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Microsoft Explore Interview Questions

Interviews at Microsoft

96 Interview Reviews

Experience

Experience
90%
9%
1%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview
44%
24%
23%
4
4
1

Difficulty

2.6
Average

Difficulty

Hard
Average
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Explore Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Redmond, WA (US)
Declined Offer
Positive Experience
Difficult Interview

Application

I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in November 2014.

Interview

I applied online, and then emailed my university recruiter letting him know that I had applied online. He responded to my email saying he would flag it internally. Every other explore intern I talked to had either a phone screen or an on-campus screen. I didn't get screened at all, and just got an email saying they would fly me out for final rounds.

There would be three interviews, which I interpreted as two technical (SDE and SDET), and one PM interview. This is what most other people got. I instead got three technical interviews. My third interviewer was actually the PM, so I expected to get a question like "design a clock for the blind" or something. Instead, he asked me Question #3 (which I found the hardest).

Interview Questions

  • Write an algorithm that would take a given string, and permute through all the anagrams of said string. So ABC would generate ABC, ACB, BCA, BAC, CAB, CBA. Now do this in constant space.   1 Answer
  • Given the index of an excel spreadsheet column, generate the column label. So you'd have A, B, C, ... Z, AA, AB, etc.   1 Answer
  • You are given a string and a regex-esque pattern. In the pattern, ? maps to exactly one character, and * maps to 0 to infinite characters that can be any character. The following strings would match the pattern ab*dc?: abdca, abdce, abbbbbdcz, abiokdcp   1 Answer

Reasons for Declining

Wasn't willing to choose Explore over a real SWE offer.

Other Interview Reviews for Microsoft

  1.  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in November 2014.

    Interview

    I talked to the recruiter on our campus job fair. Got a phone interview within two weeks and then was flown to Seattle for the final round. There were three interviews in the onsite/final round. We stayed at a fancy hotel and Microsoft reimbersed everything. The interviews were very good. All the interviewers were encouraging.

    Interview Questions

    • I was asked to code in all three of my final interviews. In the second one, I didn't check for illegal inputs and the interviewers walked me through some of his test cases and I realized I didn't take care of all the inputs that doesn't look like the example input.   Answer Question

  2.  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA (US)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA (US)) in December 2015.

    Interview

    I contacted a school recruiter. Then I had an hour phone interview. Mostly behavioral and I got a brain teaser. Later that week I was invited to Seattle for an in-person interview. I had 3 back-to-back technical interviews while I was there. The questions were very simple. There was a fizz buzz question and one about sorting. I also got one about how to design a door. Overall, the interview is very doable. You just need to stay on your feet and don't slip up!

    Interview Questions

  3.  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Microsoft.

    Interview

    I sent my resume to a recruiter in November and somehow got past the phone interview. I got an email in December saying they were going to fly me out to Washington for in-person interviews. This was part of the Explore program, so there were about 60 people interviewing. There were three one-hour interviews with different people. One was behavioral, one was technical, and one was design.

    Interview Questions

    • Choose your favorite software application and design a new feature for it.   Answer Question

  4. Helpful (1)  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in January 2014.

    Interview

    You will spend the better part of a day rotating between interviews for product management, testing, and development, by full time employees in each role. You will have breaks in between. Overall, the interviewers are very kind, and receptive to your answers. Be ready to answer at least basic questions in each of the three categories, and review what you want to say about the experiences listed on your resume!

    Interview Questions

    • Favorite app, least favorite app, finding exhaustive test cases for a product, and array coding questions.   Answer Question

  5.  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in January 2019.

    Interview

    It was fairly simple in terms of the technical stuff. The interviewers were extremely nice and gave hints if needed. Overall, just clam down and take a deep breath, and be yourself.

    Interview Questions

    • How to make coffee machine for space.   1 Answer

  6.  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft in October 2018.

    Interview

    On-Campus interview at my university. It was relatively simple- did a quick resume review, talked about some experiences, and answered a coding question. My interviewer was really nice and he took some notes on his computer as I spoke

    Interview Questions

    • compare two versions in string format in order to return the more updated version.   Answer Question

  7. Helpful (1)  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Seattle, WA (US)) in September 2018.

    Interview

    two phone interviews, one onsite with 3 technical interviews back to back but apparently most people got a mix of pm and swe questions for onsite

    if you are passionate and proactive, interviewers just honestly are looking to make sure you have the potential to succeed even if you don't have the skills for it now

    Interview Questions

  8. Helpful (1)  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in October 2017.

    Interview

    One phone interview followed by onsite (3 back to back interviews). Depending on your experience, the interviews included anything from behavioral questions to product design and technical questions. Mine were all technical.

    Interview Questions

    • Find the kth element from the end of a linked list, a brainteaser, merge two sorted arrays (one of m + n elements with m elements filled and one of n elements) into the larger m + n array, shift an array right or left by k (in place).   Answer Question

  9. Helpful (1)  

    Explore Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeks. I interviewed at Microsoft (Redmond, WA (US)) in October 2017.

    Interview

    Behavioral phone call first round, 3 in-person interviews in Microsoft Headquarters (Redmond WA). Interviewers very adaptive to each candidate skillset, but ask challenging questions at the end to see thought process on a new topic.

    Interview Questions

    • general passion about tech, basic arrays/strings   1 Answer

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