Bagging an offer with Netflix is quite the dream for many software engineers. An inclusive and diverse company culture, unlimited vacation leave, inviting perks, and the chance to work on impactful projects are only a few reasons that make Netflix a splendid place to work.
To be part of Netflix’s amazing work environment takes considerable effort though. You’ve got to clear an exacting interview process that aims to test your core technical and programming capabilities. With a measly acceptance rate of under 2% for software engineering roles, even experienced programmers feel the heat of interviewing. And guess what? The majority fail to meet the standard. By adopting the right prep strategy, however, landing a job at this entertainment behemoth is certainly possible.
In this article, we’ll help you understand how to land Netflix Software Engineering Jobs.
Here’s what “How to get software engineering jobs at Netflix” will cover:
- Why do software engineers want to work at netflix?
- What does Netflix look for?
- How to prepare for the Netflix Software Engineering Interview
- Netflix interview process and timeline
- Negotiating your salary
- Cracking FAANG Interview with Interview Kickstart
Why do software engineers want to work at Netflix?
The current day has seen Netflix establish itself as the leading entertainment service provider in the world by providing unfettered access to high quality entertainment content. The over-the-top subscription-based entertainment platform has witnessed a massive upsurge of subscribers in recent years, bloating the company’s net worth in the process.
Another interesting feature about working at Netflix is that employees enjoy unlimited vacation time along with a host of other perks including stock options, remote work, and bonuses.
What does Netflix look for in candidates?
Netflix has set the bar high in what it looks for in candidates. The bottomline is that if you are a great coder and problem-solver, and exhibit real passion for the role, you are exactly what Netflix is looking for.
From the professional angle, here’s what will qualify you for the role:
- A Bachelor's and/or a Master’s degree in computer science or a related technical field like Information Science or Information Technology.
How to prepare for the Netflix Software Engineering Interview?
The technical interview at Netflix is fundamentally structured to test your problem-solving skills. In order to come out on top, you’ll have to be nothing less than a master coder and problem-solver.
Brushing up on your knowledge in core data structures, algorithms, and systems design is the primary requisite, but not everything. There are many other aspects that come into play through the interview process that help recruiters make a hiring decision.
If your Netflix interview is around the corner, here are some important points to keep in mind:
Have a structured and comprehensive prep plan
The first step involves effectively planning your prep strategy. To ace the technical rounds at Netflix, your knowledge on data structures and algorithms has to be sound. While devising your strategy, keep in mind to devote ample time for solving problems around these concepts. Also, make sure your plan accommodates adequate time for behavioral interview prep. Akin to interview processes at other tech behemoths, Netflix lays considerable importance to behavioral interviews.
Solve problems everyday to improve your problem-solving skills
Good problem-solving skills is the result of relentless practice. If you want to take on the competition and run the victory lap, you must be ready to devote a couple hours everyday to solve coding problems.
By doing this, you essentially expose yourself to diverse solution patterns, amping up your problem solving skills in the process. At the end of it, you’ll be able to solve complex problems that you haven’t encountered before by identifying and applying solution patterns to them.
Practice mock interviews with programmers/hiring managers from Netflix
Practicing mock interviews with the right professionals is crucial to interview success. When we speak of the “right professionals”, we’re referring to technical leads and hiring managers who’re actively employed with Netflix and are closely associated with the interview process.
The right professionals will give you the right type of feedback, enabling you to make insightful amends to your approach. Interview Kickstart makes this happen for you - you can practice as many as 15 Live Mock Interviews with experienced and qualified FAANG hiring managers and technical leads who can give you exactly the type of feedback needed to ace tough technical interviews.
Think out solutions aloud
This is a tip that’s specific to the interview. While solving a problem in the interview, talk out your solution to give the interviewer a peek into your thought process and analytical approach. The idea is to find the most effective solutions to problems, and hiring managers are particularly interested to know your chain of thought. If you’re able to envision the most effective solution to a problem, thinking the solution aloud will give out the right message.
Use competitive programming platforms to hone your coding skills
Make sure you’re active on competitive programming platforms in the months leading up to your interview. Platforms like Leetcode, TopCoder and CodeChef are fitting resources to hone your coding skills and raise your own standard. More so, practicing a wide range of problems with varying difficulty and differing patterns will stand you in the right stead to solve tricky and significantly challenging problems in the interview.
Optimize your LinkedIn Profile
Netflix shortlists profiles by using LinkedIn’s bullion search algorithm that scans profiles for relevant keywords.
By optimizing your profile to incorporate the right structure and keywords (based on the role you’re applying to), you can land interviews for open positions at Netflix.
Interview Kickstart’s Technical Interview Masterclass goes the mile in helping you optimize your LinkedIn profile and resume to land interviews at FAANG and tier-1 companies.
Take out time to write a great resume cover letter
Spend time to craft a cover letter that distinctly describes why you’d like to be part of the Netflix family. Make sure to adequately highlight your career highs by mentioning challenging projects you took on and saw through.
Learn about Netflix’s job culture and values
Netflix has a culture that’s unique and amazing - one that’s quite different from most company cultures. It adopts a “people over process” approach that fundamentally seeks to value every single employee.
While always aspiring to hire the best talent and keeping only the most effective, Netflix greatly values attributes such as integrity, inclusion, respect, collaboration, and excellence.
Netflix Interview Process and timeline
The Netflix interview process is built to test your knowledge in data structures, distributed systems design, and algorithms. Similar to processes at Facebook, Google and Amazon, here’s what you’ll typically encounter if you get shortlisted for a software engineering interview:
Initial Phone Screen
The initial phone screen happens with a recruiter from human resources. The requirements of the position are discussed with you, and the recruiter gets a fair idea of your technical skills and experience. If you’re deemed fit for the role, details pertaining to subsequent steps in the process are discussed, and the interview dates are fixed.
Recruiters in this round eliminate profiles that don’t satisfy the job role’s requirements. So, when you apply to open positions, make sure your technical skills align with the demands of the position.
Tips to sail through the Initial Phone Screen:
- Make sure your Linkedin profile is up to speed with your latest experience and skill set.
- Prepare to answer questions around past projects that you’ve worked on.
- Ask perceptive questions on the requirements of the position and further steps in the process.
Technical Phone Screen and coding assignment
The real evaluation of your technical prowess happens in this round. The Technical Phone Screen is built to give recruiters a sizable understanding of your coding and programming skills.
You will be asked to solve one or two coding problems around core data structures and algorithms. Typically, hiring managers in this round seek to test if your good problem solving skills are up to standard. So ideally, you’ll have to elevate your problem-solving game to give yourself the best chance.
The technical screen usually takes place remotely, and coding assignments are conducted through shared docs (google docs) or coding-interview platforms (like Hackerrank).
After solving the problem(s), you can expect questions around the approach you took and the concepts you applied. If your performance is satisfactory in this round, you’ll be invited to the
Some tips for the Technical Phone Screen
- The programming language you choose is key. Your knowledge of concepts in the language should be extensive enough to code up complex algorithms. Besides swotting up on core technical topics (data structures and algorithms), brush up on concepts in your programming language as well.
- Use a Breadth First Search approach rather than the Depth First Search to look at the approach from different angles.
- Practice coding problems everyday and categorize questions based on patterns. By understanding patterns, you’ll build the ammunition to solve new and challenging problems.
- Sign up for coding challenges and get active on coding forums.
- Give yourself at least a month’s time to prepare for the technical phone screen.
The Netflix Onsite Interview
Whether you’re an ideal fit at Netflix or not is decided in the Onsite.
You’ll typically have to go through three rounds of interview - the Coding round, design round, and the behavioral round.
The coding round:
The coding round will involve solving one or two problems around data structures and algorithms. The extent of your problem solving skills is tested in this round. Hiring managers ask you detailed questions around the pattern and approach you pursued while solving the problem(s).
Here are the important topics feature in Netflix’s onsite coding round:
- Sorting Algorithms
- Recursion & Backtracking
- Trees & its Variants
- Linked Lists, Stacks and Queues
- Graphs and its Variants (including Greedy Algorithms)
- Dynamic Programming
The design round:
The design round tests your capabilities in engineering and distributed systems design. The following concepts are important:
- Object Modeling/API Design
- Scalable Systems
The behavioral round
The behavioral round at Netflix is extremely important in deciding the final outcome. Especially for senior positions in the company, Netflix expects that individuals display the right values and behavioral traits to feel at home.
A great deal of emphasis is laid on Netflix’s culture, one that puts people over processes. In the behavioral round, you’ll be asked questions around Netflix’s core cultural values, namely collaboration, inclusion, excellence, integrity, respect and emotional balance.
With a strong culture around inclusion and diversity, netflix expects future employees to display the highest integrity and treat one another with unfettered regard and respect.
Here are some behavioral questions to expect at the Netflix interview:
- Tell us about a time when you had to collaborate with an uncooperative colleague?
- How do you ensure to stay motivated at work?
- Tell us about a time when you were burdened by a difficult project?
- Tell us about a particular project that imparted a great learning experience?
- How do you handle setbacks at work?
- How would you describe the ideal work-life balance?
Cracking FAANG interviews with Interview Kickstart
At Interview Kickstart, we empower engineers to land offers at the biggest tech companies by training them to crack tough technical interviews.
If you’re serious about landing an offer with Netflix, here’s why you should consider enrolling for Interview Kickstart’s Technical Training Masterclass:
- An intensive 2-month program with a 6-month support period.
- An extensive curriculum covering core data structures, algorithms, systems design and behavioral interviews.
- Interview training for all positions, including senior positions.
- Minimum annual salary increase of $60,000 after completing IK’s course
- Special focus on building a strong LinkedIn profile and resume with the right keywords distributed evenly.
- A large network of alums working in FAANG and tier-1 companies.
- Training from instructors who’re currently employed as hiring managers and technical leads at FAANG companies.
Cracking the Netflix interview isn’t a distant dream if you adopt the right strategy in preparing yourself.
Register for our webinar to know how it’s done.