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2-Month Preparation Plan for Facebook Program Manager Interview

Technical Program Managers play a crucial role in ensuring the end-to-end completion of projects. Technical Program Managers at Facebook aren’t expected to be good at coding, but they’re required to have in-depth knowledge of distributed systems design. TPMs coordinate cross-functionally with multiple teams and drive the progress of multiple software projects. As such, the Facebook Program Manager interview fundamentally seeks to test your design and leadership skills.

If you’re a software engineer, coding engineer, software developer, engineering manager, or tech lead preparing for tech interviews, check out our technical interview checklist, interview questions page, and salary negotiation e-book to get interview-ready! 

Having trained over 9,000 software engineers, we know what it takes to crack the most challenging tech interviews. Since 2014, Interview Kickstart alums have landed lucrative offers from FAANG and Tier-1 tech companies, with an average salary hike of 49%. The highest-ever offer received by an IK alum is a whopping $1.267 Million!

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In this article, we’ll discuss the ideal interview preparation plan to crack the Facebook Program Manager interview. We’ll look at the different technical and non-technical aspects that are part of the Facebook PM interview. 

Here’s what we’ll cover in this piece:

  • Facebook Program Manager Roles and Responsibilities
  • The Facebook Program Manager Interview Process
  • 2-Month Prep Plan for Facebook PM Interview
  • Facebook Program Manager Interview Questions
  • FAQs on Facebook Program Manager Interviews 

Facebook Program Manager Roles and Responsibilities

Facebook has several teams working on several projects. Each project is assigned a Technical Program Manager to help drive it. A TPM fundamentally has two roles to play — a technical role and a project manager role. 

Your role and duties as a PM will differ depending on what type of projects you’re working on. Some of the TPM roles at Facebook are:

  • Network Engineering Technical Program Managers
  • Hardware Technical Program Managers
  • Capacity Technical Program Managers
  • Data Centre Technical Program Managers
  • Engineering Technical Program Managers

To learn more about these roles, read Facebook Technical Program Manager Roles and Responsibilities.

Facebook Program Manager Interview Process

Similar to interviews for software engineering roles, the Facebook Program Manager interview consists of three main rounds. Let’s take a look.

  • The Initial Recruiter Screen: Recruiters use this round to determine whether your profile meets the expectations and demands of the role. You can expect some basic questions around your professional skills, experience, why you’re looking to shift jobs, and expectations from the role. 
  • The Phone Screen Interview: The Phone Screen interview for Facebook Technical Program Managers is very different from those for software engineers. You will be asked one or two program management questions pertaining to strategy, execution, and planning.
  • The On-site Interview: This round of the Facebook PM interview essentially tests your knowledge in scalable systems, and your ability to drive projects from start to finish. It typically consists of three main rounds: Systems Design, Program Management, and Behavioral and Leadership Round. Depending on the seniority of the position, there can be additional rounds in the on-site interview.

For more details, read Facebook Technical Program Manager Interview Process.

2-Month Prep Plan for Facebook PM Interview

To crack the Facebook program manager interview, it is mighty important that you have a solid strategy in place. In this section, we’ll look at what the ideal Facebook PM interview prep plan looks like. 

First, the prep timeline. Ideally, if you want to give yourself the best chance to crack Facebook’s PM interview, you should spend at least 8 weeks going over the important concepts from an interview perspective. 

Week 1 and 2:

  • Begin your prep by going over concepts in scalable systems. Note that it will take you a good two weeks to cover all the critical concepts in scalable systems. 
  • Spend the first week brushing up on Sharding Techniques, Database Management, and Network Protocols. 
  • Spend the second week brushing up on API modeling, Concurrency, and case studies in Systems Design. 

Week 3 and 4:

  • Spend the third week understanding “Planning and Execution.” Understand FAANG TPM competencies and a day in the life of a FAANG Technical Program Manager. 
  • Understand the process of setting SMART goals and monitoring projects through measurable metrics.
  • Next, understand the process of how stakeholders are involved in projects and how stakeholder interests are met. 
  • Next, learn the ways of identifying and mitigating risks while driving software projects. 
  • Next, brush up on the ways to optimally perform project execution. 
  • Understand the important concepts pertaining to Execution, including Estimation, Capacity Planning, Budgeting, and Agile Processes.  

Week 5 and 6:

  • Spend week 5 understanding Monitoring and Reporting, as these areas are a key part of TPM interviews. Understand Metrics Monitoring, Dashboards, Ownership, and Technical Deliverables. 
  • Understand how different reporting and monitoring tools are used, especially the popular ones used by FAANG companies. 
  • Spend Week 6 prepping for the behavioral and leadership interviews. Go over sample behavioral interview questions and answers, and practice structuring your answers in the STAR format. 

Week 7 and 8:

  • Work on your resume and LinkedIn profile. Optimize your LinkedIn profile with the right keywords to get discovered by LinkedIn’s bullion search algorithms. 
  • Practice mock interviews with FAANG hiring managers. Interview Kickstart allows you to practice Program Manager mock interviews with instructors who are members of hiring committees at FAANG companies. 
  • Create a good Project Portfolio that highlights all your key projects in the STAR format. 

Facebook Program Manager Interview Questions

Facebook Program Manager interview questions are majorly around scalable systems, software program management (planning, strategy, and analysis), and leadership. 

Let’s look at some common Facebook PM interview questions to help you prep for the interview. 

Facebook Program Manager Interview Questions on Scalable Systems

Scalable systems is a crucial part of the Facebook PM interview. Let’s look at some sample questions asked in the interview:

  1. How will you go about designing a platform like Instagram?
  2. What aspects will you consider while designing a chatbot service?
  3. How will you ensure that your database is secure?
  4. What network aspects will you consider when designing a platform like Uber?
  5. What do you understand about API modeling? GIve an example of how you would implement API modeling?

Did you know that the average salary for Program Managers at Facebook is $120,700 per year? The number is much higher for experienced PM. Read this article to learn more.

Facebook PM Interview Questions on Program Management

Facebook Program Managers are tasked with the responsibility of driving projects from end to end. Having a good sense of the important aspects to consider in order to close projects is an absolute necessity for PMs. Having a thorough understanding of risks involved, resources needed, and key performance indicators is a fundamental requirement of the role. 

Let’s look at some sample Facebook PM interview questions in Program Execution and Management:

  1. Tell us about the most difficult project you managed and drive from end to end.
  2. Tell us about a time when you had disagreements with your superior on the course of a project that you were driving.
  3. How do you go about prioritizing goals and resources?
  4. What risk factors will you consider while executing an important scalable systems project?
  5. Tell us about a time when you drove a project that had a tight deadline and involved coordinating with multiple teams.

Facebook Program Manager Interview Questions on Leadership

Leadership is a key attribute that Facebook Program Managers should possess. PMs are required to coordinate with multiple teams, devise strategies on the basis of that, and manage risk and resources. In this section, we’ll look at some popular Facebook Program Manager interview questions in leadership. 

  1. Tell us about some challenges you faced while coordinating with multiple teams.
  2. Tell us about a time when you dealt with a conflict at work
  3. Tell us about a time when you had to divert resources from your team for another project? How did it affect the ongoing project?
  4. Tell us about a time when a member of your team was dealing with stress.
  5. How do you make sure to stay productive at work as a leader? How do you prioritize tasks?

These Facebook Program Manager interview questions will give you just the insight you need to understand and prepare for all categories of questions at PM interviews. 

FAQs on the Facebook Program Manager Interview

Q1. Does Facebook ask coding questions in Program Manager interviews?

While Program Managers who drive certain types of technical projects are required to know some bit of coding, Facebook generally does not ask coding interview questions in its TPM interviews. 

Q2. What are the important systems design topics to prepare for the Facebook Program Manager interview?

The important systems design topics to prepare for the Facebook Program Manager interview include database management, network protocols, sharding techniques, loading, caching, file systems, online processing systems, API modeling, and concurrency.

Q3. How many on-site interview rounds does the Facebook PM interview have?

The on-site interview for PMs at Facebook consists of 3-4 rounds. They include 1-2 Systems Design rounds, 1-2 Program Management rounds, where questions around Planning, Monitoring, Reporting, and Execution are asked, and 1 Leadership round. 

Q4.  What should be the duration of your prep for the Facebook PM interview?

To crack the Facebook interview for program managers, you should ideally begin your prep 8 weeks before your interview. 

Q5.  How much do Facebook Program Managers make in the US?

The salary of Facebook Program Managers ranges from $131,000 to $368,000. 

Gear Up for Your Next Program Manager Interview

If you need help with your prep, join Interview Kickstart’s Technical Program Manager Interview Course — the first-of-its-kind, domain-specific tech interview prep program designed specifically for Program Managers. Click here to learn more about the program. 

IK is the gold standard in tech interview prep. Our programs include a comprehensive curriculum, unmatched teaching methods, FAANG+ instructors, and career coaching to help you nail your next tech interview. 

Sign up for our FREE webinar to uplevel your career!

Interview Preparation
Last updated on: 
August 10, 2021

Dipen Dadhaniya

Engineering Manager at Interview Kickstart

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