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· 5 min read
Zhenghao He


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Most technical interviews are over-indexing on coding

Over the past two years, I have interviewed with over 10 different tech companies ranging from hot startups like Coinbase, Stripe, and Instacart to FAANG companies like Amazon and Meta, for Software Engineer positions of various levels.

The technical interview processes I have had all consisted of at least two rounds of coding interviews, where I either had to solve an algorithmic, LeetCode-type question or build a practical app/feature. During those coding interviews, I always started with an empty slate: if it was an algorithm-heavy interview question, there would be a literally empty file in the editor for me to start writing code; if it was a practical app building exercise, there might be some boilerplate code or some utilities/helper functions available but still I was expected to build the app/feature from scratch.

· 12 min read
Zhenghao He

The interview question

Imagine you were a university student looking to land an entry-level software engineer job and you were having this technical coding interview. The interview question starts with a table showing amount of units of a product sold at the shop and the corresponding price per unit. The idea here is that there is an incentive for customers to buy in bulk – the more we can sell the lower the price:

purchase quantity                                  price per unit
1-5 5 dollars
6-10 4 dollars
11-20 3 dollars
20+ 2.5 dollars