WA) in March 2011.

    Interview

    Standard stuff. prelim screening, then on-site - 4-5 1hr interviews.

    You gotta be good at interviews. Wrote a hashtable implementation on the board (can you code).

    Solved a few distributed systems problems - bank of webservers, tiers of caching, dealing with connection fan-in, etc (do you understand systems and networks, not just FOR loops).

    Few other questions - interviewers were pretty good at it. I learned a few things to use in my own interviews.

    Interview Questions

    • Huge bank of servers is pounding data layer with connections. What do we do?   1 Answer
    • Implement a Hashtable. Chaining / Linear-probing, hash stuff. etc   1 Answer

    Negotiation

    I didn't need to negotiate. They hooked me up - serious efforts were taken to double my stock grant when I didn't even know what was on the line. Negotiate with what? No one else would pay me that much.

  2.  

    Principal Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Bengaluru (India)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at Zynga (Bengaluru (India)) in March 2016.

    Interview

    Recruiter contacted me through phone and asked for preferred timings. Had 1 round of phone screen and multiple rounds of design, architecture and coding. Had a HR round which was focused on managerial and soft skills. Interviewers are on time and friendly throughout.

    Upfront communication from recruiter and rounds scheduled properly.

    Interview Questions

    • Questions on software design and architecture. Had coding rounds also. Emphasis on Dynamic programming.   Answer Question
  3.  

    Principal Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Bengaluru (India)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Zynga (Bengaluru (India)) in February 2016.

    Interview

    I applied to Zynga through linkedin for their Game Services team, and the process moved really fast. I had one on one interview with the Engineering Director at the SF office, who asked basic concepts (how hashmaps works, write code for find if the given strings are anagram or not etc.).

    I got call next day morning and f2f interviews were scheduled after 3 days. I met the Engineering Manager for the game services team for the first round, and she largely asked about my current project, how would I go about selecting rdbms vs nosql for a project, and writing code to remove duplicates from a linkedlist etc.

    Second round was design/architecture round with a senior developer, and we spent the entire time discussing how to design a leaderboard. She was looking at the "sorted set" implementation of redis, which I was not aware of beforehand.

    Third round was with Senior Engineering Director, who had been in the bangalore office for a visit. He asked basic questions about time/space complexity for the given code snippet and asked me to program how to insert a number in a sorted linked list.

    After that I met the HR manager, who asked about expected CTC, when can I join etc. and usual HR questionnaire, and told me that they would get back to me in next 2-3 days with their response. I got a rejection mail about a week later.

    Interview Questions

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  5. Helpful (4)  

    Principal Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Bengaluru (India)
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Zynga (Bengaluru (India)) in January 2016.

    Interview

    This company not known for great experience.

    But contrary to that I had great experience with both HR and Engineers.

    Interview was conducted for Gaming service team. 2 online rounds where I was asked 1) Linkedlist 2)BST and 3)Distributed top K questions
    After that I was invited to Bangalore. First round was DS and Algo. Second interview conducted by Tech Director of Farmville 2 and he asked only one question of converting Roman Number to Decimal. Third round with Country Manager with usual questions.

    Lunch was there(heard good things about their lunch) with Fish, Chicken, WaterMelon, Papayya, Paneer, Chapati, Rassam etc

    Finally they offered me good compensation.

    ZYNGA is sinking ship but holds i) Cash of > $1 Billion and ii)Confidence of making big in Mobile mkt. They have one game "Dawns of Titans" waiting to be launched in 2016. I wish it changes the Fortune of Zynga(because Zynga known to reward employees with open hands).

    I had great experience with both Engineers and HR. But I felt very bad when I declined their offer as I was uncomfortable to shift to Banaglore

    Interview Questions

    • convert roman number to decimal...Half of ans given by interviewer himself :)   Answer Question

    Reasons for Declining

    Only because I was not comfortable to move from Pune to Bangalore. Otherwise they were offering great compensation(felt like they are pay master, but you need to negotiate hard)

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