Facebook Interview Questions in San Francisco, CA | Glassdoor.com.au

Facebook Interview Questions in San Francisco, CA

Updated 16 May 2017
671 Interview Reviews

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  1. Helpful (54)  

    Data Scientist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    Declined Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 6 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in February 2017.

    Interview

    I applied online in late December and then spoke to a recruiter for about 15 minutes in early January. I was scheduled for an in-person interview in mid January where I interviewed with one data scientist in a 1:1 interview for an hour for the first round. Another recruiter then called me for a 30 minute prep for the 2nd round. The final, 2nd round interview was about 5 weeks later in late February, with 6 data scientists over 4 hours in the afternoon. I got an offer but it was for a lot less than I was expecting, and we couldn't bridge the gap enough for it to be worth it.

    Everyone seemed relatively nice, although I could tell that a lot of the questions are really designed to trip you up, like they want you to miss some detail or edge case. My advice would be to pay attention to every little bit of minutiae regarding the question, make sure you're staying on task, write on the whiteboard, and explain your thoughts. Industry word is that data science at Facebook is not what it once was and is more of a product data analyst role now, so make sure you're really into Facebook products because that's what you'll be analyzing.

    Also, I didn't get a single question about dice, cards, or any other brain teaser type questions. All these mentions of NDAs are missing the point of Glassdoor, people can be a little more verbose than "various questions". You can't trademark an interview question or claim it's a trade secret.

    Interview Questions

    • How would you measure the health of Mentions, Facebook's app for celebrities? How can FB determine if it's worth it to keep using it?

      If a celebrity starts to use Mentions and begins interacting with their fans more, what part of the increase can be attributed to a celebrity using Mentions, and what part is just a celebrity wanting to get more involved in fan engagement?  
      5 Answers
    • There is a table that tracks every time a user turns a feature on or off, with columns user_id, action ("on" or "off), date, and time.

      How many users turned the feature on today?
      How many users have ever turned the feature on?
      In a table that tracks the status of every user every day, how would you add today's data to it?  
      4 Answers
    • If 70% of Facebook users on iOS use Instagram, but only 35% of Facebook users on Android use Instagram, how would you investigate the discrepancy?   5 Answers
    • How do you measure newsfeed health?   2 Answers
    • If a PM says that they want to double the number of ads in Newsfeed, how would you figure out if this is a good idea or not?   3 Answers
    • We have two options for serving ads within Newsfeed:
      1 - out of every 25 stories, one will be an ad
      2 - every story has a 4% chance of being an ad

      For each option, what is the expected number of ads shown in 100 news stories?
      If we go with option 2, what is the chance a user will be shown only a single ad in 100 stories? What about no ads at all?  
      7 Answers
    • How do you map nicknames (Pete, Andy, Nick, Rob, etc) to real names?   3 Answers
    • Facebook sees that likes are up 10% year over year, why could this be?   4 Answers
    • How many high schools that people have listed on their profiles are real? How do we find out, and deploy at scale, a way of finding invalid schools?   4 Answers

  2. Helpful (16)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Facebook (San Francisco, CA (US)).

    Interview

    Standard computer science/algorithms phone screen interview.

    I've been a few years in my current job, and I have decided to try the job market again. My resume is impressive, I haven't padded it in any way, I've led software projects to release on time, and I'm finding it easy to get as far as phone screens, but no further.

    This isn't a criticism of Facebook itself, rather of the whole Bay Area software engineering scene - since the last time I went for interviews, there seems to be a much bigger focus on getting the initial computer science/algorithms questions correct on the first go. Miss an edge case that the interviewer brings up, you're toast. Misplace a < instead of <= in an iteration, you're toast even if you find it yourself. Take longer than 20 minutes per question, you're toast. Try to recreate from first principles an algorithm you haven't thought about since you graduated, or never, ever used in your work, you're toast.

    I've interviewed many people in my current job, and never regretted recommending employment to any of them. Every single one of the people I've recommended have made mistakes in their coding tests, and every one of them managed to find the errors when I pointed out that they had made a mistake. Perhaps I have lower standards, but when I interview, I look for how the interviewee recovers from a mistake, not that they are able to regurgitate something they learned from reading over Glassdoor interview questions.

    Or maybe I just come across badly on the phone. Hard to say.

    To recreate the process, go to leetcode and try some of the medium/hard exercises. If you can't complete it in under 20 minutes, and you have to redo some work to cover all the edge cases on submitting the solution, you can be sure that in an interview employers will thank you for applying, praise you for your impressive resume, and tell you no thanks.

    Interview Questions

    • Variation of standard algorithm question. Corrected code on being given edge case. Took 25 minutes to get satisfactory answer - probably too long for the interviewer.   1 Answer
    • Second question was a dynamic program question - I knew how to find the solution but hadn't even thought of the algorithm for several years. Was unable to complete the solution in the remaining 20 minutes.   1 Answer

  3. Helpful (4)  

    Android Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Interview

    It was a standard, not easy but not too difficult technical interview with an emphasis on recursion problems and code efficiency. The recruiters are very prompt and on your side, so use them to your advantage. The interviewers were smart and quite nice too, which reflects the good culture of the eng org.

    1. Short recruiter call
    2. 30-45 minute phone screen. Coding questions followed by some Q/A where you can ask dev some questions.
    3. Onsite interview consisting of 4 interviewers, approx 45 min each. A) Coding question B) Architecture question C) Behavioral questions with small coding question, and D) more coding questions.

    Tip
    1. Use helper methods to keep your code clean. You may not actually need to code them out, saving you valuable time.

    Interview Questions

    • 1A. Given a sorted array of integers, make a binary search tree out of it. Solution is recursive.
      1B. What if you're passed a sorted linked list instead of a sorted array? Make a binary search tree out of this now. Solution is recursive.
      2. Compute the diameter (look up the definition) of a binary tree. Solution is recursive.
      3. Architecture - design the news feed from an Android client point of view.
      4. Given a dictionary of strings -> translations, translate an input string. Translations may overlap. For ex: 1->A, 11->B, 111->C. Solution is recursive and involves preprocessing the input dict.
      5. Given a queue of jobs, their runtime, and a cool down town, return the total time to finish the jobs. Input could be: A->3,B->2,A->3,A->3 and cool down of 2 after each job. Solution is iterative (and quite simple).
      6. Print a binary tree vertically aligned, where a node, it's right child's left child, and it's left child's right child are in the same group. Solution involves passing the groupId to each child. Right child will be curNode.groupId+1 and left child is curNode.groupId-1. Append in a hashtable<int, linkedlist> keyed by groupId.  
      Answer Question

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  5. Helpful (7)  

    Data Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in April 2017.

    Interview

    Was contacted by a recruiter on linked in. Told them I wasn't in the process of looking for a job, and hadn't prepared for interviews yet, and they told me that they would be happy to wait for me to prepare and interview me. Gave me over a month to prepare, before I did 2 45 minute phone interviews.

    Phone interview was pretty much exactly as everyone else explained. Note to readers: If you saw people who thought the interview process was easy, you also noticed that they didn't often get offers. They ask challenging questions, and expect you to explain your thought process in solving the problems. It was a challenging process, but very fair. I actually struggled quite a bit on my coding interview, but I did very well on my SQL portion, and because I communicated my thought process clearly in my coding section, they decided to move forward.

    In departure from what I have ever experienced, I got a phone call from a manager explaining the onsite interview process to me, what he was generally looking for in a candidate, and what the general process was like. It was a really cool thing, I really felt like they wanted me to succeed, and that they weren't actively rooting against me.

    The onsite was 3 full stack interviews. There were some questions that were pretty tough, but it was a realistic interview that really tested how you'd think and perform on a day to day basis.

    Interview Questions

    • Pretty much in line with what other people have been asked.   16 Answers

  6. Helpful (2)  

    Product Designer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in April 2017.

    Interview

    1. Short email questionnaire from the recruiter to make sure I was a good fit for the role
    2. Phone screen with the recruiter which included a short portfolio review
    3. Two back to back 40 minute phone interviews. The first was a portfolio review and the second was an app critique.
    4. Invited onsite one week later. Onsite consisted of a 30 minute portfolio presentation to about 6 designers. Lunch with a designer as a chance to ask questions about Facebook and the org I was interviewing for. After lunch I had three 1 on 1 interviews. The first was another app critique, then a background/job fit interview, and then a design challenge.

    I had a competing offer and was able to accelerate the decision process. 3 days later I was contacted by my recruiter with an offer. Overall the experience was seamless, transparent, and enjoyable. I credit most of that to my recruiter.

    Interview Questions

    • As a designer, what do you bring to the table?   1 Answer
    • Rethink the ATM   1 Answer

  7. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in April 2017.

    Interview

    I was contacted by a Facebook recruiter via LinkedIn and within a few days had non-technical 30 minute phone interview, after which we scheduled a first technical interview that could be done in person or over the phone. Since I live in the area I opted to do it in person at the Menlo Park facility. The recruiter supplied me with links to several sources of preparation materials, and asked for dates which I might be ready for my first technical interview. I opted for a date two weeks from the phone screening.

    On the day of the interview I was greeted at Facebook by the recruiter, who showed me around the campus, which consists of 16+ buildings and has lots of amenities. The recruiter brought me to a small meeting room with two whiteboards and a few minutes later the interviewer showed up, accompanied by an observer. The first thing they did was ask me about any current projects I'm working on, and about the tech stack I use. After talking about that for a few minutes they presented me with a coding problem, which I could do in a language of my choice.

    I have not done many of the typical coding challenge problems you might see on LeetCode or similar sites. I was relying on experience and my ability to work through a problem. I read somewhere that interviewers care more about how you approach a problem than how well you can churn out memorized material, so I thought I'd be better off focusing on my overall approach and communication skills. In that regard I think I did well but after reading some other reviews, perhaps I worked too slowly and could have benefitted from doing more of those more academic coding exercises. I was given one problem and took the whole 45ish minutes to do it. I started with a very general conceptual solution done visually, and then wrote it up as executable code, while addressing bug and ways it could be made more efficient. Afterwards I was asked to execute the solution on the whiteboard as if I were an interpreter running the code, noting intermediate values and output.

    I did not find the problem very difficult but I wanted to make sure I stayed engaged with the interviewer and talk out the solution while working on it, which is not how I typically code on my own.

    Interview Questions

    • Do an in-place (without allocating any extra memory) rearrangement of a list of integers, putting non-zero elements first.   3 Answers
    • Do you have any questions for us?   2 Answers

  8. Helpful (2)  

    Anonymous Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    Declined Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in April 2017.

    Interview

    Facebook recruiters reached out to me. Process was vague, and it was clear they were trying to get me to be tempted into a role that was significantly junior to my current work. Even though I was clear about my career goals and expectations, they persisted in wasting my time over 3 weeks. I wouldn't call it baiting-and-switching, but it was clear that they were hoping to tempt me with the prospect of working at Facebook. Except... really? Facebook?

    Interview Questions

    • Could you submit <supporting materials here>?   1 Answer
    • Would you be willing to take a less senior role in order to learn how Facebook operates?   1 Answer

  9. Helpful (1)  

    Product Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Facebook (San Francisco, CA (US)).

    Interview

    A few weeks after I applied, I had my first call with the recruiter - very simple, basic Q&A.

    Three weeks later, I had a 30-minute phone interview with the hiring manager who arrived late to the interview. More high-level, talking about my background, how I approached roadmap prioritization, taking features from idea to lunch, what metrics did I monitor, and how did I know what actually impacted those metrics.

    I heard back one week later that I would be moving on, and it took another week for the recruiter to respond to my availability. At this point, I had offers in-hand from other companies and asked multiple times to accelerate the process since I would need to get back to the companies I had offers from, but it didn't seem like she even read my email.

    I finally had my second-stage interviews three weeks after my first-round. I had 2 video calls with an engineering manager and a PM. The PM was nearly 10 minutes late to a 45-minute call. The questions they asked were pretty boring and uninspiring. I didn't really get a great vibe from the interviewers - almost felt like they were arrogant.

    Then, almost two weeks later, my recruiter finally got back to me saying I wasn't moving on.

    All in all, the process took more than 2 months from my initial application and I still hadn't even made it to an offer stage. My recruiter was completely irresponsive. At each stage of the process, I probably sent her 1 email every 3 days, and sometimes it took her more than 2 weeks to reply.

    Overall, a completely terrible process. I had an irresponsive recruiter, and late interviewers who asked questions that I felt didn't accurately showcase my skills, strengths, and prior experience.

    Interview Questions

    • How do you prioritize a roadmap?   1 Answer
    • How would you increase the number of engineers Facebook hires? Brainstorm some ideas, walk me through your process, etc.   1 Answer
    • How would you improve an internal CRM that the sales and marketing teams use? Walk me through what you would do in your first 90 days if this was your project. What metrics would you look at?   1 Answer

  10. Helpful (1)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)) in April 2017.

    Interview

    A recruiter reached out to me in LinkedIn and setup a phone interview. There were 2 persons on the phone call during the interview. First I was asked to talk about myself and a specific feature that I developed at my current work. Then I jumped onto the coding problem on coderpad. I didn't like the attitude or the vibe that I got from the interviewers (only one person was talking to me on the phone). At the end when I was asking questions about FB, he gave me a very generalized info and didn't really show any enthusiasm which right away made me figure out that he wasn't happy. Also during the interview, I think he wanted to give me a bit difficult challenge but he couldn't really explain to me clearly and hence I didn't understand what exactly he wanted. But on the other hand the recruiter was outstanding. She called me twice before the interview and reviewed the practice that I was doing for the interview. Even after the interview, she called me and explained to me the result and possible things which I could work on for next time.

    Interview Questions

    • Design and write code for a queue system which would include enqueue, dequeue, etc.   1 Answer

  11.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA (US)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA (US)).

    Interview

    Had an initial phone screen, some easy tree type questions and array questions. Next got the on site, it consisted of 4 different interviews. One was a behavioral while the other 3 were algorithms. Quite tough

    Interview Questions

    • Medium level leetcode I would say   1 Answer

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