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Discussion on: 5 Interviews, 7 hours: Lessons From Not Getting A Big Tech Job Offer

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Monica Mateiu

Great piece, love that you took something positive from an otherwise exhausting process. I've had lots of different types of interviews - some of them successful, some of them not - over the past 3 years since I changed careers. And just like you, I've received plenty of offers within 3-4 rounds of interviews. I had to do 6 rounds to get my current job, and while this interview process was quite nicely structured I would definitely not go through the same process for just any company.

Often, the types of so-called "pair programming" tasks you've described turn out to be nothing but stressful solo programming exercises. It takes one bad interaction or one moment of confusion to ruin the whole interview. And a lot of companies don't even give you another chance to redeem yourself. The way I see it, there's very little you can learn about a candidate (or about the team you'll be working with, if you're the applicant) in such interviews, as there's a very specific type of software engineer who will thrive in this environment. And they always get the job.

Great that you went through with it anyway and learnt so much in the process!

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Simon Barker Author

Thanks for this comment, 100% agree. The middle test where I messed up was like you describe, a bad stressful moment that ultimately (I think) cost me the job and no amount of other positive indicators of my abilities could change that persons mind I guess. Basically it’s a process where you need to be perfect the whole way through with no slip ups πŸ€·β€β™‚οΈπŸ€¦β€β™‚οΈ