Key Concepts

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Technical Interview Problem Clarification

During a technical interview, an interviewee will be presented with a problem to solve. The interviewee should clarify the problem with the interviewer so both parties understand the problem definition and its scope. The interviewee should be able to restate the problem in their own words and ask questions to clarify every unknown that comes to mind.

Technical Interview Solution Outline

The third step in the technical interview process following problem clarification and solution input-output and edge cases identification is developing a solution outline. Communicate effectively and cordially with the interviewer using a step-by-step approach to solving the problem. This will demonstrate your thought process and ability to receive and incorporate feedback from your interviewer to produce an acceptable workable solution.

Technical Interview Solution Whiteboarding

The fourth step in the technical interview process is to whiteboard your solution after you have previously outlined it. Make this step as collaborative as possible by explaining to the interviewer the code you are about to write before writing it on the board. Repeat this process for each outlined step in your solution. Face your interviewer when speaking and face the board when coding.

Technical Interview Solution Testing

In step five of the technical interview process, after the solution has been coded on the whiteboard, it’s time to test the solution with the clearly defined inputs from step two and verify the expected outputs. Walk through each line of code with your interviewer, identify and correct any logical error found, if possible.

Technical Interview Solution Efficiency

In the last step of the technical interview process, we discuss the efficiency of our coded solution in terms of time and space complexity. If improvements can be made, we do it. Otherwise, we can explain and justify our implementation.

Technical Interview Input-Output Edge Cases

The second step after problem clarification in a technical interview is to define acceptable inputs and expected outputs to the solution as well as identify edge cases that will stretch the solution to its limits. The ability to foresee potential setbacks and bound the problem adds merit to the interviewee’s credit.

Technical Interviews: Whiteboarding
Lesson 1 of 1
  1. 1
    Aspiring developers must pass a technical interview to be hired as a professional. These interviews evaluate the candidate’s ability to write code, articulate their thought process, and problem sol…
  2. 2
    Whiteboarding interviews begin with a problem from the interviewer. The interviewee must be confident they understand the dimensions of the problem! Software development is full of ambiguity. Prog…
  3. 3
    When the question is clear, we then produce concrete inputs and outputs. These inputs guide a solution for the remainder of the interview so write them on the board! You may still be unclear how t…
  4. 4
    It’s time to start breaking down the problem by category. Given a question which requires the use of a stack, what do you know about stacks? Have you encountered other problems that use stacks an…
  5. 5
    We’ve finally come to the portion where you’ll write some code! Previous steps improve your odds for success because you have an outline and clear inputs for testing. Writing code on the board is …
  6. 6
    With a working implementation on the whiteboard, use the test inputs to walk through the evaluation of your code. Write out any temporary variables on the board and update them when they change du…
  7. 7
    You’re satisfied with your implementation and you’ve demonstrated how it works, but you’re not quite done. Analyze the time and space complexity of the solution. With this step you are demonstrat…
  8. 8
    Technical interviews judge the candidate’s ability to perform technical aspects of the job. Whiteboarding is a type of technical interview which requires the candidate to code a solution without th…

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