While it might seem a bit daunting initially, cracking the front-end coding interview is a reasonably achievable goal. Aim to be a front-end developer at any FAANG or tier-1 company, and with proper preparation, you can surely clear it with confidence. This article clears the roadmap for you and provides you with information and insights that can help you put your best foot forward as a front-end software engineer.
If you are preparing for a tech interview, check out our technical interview checklist, interview questions page, and salary negotiation e-book to get interview-ready! Also, read Cracking the Coding Interview: 9 Extremely Important Things You Should Know and Most Popular Coding Languages for FAANG Interviews in 2021 for specific insights and guidance on tech interviews at FAANG.
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In this article, we’ll cover:
As a front-end engineer, your job would be primarily to design, select, install, and test the UI. You would be expected to know and apply visual as well as interactive design principles to web applications and websites to create a seamless user experience.
From an interview perspective, beyond knowing how to design the user experience, a front-end engineer should have a good enough knowledge of data structures and algorithms.
Related read: What Is the Role of a Facebook Front-End Engineer?
To know how to crack the front-end coding interview, you must first be aware of the skills you’re likely to need to become a successful front-end engineer. The skill requirements for any specific front-end engineer job are a bit different from the others.
The requirements would be specific to that role and company. That said, certain skills are essential or, at the very least, highly valuable to have as a front-end software engineer. Some of the skills required for cracking an interview for the role of a front-end engineer may include:
Along with the above skills, it also helps to have had former employers that are known to hire the best talent.
The interview process for front-end interview would typically involve:
A recruiter phone screen typically lasts about 30 minutes and aims to determine if you have a shot at the job and are someone they can see themselves working with. Expect questions based on your resume, the role you applied for, and why you’re interested in that company. Your answers to behavioral questions should show both intellectual humility and confidence and should not be too long.
If you weren’t already sent an email about the entire interview process, the recruiter might also inform you about the next steps in the interview process during this call. You can ask any appropriate questions regarding the process at the end of the interview, and they’ll let you know as much as they are at liberty to tell you.
There are usually two technical phone screens that typically last 45 minutes each and will test whether your knowledge and skills sync with your resume and whether they are relevant to the role. You can expect questions in the format: what’s X, what’s the use of X, why do we choose X over Y, when should we choose Y over X, compare X with Y, differentiate between X and Y, and so on to test your depth of understanding.
Give your answers at a moderate pace and maintain an appropriate tone so you can communicate your technical competence effectively through your solutions. Also, even during a phone screen where you aren’t visible, dressing well for the occasion will help you feel more confident and may help you perform better.
In some cases, you may be given an assignment to finish in a few days. Make sure to test your solution well and follow the instructions on what’s okay to refer to and what’s not while solving the problem.
These will have multiple rounds with multiple interviewers, typically 50-60 minutes each, lasting 6-9 hours, including a lunch break. The exact structure of the interview will vary based on the company, but broadly, they’ll judge you on behavioral, technical, and leadership skills. Each round will usually focus on one category, but questions testing additional skills are not entirely out of bounds.
Behavioral and leadership rounds:
Here are some tips to help the interview process seem like a breeze:
While rigor is required, ensure that you don’t burn yourself out.
Here are some tips to keep yourself calm:
These are some of the questions typically asked during a front-end coding interview:
Q. Where do I start my preparation?
You can start by visiting the careers pages of companies like Amazon, Google, etc., and going through the requirements for some of the front-end engineer job opportunities you may find interesting. While you’re at it, we also recommend learning about the goals and values of your target companies.
You might also find our articles on The Best Data Structures and Algorithms Course to Crack FAANG Interviews and 21 Job Interview Tips: Make a Superb Impression and Get Hired helpful.
Q. How can IK help me prepare for the front-end coding interview?
If you need help with your prep, whether you’re a front-end coding engineer or a backend software developer, consider joining Interview Kickstart. At IK, you get the unique opportunity to learn from expert instructors, hiring managers, and tech leads at Google, Facebook, Apple, and other top Silicon Valley tech companies.
That’s not all! We offer a one-of-its-kind Front-End Engineering Interview Course that is tailor-made to help front-end engineers crack tech interviews at the biggest tech companies. Click here to learn more.
For more details on how IK can help you uplevel your career, sign up for our FREE webinar!