System design for FANG senior positions

Guidewire Mlpzaq
Nov 10, 2018 14 Comments

Just got a rejection from Facebook after on-site. I have 10+ years of experience so can only be evaluated as E5 or above. I thought I did well during interview. Solved almost two coding questions on each of the three algorithm sessions (demonstrated my thought process as much as I can instead of just solving them). The behavior session went well too, so the problem could only be the two design sessions. In the two sessions I can’t recall there were any design issues I couldn’t address. I also gave trade off evaluation on my design decision, but it could be I didn’t drive the conversation enough so I only got the recommendation of a soft hire instead of strong hire. The recruiter told me I passed the informal review but the packet was rejected by the hiring committee.

My question is how high the bar is for the system design round in E5 or any senior roles of FANG companies? Does it need to be evaluated as a strong hire to pass the HC? I have no FANG experience in the past that I don’t know how much impact it has on hiring decision. Thanks.

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TOP 14 Comments
  • Apple hMWF54
    Unfortunately the system is completely opaque, mainly due to fear of lawsuits. You will never know what went wrong.
    Nov 10, 2018 0
  • Facebook / Eng Menlo Park
    I just started as E5 and my system design round was the weakest.
    Nov 10, 2018 3
    • Microsoft Blkman
      How many coding interviews did u have. And how many questions were asked in each.
      Nov 10, 2018
    • Facebook / Eng Menlo Park
      2 rounds of coding, 1 round was 1.5 questions (didn’t finish second) and the other was 1 question with many follow ups.
      Nov 10, 2018
    • Guidewire Mlpzaq
      OP
      Do you have strong background like working in other FANG companies before? Did you apply to the generalist or any particular positions ? Was your system design round for infrastructure or product? Thx.
      Nov 10, 2018
  • Cadence QVYJ67
    Can you please share your interview experience? What kind of questions they asked and specially system design question.
    Nov 10, 2018 3
    • Microsoft IfbU64
      +1
      Nov 10, 2018
    • Guidewire Mlpzaq
      OP
      I can’t tell any details about the questions, but they are just typical questions we see on the Internet. It’s more about the conversation than the questions themselves. The same design questions can be conducted in completely different ways by different interviewers and interviewees. I have seen the questions before but it’s not enough for me to pass the interview.

      Also Facebook has two types of system design interviews. One is product design while another is infrastructure design. What I did is product design. Infrastructure design focus more on scalability than product design.
      Nov 10, 2018
    • Guidewire Mlpzaq
      OP
      As for interview experience, I also had on-site interviews with Airbnb and LinkedIn earlier. I feel the questions from Facebook are easier compared to the other two, but given so many candidate applying to Facebook I believe they have less mercy if you do anything sub-optimal.
      Nov 10, 2018
  • Microsoft Blkman
    Op tag Facebook
    Nov 10, 2018 1
    • Guidewire Mlpzaq
      OP
      Done
      Nov 10, 2018
  • Microsoft Blkman
    Is it mandatory to get through 2 questions in facebook interviews?
    Nov 10, 2018 1
    • Guidewire Mlpzaq
      OP
      The recruiter told me there will be two sessions if you choose product design and one session if choosing infrastructure design.
      Nov 10, 2018
  • Facebook / Eng msus33
    ‘Solved almost 2 coding questions per algorithm session’ does not mean it went well (also doesnt mean it went badly). It just depends on what questions you were asked and how well you approached them.

    Some interviewers start with an easy warm up question. In this case, if you only solve the easy question and scratch the surface of the main question, it won’t be enough. In other cases, you may be doing poorly on the first question and the interviewer moves to a second and different question to give you another opportunity.

    The bottom line is that the interviewee never really knows that interview X went that good or badly.
    Nov 11, 2018 0