The Google interview questions for software engineers are focused on three topics, viz., algorithms, data structures, and distributed system design. Practicing solving Google software engineer interview questions on these topics will help you ace Google’s tech interview and land an attractive offer.
The acceptance rate at the company is a meager 2%. This clearly reflects how difficult landing an offer at Google can be. Cracking the coding interview requires the right prep strategy, including knowledge of the top Google interview questions for software engineers.
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In this article, we’ll cover various aspects of Google’s software engineer interview process, including common Google interview questions for software engineers.
Google’s software engineer interview process is broadly divided into three stages:
Duration: 6-8 weeks from the first phone screen to landing the initial offer.
Duration: 90 minutes
The online assessment is a preliminary test specifically for freshers and interns. Google interview questions for software engineers asked at this stage focus on:
No system design questions are asked at this stage.
Duration: 30-60 minutes
For experienced software engineers, Google’s interview process begins with the technical phone interview.
Tech leads conduct interviews at this stage via Google Meet or Hangouts.
To answer phone interview questions at a Google software engineer interview, you’ll be required to develop code using a shared Google doc. You’ll have no access to auto-completion and syntax highlighting in this case.
Duration: 30-40 minutes per interview
On-site interviews can comprise up to 4 rounds of interviews depending on the position you’re interviewing for.
The three main rounds of interviews at this stage are:
You should thoroughly practice Google interview questions for software engineers for these rounds. The more senior the position, the more difficult the design and behavioral interviews become.
Read our Google Interview Guide to learn all you need to know about the Google interview process.
Google assesses software engineers based on the following role-relevant criteria:
Recruiters at Google assess your ability to learn quickly, think analytically, and adapt to different situations.
Often referred to as GCAs, Google assesses general cognitive abilities to identify smart engineers capable of conceiving effective and innovative solutions.
Hiring managers evaluate how relevant your skills and work experience are to the role you're interviewing for based on how you answer Google interview questions for software engineers.
Key areas of evaluation are:
Google conducts behavioral interviews during the on-site stage of its software engineer interview process.
During these interviews, you’ll be evaluated based on certain psychological traits to determine if you’ll be a good cultural fit.
Google interview questions for software engineers in the behavioral rounds will focus on:
The Google interview questions for software engineers are based on topics such as:
Below are topics you should be familiar with to solve Google interview questions for software engineers:
Below are sample coding and algorithm questions asked at the Google software engineer on-site interview.
Here are some popular Google interview questions for software engineers on Binary Trees:
These are some common Google interview questions for software engineers on Dynamic Programming:
Take a look at these popular Google interview questions for software engineers on Arrays:
Here are some Google interview questions for software engineers on Strings that you can solve:
Practice these Google interview questions for software engineers on Recursion before your tech interview:
Find out the longest chain that the new set of pairs can form.
Further reading: A list of problems with solutions to prepare for your Google coding interview.
Google interview questions for software engineers on system design are an integral part of your tech interview. If you’re applying for senior software engineering roles such as senior software developer or engineering manager, focus your prep on systems design interviews. For junior coding engineer roles, coding interviews have more weightage than design interviews.
Below are some distributed systems design questions asked at Google’s senior software engineer interviews:
Recommended Reading: System Design Interview Preparation Tips
Behavioral interview questions gauge your ability to problem-solving and working through difficult situations. Have a look at the following articles to understand the type of Google interview questions for software engineers on behavioral skills.
Cracking the Google software engineering interview requires diligent effort. Given below are useful tips to make your prep more effective and answer the Google interview questions for software engineers better:
Identify patterns when solving coding problems and utilize them to solve new problems. This is a great way to enhance your problem-solving skills.
Try to solve at least 100 problems of varying difficulty to prepare for your Google interview.
Give yourself sufficient time to become thorough with core tech concepts like Data Structures and Algorithms.
We recommend you spend at least 10 weeks preparing for your Google interview, solving as many problems as you can during this period.
Your ability to develop code using a whiteboard is tested during the Google onsite interviews.
You will be evaluated on your ability to develop a brute-force solution, write bug-free code, and incorporate changes in the problem statement using a whiteboard.
Practice communicating the various steps you use to solve a problem with the interviewer.
During the interview, you’ll be assessed more for your problem-solving approach and ability to communicate the same than your ability to arrive at the right solution.
Create a portfolio of projects you’ve worked on; note your most important projects and achievements.
Elaborate on them utilizing the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) format to give interviewers sufficient context and information about your projects.
A strong project portfolio will add immense value to your profile and boost your chances of landing an offer.
Mock interviews are one of the most effective methods to prepare for an interview.
Practice mock interviews with the right professionals. In this case, with hiring managers from Google.
Getting the right feedback will improve your interview performance and help you land a good offer.
If you want to practice mock interviews with hiring managers from top tech companies and solve Google interview questions for software engineers, check out Interview Kickstart’s interview prep program.
Some popular questions asked about Google interview questions for software engineers:
Q1. What questions are asked in Google interviews for software engineers?
Some topics you should be familiar with to solve Google interview questions for software engineers are — recursion, trees and graphs, dynamic programming, hash tables and queues, arrays, strings, and so on.
Q2. How can I prepare for Google interview questions for software engineers?
When preparing for Google interview questions for software engineers, first brush up on your fundamentals. Follow it up by practicing coding questions on a whiteboard and after doing your research, come up with a list of technical topics to cover. Start preparing at least 8 weeks before the interview.
Q3. Is Google software engineer interview hard?
Google interview questions for software engineers are pretty challenging. So try to practice with ex-interviewers from Google and cover a range of topics.
Q4. How long is the Google interview process?
The entire interview process for software engineers at Google can take anywhere between a couple of weeks to a couple of months to complete.
Q5. How many rounds are there in Google interview?
The Google interview process can be divided into three stages — Online Assessment, Technical Phone Screen (1-2 rounds), and the Onsite interview (4 rounds).
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