Human Resources News & Insights

20 super-hard interview questions employers are really asking

Afraid your interview process may be a little too easy – or doesn’t dig deep enough? See how you stack up against these companies and their interview questions. 

Glassdoor allows job candidates and employees to not only review companies and their hiring processes, but also share specific interview questions they’ve been asked.

On an annual basis, the site creates various lists of strange and/or difficult interview questions companies are really asking.

Here are 20 of the hardest questions companies have asked recently, compiled from the most recent list released by Glassdoor:

  1. “How do you explain a vending machine to someone who hasn’t seen one before?”
    • Company: Bloomberg L.P.
    • Position: Global Data Analyst
  2. “If your current employer had an anniversary party for you, what five words would be written on the cake to describe you?”
    • Company: Express
    • Position: District Manager
  3. “What’s the capital of Canada?”
    • Company: OpticsPlanet
    • Position: Team Leader
  4. “Name a brand that represents you as a person.”
    • Company: Twitter
    • Position: Brand Strategist
  5. “If you could take anyone on a road trip with you, who would you take and why?”
    • Company: lululemon
    • Position: Educator
  6. “If you had to take only one item to a deserted island, what would that be?”
    • Company: Squarespace
    • Position: Customer Service Specialist
  7. “Please describe an instance where you had to make a decision without all of the necessary information.”
    • Company: athenahealth
    • Position: Analytics
  8. “If you are in a boat with a boulder and you drop that boulder into the lake, how does the water level before and after you drop the boulder in the lake compare?”
    • Company: Apple
    • Position: Mechanical Design Engineer
  9. “You have been asked to lead a multi-million dollar, multi-year grant that will be supported across several companies and universities. How do you start?”
    • Company: Ford Motor Company
    • Position: Research Scientist
  10. “Sell me on one idea, and then sell me on the opposite of that idea.”
    • Company: Blizzard Entertainment
    • Position: Solarwinds Administrator
  11. “What is the probability of an integer from 1 to 60,000 not having the digit 6?”
    • Company: Akuna Capital
    • Position: Quantitative Developer
  12. “Give me 48 cents using six coins. Tell me quantity and value of the six coins.”
    • Company: Wintec
    • Position: Human Resource Manager
  13. “If you were a Muppet, which character would you be?”
    • Company: LifeNet Health
    • Position: Donor Family Advocate
  14. “What part of the newspaper do you read first? What does this say about you?”
    • Company: BDO USA
    • Position: Audit
  15. “If a coworker had an annoying habit, and it hindered your quality of work, how would you resolve it?”
    • Company: Proctor & Gamble
    • Position: Production Technician
  16. “Throw your resume aside and tell me what makes you you.”
    • Company: Zillow
    • Position: Sales Executive
  17. “How would you find the square root of 1.2?”
    • Company: Jump Trading
    • Position: Hardware Engineer
  18. “Write an equation to optimize the marketing spend between Facebook and Twitter campaigns.”
    • Company: Uber
    • Position: Analyst (Data Science)
  19. “What is the first thing you’d print with a 3D printer if you had one?”
    • Company: Rackspace
    • Position: Linux Systems Administrator
  20. “How many fire hydrants are there in Los Angeles County?”
    • Company: Disney Interactive Studios
    • Position: Software Engineer

Source: Glassdoor.com

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