Preparing for Technical Interviews

Published Nov. 28, 2019

The technical interview step is often the thing that makes or breaks the interview process. Even worse: They are incredibly different, not always reflect the skills you need on the job, and often high-stress situations. We don’t have a magic potion that helps you clear all of these, but we’d like to help.

Preparing for Technical Interviews

The most important thing to know and think about is: It’s usually not your fault, if you fail one of those. Different interviews are highlighting different strengths, and it’s often a single decision that allows you to continue the process or get rejected. That sucks if you’ve been hoping to get a specific position, but it doesn’t reflect the quality of your skillset.

That being said, a lot of issues can be be easier if you prepare well for your upcoming interview, and we want to show you how.

Predict the Content

Technical interviews are almost never the first step in the process. You’ve likely talked to someone on the team or HR before, should know what the company/team does, and might even already have some clarity on your future responsibilites. Technical interviews are there to verify that you have the necessary skills to flourish in that position.

It’s in no way necessary to study and prepare yourself for each interview (it does help to get in the right headspace though), but even a slight expectation of what you could expect in the interview can help you subsconsciously think about the right topics, and can help you feel less anxious during the interview.

Get as much information beforehand

It’s totally okay to ask questions about the upcoming process when you’re interviewing. “What are the next steps?” is a totally common and appropriate question to ask your interviewer.

Another common question is “should I prepare something?”. This can give you great insights into the next step in the process:

  • Whether you should prepare writing/note material or not
  • Any specific content that you may get asked about
  • If online, whether or not you’re expected to be at a desk (stationary) or can join via phone

Again, this is not the secret formula to interviews: But it can help you know what to expect and get you in the right headspace.

Don’t put too much weight on it

We already teasered it, and it’s a sad truth that everyone in the industry knows: Whether you pass or fail a technical interview mostly depends on the company and interviewer – not you.

There are countless articles and posts out there from now-successful professionals, who once got rejected multiple times at countless companies.

Once you stop sweating about technical interviews, they get much more enjoyable and that will translate to your performance too!

Bonus: Practice with an interview partner

If you know somebody who conducts technical interviews regularily, ask them to practice with you! It’s great to get into the habit of interviewing, especially if it happens in a stress-free environment.

If you can’t do that and it’s one of your first interviews, try booking an hour with a professional. Practice makes perfect!