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How To Land an Interview With a FAANG Company

FAANG is an acronym for the highest performing tech companies in the stock market. These companies are Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google. (In 2020, Microsoft replaced Netflix due to its higher market influence in the technology.)

Since these companies are the top tech companies in the world, the competition for jobs at these companies is fierce. Because of this competitiveness, some extra preparation is needed when you are ready to apply. If you’re looking to score a FAANG interview, here are some things that you should do to help you succeed.

Research the Company

Working at Google seems very prestigious, but do you really know what it’s like to work for Google? If you want to find out more about a company’s culture, the best place to start is by going directly to the company’s website.

For example, Google’s Our Hiring Process page provides detailed information on job searching, resumes, interviews, and how to apply online. Learning about a company’s work culture beforehand is the best way to gauge whether or not a company is right for you.

Keeping up-to-date with the latest news about your target FAANG company is a must and studying the company’s products, history, and mission statement will help you make an informed decision as well.

Of course, most companies think their work culture is great. But what do others think? Reviews on Indeed and Glassdoor can provide great insight into what it’s really like to work for a particular company. Social media searches can help you assess a company’s true reputation. The more in-depth your knowledge of the company is, the easier it will be to converse about the company during your interview.

Study the Job Description

Once you’re sure that your target FAANG company is the one for you, it’s time to check out the job openings. When you find a position that interests you, it’s vital to read the job description carefully.

The important thing to keep in mind is what are they looking for and whether or not you meet the qualifications. Top tech companies are usually looking for people who meet very specific criteria, so don’t apply if you are not truly qualified.

Put Your Best Face Forward

Needless to say, make sure your resume is up-to-date. FAANG companies receive hundreds of resumes per month and it’s essential to make yours stand out instead of getting lost in the pile.

Take these steps to make your resume the best it can be:

  • Highlight the skills that show you’re qualified for the job
  • Keep your most relevant experience near the top
  • Cut out unnecessary and irrelevant items
  • Use bullet points to make particular details stand out
  • Highlight your problem-solving and technical skills

Craft Your Cover Letter

If you want to score a FAANG interview, a generic cover letter won’t do. It’s important to let your potential employer know that you specifically want to work for them and let them know the reasons that they should hire you.

Another good thing to do when crafting your resume is to target the hiring manager. If you are ready to apply to your FAANG company of choice, do some research and find out the hiring manager’s name and then address your cover letter directly to them.

This attention to detail shows that you’re willing to put in the effort, which translates into the effort you will put into the company if you are hired. In this day and age, it’s easy to search for who’s who in any FAANG company. Search for company employees on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Create a Great LinkedIn Profile

Speaking of LinkedIn, make sure that your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date as well. A high percentage of recruiters use LinkedIn to scout potential employees. The better your profile is, the better chance you have of scoring a FAANG interview. As with your resume, highlight your experience and accomplishments that show you are qualified for a position in a FAANG company.

Have A Practice Interview

With FAANG companies, you will likely need to go through multiple rounds of interviews before being hired. Even if you are qualified, you may fail the first few interviews due to a lack of preparedness, nervousness, or a combination of the two.

A FAANG interview may be different from the types of interviews most people are used to. FAANG companies use what’s called a behavioral interview. These types of interviews assess past behavior to predict whether or not a person is the right fit for the job. The questions are used to assess who you are as a person and not just whether you are qualified to do the job you are applying for.

We all know the standard interview questions, such as “What is your greatest strength and weaknesses?” and “Where do you see yourself in the next five years?” But in a behavioral interview, you may be asked something like, “What are the challenges you faced at a previous job and how did you handle it?”

Behavioral interview questions are designed to show how you behave in certain situations. By researching behavioral interview questions beforehand and thinking about how you might answer them, you will become more prepared to ace a FAANG interview in reality.

Take Online Assessments

In addition to assessing who you are as a person, FAANG companies will test your technical skills as well. There are online assessments for Microsoft, Amazon, and Google you can take on Algo Monster, a software system used for technical interview preparation.

The software assesses visual and interactive learning as well as code editing, amongst other subjects. Online practice tests can help answer important questions before taking the actual assessment test when applying for the job.

For Google, the first step to getting hired is to pass the assessment test. This test is administered after a person passes the initial screening and before the phone screening.

The assessment test may not be necessary for everyone. It depends on the position that you apply for. The most common questions are coding questions on data structures and algorithms, and the candidate has 90 minutes to complete the test.

The online assessment is the first step when applying for Microsoft as well. Passing the test determines if a person moves on to an in-person interview.

The assessment consists of three questions that are to be answered in an hour and a half. By completing the online assessments first, you will be prepared for whichever test questions are chosen for the real test.

For Amazon, the assessment test is the first step when you apply for an SDE (Software Development Engineer) role. Passing or failing this assessment will decide whether or not the candidate moves on to a phone, in-person, or virtual interview.

Algo Monster also answers some of the most frequently asked questions that potential candidates may have about the Amazon assessment test, including:

  • Is Amazon’s SDE online assessment test proctored?
  • Is Amazon’s online assessment timed?
  • How is Amazon’s online assessment evaluated?
  • Does Amazon’s online assessment require a webcam?

Answers to these questions can be found on Algo Monster’s Amazon Online Assessment Questions page.

Hire An Interview Coach

Since competition is tight when applying for a FAANG company, hiring an interview coach is a good way to help you ace your FAANG interview. A good interview coach can help with mock interviews and role-playing, and they can also provide feedback.

One of the most significant benefits of having an interview coach is that they can help boost your confidence and provide real questions that you may encounter during a FAANG interview.

The interview coach will be able to provide feedback so that you can better articulate your skills and experience, as well as improve your interview answers by the time the real interview comes. Feeling confident and prepared is a sure-fire way to be successful in any interview.

In addition, many interview coaches have worked for big tech companies, so they will be able to provide true insight as to what it’s really like to work for a FAANG company. Having this inside information will help you become well-versed about the company you are applying for.

Build A Relationship with Recruiters

Building relationships with recruiters is a great way to get your foot in the door to land a FAANG interview. Recruiters can keep you informed on new job openings, provide advice about the job market, and offer career advice. Things to keep in mind when connecting with a recruiter:

  • Check-In Weekly – Recruiters are very busy and have many clients, so check in weekly with them to help keep you on the radar for when new job opportunities come about.
  • Get Resume Advice – Recruiters are a great source for resume advice, especially if the recruiter specializes in a particular industry. A recruiter can provide feedback on formatting and choice of words. You can then use this feedback to craft your resume yourself or seek out a professional resume writer.

At the end of the day, scoring a FAANG interview is not easy. But online resources that can help you are in abundance. By following the above steps and making personal connections with a recruiter or interview coach, you can move one step closer to landing your dream FAANG job.