If you are looking for a job in a tech company or looking for someone to work in your company, having a basic idea of what technical interviews are like is a must. Most technical companies will have several rounds of screening and interviews for their candidates, such as group discussion, HR rounds, general interviews, and so on. But given the nature of the job, the technical interview is usually the one that will be given the highest priority. So, it is imperative to know what are the most common technical interview questions.
Meanwhile, your prospective employee is still out there interviewing elsewhere in case your offer letter never comes.
What to expect from a technical interview?
A technical interview is not very different from any other usual interview except that it focuses more on your technical skills. Most tech companies will have at least one technical interview to test your IT and other tech skills. Tech interviews may be conducted in-person, over the phone, or even online.
Common IT interview questions can include problem-solving questions, brainteasers, or technical proficiency tests. Many tech interview questions are also related to your skills, qualifications, certifications, knowledge of different computer languages, knowledge of IT tools, proficiency, and so on.
Depending on the type of role you are applying to, you may also have to appear for skill tests in programming, coding, web development, app development, etc. So apart from preparing your answers for the common technical interview questions, you should also brush up on your skills before you go for an interview.
Though this sounds like a lot of preparation, there is nothing to worry about for aspirants who are updated and aware of what to expect. To help you prepare better, here’s a list of some of the widely asked information technology interview questions and answers. This list may also be helpful for employers who are looking for some good technical interview questions to ask.
These information technology interview questions are not usually highly technical. They are rather related to your past experience and your approach to problem-solving in general. Some common examples are given below.
1. Tell us what you know about our company
You may have come across this question in every interview so far. Be prepared to face it again as an IT specialist interview question. Although it may sound very cliched and irrelevant, it does reveal a lot about you. By asking this question, the interviewer tries to find out how genuinely interested you are in the company and the job.
There are often people who apply for a job without any knowledge of what they are going in for. That shows a lack of dedication and no employer would ever want to hire someone who does not make the effort to research about the company.
2. What was the most challenging project you handled in your previous role?
This tech interview question is valid only if you have past work experience in the field. But even if you don’t, you can talk about something you have worked on independently or about a project that you took up in your academic career.
This question aims to find out what you are passionate about. Most people, in response to this IT interview question, talk about projects that excited them the most. That gives the interviewer a clear idea of what they like working on and whether those skills would be useful in the current role.
3. What was the most difficult problem you faced in your past job and how did you solve it?
This is a question that tests your ability and attitude towards problem-solving. In IT, there will always be problems and issues coming up that require immediate attention. The interviewer wants to know how you approach such issues. Make sure to stick to a problem of technical nature. Since this is a technical interview, talking about problems you faced in other fields, like administration or man management, may not be a very good idea.
Talk about a technical issue that pushed your limits and how you used your skills to quickly find a solution to it.
4. Tell us about a time you were faced with a situation or work you did not like and how did you react to it?
In this interview question for IT, the interviewer is trying to judge how you react to unpleasant situations. It is a test of your adaptability. Do you refuse to take up any work that you don’t like or do you rise to the occasion and try to find your way around it? Soft skills like adaptability are very crucial to a job. You should be open to change and accept new challenges instead of turning your back on them. That is what employers seek in a candidate.
It is not always necessary to do the things you don’t like but on certain occasions, you have to take up such tasks and complete them with dedication. Be honest when answering these questions. Tell the interviewer why you were not comfortable or confident in the job that was assigned to you and why you decided to go ahead with it anyway. Try and highlight how you overcame your inhibitions and fears to complete the task successfully.
5. What according to you are the qualities of a good team or project leader?
As part of a tech company, you may be required to lead a team soon. The interviewers would want to know whether you understand the role of a leader in a project. This technical interview question is aimed at finding out what you know about leadership skills and whether you would be a good fit for a leadership role when the opportunity arises.
6. What special skills do you think a remote worker would need?
Given how the world is gradually moving to digital platforms and remote working is becoming the norm, this question is legitimately a part of every interview. Most IT technician interview questions today could be related to remote working.
Through this question, the employer wants to know if you know what remote working demands. You should be aware of the challenges of remote working and the best practices that can help overcome these challenges. Tech companies need people who can as efficiently from a remote environment as they would in the office environment.
Questions on technical skills
Apart from the general questions, a technical interview would include some specific questions on your technical skills.
7. What online resources do you refer to for help?
There are many online resources for IT professionals these days. But not all of them are equally reliable or offer the same standards. The interviewer here wants to know whether you know which resources to trust and whether you keep yourself updated.
In response to this IT interview question, make sure to name some reputed resources such as GitHub or StackExchange or other online forums and social media pages. It is a good idea to do some research on such reputed resources before going for an interview.
8. What do you do to keep your technology skills updated?
Technology is changing very rapidly and you cannot expect to bag a job in IT unless you are extremely up-to-date with the latest skills in your field. Employers expect candidates to continuously upgrade their skills. This tech interview question tries to find out if you put in any effort to learn new things.
Mention some useful courses, materials, or blogs that you follow to keep your technical knowledge current. If you have participated in any workshops or hackathons lately, you should bring that to light as well. It reflects your enthusiasm towards your profession and your willingness to learn.
9. What are the technology products that you use most?
There are new and upgraded technology products hitting the market every second day. The interviewer wants to know whether you have experience working with the latest technology tools. Your choice of tools also tells them about your inclination towards the kind of engineering or the design and user experience and so on.
This tech interview question can tell them whether you would be a good fit in their organization, among the kind of hardware and software that they rely on.
10. What is your take on the Agile environment?
Most IT companies are now adopting some kind of Agile methodology to improve their processes. With this IT interview question, they are trying to judge your knowledge of this popular environment as well as your attitude towards collaboration, lean practices, and communication with other members.
How to prepare for a technical interview
Though there are hundreds of other IT interview questions and answers that are specific to the role you are applying to, preparing for these common questions can make a big difference.
Research the company you are applying to
The first step of preparation for a technical interview is to learn as much as you can about the company you are applying to. Candidates who are confident about why they want to work for the company have a better chance of cracking the interview.
Anticipate some trick questions
Employers know that most candidates would be prepared with their answers to the common technical interview questions. That is why they may throw some curveballs at you now and then to see how you react in pressure situations. The way you answer these unexpected questions shows your presence of mind and your critical thinking ability.
Prepare a few questions you want to ask the interviewer
Quite often interviewers allow candidates to ask any question that they have in mind at the end of the interview. You should make use of this opportunity to know more about the role and the company. It also shows your interest in the job and is received well by employers. Prepare a few questions beforehand to make sure you don’t fumble in the end.
Following these few tips, you should be able to answer any interview questions for IT that come your way. A little preparation and some wit are all you need.