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Two businessmen shaking hands. Top Software Development Interview Questions

20 Software Development Interview Questions to Practice and Wow Hiring Managers

As an aspiring software developer, you will need to ace your interviews to get hired. While each interview session will be different, there are common questions that interviewers tend to ask candidates about their skills, experience, and attitude. This article runs through the most common software development interview questions and how to answer them. 

Coding Interview Questions for Software Developers

If you want to become a software engineer or developer, you will have to go through a job interview process. This section includes questions candidates encounter during technical interviews and some useful tips on how best answer them. In general, these questions aim to assess the candidate’s technical skills and knowledge of software relevant to the field.

What are the most important software development programming tools? Which do you prefer and why?

A good software developer should be familiar with the most common project management tools and software development tools. Prior to the interview, you should research programming languages that are important for the hiring company’s operations and focus on them as your most preferred.

Can you describe the process of software development? 

This is a common question that a good software developer should answer with ease. To respond appropriately, you should list the step-by-step process and provide a brief explanation for each step. The hiring manager will want to know how familiar you are with the software development life cycle and test your efficiency in attaining good outcomes. 

What is modularization?

You should directly define the term in a clear and concise manner. You can talk about how modularization is the process of dividing a software system into smaller, self-contained units that each perform a specific task without reference to the others. This is one of the skills that you will need to succeed in software development.

How do you test and find bugs in applications?

This is to establish how thorough and efficient you are as a software developer. You should demonstrate your unique industry standard skills to the interviewer and describe an effective process to test and find bugs in applications. Make sure you mention that testing should be done regularly and in stages. 

What techniques can you use to make a website faster?

This question is used to further test your level of expertise and experience. Your answer may indicate that there are many techniques available to make websites faster, and you can include some of your favorites. You can talk about functional programming and the Agile software development process.

Behavioral Software Development Interview Questions

Behavioral questions assess your personality and attitude to determine whether you are a good fit for the company. These questions are important if you want to get the job and earn a high salary. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average salary for software developers is $110,140, so you should definitely put your best foot forward.

What do you enjoy about being a software engineer?

Enjoying what you do makes you more productive. This question is designed to test your dedication to your job and how you will be able to manage difficulties. In a software engineering interview, your answers should show the interviewer you are motivated and passionate.

What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Your answer to this question should focus on your strengths that will be beneficial to the company in general and the role you’re applying for. When you talk about weaknesses, you should discuss your learning process and demonstrate that you’re working on techniques to turn those weaknesses into strengths.

Tell me about a time you had to make a difficult decision and how you went about it.

This question is to test your decision-making skills, especially when they are tough decisions. The scenario you choose should be relevant to the field, the company, and, ideally, the job role. You should describe personal projects or professional projects you are especially proud of and what vital decisions you made that led to success.

Tell me about a time you had to make an unexpected change to a deadline.

This question is to test your time management ability and see how well you work under pressure. Your answer should show the hiring manager that you can make well-informed decisions quickly without sacrificing the quality of your work. You can also talk about best practices in software engineering to avoid changing deadlines in the future.

Describe a time when you had to work with a team.

Teamwork is important as a software engineer. To work with members of different teams, you will need strong interpersonal skills. This question is to assess your fit with the company culture and the relevant team. Your answer should show, using examples in a previous role, that you are a positive team player and that you enjoy working with a team.

Entry-Level Software Development Interview Questions

The interview process for entry-level roles is usually more focused on a candidate’s knowledge of software architecture and work attitude. The questions are designed to assess your readiness for a role as a software engineer. The salary for entry-level coders is still high, so you must prepare for your first interviews.

What are some common traits of a good software engineer? Which of those traits do you possess? 

As a professional fresh to the field, you must be able to answer basic questions about software engineering. This question is also designed to assess your fit with the company as well as your personal philosophy. Your response should reveal to the interviewer about your soft skills as much as who you are as a professional.

Why do you want to be a software engineer? 

This is a common software engineer interview question to establish your motivation, your reasons for wanting to join the field, your character, and your interest in the industry. Your answer should show you are passionate about software engineering and that you are motivated to develop your skills and knowledge.

What are white box testing and black box testing? What are the differences?

There will be many technical questions to test your knowledge of software engineering and your level of expertise. You should define the terms first, then give a detailed explanation of the differences. This is one of the most common questions for software engineers, so refresh your knowledge on this software testing method.

What part of software development do you think is the most difficult?

This question is to test your areas of expertise as well as aspects where you may be lacking. You should focus on skills relevant to the company as well as those in which you are strong, as there may be follow-up questions to test your knowledge. You can talk about anything from user interface design to project planning.

Tell me about a project you handled from start to finish.

The hiring manager will want to know if you can handle and quality control a project on your own and design products to meet client needs. Your answer should demonstrate you put clients and key stakeholders first. You can use the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) to source ideas for a detailed response. 

Web Development Interview Questions

This section focuses on common interview questions web developers usually encounter in interviews. According to PayScale, the average salary for web developers is $60,307. Even though this is lower than the software developer salary, you should still get ready for your interview and show the hiring manager that you’re the best person for the job.

What is the role of a web developer?

This question is to evaluate both your understanding of the role of web developer and your role with the company. You should read the job description properly and research the company. Your response will clearly show the interviewer your understanding of the job, whether it focuses on application development or design tools.

What are the most important web development tools?

The hiring manager will need to know you have a good knowledge of web development and you can handle the job required. The tools you mention, in order of importance, should be relevant to the company and the role you are applying for. Online web development courses can help you learn these tools and prepare to talk about them.

What is the difference between cookies and local storage?

You should answer the question directly and in-depth to demonstrate your full understanding of the difference in various scenarios. For example, you can say that there are many differences between cookies and local storage, including the client or server side, the size, and expiration. Then you can explain how they differ at each level.

How can you reduce page loading time?

Your response to this question should also be direct and in-depth. Describe the process as clearly as you can and show the hiring manager you have demonstrated experience. You can talk about reducing image sizes, removing unnecessary widgets, and creating bug reports to solve problems.

How do you keep up with industry trends and news?

The hiring manager will want to know how passionate you are about your chosen field. Your response should show the interviewer that you are knowledgeable of industry-relevant newsletters and other resources. This is also a good place to practice your communication skills and describe your career aspirations.

Bonus Advice: Tips to Ace Your Software Development Interview

Four men looking at a paper on a table. Top Software Development Interview Questions
With adequate preparation, you can impress the hiring manager and ace your interview.

Practicing software engineer interview questions is a great way to prepare for an interview. However, there are many other things you can do to increase your chances of success. Below are some more useful tips to help you ace your next job interview.

  • Research the company: Researching will give you vital information about the company and its background. Become familiar with the company mission, vision, objectives, and strategic plan to address potentially complex questions and ease the hiring process.
  • Practice whiteboarding: You may be given a coding test to complete on a whiteboard during the interview. Practicing a common piece of code or software analysis problem on a whiteboard will help you feel comfortable in an interview situation and increase your chances of landing a dream job.
  • Study common coding concepts: You should learn common coding concepts regardless of your preferred area of expertise. This could save you from curveballs or things that you may overlook or forget during the interview.
  • Practice interview answers: You should practice your answers with a friend or family member to help you identify areas you may be lacking. Become familiar with the questions and practice answers to interview questions in using uncomplicated and common English language descriptions.
  • Prepare your mind: Preparing your mindset is equally as important as tuning your knowledge and skills. Aim to be relaxed but friendly and energized. Get enough sleep the night before the interview and have a good breakfast to stay alert. 

Are You Ready to Ace Your Interview? 

If you’ve practiced interview questions and researched the company, then you are ready to ace your job interview. By becoming familiar with the software engineer interview questions above, you will be more at ease and prepared during the process. Once you pass your interview, you will be ready to enter some of the best tech jobs in 2021.

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