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The virtual or onsite interview stage

November 21, 2023

While the phone interview or initial screening is a great way for companies to make sure candidates are qualified – your following interviews will center around gaining the employer gaining a sense of your soft skills.

  • Write down more detailed questions in advance: As you move further along during the interview process, you’ll need to ask more detailed questions about the role - like what your day-to-day responsibilities would look like, which projects you would lead, and how you’re performance is measured.
  • Sign in a couple minutes early. This will also give you a few extra minutes of buffer time if there’s any issues connecting or software you need to download.
  • Be mindful of your body language: Sit up straight, smile, and use expressive gestures to convey enthusiasm. Non-verbal cues are still important in a virtual setting!
  • If meeting virtually, make sure that your background is visually appealing. Even more so than other stages, it’s important to be in a quiet place that looks professional. While you may not need to dress as formally as you would for an in-office interview, it’s important to look professional.

Some common interview questions to prep for during the virtual/onsite interview stage include:

  1. What do you enjoy the most about working in this industry?
  2. What’s something you don’t like doing at work, or your least favorite part of working in this industry?
  3. Tell me about the most challenging code problem or bug you’ve ever worked on. What did you do to solve it, and what did you learn from the experience?
  4. What are your best strategies you’ve found to manage your time when you have multiple, competing projects at once?
  5. Let’s say someone on your team has a different solution or approach to a problem than you do. How do you work with them on coming up with a solution you’re both happy with?
  6. Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision without all the relevant information.
  7. What’s your experience like working with cross-functional teams – like product management, sales, data science, or finance?Technical Interview
  8. What are the types of technical interviews that WE have seen at RFS?

You also want to make sure you’re ready for role-specific questions during this stage too, like:

  • If you’re a Senior Product Manager: Research common questions on product lifecycle, go-to-market strategy, etc.
  • If you’re a Senior Machine Learning Engineer: Research In-depth questions on algorithms, data handling, and system design.
  • If you’re a Senior Software Engineer: Spend some time looking up questions on architecture, coding, and collaborative development.

Finally, be on the lookout for questions that address cultural fit. These can include:

  • Questions about your adaptability. Your interviewer may ask additional questions about how you handle stressful situations, or opposing views to gauge your adaptability. If you’re working in a culture that has a fast-paced environment, you’ll need to stay adaptable and level-headed in these situations.
  • How curious you are about the industry you’re interviewing for and new developments. Other employees of the company may enjoy sending new ideas back and forth, and trying new technologies. An interviewer may ask questions about new products you’ve tried and used to make sure you also have an appreciation for this too.
  • Questions about your working style. “What’s your management style?” is a basic way of asking this, but interviewers are going to be curious to know if your work style matches theirs. Some organizations like a lot of communication and updates. Others prefer to be more hands-off and let their direct reports come to them with questions. There’s no working style that’s right or wrong - it’s simply a preference!

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