I’m certainly not the first guy to write about interviewing with Microsoft but I will share some of the things I’ve used to prepare for my interview sequence. Microsoft recruiters will conduct a phone interview first and if you make the cut they’ll invite you up to do an in-person interview. For Software Development Engineer (SDE), Software Development Engineer in Test (SDE/T — pronounced “ess-det”), and Program Manager (PM) positions the interviews are very technical. Microsoft has gotten kind of legendary for their interviewing processes and techniques. Wikipedia has a pretty good article on Microsoft’s interviewing processes and techniques.

Below I’ve just listed the resources I’ve used to prepare for my phone interview.

  • The Microsoft Interview by Jason Looney. Has a pretty good rundown of logic questions that look legit — could certainly see these appearing in the future.
  • Interview Questions on Wikipedia’s article. These are more technical questions. For instance, “How would you test a pen?”
  • Microsoft’s JobsBlog has a TON of info on specific components of the interview. It’s maintained by their recruiters and HR folks — the same people that will be interviewing you — so you know the info on there is legit!
  • Just a list of interview questions… Seems like some more legit info that you should know.

I also found it useful to read other people’s experiences with phone interviews. Some are successful, some are not.

The important tips/points I’ve learned so far are listed below. I’ve kind of scraped these from other pages.

  • Try to walk around during your phone call. It will keep you alert.
  • Prepare ahead of time. Make a list of common questions and your answers. Look at the links about for common questions.
  • Sound like you’re really in to it! I mean come on, it’s Microsoft. Passion about technology is #1!
  • Prepare some questions for the end. I hear that they ask if you have any questions at the end of the interview. It would be a good idea to have some prepared! Come on, I’m sure you’ve got some…it’s just a matter of harvesting them.
  • Answer questions honestly. They’re not interested in buying a personality they’re interested in buying your skills.
  • Be concise.