Aug 25 2020

Interviewing at Meta: The keys to success

By Meta Careers
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The new realities of working from home have required a collaborative effort across our recruiting team, interviewers, and business partners as we shift thousands of interviews into virtual formats. We’ve strived to adapt Meta’s hiring and onboarding processes to match our new needs, and have continued to effectively interview candidates. To learn more about the experience, we talked with five Meta engineers who shared insights on the process and how they prepped for their interviews.
"A collage of five Facebook engineers."
Meta engineers Liat, Reut, Asher, Shay and Ido.

Owning your interview experience

At Meta, we want each candidate to fully own their interview experience. We prioritize autonomy during the interview process so people get a taste of what they’ll encounter as a Meta team member. Engineers remind us that even when you’re owning the experience, interviewing anywhere calls for getting outside of your comfort zone. With this in mind, we do our best to make sure each candidate is fully prepared every step of the way. We communicate transparently throughout the process to answer questions and address concerns.
Shay P. says that having a close connection with the recruiter he worked with helped make the process stress-free. “My connection with the Meta recruiter helped me a lot because it was set up in a way that serves engineers. I actually enjoyed the process and it never felt like a chore.”
Asher T. agrees that receiving guidance took a lot of pressure off. “If you take guidance from the recruiter and get some practice, you’ll know exactly what to expect and won’t hear anything surprising during the interview. Meta also provides feedback very quickly.”
Reut C. appreciated the recruiter’s candidacy and openness. “The fact that she was approachable and available for anything whenever I needed, was really helpful and reduced all my concerns.”
For Ido S., the support he received really stood out to him as he was searching for a new role. “I had support from the recruiting team and everyone involved throughout the entire interview process,” he says. “The recruiter explained everything thoroughly and answered any questions I had. They were very patient, and suggested ways for me to prepare for the interview more effectively.”
Liat B.’s connection with her recruiter helped her imagine the type of company atmosphere she could expect once she landed the role. “I felt like I had someone in my corner every step of the way who really wanted to see me succeed.”

Preparing for the interview

Interviewing at any tech company calls for significant preparation. At Meta, our sourcers supply everything an interviewee needs, from prep materials to practice exercises, which are similar to what you’ll experience in the actual interview. When prepping, you’ll solve problems that engineers decode on a daily basis while building products and collaborating with teams.
“My interview was fun,” Asher remembers. “I love algorithm questions, which is what all of the prep materials consisted of. You’re not expected to do anything in the interview besides what you already know as a software engineer and what the recruiter shares with you ahead of time. I felt like I had everything I needed to practice and do my best in the interview.”
Shay agrees that thoughtful prep is key to enjoying the interview experience. “Use the sites the recruiter gives you to solve algorithms yourself until you’re an expert in those types of questions,” he advises. “It's important to write actual code—as opposed to pseudo code—on either a notepad or white paper when preparing for the interview. Last, choose a single programming language you feel comfortable with and stick to it to gain confidence.”
In addition to materials and practice exercises, we offer guidelines to help you prep most effectively. Sourcers recommend that when practicing with an exercise, limit yourself to 45 minutes, which is the amount of time you’ll have during the interview. Engineers suggest recording yourself when you explain your solutions and using simple language when giving your answers.
Your interview is a place for you to shine by demonstrating how much you know. The interview also serves as an opportunity to ask questions and discover which teams might work best with your skill set. “I’ve interviewed many people previously, and I was very impressed with how structured and well-delivered the Meta interviews were,” Ido says. “The interviews enabled me to show my abilities while learning about Meta projects and teams from different interviewers.”
After all the prep, the last thing you want to do is give up on yourself. Liat emphasizes that you should not get discouraged during your interview. “Even if you think you failed in an interview, continue as if you succeeded and don’t let it affect the rest of the process. You can still pass as long as you show your problem-solving skills.”
Reut agrees that candidates tend to get in their head during interviews and think that they’ve failed even when they haven’t. “Everyone wants to see you succeed, so just enjoy the process! Put concerns aside during the interview and remember to be yourself.”

Post-interview: driving impact

After the interview, the real fun begins once you join our team. Meta empowers engineers to bring measurable social impact with the code they write. Outside of your core job, you’ll also learn from others on cross-functional teams.
“The interview is worth the prep work,” Ido says. “Meta goes to great lengths to create a good filter and ensure teams hire the right people. If you want to work with the best engineers on interesting and challenging projects for a company that values and invests in engineering, then you have to be picky.”
Liat finds Meta's culture extremely rewarding. “I’m endlessly motivated to work for a company with a healthy and special culture that encourages diversity, constructive feedback, and constant innovation.”
For Shay, making an impact at scale has validated his decision to interview for his current role. “The most rewarding opportunities at Meta are tied to the impact I’ve been able to have since day one,” he reflects. “During my first three months at the company, I was part of a team that worked on a new feature, Facebook Lite dark mode, that reached hundreds of millions of people.”
Reut echos Shay’s sentiment on impact. “Not only is the work dynamic, but I have the ability to influence tools that me and all the people around me are using in our day-to-day routine.”
Asher concludes, “Being an engineer at Meta was exactly what I was looking for. I love working in an environment with talented engineers and making an impact at a very large scale. The culture here really enables me to grow and be the best version of myself.”

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