How to Crack the Coding Interview
, These days you need to crack the coding interview to get an excellent job as a professional developer. Gone are the days that a simple resume, college degree, and discussion with a manager get you that development gig. Instead, almost every company will now be testing your knowledge, skills, and ability to work in a time crunch and have the pressure of multiple people watching you code.
You’re going to have to do a coding interview, and you’re going to have to crack it.
But how do you crack the coding interview and land your next job? You can find the answer from AlgoMonster.
Investigate The Company
While many companies use similar technologies and coding techniques, it’s going to be hugely beneficial if you can find out precisely what technologies your prospective employer is using.
Whether you know somebody at the company, you can reach out via LinkedIn or even search the web to see what current employees say about how development works there.
You then have an excellent starting point on what some areas will be when you enter the coding interview.
Research Standard Coding Interview Questions
More often than not, you’re going to find that coding interviews are relatively similar, with some changes specific to how the company operates or what technologies they use, which is where step 1 above comes in.
Find online practice coding interviews, standard questions, blogs, or anything about what is asked or tested in coding interviews.
If the company you are interviewing with is big enough, there may be specific discussion around their coding interviews, which will benefit you.
Practice The Coding Interview
You may be a fantastic coder and have years of experience, but this is a test, and you always need to prepare for a test.
From the research you did in step 2, you should now have some practice coding interviews you can try. Run through them and start finding areas where you lack skills or have issues answering or understanding the questions. These areas are going to be your priority to get better at.
Keep practicing on as many different coding interviews as you can until you crack the coding interviews and are ready to land the job.
Study The Coding Interview
Now that you know what’s in a standard coding interview and what areas you specifically need to study, start studying.
Your priority should be areas where you’re having the most difficult to ensure your knowledge or skills are brought up to the required level.
Keep going back to the practice tests to ensure what you’ve been studying is working and the areas you had trouble in before should now be improving, and you can reprioritize based on the results of each practice test.
Software Design Skills
A specific area you’ll want to study which may not be something you’ve worked on before is software design. Whether you’re fresh out of college or you’ve just been working in specific areas of the software stack, you will be asked about overall software design in the coding interview, so this is something you should understand and be able to discuss at a high level.
It would help if you also spent some time going over the basics and making sure you drill everything into your head, and everything is fresh and ready when it’s time for the coding interview.
You’ll need a good understanding of data structures and algorithms, not just how to code them, but the best option for each project or task you code. So ensure you have a thorough understanding of all the options and how they are best used.
Time Yourself in Practice Coding Interviews
You may know all the information and get good results on the practice coding interview, but how fast are you? You may be stepping into a competitive position, with many internal and external candidates all fighting for it. Therefore, the faster and more accurate you are, the better your chances will be.
Time how long it takes you to finish your practice tests and then start to improve your speed. Figure out what is taking the most time and why, and see how you can shorten that time.
Test Your Code
In a coding interview, you may get tested on edge cases, which gives extra points. So ensure you run your code through various edge cases to ensure it’s always covered—things such as empty inputs, malformed inputs, or massive inputs.
Make sure you know what will happen and how to deal with it, and that may be the difference between landing the role or just getting your resume filed away.
Find Other Interested Coders
Any topics that you’ve just learned, or problems you’ve just solved, try to explain to another coder and teach them. See if you’re knowledgeable enough on it for somebody else to quickly understand and get it as well.
You can’t just regurgitate in a coding interview. You need a thorough understanding when discussing with the interviewers, especially when you’re in the middle of coding and having to talk to them simultaneously.
Ask Relevant and Thoughtful Questions
During the coding interview, you will write code, solve problems, and discuss this all with the interviewers. If there is any misunderstanding on your part, then ensure you ask questions. Nobody is perfect, and this shows you are confident enough to clarify things .before starting, which is essential as a coder.
Talk Through Everything You are Doing
It’s important to do well on the coding part of the test. Still, another critical component of the test is explaining .what you’re doing and why you’re doing it to the interviewers so they can get a better understanding of you. It also shows a higher level of skill when you can code and explain at the same time.
Practice as much as possible. Whether you are interviewing with multiple companies, doing practices online, it doesn’t matter. Coding interviews are a specific skill that you need to learn and practice to do well and progress towards your dream job.