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How to skillup to be ready for FAANG job?

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Senior Machine Learning Engineer at Taro Community2 months ago

Most people spend a tone of time prepping for FAANG interview but once you have the job, you need a different set of skill to be competitive and exceed the job expectations as a SDE. It would have be nice if we had also took the time to build up the skills to do the job better before joining the company. Any recommendation on material to skill up for FAANG job

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  • 22
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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    a month ago

    I like this question: It's important to be forward-thinking! It is much, much harder to survive at FAANG now than ever before (stack rank percentages and PIPs are being cranked all the way up), and the people coming from non-FAANG type companies are the most at risk to fall behind and into the grinder.

    Contrary to popular belief, you don't need to work at a top tier company to develop the skills necessary to do well at a top tier company. A lot of it really is mentality. There are 2 core angles I've seen non-FAANG engineers struggle with after breaking into FAANG:

    • Technical quality - 99% of companies don't have the same technical rigor that Big Tech does due to a mixture of apathy and not needing to. While a 1% edge case usually isn't a big deal for a product with 100k or even 1 million users, it's a massive deal when you have 3 billion users like Facebook does (1% = 30 million people!). To dive into this topic, I recommend these courses:
    • Communication - From my own personal experience (I worked at 2 companies that are lower than Meta on the totem pole IMHO before going to Meta) and observing countless others, engineers at less cutting-edge companies tend to be more silo-ed (product is very separate, design is very separate, QA is very separate, etc). However, FAANG generally gives a lot more ownership to engineers and hence a higher communication burden. I recommend this classic course to help here: [Course] Effective Communication For Engineers
  • 6
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    Mid-Level Software Engineer [SDE 2] at Amazon
    a month ago

    I totally agree with what Alex mentioned. Besides the effective communication aspect, you need to learn how to write tech plan better and clearer:

    • There are more stakeholders in FAANG companies, writing anything in a clear and well structured manner will deliver better to a wide audience.
    • Be concise and have more data points.
    • Use less passive voice and weasel words