Software Support Interview


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    In a moment of desperation I applied for a support role at a company developing an inbound marketing software. The interview was dragged out across four stages,

    Having reached the final stage, I was asked what my superpower and cryptonite were and how exactly I was exceptional, surpemely gifted and extraordinary (yes, that was the exact wording.). I was a bit confused by this line of questioning having been told right at the start of the interview that the company's core values were humility and modesty. Having encountered HR crazy before though, I just pushed through it and finally got to the 45 minute technical test.

    The job ad had asked for someone with skills in SQL, XML, HTML and CSS. In my hubris, I thought the technical questions were going to be about that. Instead, I was asked a plethora on indepth questions on the workings of bicycles as well as toasters. After resolving several "toaster tickets" the interviewer then moved on to mathematics problems such as:

    You have been given 9 weights, one of which is slightly heavier than the rest.
    Can you work out which weight is heavier in just two weighings of the balance?

    I solved a few of these and things got even more surreal.

    Next up were my opinion on Team Fortress 2, League of Legends and LAN parties.

    I called it quits at this point. No way they are getting past my control point.



  • @royal_poet said:

    toasters.

    You didn't, by any chance, apply to CDCK?


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    Nope :)

    Though I was tempted to say "the toaster grew an arm and stabbed you in the face" at various points throughout the interview.


  • SockDev

    well... that sounds like someone drank a bit too much of the interview 2.0 koolaid and then decided to hire someone...

    wonder what WTFs we would have discovered if we had managed to get an insider in there. ;-)


    filed under welcome back!


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @royal_poet said:

    In a moment of desperation I applied for a support role at a company developing an inbound marketing software.

    Forgive me for asking, and I do not mean this to sound condescending, but this sounds like a very entry-level position?

    If so:

    @royal_poet said:

    The interview was dragged our across four stages,

    A four stage interview for an entry-level position is TRWTF. The rest of it is merely icing on the cake. The only thing they were missing was a "trust fall" exercise and someone having to lead a group of people to build an object through only their words.



  • @royal_poet said:

    Having reached the final stage

    Was all that on the final fourth stage? That stage is usually meeting some VP or some bureaucratic non-sense.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    Shockingly enough it was. Order went like this:

    1| Speak to HR person for an hour about HR bullshit.

    2| Half hour talk with the head of the department one would actually work for.

    3| Talk to the head of the department AND his superior. (I thought it would end here.)

    4| 3 1/2 hours of fun consisting of 30 minutes with 3 prospetive co-workers each, then another 30 with the head of the department and another 30 with the superior, oh and the technical test of course.

    I knew it was a train wreck after 2| but stayed on because the pay would have been quite good for what seemed to be a fairly easy job right in the centre of Dublin. I'm the process of relocating - so I'd not have minded an easy job for a few months.

    And Intercourse, not quite as entry as I made it sound. They are looking for someone to build and train a language support team for a new product and market they have not been active in before - but that makes this insane interview even more insane, right?

    I've actually applied for a similar role somewhere else that came with a 10 page technical test, programming samples to hand in, the requirement to write sample letters in all languages listed on the CV and so on...

    But recruitment in the multilingual arena has always been nuts. You always get the worst of all worlds.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @royal_poet said:

    And Intercourse, not quite as entry as I made it sound.

    Fair enough. Around here, "Software Support" would be basically helpdesk. End users have issues, they call you, you work through a flowchart. Very necessary, but not quite a position that you would have a 4-stage interview process for.

    Localization error, does not parse correctly 
    

    @royal_poet said:

    I've actually applied for a similar role somewhere else that came with a 10 page technical test, programming samples to hand in, the requirement to write sample letters in all languages listed on the CV and so on...

    I have a feeling I would not interview well in today's market...

    @royal_poet said:

    But recruitment in the multilingual arena has always been nuts. You always get the worst of all worlds.

    Sounds like it.



  • Did they give you a piece of paper to fill out, but forced you to sit in an egg-shaped chair without a table and there was a table on the other end of the room, but no one told you you can use it?



  • This image sounds familiar... is that from some movie? Or maybe I had this nightmare before?



  • It's from Men in Black.



  • @royal_poet said:

    No way they are getting past my control point.

    Everyone back to the base, pardner.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @cartman82 said:

    Did they give you a piece of paper to fill out, but forced you to sit in an egg-shaped chair without a table and there was a table on the other end of the room, but no one told you you can use it?

    Men in Black - Test Scene – 03:23
    — Creepoid1234


  • SockDev

    if i was Zee and gave that test i would absolutely have hired Jay after that scene too.

    :smiley:
    thinking outside the chair FTW



  • @royal_poet said:

    Next up were my opinion on Team Fortress 2, League of Legends and LAN parties.

    The first is a decent team-based shooter, but far from being the most fun or exciting out there.

    The second is a crappy Warcraft 3 custom map turned into a "game" that rewards defensive play, retains RTS controls for controlling a SINGLE UNIT complete with the annoying roundtrip latency on clicks, requires players to memorize cryptic two and three-letter codes to communicate game state to their allies, allows one small mistake early-game to snowball into an unrecoverable disaster and attracts a community that Jeff would consider MORE toxic than us. In spite of these flaws, people play this game to win big money.

    The last one was a wonderful idea until about five to ten years ago, when it was mostly rendered obsolete by Steam. Although, it's having a comeback due to my laptop.


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