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How to prepare a Tech Interview. Last Survivor guide to code interviewing. Speakers : Alberto Lorente Leal, alorlea@ieee.org Diego Lucas Jiménez, diego.lucas.jimenez@ieee.org. Backgrounds. Education : Ingeniero de Telecomunicación, ETSIT UPM

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how to prepare a tech interview

Howto prepare a Tech Interview

LastSurvivor guide tocodeinterviewing

Speakers: Alberto Lorente Leal, alorlea@ieee.org

Diego Lucas Jiménez, diego.lucas.jimenez@ieee.org

backgrounds
Backgrounds
  • Education:
    • Ingeniero de Telecomunicación, ETSIT UPM
    • Civilingenjörutbildning data teknik, KTH
    • M.Sc. Software Engineer of DistributedSystems, KTH
  • Software Engineer, ~1 year
  • Presidente IEEEsb, año 2010-11
backgrounds1
Backgrounds
  • Education:
    • SystemsAdministrator, ComputerScience
  • Software Engineer, 2 years
  • SystemsAdministrator, 2 years
  • ETSIT UPM IEEEsbValuateMember (6 years)
outline
Outline
  • Introduction
  • What do they look for?
  • What do they expect?
  • Preparing a CV
  • The process.
    • Getting the interview
    • Preparation
    • The Tech Interview!
introduction
Introduction
  • Whatthehellisthis?
  • Wherediditcamefrom?
    • Knowing a language vs. Proficient in language
    • Hiringpeople (cheap vs. Expensivelawsuits)
    • Software isnotaneasybusiness...
  • Whyisit so popular?
  • Doesitdifferfrom a normal Interview?
  • Isit so hard?
what do they look for
What do they look for?

Testing aptitude, not knowledge

what do they expect
What do theyexpect?

The most important interview question is not covered any place probably. In fact, it’s often the single most important question in your interviewers' minds as they grill you in that little room. Despite the questions on polymorphism and heaps and virtual machines, the question they really want an answer to is ...

Would I have a beer with this guy?

preparing the cv3
Preparingthe CV
  • Build a powerful resume
    • Goal: HIRE ME!!
  • Includerelevantinformation
  • Gettothepoint, keepit simple (2 pages)
  • Checkyourgrammar!!
  • Easyto do, isn’tit?
preparing the cv4
Preparingthe CV
  • Sixmilestonestobuild a powerful CV:
    • AccomplishmentOriented
    • QuantifiableResults
    • WellTargeted
    • UniversallyMeaningful
    • Clean, Professional, Concise
    • WellStructured and Clear
clear cv
Clear CV

WTF!!?

WTF!!?

WTF!!?

preparing the cv5
Preparingthe CV
  • Nowyou are askingyourself:
  • Make use of your time!
  • Make a kick-ass resume

How I can make myself special?

It’s really not that hard.

Ok, no, itis.

getting the interview
Gettingthe interview
  • Applythrough Job sites.
    • Internship
    • GraduateEntryLevel
  • Waitforanswer.
  • Alternatives?
    • Referal
    • Job fairs
    • Recruiters
    • LinkedIn
    • Social Networking
preparation
Preparation
  • Hopefully, youreceive a response of yourdreamcompany.
  • Reaction?

Hello xxxx,

Thanksforyourinterest in Google, I am fromthetechnicalrecruitingteam and I wouldfurtherdiscussyourjobopportunitieswithus. Whenisitokaytotalk?

Regards,

preparation1
Preparation

Whatpeopleseewhenyougetthe interview

Whatyoureallysee

preparation2
Preparation
  • Yourbiggestexamis at yourdoorstep.
  • Up tothechallenge?
  • Remember:

Testing aptitude, not knowledge

Looking for doers

preparation3
Preparation
  • Do notonlyfocusontechnicalaspects
  • Theywanttoknow YOU!
    • i.e: Yourpersonality.
    • Addchemistrytotheteam.
  • Definitely NOT mindlesscoding machine
  • Expect

Behavioralquestions

behavioral questions
BehavioralQuestions
  • Personality
  • Communicatewell
  • Answerwell
  • Watchfor red flags Arrogant, non teamplayer
  • Strategies:
    • NuggetFirst
    • S.A.R: Situation, Action, Result
preparing behavioral questions
PreparingBehavioralQuestions
  • Iseasierthanitseems
  • 1. CV islikeyourlifeexperience, refreshthesituations.
  • 2. PreparationGrid.
strategy 1 nugget first
Strategy 1: NuggetFirst
  • Startwith a goodinitiator
    • Goal: Graspinterviewersattention and context

Q: Whatwasyourgreatestachievement in project X?

A: One of mygreatestachievementswaswhenweadded a new wholefunctionality..

how to tech interview
Howtotech interview
  • Study and refreshconcepts!
    • Network Engineer Routing, OSPF, TCP/IP, etc
    • Software Engineer  Algorithms, threads, scalability, coding, ObjectOrientedDesign, Patterns….
  • Practice!
    • Loads of problemson internet
    • Do notmemorize, useless.
  • Pushyourlimits!
  • WRITE CODE ON PAPER (or Google Docs)
  • AvoidIDEs
data structures
Data Structures
  • Howtoimplement
    • I.E: Knowhowtocodeityourself
  • Pros/Cons
algorithms
Algorithms
  • Implementation
  • Space vs. Time Complexity
    • Learnthycomplexities!! http://bigocheatsheet.com/
other fancy algorithms
OtherFancyAlgorithms
  • Pathfinding:
    • A*
  • Sorts:
    • Comparisonwithothersorts (insertion, selection)
  • DynamicProgramming:
    • Knapsack 0-1 orKnapsackwithrepeateditems
  • AnythingthrownonProgrammingCompetitions
concepts
Concepts
  • And howtocodeit.
during the interview
Duringthe interview
  • Ask Questions!
    • Ambiguousquestions, informationismissing
    • Do notstartcoding as a maniac Red flag, NO HIRE
  • Talkoutloud
    • Show yourprocessthinking
  • Thinkcritically
    • Isthisoptimal? Complexities?
  • Slow and cleancode
    • Beatifulcodewinspoints
  • Test yourcode!
    • And fixitaccordingly
good coding style
GoodCoding Style
  • Methodical, no rush and no stress.
  • Bug free code
    • Doublecheckitworks and fixit (TDD?)
    • Checkborder cases
  • Cleancode
    • Concise, readable
    • Good use of libraries and data structures
    • Capable of anotherprogrammerunderstandwhatyouwrite.
its about style good code
Itsaboutstyle: GoodCode
  • Whycan’twe be friends?
dafuken
Dafuken!

Do I needtoacealltheseconcepts?

do not worry
Do notworry!
  • Evaluationis RELATIVE
    • Notabsolute

It’s not about how quickly you solved the problem…

Whatdoesthis mean?

… it’s about how quickly you solved it relative to other candidates.

tell me mr anderson
Tell me, Mr. Anderson...
  • Sit position!
    • Handsoverthetable
  • Look theeyes of yourinterviewer
    • Stay in a relaxedactitude
  • You are nervous. Confessit!
    • Mistakes are normal.
  • Youhavedefects
    • Point them. Thenexplainhow are youtryingtocorrectthem.
  • Butanyway, you are thebestcandidate
    • Convincetheinterviewer
relax
Relax
  • Interviews are hards
  • Show thebest of yourself
  • And final note:

EVERYONE MAKES MISTAKES.

Everyone!

after interview
After Interview
  • Follow up withrecruiter
    • No answer != rejection
  • No idea of your performance onthe interview
    • Do notthinkorworryaboutit.
  • Random factor
    • Interview anti-loop
    • Ifyoufail, get up and try again, and again.
most importantly
Mostimportantly
  • Ifyoufail, learnfromtheexperience
    • In my case I learned a lot in algorithmsand othertechaspects
  • And as a gamer:

GOOD LUCK & HAVE FUN!

s ources
Sources
  • Informationwastakenfrom:
    • Slides of Cracking thecoding interview, advice and strategiesfor SWE. Gayllaakmann McDowell, Founder of CareerCup.
    • The Google Resume, Howto prepare for a career and Land a Job on Apple, Google or Microsoft. GayllaakmannMcDowell.
    • Cracking thecoding interview, 150 interview problems and solutions. GayllaakmannMcDowell.
  • Otherinterestingsources:
    • Programming Interviews Exposed, 3rd Edition.
    • CareerCupwebsite.
    • Search Google