I've been meaning to mention this for a few weeks but hadn't found the time or energy; however, now that I'm settled in my new, awesome, job I'd like to take a minute to say that the people I spoke with while interviewing with Google were rude, arrogant, condescending, and not nearly as clever as they thought themselves to be. I wasn't offered a position with them, but after doing several phone interviews I wasn't at all interested in working with the company.

The people I spoke with appeared not to have even read my resume. I got sick of explaining to them what programming languages I know, what technologies I've used, and what kinds of projects I've worked on. That's what resumes are for. The questions they asked were designed for entry-level employees and rarely captured any relevant information about my work experience and education.

Despite the direct applicability of my PhD research to the problems Google professes to be interested in, the interviewers seemed incapable of compehending my work and were uninterested in discussing it or hearing about its importance. Instead they focused almost exclusively on first-year computer science algorithm questions about sorting arrays and writing for-loops. I suppose they're eager to hire people with decent programming skills, but those people are a dime a dozen and I wasn't interested in that sort of job.

When I questioned the interviewers about their approach and tried to explain how my research could fit into the company vision in a way that wasn't really being captured by their freshman CS questions I was rebuffed. Each interviewer mock-patiently explained how important their questions were and told me Google hires only "the best of the best". Of what, code monkeys?

In any event, after my experience I don't think I'd ever want to work for Google and I will heartily denigrate the company to anyone I know who considers applying there. A company that wants to attract the best and brightest should find a way to treat their applicants as individuals, and should tailor their interview regimen towards discovering talent and intelligence, not just textbook coding ability. Unless, I suppose, that's all Google wants.



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