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I need interview prep help... how can I get that on here?

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Entry-Level Software Engineer at Unemployeda month ago

Today I fumbled a technical interview.

I was told by the company I interned at previously to apply for a job posting. The person who knew the role is my manager from my internship there. That same manager I knew in there is now one position under the CTO. He told me it was a role that uses Spring Boot, Docker, and GraphQL. He said there’s a big effort to get GraphQL into the company’s architecture. It said “5+ years experience”, and didn't mention GraphQL, so I didn’t take it seriously. After I applied, the posting disappeared. My manager said the job posting I applied for was “probably just one of those ghost postings”. I had the behavioral where I spoke with the manager: I aced that. Today was the technical. The recruiter I was talking to was telling me this was an interview where I could show off projects, so I took the “prep some projects” approach. Did 3 projects. One using mern and GraphQL, one using typescript and express with rest architecture, and one using spring boot.  So I do that. I also prepped a Google doc with a list of common interview questions for all that I’m expecting. 

When I get into the interview, I get asked about my prior role. They said that showing projects wouldn’t be necessary: and that GraphQL wasn’t in the role. The first 20 minutes went well. I was asked about API stuff. I hear them say “good” sometimes, so I know something is right. Then I start getting asked simple questions I didn’t think to prep for. One was literally “what’s the difference between JDK and JRE”, and I knew what JDK was, but not JRE, and the difference between @override and @overload. I was then asked what Node is, so I tell them it’s a runtime environment (idk how I didn’t piece together what JRE was at this point), but I made a mistake because I should of delved into themes that made node.js incredible, like its event loop. Although I knew the basics of a microservice, it was only the basics. The interviewers were kind, and told me that although I articulated myself well, they’re looking for someone who knew more about microservices, and can code right now.

Luckily, the company told me prior to this that even if this doesn’t work out, they’d still want to hire me. There'll be another chance, but I realized I need mock interview help. I know I’ll need to review the Taro course on getting into and succeeding in interviews, but I also want to find people to do mock interviews with. How can I do that with Taro?

Thanks,

~Evan

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Discussion

(6 comments)
  • 2
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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    a month ago

    Sorry to hear about the interview fumble - Tech interviews are such an unpredictable mess and the market's so bad right now.

    When it comes to mock interviews, we hold events for that regularly. There's literally an upcoming one tomorrow for behavioral mocks (the event description has a lot of great resources): Taro Behavioral Mock Interviews Meetup

    You can find all the upcoming Taro events here (there's a resume review meetup coming up as well): https://www.jointaro.com/events/

    Keep an eye on your email as well as I regularly send out emails highlighting the major events.

    • 1
      Profile picture
      Entry-Level Software Engineer [OP]
      Unemployed
      a month ago

      Thanks for this, Alex, this’ll be great not just for myself, but allowing me to help all the taro community by offering get togethers and networking. We’re all in this together!

  • 2
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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    a month ago

    Couple points in addition to what Alex said:

    • One of the best ways to get more mocks is to be the organizer! This also guarantees you set it up at a time that works for you, and you can easily get a handful of great people to join. You can create an event here: https://www.jointaro.com/events/create/
    • I know the founders of Hello Interview (Taro Perk available here for 15% off) if you want structured mock interviews with legit people. (This is a paid option.)
    • 1
      Profile picture
      Entry-Level Software Engineer [OP]
      Unemployed
      a month ago

      Appreciate this plug of Hello, Rahul! Like I said to Alex, being someone that gets mocks together, I can help out everyone here. We’re all trying to put in the work and get the results we deserve, so I should help out everyone here.

  • 2
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    Eng @ Taro
    a month ago

    Then I start getting asked simple questions I didn’t think to prep for.

    Those trivia type questions can take you for a ride because you either know them or you don't know them. I'm actually not a huge fan of them compared to Leetcode coding questions because you can't reason through them.

    That being said, it's probably worth it to look up common interview questions for backend engineers to make sure you don't stumble up on those questions if a company does ask trivia-esque questions. Although, focus less on the rote memorization and think about tradeoffs between using different technologies. For deeper learning, you can connect the technologies with your own experience.

    • 0
      Profile picture
      Entry-Level Software Engineer [OP]
      Unemployed
      a month ago

      Yessir, Charlie. Something I realized is I’m gonna structure my studies in a way where I have a Google doc prepped of concepts and common technical interview questions, each categorized by language. Like one doc dedicated to Java, asking stuff like “what’s the difference between JDK and JRE?”, and “what’s the difference between overload and override?”… which just so happen to be the two Java questions that did me in 😕

      Along with that, I’ll continue to do a healthy amount of leetcode preparation. I’ll just have chat GPT generate some questions for me, and I’ll coach myself to come up with answers I know how to easily explain. Thanks for the feedback, Charlie.

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