Alpay Doğrul
by Alpay Doğrul
4 min read

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If you belong to the world of software developers, you’ll know that acing a technical interview can be a considerable challenge.

There is no doubt that there is an excessive demand for developers in the tech industry but this doesn’t mean you’ll automatically get a job. You still need to get prepared for a harsh interview.

Here are some quick and easy tips to get you ready.

Know the company

It’s always a good idea to do in-depth research about the company you apply to. You know how to do a thorough study these days right?

googleit

Yes! Google it!

But go deeper. Don’t memorize the home page of the company and learn their “mission” and “vision”…

Find something that would help you. Maybe the HR manager has an interview in which he/she explains the skills they are looking for, or you can find some articles and videos about the working ethics of the company.

Does the company have a blog? Nice! Keep reading it post by post until you internalize the way they think. Don’t forget to check their social media and be aware of the latest updates.

All of these may seem irrelevant and boring to you, but they will help you to show your passion and interest in the company.

Practice your coding skills

Just because coding is a part of your daily routine, it doesn’t mean you’ll code correctly and efficiently in an interview environment.

Usually, you have at least a week to get prepared for an interview, which means you have plenty of time to refresh your memory.

According to Stackoverflow 2017 Developer Survey, knowledge of algorithms and data structures is one of top 3 criteria in developer recruitment. There may be some concepts that you haven’t used for a while, and some interviews can start off with a question that tests your knowledge of those concepts.

Here’s a “technical interview cheat sheet” that will remind you some basic concepts:

https://gist.github.com/TSiege/cbb0507082bb18ff7e4b

You can use this sheet to find your weaknesses and make sure that you have them strengthened before your technical interview.

If you’re looking for an online resource to give you some challenges and a chance to practice online, you’ve come to the right place!

Codela

There are dozens of coding challenges at Codela and you can solve them in 11 programming languages. You may keep practicing in your favorite programming language or try to develop your coding skills in new languages. If you are interested in solving previous interview questions of specific companies, Codela is there for you. Don’t you want to see if you are ready to solve Google interview questions? Use company tags such as Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon etc. to test yourself with previously asked questions in tech interviews. You can also use tags such as “arrays”,“mathematics & probability”… according to the field you like to practice.

Let them know what you think

The interviewer is sometimes a senior developer or engineer. Their goal is not to see if you can find the exact solution for a given problem. They want to understand how you think and the ways you attack the problem. So thinking out loud will provide them with clues about your skills and knowledge even if you can’t find the right solution.

Be sure to show your ability to break down a problem into little tasks. Let them see your mindset and process of structuring a solution. Don’t forget that if you share your ideas, you can even get some help!

Ask Questions

In technical interviews, questions are usually more ambiguous than they might appear at first glance. Don’t hesitate to ask any point that’s unclear before attacking a problem.

Interviewers know that there is not a single solution to a problem. Be ready to discuss other possible solutions and show your deep knowledge of the topic. Show them that you can code, but also show your ability to solve problems!

questions

Here are some example questions to ask an interviewer in a technical interview:

  • “Can I assume all the input is formed correctly?”
  • “Do I need to do parameter verification??”
  • “Do I need to write error handling?
  • “Are there memory/space or other constraints?”

Questions like these will show your in-depth knowledge of the topic, and your interviewer is going to like that.

Practice your non-technical answers

Of course, you will be asked some behavioral questions, too. You should have answers to clichés like:

  • What is your greatest strength?
  • What was a challenge or conflict you got into at work and how did you handle it?
  • Why do you want to work here / want this job?
  • Why are you leaving your current job?

You can find many pieces of advice online on how to answer these kinds of questions. Some companies might prefer asking certain types of questions and to see them you can check the glassdoor.com reviews and learn the interview processes of specific companies. For example, there are more than 8000 reviews on Google interviews, some of them are from current workers of Google.

glassdoor

Finally,

Practice

Yes, I know that I’ve mentioned this one before.

But you wouldn’t believe the number of successful developers failing the technical interviews just because they didn’t practice. Again, make sure that you know the basic algorithms and have the necessary knowledge to apply them.

Did I miss anything?

Although some people think that you can’t change anything in a week, there are lots of things to be better prepared.

Make a detailed plan that works well for you based on your target company. Never underestimate changes you can make in a week.

And, of course, if you know any other ways or tools to get prepared for a technical interview, feel free to share them with us in the comments!