Landing a job at a company like Twitter can be a major career milestone. The company’s mission to “give people the power to build a better world” is quite powerful and inspiring, and it’s no wonder why so many people aspire to work there.
Plus, as a tech giant and a major player in Silicon Valley, this is one place many computer science majors aspire to work.
If the idea of working at Twitter has captured your attention, this guide is for you. In this article, I’m going to provide you with a comprehensive guide to Twitter’s interview process, highlighting common questions, the best ways to prepare, and what you can expect from the experience. Whether you’re just starting your career or looking to take the next step, this article will give you everything you need to know to land a job at Twitter.
Benefits of Working at Twitter
Before we go over interview questions at Twitter, let’s take a second to talk about why you might want to work there in the first place. Twitter is a highly sought-after workplace, largely because it’s a great stepping stone to other jobs in the industry.
However, that’s far from the only benefit of working there. Let’s go over a couple of other reasons why you might want to work at Twitter.
Boosting Your Resume and Career Path
Twitter is highly reputable in the tech industry. As such, a position at the company can do wonders for your resume and career path. A Twitter position can make your resume stand out and catch the eye of other top tech companies or startups.
Good Work Culture and Environment
The work culture at Twitter is another noteworthy reason to consider working there. Twitter is a welcoming work environment that prioritizes inclusion, diversity, and open communication. As a result, employees feel validated, heard, and supported.
Opportunities for Growth and Development
Another reason why Twitter may be a great place to work is that the company encourages employees to evolve their skill sets and pursue opportunities that align with their interests. For instance, Twitter often sponsors hackathons, conferences, and training sessions that cover a diverse range of topics to help its employees broaden their knowledge base. This can be a great way to expand your professional repertoire without having to pay for classes out of pocket.
Competitive Compensation and Benefits
Depending on the position, the salary can be quite lucrative. For instance, entry-level software engineers at Twitter earn an average of $148,000 per year, according to Glassdoor. Employees also enjoy benefits such as parental leave, generous time off policies, and comprehensive healthcare coverage. So, if you’re after a job that pays the bills, this is definitely a good place to consider.
Twitter Interview Process
Now that I’ve convinced you that working at Twitter is a good idea let’s get into how to land that job.
The first thing you’ll need to have in mind is what the interview process is like. The Twitter interview process typically involves a couple of stages—a phone screen, an online coding test, a technical phone screen, and an onsite interview. Each stage is designed to test different aspects of your skills, so be prepared to face different types of questions throughout the process.
Let’s take a closer look at each stage of the process and what it entails.
Phase One: Phone Screen
The first phase of your Twitter interview is a phone screen. During the phone screen, a recruiter will usually get in touch with you to discuss your background and experience. The phone screen is used to determine your eligibility for the role and to make sure that you have a basic understanding of the programming language and the job responsibilities.
Online Coding Test
Once you make it to the next stage, you’ll take an online coding test. This stage assesses your technical skills, including the ability to write efficient, error-free code in a limited time. You have about 90 minutes to complete the test, which includes multiple coding challenges.
Technical Phone Screen
If you successfully pass the coding test, the next stage will be a technical phone screen with a Twitter engineer. Unlike the general phone screen, the technical phone screen may cover more in-depth technical questions in your area of expertise. This is where you’ll get to talk shop and show off your computer knowledge.
Finally, if you pass the technical phone screen, you will be invited to an onsite interview. This is typically the most challenging stage.
The onsite interview is usually conducted over the course of a full day, with several interviews with current Twitter employees, where you’ll be asked more detailed technical and behavioral questions. The onsite interview process consists of a mix of coding and behavioral interview questions.
How to Prepare for a Twitter Interview
Now that you’ve got an idea of what the interview process is like at Twitter, let’s talk about how to prepare. Being prepared is what shows the interviewer you’re serious about the job and can increase the likelihood of landing the gig.
It’s not enough to rely solely on your past experience and technical skills. You need to spend time researching the company, the position you’re applying for, and the interview process itself. Here are some ways that I personally recommend preparing for a Twitter interview:
Technical skills are critical when it comes to a Twitter interview. The interviewer will expect you to have a good grasp of fundamentals and a deep understanding of technical concepts. To prepare, start by reviewing data structures, algorithms, and common coding problems. Other skills to review include distributed systems, system design, and object-oriented programming.
There are great online courses that can cover these topics, such as Udemy, Coursera, and others. You can also go back and review any textbooks you have on these subjects or conduct practice exercises by creating a series of codes on your own. Other skills to review include distributed systems, system design, and object-oriented programming.
Another critical area of preparation is researching Twitter as a company. This includes looking into the company’s mission, history, and current projects. Study Twitter’s mission statement, values, and different products. Look into what high-level executives at Twitter are saying and what are their goals and vision for the future.
You should also be familiar with the company’s history, achievements, and challenges. This information will give the impression you are interested and willing to understand the company culture.
Plus, it helps prepare you to answer the question, “Why do you want to work at Twitter?” With a better understanding of what Twitter is like as a company, you’ll be able to give a more honest, well-rounded answer.
Practice Interview Questions
One essential part of preparing for the interview is practicing interview questions. The questions can cover coding and behavioral or situational interviews. So, you may want to practice on coding platforms like LeetCode, HackerRank, Triplebyte, or different resources. Situational and Behavioral questions can be practiced with exercises like mock interviews, for example, Pramp.
Remember, practice will allow you to get more comfortable and less anxious and will help you build confidence and speed.
Skills and Traits to Emphasize
Although technical skills are essential, you should also be prepared to showcase other skills and traits that make you a good fit for the position. This includes problem-solving ability, leadership, teamwork, communication skills, and a good work ethic. Make sure to bring up any relevant experiences and how you plan to apply them in the job role you’re applying for.
Remember, there is no limit when it comes to preparation. You can never overprepare for an interview. In all likelihood, you will probably walk out of a Twitter interview having learned something new. The more you prepare, the more confidence you will have in yourself and your ability to perform well.
Common Questions in a Twitter Interview
As you probably noticed, your interview process at Twitter involves a lot of questions. But, what kinds of questions are those, and how should you answer them?
Let’s check out a couple of the different types of questions you’re likely to encounter in a Twitter interview.
Questions related to system design/ technical skills
One common question you might encounter is related to system design and technical skills. For example, an interviewer might ask you to design a system for storing and retrieving user information, with an emphasis on scalability and speed.
With these questions, you’ll want to showcase your knowledge of coding and computers. The more accurate your answers are, the more likely you are to get the job.
Employers ask these questions to learn more about your personality and work style. For instance, a Twitter interview might ask you to describe a time when you had to overcome a conflict with a co-worker or how you handle setbacks in a project.
With these questions, you’ll want to talk about your past work experience and how it relates to the job. You may need to give specific examples as well, so be sure to come with a few scenarios in mind that you can draw on to answer questions.
Coding is also a crucial aspect of many Twitter jobs, so expect to be asked coding questions that test your ability to write efficient and readable code. For example, an interviewer might ask you to write a function that takes input in the form of a string and returns the word frequency in descending order.
For these questions, you’ll want to study up on your coding skills. Be prepared to ask complicated questions or to walk someone through how to create a specific code.
Questions depending on Job role
It’s important to note that each job role has different requirements; therefore, the questions asked may vary. Therefore, it’s crucial to research the position you’re applying for and tailor your preparation accordingly. Depending on what position you’re applying for, you may need to rehearse customer service answers or go back and study specific technical skills.
Best Ways to Answer Questions in a Twitter Interview
Just knowing the types of questions you might get asked at Twitter isn’t enough. You’ll also want to know how to answer those questions best so as to present yourself in a good light.
Typically, this means answering questions thoughtfully, honestly, and in a way that showcases your skills and knowledge. Here are some best ways to answer questions in a Twitter interview.
It can be easy to overstate your abilities or achievements in an interview, but this is never a good strategy. You want to be honest about your experience and qualifications, as this will help you build a strong rapport with the interviewer and showcase your integrity.
If you are not sure about an answer, it is okay to say so. The interviewer will appreciate your honesty and transparency.
Interviewer: “Tell me about a time you overcame a significant challenge in your career.”
Candidate: “To be honest, I can’t think of a particular challenge that stands out at the moment. However, I’m confident in my ability to tackle any obstacles that come my way.”
Clarify Your Thought Process
Interviewers are interested in how you think and problem-solve. They want to know that you can approach challenges with a logical and well-thought-out strategy.
When answering questions, take the time to explain your thought process and how you arrived at your answer. This will showcase your critical thinking skills and ensure that the interviewer understands your approach.
Interviewer: “How would you go about optimizing Twitter’s search algorithm?”
Candidate: “Well, the first step would be to analyze the existing search function and identify any areas that could be improved. From there, I would gather data on user behavior and search patterns to better understand how people use the function. Based on this information, I would develop a strategy for improving the algorithm, testing it, and refining it over time.”
Demonstrate Problem-Solving Ability
Twitter is a fast-paced and innovative company, so demonstrating your problem-solving ability is key. Be prepared to discuss how you have solved complex problems in your previous roles or in your personal life.
Use specific examples to illustrate your thought process and highlight successful outcomes.
Interviewer: “Tell me about a time when you had to make a critical decision without enough information.”
Candidate: “In my previous job, we were facing a tight deadline for a project, but the team didn’t have all the necessary information to make a decision. I took the initiative to gather as much data as possible, consulted with my colleagues and developed a plan based on the available information. While it wasn’t a perfect solution, we were able to meet the deadline and exceed the client’s expectations.”
What People Say About Twitter Interviews
Twitter interviews have a reputation for being challenging yet rewarding. After all, the company has a lot to offer in terms of professional development, compensation, and work-life balance.
While some people may find the interview experience difficult, others may view it as an opportunity to learn and grow. Below are a couple of the positives and negatives of interviewing at Twitter.
- Friendly and helpful people at Twitter
- Knowledgeable interviewers that felt genuine about learning about the candidate
- Smart, insightful interview questions, as well as the interviewer’s attention to detail
- Provision of constructive feedback at every step of the interview process
- Candidate felt the interviewers were overly critical and rude
- Some questions seemed impossible and required too much knowledge of unknown subjects
- Interview was intimidating
Of course, everyone will have a different experience, but it’s always helpful to hear from others who have been through the process before. If you’re passionate about Twitter and feel like it’s a good fit for you, don’t let a negative interview experience dissuade you. Keep applying and striving towards your goals.
The interview process at Twitter can be a rigorous and challenging experience. However, with the right preparation and mindset, it can also be a valuable opportunity for personal and professional growth.
The best way to excel in a Twitter interview is to prepare adequately. By sharpening your technical skills, researching the company, practicing interview questions, and highlighting your strongest traits, you can position yourself as a valuable candidate.
If you still have the jitters for an upcoming Twitter interview, I strongly recommend consulting one of our career coaches to help you prepare.
Our experts will not only equip you with the specific skills and knowledge necessary to excel in your interview but will also provide encouragement and support throughout the entire process. With our experienced and personalized guidance, you will feel confident and prepared to tackle any question that comes your way.