Google Interview Questions
Founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998, Google LLC is an American multinational technology company that specializes in services and products related to the Internet, for instance, cloud computing, online advertising technologies, search engines, software, and hardware. Google is one of the Big Five companies in the United States Information Technology industry, along with Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook. Google was reorganized as a wholly owned subsidiary of Alphabet Inc. in 2015. Sundar Pichai is the CEO (Chief Executive Officer) of both Google and Alphabet.
There have been a lot of factors that have accelerated the company's rapid growth since its incorporation including products, acquisitions, and partnerships beyond Google's core search engine, that is, Google Search. On the list of the most valuable brands, Google is ranked second by Forbes and fourth by Interbrand.
As we know that Google has a plethora of products to offer, I am sure that you are tempted to interview at Google and take a job! Their hiring process is a crucial part of their culture as they care deeply about their teams and the people who make them up. Building a more representative and inclusive workplace is the motive of Google’s hiring team, and that begins with hiring highly skilled people from various backgrounds. According to the Googlers, in order to truly build for everyone, a diversity of perspectives and experiences, and a fair hiring process is the first step in getting there.
Google Recruitment Process
1. Interview Process
- Recruiter Connect: The Recruiter can contact the candidate based on his/her profiles on Linkedin etc or if any of his/her known has referred him/her to the company. However, it’s always best to message the recruiters via LinkedIn and apply for the roles in the Career page of Google. If the candidate is good in DS & Algo skills it is highly recommended that he/she participate in Google Kickstart, this is Google’s hiring contest which happens 6 times in a year. If the performance in those competitions is good the recruiters will contact you easily.
- Interview Rounds: Google has a total of 7 rounds. The first two are telephonic interviews where the interviewer mostly asks one medium or two easy Algo DS problems to the candidate and the candidate has 45 minutes to solve the problems. However if the performance in Kickstart is good, these rounds are skipped and you directly move to the next rounds. Next, we have 5 onsite interviews out of which 4 are Algo DS interviews and 1 is a Googliness interview, Googliness interview is mostly a behavioural interview.
- After Interviews: Once the interviews are over, the recruiter will contact you with the feedback of the interviews, if the performance is good and the interviews are cleared your profile goes to the different teams in Google for the team matching round. In the team matching round the team understands your work style and your interests and you can understand their requirements and the work expectations of the team.
- Hired: Once the team and you both are comfortable and ready to start, the offer letter is prepared and shared with you by the recruiters and you are HIRED!
Mastering the Google’s Software Engineering Interview
2. Interview Rounds
- Telephonic Interviews (Two Rounds): These are two 45-minute interviews on the phone where the interviewer shares a Google Doc with the candidate and asks either a medium problem or two easy problems of Algorithms and DS. It is expected that the candidate first explains the solution of the problem to the interviewer and then codes the problem on Google Docs within the time of the interview. (Suggestion: Practice writing the code on Google Docs if you have any interview coming up as it is a different experience compared to writing the code in any text editor).
- Algorithm Data Structure Interviews (Three or Four Rounds): These are 45-minute interviews where the interviewer shares a Google Doc with the candidate and asks Medium to Hard problems of Algorithms and DS. It is expected that the candidate first explains the solution of the problem to the interviewer and then codes the problem on Google Docs within the time of the interview.
- Googliness Interviews (One Round): This is a new interview that Google started in 2020. It’s mostly the behavioural interview to check the cultural fitness of the candidate in the company.
Google Interview Preparation
1. Interview Preparation Tips
Now that we know all about the hiring process of Google, here are a few tips which you can use to crack Google’s interview and get a job
- Understand the work culture at Google well - It is always good to understand how the company works and what are the things that are expected out of an employee at Google. This shows that you are really interested in working at Google and leaves a good impression on the interviewer as well.
- Be Thorough with Data Structures and Algorithms - At Google, there is always an appreciation for good problem solvers. If you want to have a good impression on the interviewers, the best way is to prove that you have worked a lot on developing your logic structures and solving algorithmic problems. A good understanding of Data Structures and Algorithms and having one or two good projects always earn you brownie points with Amazon.
- Use the STAR method to format your Response - STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. The STAR method is a structured way to respond to behavioral-based interview questions. To answer a provided question using the STAR method, you start by describing the situation that was at hand, the Task which needed to be done, the action taken by you as a response to the Task, and finally the Result of the experience. It is important to think about all the details and recall everyone and everything that was involved in the situation. Let the interviewer know how much of an impact that experience had on your life and in the lives of all others who were involved. It is always good practice to be prepared with a real-life story that you can describe using the STAR method.
- Know and Describe your Strengths - Many people who interview at various companies, stay shy during the interviews and feel uncomfortable when they are asked to describe their strengths. Remember that if you do not show how good you are at the skills you know, no one will ever be able to know about the same and this might just cost you a lot. So it is okay to think about yourself and highlight your strengths properly and honestly as and when required.
- Discuss with your interviewer and keep the conversation going - Remember that an interview is not a written exam and therefore even if you come up with the best of solutions for the given problems, it is not worth anything until and unless the interviewer understands what you are trying to say. Therefore, it is important to make the interviewer that he or she is also a part of the interview. Also, asking questions might always prove to be helpful during the interview.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How many rounds are there in Google Interview?
There are 6-7 (Telephonic Interviews - 2 Rounds, DS & Algo Interviews - 3 or 4 Rounds, Googliness Interviews -1 Round).
2. Why do you want to join Google?
There are a lot of high-quality products that Google employees work on every day and the amount of opportunity that Google presents its employees is humongous. Also, the work culture is really good over there and the compensation offered to Google employees is on the higher end of the standards of the Information Technology or Software Industry.
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3. Are Google interviews hard?
The toughness of an interview depends upon the amount of hard work you have put in to prepare for them. Usually, the questions asked in a standard Google interview are of Easy to Medium Level but it varies from person to person. Since the number of interview rounds ranges anywhere from four to seven, it can be intimidating at times for a candidate. But if you are in, it is going to be worth the effort.
4. Can I apply for multiple roles at Google?
Yes, we can apply to any role that aligns with both our interests and skills. We are evaluated against the requirements for each role and we can give interviews for different roles at the same time. But one should note that within a span of thirty days, one can apply only for three roles at Google.
5. What are some of the questions which one should ask the interviewer at Google?
It is always nice to ask questions about the company’s culture and what is the current technology using which the company makes its products. Asking about the future innovations at Google also might be a good idea as it might make the interviewer believe that you are looking forward to joining Google for a long time. You can also ask about the interviewer’s personal experience at Google and what skills you must develop before you join the job.
6. What is Googleyness?
Googleyness can be thought of as a set of qualities that makes one stand out from the pack and fit into the unique work culture of Google. However, this term has not been officially confirmed by Google. Some of these qualities are as follows -
- Striving for excellence and doing the right thing.
- Keeping an eye on the goals.
- Being proactive and ready to go the extra mile.
- Doing something nice for others, without expecting anything in return.
- Valuing users and colleagues and rewarding great performance.
- Being transparent, honest, and fair.