What Our Students Say About IK

On Quora

Davide Testuggine, Applied Research Scientist at Facebook (2017-present)

I took the full course last August, and I highly, highly recommend it.I am an experienced software engineer (I was in Microsoft) so I had a pretty clear idea of what was the bar to clear for a technical interview, but I just hadn’t done any practice for years.

I always found technical interviews very scary: I think that what triggered my anxiety was that when I was still in school, I did an interview with Google for a summer internship and I was annihilated. I had absolutely no idea on how to even approach that problem (it was a pretty tough dynamic programming problem, but at that time I didn’t even know what DP was). I ended up studying a lot for my Microsoft interview, and while
I did get my offer, that ended up being a quite stressful experience.

So this time, when I decided that it was time for me to move on to my next challenge, I thought I'd do something to make it less stressful. I first joined a meetup for interview prep because it was free, but quite frankly the level there was just not good enough. Being a full-time employee, I just could not afford to waste time by learning so little. So I decided to look for something else. What eventually turned me to Soham’s course is that he was the way he talked about the course as not a substitute for hard work, not a “cheat sheet” of questions but a way to actually get good at algorithms, through a lot of perspiration.

The course was very intense. During the two months it lasted, I would easily work 2+ hours every day, weekends included, on the homework problems. Nobody will teach you an intro to algorithms: you should probably do an algorithms course beforehand if you don't know what a BST and a hash table are. This course is just practice, practice, practice. And it works! A few weeks into the course, I thought again about that Google question that was so scary when I was in school, and realized that I now could easily solve it. I also went a bit on Leetcode to do some Hard problems from Google and Facebook, and everything went well. Fast forward a couple of weeks, and I accepted my offer with Facebook. I am now almost through bootcamp and about to join an amazing team that is my dream fit. And I am now finally confident about interviewing!

Finally, I think that all that practice had a long-lasting effect on my ability as a software engineer. I am simply faster at coding than I ever was. I focused a lot on my coding fluency, so now I don't make trivial errors such as “off-by-one” loops, I don't need to go searching for documentation left and right, etc. This had an effect on my flow: I can keep focused on the idea if the implementation takes a few minutes as I don't get lost on implementation details anymore, so the productivity increase I experienced is greater than just the delta in time for the implementation itself.
Tl;dr - Yes, do it.

Ted Annan, former Senior Software Engineer at TripAdvisor (2015-2017)

I took this course in June of 2017 and it was worth every penny. Working in the industry for several years without having to interview, I was in dire need of a refresher since interviewing in the software engineering space is much different than work done on the job. This course was much more than that.I signed up and was immediately scheduled for a quick 30 minute phone call with the founder, Soham. Why? They don’t just want sign ups for money; they want to make sure your goals are aligned with what the course offers.

After outlining the course and curriculum, I got started. I attended remotely via video. The course was an in depth dive into the key topics necessary for an interview. Trees, Recursion, Dynamic Programming, Graphs, Object Modeling, Scalable Systems, etc - these were each dedicated a full 4 hours each (12 for scalable systems and 8 for dynamic programming) along with homework and timed tests every week. Besides the topics, they also focused on interview problem solving approach - step by step guidance on how to approach each type of problem. Office hours for questions are also very useful.

During the course and after, I had access to several resources to further ensure my success - 15 mock interviews with senior/principal engineers from reputable industry leaders such as Google, Facebook, Apple, LinkedIn, Dropbox, etc. These folks provided feedback after each mock interview which is PRICELESS because this is something you wouldn’t get from a real interview. This allowed me to hone my skills prior to the actual interviews.Another very important note, and it was shocking to me throughout the process - these folks actually care. Soham and other leaders of the course reached on to me on several occasions to check on my status and provide guidance. Nick spent an hour on the phone during late hours working on techniques to help calm the nerves during interviews and overcome fear.

This course was a life changer - I have since received 4 offers from top companies, Facebook included. Prior to this course (in 2015) when I interviewed with Facebook I didn’t get past the technical phone screen. I passed 12/14 phone screens, and got offers from 4 of the 6 companies I interviewed onsite with.

A couple of things to note: The course is extremely intensive - be prepared to spend 14 hours per week on lectures, tests, and homeworkThis will give you a strong base, but you will need to spend additional hours practicing on your own - I’d recommend 4–8 hours per week. This is mainly for solving more company, platform and role specific problems found online (via Google Search/Glassdoor). For example, I needed to solve more iOS specific questions since I was looking for an iOS role.Use the course resources! There are office hours, folks from top companies you can reach out to for company specific info, workshops for behavioral interviews, scheduling interviews, negotiating compensation, etc.

Ajith Jose, Software Development Engineer II at Amazon (2017-present)

I took the Interview Kickstart course last year as a remote student. Although I was doing my interview preparation few months before joining the course, I was unable to clear any of the top tier interviews. The course gave me a breadth wise understanding of all sorts of coding and system design questions you can expect from top-tier companies. It is pretty intense and you should be ready to spend close to 15 to 20 hours a week on interview prep alone.

There were many new question patterns discussed in the classes which I would have never bothered to learn had I learned myself without help. The instructors of the course are senior engineers who are working for companies like Google, LinkedIn, Dropbox and so on. The course is well structured into coding / system design topics and each class by an instructor focuses on one topic. Towards the second half of the course, you can begin taking mock interviews with engineers from top tier companies and they give you valuable feedback on how you can improve yourself.

While I was doing the course, I did attend some interviews initially which I did not clear. But with more practice and mock interviews, I started clearing interviews. Depending on how much you are already good with your CS fundamentals (data structures, algorithm and system design), the interview prep can extend beyond the 2-3 months timeframe. For me it took close to 5-6 months to see results.

I ended up getting multiple offers from top tier companies and I am currently working as a SDE 2 for Amazon.

Dwarak Nath Bakshi, One of the many refined products from IK

Hmmm I have never answered on Quora before. When I saw IK in the question I jumped up as though like reflex to answer this question.I was one of the cohorts in IK last year. Like any other cohort, my intent was to be able to find some kind of a secret pill there to “magically” ace through the “whiteboard” interviews, land in a You-name-it top-tier company, with a handsome sal and live happily ever after. A fairy tale indeed.

Well, I was in for a surprise. Rewinding back.. A telephonic interview with Amazon..

Interviewer: << after all the initial nice talks>> Given a root node of a linked list and an int k, can you reverse every k elements in the list. [[ I was elated, exactly the same question I had studied in Narasimha Karumanchi book. What a luck! Then.. I keep my pen on paper, drew few nodes.. then… then what??…!@###$
Me:<< buying time>> let me paraphrase the question for you….3 minutes later
Interviewer: We have not heard from you. Are you still there?
Me: <> Yes yes, I am drawing a picture in my notebook to manipulate the pointers (Sadly( Or fortunately?), this was when all the coding interview platforms were not available).10 minutes into the interview
Interviewer: If you could think aloud , it can help us understand your thought process
Me: Sure sure.. what I am thinking is … [[Damn! I am not thinking anything to think “aloud”..Then I pull up courage to spit out words like “node”,”next”,”swap” etc which I myself did not understand, let alone explaining it to the interviewer .25 minutes passed on a virtually muted phone call
Interviewer: Okay, looks like we lost you. May be lets look for sometime in future....Fast Forward to a recent past- telephonic with Facebook.
Interviewer: Given that letters are encoded like 1-A 2-B..Z-26, Given a number, can you give the number of possible encodings possible? Given 123, it can be abc or lc,aw.
Me:<< Again paraphrasing the question, this time with a better understanding- Enhanced the example to 5 digit number>>Interviewer:<> Sounds good.
Me: I think we can look at it recursively, if I can take the input as a string, I could either have a substring of size 1 or 2, If I take substring of 1, then I know that the number of encodings possible is 1+ number of encodings possible from rest of the string) If I take a substring of size 2, the number of encodings is 1+ number of encodings possible from rest of the string.. Sum of these two gives me the total number of encodings possible.

And I typed out a quick mathematical representation. <<25 min into the interview>> I have a working recursive solution <<35 min>> I have explained a small recursion tree and identified repeating sub problems and memorized the results of the past <<40 min>> 

Interviewer: If we have to do bottom up… 
Me: Yes, we can build the cache bottom up and eliminate the recursion
Interviewer: Can we optimize on memory?
Me:<> As the solution depends only on the outcome of n-1 and n-2, we can do the same in constant space
Interviewer: Thats exactly what i was looking for.....And I got a call onsite!

You might think, I am going to rave about IK for the transformation above. I actually want to. But let me keep it as objective as I can. I did not come out the polished piece just by attending the 2 month bootcamp in IK. After the bootcamp, I had to struggle, I had a lot of “mind freezes”, embarrassments and sometimes questioned my self-worth. I kept practicing, one easy problem a day, to one medium problem, to one hard problem.. and I am still practicing… Irrespective of where we get the knowledge from, it is our practice that can move us forward. I have still not switched companies. So what did I gain out of IK?

A Satsang of like-minded people, trying to overcome the same fear of “what is out there?”A holistic approach to approaching a problem, to not to get scared away by the problemA mindset, rather an obsession to look out for any new problem and get my hands dirty to try and solve it. This readiness was never there before.Loads of practice to break a problem , slowly to a level you can solve them individually and to cumulatively solve the whole problem and communicate the solution effectively.

Think through alternatives and evaluate the alternatives before even keeping hands on code (This is an immense take-away, that I still benefit from in my day to day work) Mock interviews with different styles of interviewers to limit any surprises out.

Some key concepts, well explained.. example I can never forget Spundun’s DP classes. I have got a love for DP after his way of simplifying it.Someone already pointed out Geeta Chaudry. Her sessions on recursion was an eye-opener to understanding recursions. Lots and lots of discussions on scalability, how different companies are built, how to systematically approach system design questions. What an interviewer looks for when he asks a open ended question like “Design twitter” My network has grown. Folks who come there are very talented and I have made a lot of Friends there. Soham Mehta has turned into a very good mentor for me to bounce my ideas with.

Above all I have become a better engineer. I am not actively looking out but I am confident to give my best shot at any interview. Outcome is not in our hands but we are performers we will do what we can do best."Perform!” I realize now, I had paid thinking I will get a “instant weight loss," but I got myself a muscle trainer to get fit than to lose weight, the right way and lasting! Hope you found this useful.

Tuan Dang, studied at University of California, San Diego


I took this course about 2 years ago. Each session (1–2 meetings) of the course covers a data structure / algorithm topic. On top of regular DS / AL topics, the course also has sessions on system design, Object Oriented Design, and Concurrency. These topics are regularly asked during technical interviews and there are not many online resources available to prepare for these types of questions.

I think the course is very hands on and touches on actual interview questions. There is a homework component to the course which covers the popular and challenging interview questions for each topic. If you actually try to do the homework on your own and then look for better / optimal solutions online, you will learn a lot. There are also tests in order to enforce your studying. In addition to homework and tests, students have many mock interviews on any topics they want. These interviews mirror the real interviews at top companies, and they are great opportunities to get practice.While taking this course, you will need to do a lot of preparation and studying on your own as well. You will have to invest your time (outside of class time) in order to improve your interview skills. I think you should take this course when you are ready to move and can invest a lot of time to prepare for technical interviews.

The course founder, Soham, shares many inspiring viewpoints about how we should look at tech interviews, as well as how we should pick our careers in order to grow. He cares about the students and the quality of his course. I still keep in touch with Soham until this day and ask him career advice.

Santhosh Chaitanya

I took this course after seeing this Quora reviews. Yes I bet its the most effective and intensive boot-camp course for Algorithms, Data structures, System Design and scalability and Behavioral interviews.

The only mantra for cracking the technical interviews is Practice and this course helps up to do it cleverly and effectively. Moreover, this kind of practice cannot be done independently by ourselves in such a short time.

The more you put in this course the more you get out of it. Its not a magic potion but only a systematic preparation which requires steady hard work based on your personal level of technical fluency.

FYI please prepare the pre-requisites for this course for 100% ROI.

Anonymous Quokka

I took the class in May 2017, and can without any doubt say that this was the best investment of my life. Interview Kickstart helps software engineers with normal jobs get intellectually full-filling jobs and double their salary.

When I started the class I found it a little bit pricey, but now that I have seen everything that is included, I’m wondering how it can even be a profitable business. Here is a list of a few things that I think they are not advertising well enough: All the instructors and mock-interviewers actually work in a Software Engineer or Engineering Manager role at companies like Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. You have a career coach who is a former recruiter from a top company. You have life-long access to their alumni network. They provide free food during the long evening and week-end sessions. :)

Strong Liang, Software Engineer/Engineering Manager at Uber (2015-present)

I took IK 3 years ago after going through many interviews that didn’t work out and couldn’t find the root cause. I found my experience at IK very useful in a few aspects:

1) feedback from interviewers at the kind of companies I wanted to get in, both good and bad. Having failed many interviews, I was eager to find out what I was missing. After going through a number of mock interviews, I learned that it was not what I had thought it would be. Having this understanding of my strengths and weaknesses helped me maintain an objective view on my performances.

2) support in doing lots of coding questions with good coverage. For someone who’s organized and disciplined, this benefit probably wouldn’t apply. I was lacking both in my preparation, so getting assignments helped me focus.

3) support and guidance in going through actual interviews. Soham kept close touch with me and offered a lot of guidance and encouragement navigating the interview scene. This was quite helpful, as it was not smooth sailing right after the program.Eventually, I got two offers, with one being Uber, where I had been working since then.

Anonymous Dragon  

I took a 4 weeks crash course here. And its the best course I have ever signed up for, I enjoyed it so much. Having had 5 years of professional experience in one of Silicon Valley giants, I had forgotten how it was to interview. By the end of course I was so eager to solve more challenging problems. I learnt how to methodically approach a DP problem which I could not have done no matter how many problems I solved on my own. The teachers are great and more importantly the course is structured very well with the mock interviews with real interviewers, very challenging homework problems and feedback that you are sure to succeed afterwards.  

Last but not least I would like to mention Soham Mehta puts in a lot of efforts to help, if you do well in the class. He gives invaluable advice on how to evaluate offers and companies. I would highly recommend it if you want to cut short your next career switch from 4-6months to a month.

Karthik Gomadam Rajagopal, Ph.D Computer Science, University of Georgia (2009)

I was part of the January 2018 cohort of IK. I am going to try and be objective in my review, highlighting the things I liked and the things I wish they can do better.

My reason for joining IK: I am fairly comfortable in my CS and algorithm basics. I do not have much interview experience and somehow, I had not failed at a tech interview at that point. However, I knew that I had some serious bugs to take care of before interviewing again. The bugs I identified were: I would jump to solve the problem too soon, without elucidating a few examples and getting the problem clarified.Often, the first point leads to encountering corner cases that I would freeze me up. Rather than speak out clearly where I had made a mistake, I would withdraw into a shell, thinking how I screwed the interview up.

During my prep, I would often not solve a problem completely. I would just talk about how I can solve it (to myself) and then believe that I can attack it during an interview.

I joined IK to see how I can debug these issues. I had a friend who had taken the course and recommended this to me.My view of IK and why IK?:

IK is a program that guides one towards thinking about problem solving and preparing for interviews. They make it clear that you go far as you practice. However, just writing code and solving problems does not take you far in your prep. That is where IK comes in.

For me, one place I gained was in learning to analyze how I approached my solution, where I am getting stuck, and how to track my progress and improvement. I created my own data driven approach to track my progress, based on what I heard at IK.Systematizes interview prep. They do their best to help us see through the mystery of a tech interview process. I am not going to segue on how broken tech hiring is.Helps in consistent effort. One of the hardest things to do is to have a consistent effort in preparing for interviews. IK does cost a bit, but spending that money means, you are there 10 hours a week for classes and are trying your darnest to get your homework done. To those who question the cost, how many of us have signed up for Coursera courses and have never gone beyond lecture 2? We are conditioned to treat money as something very important. Giving money for a service pushes us to make sure we get the most out of it. And yes, my sign on bonus alone was many times more than what I paid IK.Shows how solution is evaluated in an interview. Every week you have a test covering the topics discussed in the previous sessions. After the test, the instructor goes over the solution, discussing many of the possible approaches and how each one can be evaluated. And over the 2 months, it gives a benchmark to evaluate to see how far we have come along (in how close our test answers to those that are considered good answers).

(Some) Really smart instructors: I want to mention Gaurav and Sunny. Gaurav has demystified trees for me for life. And, Sunny just has a very composed way of explaining things, never frustrated, even when I made multiple attempts to solve problems fast.

Not an algorithms course: You are sent a few links to revise your basic concepts a few weeks before the program. I did not really do it in time and struggled a bit to catch up. IK is not a replacement for your algos course in school. Think of your algos course as introducing various tools and how they can be used. IK teaches you how to tap into those tools during an interview prep. I strongly recommend watching MIT lectures on CLRS and Stanford recursion lectures.Where I felt IK could have been better:

Design: I interviewed for Principal and Senior engineer positions and as such topical system design was very important for me. By topical, I mean how to use microservices, how to use Kafka, When to use Cassandra vs Redis, and so on. Again, my expectation is not for IK to teach me basics of distributed systems or distributed databases (although in the super short time he had, Gaurav did an excellent job of going over the basics, Nick condensed an entire OOPS course in 2 sessions really well), I would have really loved to get some sense of where the instructors have seen these technologies being used in their companies (giving analogous use cases of course).

Consistency of instructors: Instructors and even what is covered vary from cohort to cohort. I had a chance to interact with members from a different cohort and their experience and satisfaction levels were very different. In a few cases, even the solutions that were discussed as optimal was different. Given how big IK is getting, it might be helpful to have a more consistent set of instructors. Again, I understand that instructors have full time jobs and it might be harder to get this done.

Consistency of curriculum: I feel this can be achieved a bit more easily than the consistency of instructors. It also helps members to prepare better for upcoming sessions. Sometimes, the sessions meander into discussing fundamentals that CS students are assumed to know (again we forget a lot of what we have read, if we do not use them in our jobs. This is not meant to offend anyone.) and having a curriculum serves as a point of reference and would help folks brush up on their basics.

My interview statistics: 7 phone screens, 5 onsites (attended only 3 as I accepted an offer before the other 2) and 3 offers. I decided to join Coupang, an exciting e-commerce company.Overall, I would recommend IK. I am grateful to all my instructors for taking the time to help me. Interviewing an imperfect science and IK tries best to bring some order to chaos. You feel confident and most importantly, IK brought back the love of problem solving that a few years of “software engineering” had managed to kill. I am thankful to Soham, Ryan, Nick, and the team.

Other resources: Leetcode, Netflix design videos on YouTube, MIT lectures, Stanford recursion lectures, Algorithms Design Manual, Tushar Roy’s videos on Youtube, Geeksforgeeks (mainly as a solutions reference).

Anonymous Mongoose

K Course is super useful to practice for interviews. At times when we practise on our own, it's difficult to bring a structure to the preparation. There are numerous practise platforms and interview experiences available online, but IK gives the human touch to the process. IK's overall program structure and practice session's reinforce the key strategies required to solve certain kind of problems. That was very useful to gauge where I stand in terms of preparation, then when I look at considerable number of interview experiences online, it helped me analyze where exactly I need to be to challenge such an interview. Best part is access to real interviewers from reputed companies sharing their insight on how they interview candidates, what do they look for, what's the best strategy for certain situations. How to measure the interviewer's intent, how to read his hint, stuff like that. Mock interviewers patiently explained what happened in the interview and suggested smart suggestions to overcome the gaps. I view this program as a lifetime investment to my carrier which I could reuse and fallback for support whenever I need. Overall, the program gave me confidence which is immense under stressful interview times.

Divya Man, Attended Interview Kickstart

It was very useful! As someone who doesn’t have any Software engineers at top-tier companies in her personal or professional network, didn't have a CS degree, and couldn’t at the time afford a Bootcamp, I was glad to see that a program like IK existed. The mock interviews at IK are done by engineers who have experience interviewing at high-bar tech companies so the feedback from these was a pretty clear indicator of my strengths/weaknesses. Additionally, all of the teachers and the founder are happy to give prep advice. These two ingredients, along with enormous amounts time spent of problem solving and a “never give up in the face of rejection” attitude WILL put you on the path to success :D

Manan Shah, works at NBCUniversal

I have not tried the entire course which is quite lengthy and designed for software developers and engineers because my skill set was more on the Database Administration. Nevertheless, I realized after a few failed interviews that even though the job profiles I interview for are Database related, interviewers cannot part with the integrated function of programming and logic testing that are a part of any job that has to work with software programmers within a team, be it data analyst, sys admin, QA tester, DevOps engineer or even a DBA. If just a few interactions with the IK Team experts could bring 100% success I can imagine taking a full course with them can without a doubt make one a ruler in the job market for whom the prospective employers would line up with their most unbeatable offers. 

Makes me remember a recruiter telling me one Friday afternoon after she made me an offer, "I hope you have a terrible interview on Monday" - referring to the next and last interview I was scheduled with another company due to which I had requested a day extra to respond to her offer.

More worth than IK's fees would be the knowledge you would gain on not just the technical topics but more importantly on how to present yourself in a way that makes you inevitable and too good to pass for any prospective employer. In my opinion, Soham and his team knows indeed, how the world works!

Anonymous Llama

Accidentally came across IK when it was still in its nascent stage and I had come off a poor job search... Had a thrilling experience for 3 weeks crash-course, but had to take a hiatus for around 4 months right after... Revised my notes in couple of weeks and started testing the real waters in Mid march with all uncertainty.. Well the offers I started receiving was a testament that I had developed some skill which the interviewers were looking for.. 

IK is not a question bank, In person angle of it makes it way different and much larger than what is out there. Assessments from real world geeks (part of his wonderful team) and hearing their perspectives go a long way in shaping your personality to land the good programming jobs... and add to that an aspect of relationships,alumni and advice at all stages... Nailing the coding interview coming true.. Soham is a gem and I am forever indebted to him for this experience.

Ed Huang, UI Developer, Entrepreneur, Programmer

I think it’s a great course offers a lot of value. They have veteran interviewers from top companies that will help you with your interviews. Over the course you’ll actually have 8 or so mocks where you’ll get live feedback. They cover data structures and algorithms but main focus on the INTERVIEW. What’s cool is they’ll even refund your tuition if get into one of the top name companies.

On Yelp


Neelesh T. - * * * * * (5-star) review

I enrolled in Interview Kickstart in April of 2016. As a software engineer who had been working at a company for about 12 years, I was pretty rusty when it came to technical interviews and I knew I needed a lot of practice and preparation to be successful. I had tried self-study using books like Cracking the Coding Interview, but I wanted something more structured.

I came across Interview Kickstart and it was exactly what I needed. The course was 8 weeks long (2 sessions a week) and covered all of the topics that a candidate would encounter in a technical interview (trees, recursion, dynamic programming, graphs, etc). Each instructor-led session was packed with information and there were lots of problems to practice. The instructors themselves were quite knowledgeable and approachable. The course was intense, but it was a great use of my time.

Apart from the sessions, the other part that I found helpful was the mock interview practice. Having an opportunity to put into practice what I had been learning was tremendously helpful.

At the end of the course, I felt much more confident about my abilities, and interviewed with several companies. I was able to land an offer from a premier technical employer in the Bay Area, and I definitely owe this to Interview Kickstart.

Highly recommended!

Ashok A. - * * * * * (5-star) review

IK Course is super useful to practice for interviews. At times when we practise on our own, it's difficult to bring a structure to the preparation. There are numerous practise platforms and interview experiences available online, but IK gives the human touch to the process. IK's overall program structure and practice session's reinforce the key strategies required to solve certain kind of problems. That was very useful to gauge where I stand in terms of preparation, then when I look at considerable number of interview experiences online, it helped me analyze where exactly I need to be to challenge such an interview. Best part is access to real interviewers from reputed companies sharing their insight on how they interview candidates, what do they look for, what's the best strategy for certain situations. How to measure the interviewer's intent, how to read his hint, stuff like that. Mock interviewers patiently explained what happened in the interview and suggested smart suggestions to overcome the gaps. I view this program as a lifetime investment to my carrier which I could reuse and fallback for support whenever I need. Overall, the program gave me confidence which is immense under stressful interview times.

Santhosh C. - * * * * * (5-star) review

I had enrolled into June 2016 batch after going through reviews on Quora. Definitely, its the most comprehensive technical interview  bootcamp for Algorithms , Data structures, System Design and scalability and Behavioral interviews.Instructors are really really good, humble, knowledgeable and provide great learning experience. Preperation pattern is of top-notch quality.

The only mantra for cracking the technical interviews is Practice Practice and Practice..... and this coursehelps up to do it cleverly and effectively. Moreover, this kind of practice cannot be done independently by ourselves in such a short time.

The more you put in this course the more you get out of it. Its not a magic potion but only a systematic preparation which requires steady hard work based on your personal level of technical fluency and willingness to practice more problems.

Please prepare the course pre-requisites thoroughly before you start the program otherwise you will feel overwhelming and swamped.


On Google Reviews

Michael H. - * * * * * (5-star) review

I can't think of a better recipe for technical interview success than combining Interview Kickstart program with hard work. I participated in the August 2017 cohort and received offers at nearly all of the companies I interviewed at, including the two FANG companies that I interviewed at.

The Interview Kickstart program is well structured and includes two months of classes to brush up on technical areas, weekly behavioral workshops, thoughtful homework problems, and valuable mock interviews. The Interview Kickstart team is outstanding and wants to see you succeed.

If you are willing to work hard, I believe you will find Interview Kickstart to be well worth the cost and it will provide very solid foundation and direction for your interview success.

One final tip: the course moves fast and it is expected that you will spend at least one month after the first two months of classes doing mock interviews and finishing homework problems before you interview at your dream companies. Keep that in mind when deciding which cohort to enroll in.

(Via CourseReport.com)

Amit Pal • Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Data Structures and Algorithms Interview Bootcamp • Campus: Sunnyvale - * * * * * (5/5 overall score, 18/20 total stars)

This is the perfect place if you want to prepare for the coding/technical interviews in the silicon valley. The standards are pretty high in silicon valley which forces you to have a thorough practice and tailored preparation.The syllabus for this course is well thought and teachers are awesome.

Anonymous Lemur • Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Data Structures and Algorithms Interview Bootcamp • Campus: Sunnyvale - * * * * * (5/5 overall score, 20/20)

Interview Kickstart is a terrific cohort with some insanely good faculty members who are industry pros and are hugely vested in your interest. The culture is highly impressive with most of the people down to earth, approachable and very very smart. Apart from being a coding bootcamp, IK is also doing a great job in covering other topics like Scalability, Concurrency, and Object Oriented Design Thank you IK

Zulma Marti • Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Data Structures and Algorithms Interview Bootcamp • Campus: Sunnyvale - * * * * * (5/5 overall score, 18/20 stars)

Anonymous Koala• Software Engineer • Graduate - * * * * * (5/5 overall score, 18/20 stars)


I went through InterviewKickstart a few months ago and found it very helpful despite having started studying on my own beforehand. InterviewKickstart forced me to actually adopt habits I already knew I should have adopted but hadn’t at. The program’s not for you if, when you go to prepare for interviewing, you:

Successfully set up and follow a multi-month study schedule that sequences topics and has you spending 10–20 hours a week deliberately practicing solving Leetcode-style questions and systems design ones.

Find friends who interview people at their companies and will give you critical mock interview feedback over and over again as your practice.Immediately jump into mercenary mode and start strategizing about your bound-to-be-successful negotiations when you get an offer.

Especially with the popularization of deliberate practice, many of us programmer types know we should prepare for interviews roughly how I described above but, as far as I can tell, very few of us actually do this. I firmly believe that getting people to do things they already know they should do but don’t is truly the “secret sauce” of InterviewKickstart. That said, I’ll briefly summarize the pros & cons of InterviewKickstart.

Pros:

Solid problem sets for most algorithms and system design topics. While the individual questions in the problem sets won’t blow your mind compared to what you might see on Leetcode, the order in which they’re presented and the solutions (and TA help) provided make getting stuck less common and less frustrating.

There are a few really good teachers who teach at InterviewKickstart. In classes with these teachers, you learn not only content but also how someone who is better than you (or me at least) at thinking would approach a problem.

The program includes 12 mock interviews and the mock interviewers (at least the ones that I did sessions with) are all solid.

There’s a person at InterviewKickstart who focuses on behavioral/negotiation stuff and he’s quite helpful if you’re not naturally good at this part of the job process.

I noticed some other commenters on this Quora post arguing that InterviewKickstart’s “all hype”. From what I can tell, that’s inaccurate in the sense that InterviewKickstart promises it can help people willing to work hard get jobs at big name tech company and does so at a reasonably high success rate. While one could argue that highlights a flaw in hiring processes as much as the value of the program, it doesn’t negate the fact that InterviewKickstart is succeeding at what it promises to do, help people get jobs they wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.

Cons:

There are a bunch of teachers who are just OK. While the really good teachers treat classes like exploratory learning ventures, the OK ones come off as wanting to show you that they are really good at interview style problems.

Most people doing the program are, unsurprisingly, focused on finding a job at a big tech name. If you don’t like being in an environment where it feels as though people are openly trying to achieve a traditionally valued goal, then you’ll be frustrated by the one-track-mindedness of most InterviewKickstart students. That said, in my cohort’s case, the one-track-mindedness didn’t devolve into zero-sum competitiveness. People were still helpful to each other and encouraging about others’ job prospects.

To summarize, InterviewKickstart helped me do things I knew I should do but wasn’t doing. I’d definitely recommend it to someone who’s willing to put in 10–20 hours a week preparing for interviews, wouldn’t be able to maintain this level of focus on their own, and wants a job at a “big name” tech company that uses algorithms-style interviews to evaluate candidates.


When We Asked Them


Bhaskar R.

“I strongly recommend this course if you are looking for a job, want to revisit your DS & Algorithms learning or honing your interview skills. One good thing about this course is its mock interview sessions which are nothing short of real interviews one encounters. Soham and his team discuss some of the finest points of tech interviews which i applied proved helpful. All the best in your job hunting.”

Anonymous Jack Rabbit

Before I started at IK, I was working for a company in bay area for six years and wanted to be part of elite group of companies like Google, FB etc. So, I was preparing on my own for a while (completed Cracking the code interviews book and did a large number of questions on GeeksforGeeks website on various topics at that time). But even after doing that I was not very confident and used to wonder if I was preparing in a right way or not. I was kind of struggling to keep up the pace and understanding some of the topics.I wanted to give my everything into the preparation but was directionless at that time and wanted a systematic way in which I could prepare for the Interviews.

I used to read a lot on Quora about interview preparation and interview experiences. There some of Soham's posts caught my attention and got to know that he was actually running a company called Interview Kickstart to help candidates prepare for Interviews. That's what I was looking for at that time. I talked with Soham over the phone to know more about the coursework and everything looked in place for me. I was convinced that Interview Kickstart was the thing I was looking for. I ended up joining their July, 2017 cohort.

Before the start of any cohort at IK, we are given preparation material that everybody should go through before starting the classes so that everybody is on the same page and have all the basics covered to understand the topics in the class. I made sure that I complete that material before the classes start and that really helped a lot in long run and I believe everyone must do so. As I was preparing on my own before and went through the prep material fully, I didn't find the classes too hard to follow. I made sure that I finish each of my homework and tests before deadline. The quality of questions we have in homeworks and tests is very good as they strongly test your knowledge for that particular topic and cover wide variety of questions. I tried to give as many mock interviews as I could before my actual interviews and the feedback from each interviewer really helped me to improve. I really liked all the workshops as well that helped me to prepare my resume, get ready for the behavioral interviews and learn about the dos and donts while negotiating with companies during offer phase.

So I was having a dream of joining these big companies and with my persistent effort for few months and continued guidance of teachers I was able to get through most of the big companies and finally joined Google.

I would highly recommend IK to everyone who is looking for a job and willing to work hard. The best investment of my time and money so far in my life I would say.

Archana V.

*“This course definitely has put me at more ease with all the practice” 

Anonymous Capybara

*“It made me so comfortable with interviewing, that I would ask for more questions in interviews” 

Srini S.

*“You exposed us to such difficult problems, that many others became easy” 

Anonymous Chickadee

*“I will never look at Amazon’s ‘top selling items’ the same way again” 

Srinivas S.

*“I now exactly know what my strengths are, and where I need more practice” 

Anonymous Fox

*“I found my job several weeks sooner than what I’d have found otherwise” 

Ashwin S.

I was working for a startup and in 2 months, I received the axe. I was devastated because I moved specifically to SF for this job. I also bought a car for the commute. When I got fired I felt so embarrassed and stressed out. I entered IK unemployed with only a year's worth of experience in the industry.

Before this start up, I attempted to study for interviews on my own. I honestly felt that I was settling for this startup and I hated that feeling...perhaps that fueled my eventual termination after 2 months. I was convinced that there had to be a program that I can do to reach the companies that I truly wanted.

I felt more at ease. Anytime I failed an interview or had some very bad days, I received the right kind of mental support and encouragement.

I'm so proud of getting results within a month after my program. I'm so proud of eventually accepting a solid offer from one of the best software companies in the planet.

This journey is a tough one for sure. I think to succeed in this requires a special way of thinking that not many people can do by just putting in half the effort. I'd recommend this program to people who are willing to give it a 100%.

Anonymous Armadillo

Before Interview Kickstart, I was a graduate student still in school. Out of undergrad, I wasn't even remotely prepared to interview or land a good tech job, so I ended up somewhere that I really did not like. That experience had made me even more nervous about the interview process, turning it into some seemingly unachievable goal. I was too nervous to apply to internships because in my head the bar was to know every algorithm ever written in an algorithms textbook by heart. As I prepared to search for a full time role, I knew I needed to do something different.

As I looked around the internet for interview prep tips, I stumbled on one of Soham’s Quora posts where he mentioned Interview Kickstart. I visited the website, and it sounded like exactly what I needed. I didn’t have any way to gauge my preparedness, to structure my preparation, or to break “interview-ready” into manageable and achievable goals. I knew that trying to “know every problem on GeeksForGeeks” or “solve every LeetCode Hard Problem” were the impossible goals I had set which scared me away from applying to an internship. I was inspired by the fact that Interview Kickstart represented people who had actually been through and succeeded in this process who could help me break it down and move forward past my anxiety.

As I moved through the program, I grew more and more confident. The program built on my algorithms knowledge from school, but helped structure it. We went through all the relevant topics, covering and refreshing the areas that were highly important. What was so fantastic was that each topic started at a level which felt comfortable and then had a plan for progressing into more and more difficult areas. The problems covered in class helped set the stage for each topic we covered while the homeworks helped push the boundaries and comfort level with more difficult problems. As I began to do the mock interviews, the process finally felt real. The target was no longer some far-off goal I would never hit, it became only months of dedicated preparation away. I really enjoyed how the program was both easy and difficult at the same time; covering the topics and doing the in class problems was very manageable and helped solidify my knowledge, while the homeworks delivered very challenging and difficult problems. The best part for me was the mock interviews. The lump-in-your-throat feeling is probably the hardest part about a real interview, and the mock interviews helped replicate this perfectly. The mock interviews helped me improve some of my basic problem solving skills in a setting that felt completely real.

I am most proud of sticking with the program and forcing myself forward in the interview process. As the homework begins to accumulate, many can feel the temptation to simply stop. Many daunting problems a week on top of a busy schedule could cause anyone to simply stop. Even though I wasn’t finishing every problem every week, I committed to keep moving forward and keep solving as many problems as I could. As the beginning of the school year progressed, I forced myself to move forward. Even though I did not feel 100% ready and had not completed every problem, I felt that I had to move forward. I applied to a variety of jobs and did a number of mock interviews. Even though I wasn’t 100% ready as I wanted to be (which I know I will never be because in my crazy head that means memorizing CLRS), I got interviews and passed them. I didn’t pass some interviews with some companies, but I did very well with plenty of companies and received numerous offers. I also really liked the people. All of the instructors and TA’s were extraordinarily helpful. They helped inspire me to think that I definitely could make and helped me work through and understand extremely difficult issues. Despite being in a remote cohort, I also had the chance to meet up with several of my classmates outside of class. We had a great time working through the problems, commiserating over the difficulty of the tech interview process, and getting to know one another. I will keep in touch with everyone I met at Interview Kickstart.

Interview Kickstart is exactly what it promises and advertises itself to be. It does not pretend to be a magic button you can push to get a job offer, instead it helps you set a course towards greater success. The course does not pretend it will be easy, and from day 1 it tells you it will be difficult. However, Interview Kickstart helps you understand that it is absolutely doable. It takes hard work and dedication, and Interview Kickstart gives you the perfect place to harness and focus that work and dedication. Interview Kickstart was the best investment I’ve ever made in myself and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to work their way to a great role in tech.

Chanda P.

I had decided that i need to make a career change but was just not sure where to start. IK helped me carve my path and set me up for success in my journey of job hunt.

I was desperately looking for someone/organization who could advice me on how to succeed in today's market. It was after 8 years I decided to make a switch. And times have changed!

I understood that the path ahead is not easy. But at least i knew what the path and goal is. Had I not been to IK, It would have been like walking in the dark and not sure which direction to take. Some lessons were tough. But constant practice and determination helped me. Besides the career coaching was very helpful. The mockups and tests really help in checking the progress.

I am very happy that i found IK and participated in the cohort. It has helped me improve a lot in terms of right skills for job hunt. And also, it has helped me get more confident and got me talking to other smart people in the industry which i used to shy away off.  

I would recommend IK to others. Its worth every penny :-).  While they claim not to be psychiatrist company but they have been very helpful even in that aspect with career coaching and one on one sessions to discuss anything and everything around job hunt. They are eager to hear every single experience that we have in industry and boost our morale to get better!

Anonymous Anaconda

I wasn't looking for a change. I wanted to learn more about the program and get better in improving my problem solving skills. I came to know about IK from my friend. I am passionate about teaching and always wanted to learn and get better in improving my problem solving skills. It was hard as one needs to dedicate 20 to 30 hours every week outside of work. The fact that I didn't give up makes me proud. Anyone wanting to improve their problem solving skills should seriously consider signing up for IK.

Niloy M.

I always had interview phobia, judged myself before interviews.

On completion of one of the most visible projects in Oracle RDBMS, I felt the need to try out other companies that work at scale because of my interest in distributed systems. I wanted something in the lines of coaching classes of India where like-minded students used to study together to prepare for SAT equivalents. I looked up online and found out about IK.

It was an eye opening experience. IK gave me a good idea on how interviews are conducted these days, topics that are required to be covered. The material was excellent, represented an universal space of problems that can be asked in interviews. It changed my attitude in facing interviews. Definitely would recommend.

Anonymous Chinchilla

I was working for a startup and in 2 months, I received the axe. I was devastated because I moved specifically to SF for this job. I also bought a car for the commute. When I got fired I felt so embarrassed and stressed out. I entered IK unemployed with only a year's worth of experience in the industry.

Before this start up, I attempted to study for interviews on my own. I honestly felt that I was settling for this startup and I hated that feeling...perhaps that fueled my eventual termination after 2 months. I was convinced that there had to be a program that I can do to reach the companies that I truly wanted.

I felt more at ease. Anytime I failed an interview or had some very bad days, I received the right kind of mental support and encouragement.

I'm so proud of getting results within a month after my program. I'm so proud of eventually accepting a solid offer from one of the best software companies in the planet.

This journey is a tough one for sure. I think to succeed in this requires a special way of thinking that not many people can do by just putting in half the effort. I'd recommend this program to people who are willing to give it a 100%.

Divya Y

I had been planning to switch jobs for quite some time. It was really confusing with so much preparation material and information on the web and it was hard for me to do so much with my current job and an infant.

I am glad I was a part of IK August 2017 remote batch. Best part of IK being curated content, so I did not have to search web anymore. Excellent faculty, homework/test questions, Daily TA and mock interviews really helped a lot. I now only had to concentrate on working hard, practice questions and do not care about searching another question on the web.  The course is very methodically designed for both beginners and Senior software engineers.  Best part about IK was System Design, which is very hard to prepare and the mock interviews which gave me confidence.  Hardest was keeping up with the homework.

I never knew I could actually revise all the concepts in just 2-3 months time, I was really proud of it. I had been so afraid of interviews and being judged before IK, but after IK I found myself confident and happy to jump in for any interview without doubts.

Definitely recommend, a couple of my friends have already enrolled with IK.

Anonymous Honey Badger

*“Most problems are really not that complicated; I just think they are” 

Brian V.

*“I got my a** kicked”