Six-Month Job Hunting Journal

There were many articles I read that kept saying one should start looking for jobs sooner rather than later in the senior year. Looking to finish my degree in August 2017, I started back in March 2017 and thought it was probably too late. Nonetheless, I polished my resume and started sending applications on Indeed, AngelList, and LinkedIn. So here, I would like to share some of the interview processes I went through with some of the companies I applied for the Front-End Developer position.

Phone Interview
Talent Acquisition team phoned me and we briefly chatted about my background and what I was doing. After that we set up a time for the on-site interview.

First Interview
This interview was like an expansion to the phone interview. I was interviewed by a software developer and it was pretty easy going. I introduced myself, talked about what I did and he asked about some behavioural questions and my weakness was. I would say it was a pretty typical, or standard, interview.

Assessment
A week later, I was required to finish the take-home assessment that consisted of 3 JavaScript questions in 3 hours. The problems were mainly testing how well I could traverse data like an array to search for what was needed as well as how well I could interact with the DOM.

Second Interview
I went to Clio again for the second interview 3 weeks after my assessment. This time, there were 3 software developers interviewing me on in-depth behavioural questions, scenario questions, and some technical questions such as what hoisting meant, what kind of optimizations could be done for a list that had 10,000 items, etc.

Conclusion
Overall I enjoyed the interview and the company. I actually went back again in July for a Polymer meet-up they hosted. Unfortunately I didn’t get an offer but on the positive side, at least I did go through the whole interview process.

Online Assessment
I received an email from Active Network 2 days after I applied on LinkedIn. Instead of a phone interview like how other companies usually do, I was to complete a personality test that had no time limit and a cognitive assessment in 15 minutes. The materials included English vocabulary tests and some math problems.

First Interview
A Skype interview with a technical recruiter from the HQ followed 1 week after I completed the tests. Besides talking about my background and other introductory questions, I was required to complete the nearly identical cognitive test again but this time with Skype on so they knew I wasn’t cheating. A week later, I moved on to the phone interview.

Phone Interview
I was invited to join a conference call with 3 other software developers. This 30-minute call was all about my technical skills in a form of they asking me questions on anything about Front-End. I got grilled at this part but I also learned the most out of this interview. The questions included explaining repaint and reflow, JavaScript basics and ES6 stuffs, and some questions on paradigm and patterns. I apologize for not being able to give more details as I don’t actually remember every question since I was kind of bombarded with questions, haha.

Conclusion
Later I found out they were looking for senior developer that had many years of experience and so as a result, I got an email about not being offered the position nearly 2 months later. Still, I felt I truly knew what I was missing to become an all-rounded Front-End Developer.

Phone Interview
I applied for Front-End Software Engineer after I visited their booth during Vancouver Techfest. Luckily I got an email of an invitation for a phone interview with a Principal Software Engineer. It was more of a technical interview as the questions included JavaScript, front-end optimization, and live coding.

On-site Interview
This interview was a bit longer than other ones I had in other companies as we discussed about the side projects I worked on before, how I was involved in during my internship in the previous company, how I would respond in certain situations. This was between me and the same Principal Software Engineer I talked on the phone before and then I talked with the designer who also worked as the Front-End Developer. We spent decent amount of time on getting to know each other and how I worked with the designer in my previous job. The reason this was very important to them was that I would be working very closely with him and also share some of this workload so he could eventually focus on more of the design tasks.

Conclusion
I am glad to announce that I will be joining Article as a Front-End Developer in mid September! There were other interviews but there were the most memorable ones, especially Article. The takeaway here is to continue preparing yourself and continue trying. Wish you all the best!