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ALICE App Interview
Questions

27 Questions and Answers by
| Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.

Question 1 of 27

Talk about a recent successful project that you worked on that required you to navigate some troubled waters during the project. What were the roadblocks and how did you overcome them?

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ALICE App Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    Talk about a recent successful project that you worked on that required you to navigate some troubled waters during the project. What were the roadblocks and how did you overcome them?

      While your resume and your past experiences can easily show your interview that you have the technical abilities for this position with ALICE App, your interviewer needs some insight on your problem solving skills. This question allows your interviewer a chance to see how you handle adversity by using resources available to you. In your answer, talk about your ability to think critically and leverage people and resources to the advantage of beating a roadblock in your work. Make sure that your answer provides an example of a project that ended in success.

      Ryan's Answer

      "A couple of years ago, I was the lead architect on a new software package that we were developing. As in any project, I was tasked with reviewing and approving the code the would be enveloped in the software. Because the final code impacted our potential clients and this was certainly a unique package we were developing, I proposed putting together a focus panel of existing clients to discuss potential needs out of a new system. My senior leaders were very reluctant to do this as they didn't want any word getting out about the program in its infancy. Knowing that we really wanted their feedback to start the coding process, I worked with our sales staff to build a list of our most dedicated customers. Then, I approached out leadership with this group and they approved without reluctance. After putting together the focus panel and gathering their thoughts, we built a phenomenal program that exceeded all of our sales and performance expectations."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I know that a large part of my success in the software architecture field is due to my ability to work collaboratively with others and provide mentorship to those on my team. On a recent project, I faced a design engineer that was very rigid in their ways and was unable to conform with new requirements for a system we were designing. In one of our first planning meetings, it became very evident that he would be unwilling to change in his ways. Being a person that wants to talk things out before escalating things further, I invited him to my office to talk one on one. I used a very educational approach to explain why we would be using the process we would be and I encouraged his participation in that approach. He hesitantly agreed. As we moved from design phase to the implementation phase, the engineer went right back to his old way of doing things and not embracing our new process. Rather than upsetting the entire project time, I immediately approached the engineer with a your either on board the ship or off the ship approach. Rather quickly, he asked that his seat on the team be reassigned to another engineer. In doing that quickly, our project was back up and running with success."

  2. 2.

    How would you handle a classroom based user training session where users were at all different ends of the learning and knowledge spectrum of the program?

      Used as a question to help gauge how would handle a particular classroom based training type of situation, this is an all too real situation that could occur if hired for this position at ALICE App. When rolling out new or updated software to customers, end users can be very experienced and need little training or they can be very new to a system and need extensive training. When paired in a room together, it is best to stick to a set training plan to ensure that everyone receives the same curriculum. Give some ideas of how you think this situation is best handled.

      Ryan's Answer

      "If confronted with this situation, I think the best way to handle it would be to have an open conversation about everyone's comfortability with the system after a quick introduction. From there, I would look to pair the novice users with the experienced users during the training. This would allow the novice users to learn from me as the trainer and from the more experienced user in watching them work through training modules."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Having been in this situation before a few times when training large groups, I stick with my focused training plan but also give extra time for question and answer periods during the training. When beginners ask questions, I encourage their more experienced peers to help answer questions to build trust among the group once my time as the trainer has come to an end and I am no longer onsite. Many have commended me for this approach within their business."

  3. 3.

    Can you describe the software development lifecycle?

      With this question, employers are looking to test your knowledge. They want to know how much you've participated in the projects you've been involved in to truly understand the software development lifecycle. The question may seem basic to some, but employers are expecting an accurate answer to know that they're hiring a true pro.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Absolutely. In my last job, we leveraged the waterfall method, making sure we completed each phase of the project - and completed it on time and to the highest quality, before moving on. The software development lifecycle consists of 6 steps, starting with planning, of course, followed by implementation, testing, documentation, deployment, and maintenance. Every step is crucial to ensure we're producing a quality product and also maintaining that product to meet the changing needs and demands of our end users."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I am new to my career in financial services and sales; however, I have taken an online course focused on cold calling. This course was incredibly helpful and I look forward to meeting and exceeding my targets with ALICE App."

  4. 4.

    What would you say is your top non-technical skill that will help you succeed in this role here at ALICE App?

      As a software architect at ALICE App, you will be relied upon to be the bridge to between the business and technical side of the organization. Your work my be relied upon to work within many silos of the organization. Because of this need, your interviewer is asking you to dig deep inside of yourself and talk about what you feel is your greatest skill to help you do this that is outside of your technical ability. As you prepare for this question, there are many ways that you can answer. No matter how you answer, be sure that your answer relates to your ability to work with other people in some way, shape or form.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As I grew in the software development field over my career, I was best suited to be a architect because of my ability to be a great project manager. If hired for this role here at ALICE App, you'll quickly find that I have the ability to lead others, negotiate, budget and oversee a project from idea to final delivery."

      Ryan's Answer

      "From a self introspection point of view, I think that my ability to be empathetic towards others that I work with has led to a huge amount of my success in the software architecture field. While I do have the technical skills to do great things here at ALICE App, my ability to learn from others, see their point of view and become a great teach to them when needed will really set me apart from others that you are interviewing for this position. If given the opportunity to work here, this skills will greatly improve the team atmosphere."

  5. 5.

    Do you have any unique skills or past work experiences that we can't see on your resume that would benefit the team here at ALICE App?

      This question is providing you the opportunity to potentially set yourself apart from your competition for this position. To do just that, it will be important for you to make sure that the unique skill or experience that you discuss matches with a critical need for ALICE App and the position that you are interviewing for. Whether you talk about a unique skill or experience, your research on this job will prove vital in your ability to make sure that it impresses your interviewer.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current role as a data engineer, I have gotten the opportunity over the last five years to work with clients in many industries. One of the industries that I've worked most closely with has been the private insurance industry. This experience and my gaining of insider knowledge in the insurance industry would benefit me greatly if brought aboard the team here at ALICE App."

  6. 6.

    What software analysis and design tools do you have familiarity working with?

      As a software engineer for ALICE App, your interviewer wants to hear that you have experience in utilizing tools that you make you more proficient in your work. Dig back on your past experiences and talk openly about your experiences with the different analysis and design tools that are available to help you be better in the work that you do. In the end, make sure that your interviewer understands that you are proficient in the use of these tools and open to learning and using new tools as well.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As my career and experience in software engineering has grown over the years, I've come to really appreciate and utilize these tools that are available. A great example of this would be my recent education and use of Structured English for designing insurance claim software for a large auto insurer. The simplicity of the structured decisions in the program were a perfect example of a program that could utilize the tool and the end product ended up very functional for our customer."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I have great working knowledge in creating and reading data flow diagrams. To help with both our own sales staff and with customers, DFD's have been super helpful and I consider myself very proficient in creating them. I've also recently been introduced to decision tables to aid in product testing. I was working on a new system that involved some very complicated business rules and the decision table helped outline everything perfectly for our testing."

  7. 7.

    How would you handle a situation where a colleague was being very difficult to work with?

      In the team based atmosphere at ALICE App, departments with different skills and backgrounds can often see things from different points of view and these situations can cause some internal conflict between coworkers. With this question, your interviewer is looking to hear how you handle situations where you are working with someone that can be seen as difficult. To give them the sense that you are able to work through conflict in a professional and sensible manner, try to talk through how you handled a conflict at work previously in the past and highlight the interpersonal skills that you used to help make it a positive situation.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In all honesty, any great work atmosphere that I've been a part of in the past has involved conflict between colleagues. In situations I have witnessed, conflict has stemmed from very open-minded people giving their two cents in particular situations and two people not seeing eye to eye. This happened recently to me in the planning phases of a new project. On of our UX Designers and I had a disagreement on the final layout of a new software roll out we were planning. It worked best for both of us to talk about our ideas and list the pro's and con's for our ideas. I kept an open mind to learn from her point of view and she did the same to me on my end. This led us to come up with a great compromise in the end."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Last year, we had a new engineer join our team that was hired on from his internship with us. From his first day, he made it very evident that he would only handle certain tasks within our team and only work on certain projects. As his mentor to help get him up and running, I sat him down and discussed the expectations of each of our engineers as part of our larger team. I explained to him that our approach was not to pigeonhole ourselves into smaller tasks, but rather be well rounded engineers that could handle any project and be able to cover for each other if needed. He really appreciated this approach when I explained the benefits for his long term career goals with this approach. This example shows my approach to being very direct with people that I have a conflict with in the workplace and doing so in a very professional and educational manner."

  8. 8.

    Do you have experience working with different CASE tools? If so, what do you have experience with?

      The world of software engineering has greatly benefited from advancements in computer aided software engineering tools. Because ALICE App is at the forefront of the industry, your interviewer will be looking to hear which tools you have experience with. Make sure not to concern yourself with providing a correct answer here, but rather focus on your flexibility to learn new aides when needed while explaining what you have experience with.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current role, I regularly utilize both diagramming and web development tools. The diagram tools assist our software projects by outlining the system data and components in a graphical form for us and this saves us a great amount of time while also being very reliable. The web development tools greatly help me visualize site changes that I am making because I don't have a deep background in web development. If hired for this position, I'd look forward to learning other CASE tools for prototyping, quality assurance and maintenance."

      Ryan's Answer

      "During my career and in my experience with CASE tools, most of my experience is in the lower CASE elements that focus on coding and testing the software after initial development. CASE tools have certainly made life as a software engineer more efficient and effective and I'd look forward to learn any new CASE tools if hired for this position here at ALICE App."

  9. 9.

    What experience do you have in the different types of software maintenance?

      As a reputable company, ALICE App takes their software maintenance processes seriously and your interviewer is looking to hear that you are familiar with the four different types of software maintenance. Talk to your interviewer about any work you have done in the past with corrective, adaptive, perfective and/or preventative software maintenance. Use specific examples and make sure that your interviewer walks away from your conversation knowing that you understand the importance of proper system maintenance.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Being familiar with all four types of software maintenance, my most used method of maintenance in my current role is corrective. Based on bug reports from end users, I work through coding and logic issues to resolve issues in a timely and effective manner. In the maintenance I perform, I never hesitate to pick up the phone and contact customers to hear first hand about what they are experiencing. By doing this, they feel like they are an important part of the process and it reflects well on me and my organization."

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current role, I'd definitely say that a majority of the maintenance work that I do is adaptive maintenance. Working in banking software that is used around the globe, I help perform system maintenance for changes in currency on a pretty regular basis. This work requires research and talking with end users to help adapt the programs for their use. If hired here at ALICE App, I also have experience performing perfective, preventative and corrective maintenance on software as well."

  10. 10.

    If you were asked to review a colleague's code that they had written, what key things would you look for?

      For this question, your interviewer will obviously be looking to hear that you have adequate knowledge when it comes to coding processes. But most importantly, your interviewer will be looking to gauge your ability to be a team player and focus on the bigger picture when working on a project. In your answer, focus on your attention to detail and your ability to help others when needed.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As an experienced software engineer, I fully expect my colleagues to reach out to me for my insight and I never hesitate to provide open and honest feedback. When asked to do this, my main focus is ensuring that the code is readable and functional. If there are lines of code that need to be removed, I don't hesitate to let my colleague know that while also giving them feedback on why I feel it is unnecessary."

      Ryan's Answer

      "When I'm asked to do this in my current position, my main focus is on regulatory requirements that were put in place for the project and security issues. I work with a team of great engineers that are very efficient coders and these two areas are most often overlooked."

  11. 11.

    We are looking for innovators to join us here at ALICE App. Where have you brought innovation in automation to a process in your career?

      Innovation in software has occurred in many phases over the last 20 years and ALICE App is always striving to be on the forefront of innovation in their field. For this question, think back on your automation experience and talk about a concept that you helped create that you felt was innovative. Really sell your interviewer on your ability to think outside of the box with this question by hammering home the idea that you can help bring new innovations to the team at ALICE App.

      Ryan's Answer

      "To be very honest with you, I was really drawn to the automation side of engineering because of the constant need to be flexible and continuing me education to stay ahead of new trends. Last year, I helped develop a codeless test automation for my company that brought together our software engineers and end users to test in environments in a fast and efficient manner. The codeless testing was a first for my organization and really helped free up time for our software engineers to come up with solutions rather than spend time testing."

      Ryan's Answer

      "About four years ago, I was on a team that developed an AI bot that could test scripts and provide analysis on extremely large amounts of data in a short period of time. Our work focused on the algorighms that the AI would utilize in its testing work. From the start, the AI process was extremely accurate and efficient. Now, as things have changed over time, modifications to the AI system all center around changes to the algorithms. Based on our success, we presented our AI system at a national conference last year and it received a lot of great accolades."

  12. 12.

    What do you feel are the primary features and benefits of the Java programming language?

      As a company that utilizes Java, ALICE App and your interviewer want to make sure that you have an understanding of the Java programming language and they do so by asking this question. Obviously a language packed with unique features, talk about the features that you can speak the most knowledgeably about and tie your direct experience to.

      Ryan's Answer

      "When I started working with Java three years ago, the first huge benefit was the fact that the Java syntax was based on C++. At that time, I had a great working knowledge of C++ and my transition to Java was absolutely seamless. The other amazing feature that I've come to appreciate with Java is how robust the memory management is in exception handling and automatic garbage collection."

  13. 13.

    In your mind, when is monkey testing the most effective in testing new software?

      By utilizing random inputs to check the behavior of a program, monkey testing has its time and place in the software testing process. For this question, your interviewer is looking to hear that you have an understanding of the theory behind monkey testing and how you would look to put it to work at ALICE App to test their products.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my experience, monkey testing has been very effective in load testing and stress testing new software as standard testing methods couldn't do this without a lot of extra work. Because of the adhoc approach to the testing, load and stress on the software was most highly gauged through monkey testing."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Because monkey testing is able to find unique bugs that standard testing won't find, I've found it to be very effective for testing new pilot software programs that are reaching new bounds. At my current job, I helped design a brilliant monkey testing process that utilized user behavior to look for certain probabilities of bugs within our systems that we were designing."

  14. 14.

    Do you have experience writing a custom exception in Java?

      As a Java expert, you will hopefully have the ability to inform your interviewer that you do have experience in writing custom exceptions in Java. As a reputable software company, the engineers and architects with ALICE App often need to demonstrate the ability to do just this. While talking about the experience that you do have, be sure to discuss your thought process in initially determining the need for writing a custom exception above and beyond the standard Java exceptions.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Yes, I certainly do have experience writing custom exceptions in Java in my time in the financial software industry. Because some of the business logic and workflow needed customization, I was tasked with extending the exception class and all subclasses in standard Java to create the custom exceptions needed."

  15. 15.

    If hired for this position at ALICE App, what leadership skills would you bring to our team?

      While this position at ALICE App may not hold the title of manager, supervisor or director, the organization firmly believes that employees that demonstrate key leadership qualities are better set for future career success. Aside from that, leadership skills help you work better as part of a larger team and with potential customers as well. Prior to your interview, think about one or two leadership qualities that you possess and talk in detail about how you've exemplified those qualities in the past.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I would say that my credibility is my best leadership skill. My openness and honesty suits me well when working among a team of individuals and this helps them gain trust in following my lead when working on projects. Another skill I would bring here to ALICE App would be my ability to lead by example. I'm not afraid to take a risk in seeking innovation and I've been commended for this trait many times by my current manager."

      Ryan's Answer

      "If you were to offer this position to me, you'd quickly find that my positive attitude is an inspiration to those that I work closely with. In my current job, we work under the constant stress of tight deadlines and my positivity can be infectious to help others maintain their focus when negativity can easily take over in most situations. I would say that my other strong suit as a natural leader is my ability to be fluid on a day to day basis. Sometimes our world can be monotonous and when change comes, most resist that change. For me, change is a chance to break the current mold and grow as an employee."

  16. 16.

    In your experience in software testing, would you consider yourself proficient in both testing and debugging processes?

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  17. 17.

    At ALICE App, we rely on a full team effort to deliver top quality products to our customers. Tell me about a time that you worked well as part of a team. Are you comfortable in a similar role here?

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  18. 18.

    If hired for this position here at ALICE App, would you be comfortable handling overall project manager responsibilities for new software development?

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  19. 19.

    ALICE App hires developers with a strong understanding of object-oriented programming. Discuss your knowledge in this area.

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  20. 20.

    In Java, why shouldn't you use strings to store a password?

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  21. 21.

    How do you ensure that you have a healthy work-life balance in your career?

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  22. 22.

    Here at ALICE App, we ask our test engineers to follow specific QA protocols. What role do you feel QA plays in software development and testing?

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  23. 23.

    What programming languages would you consider yourself fluent in?

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  24. 24.

    If hired here at ALICE App, what do you feel would be the biggest hurdle for you to overcome from the start?

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  25. 25.

    As a consultant with ALICE App, your role will be vital in gather information from our customers in building new technology for them. What would be your goals in an initial consultation with a new or existing client?

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  26. 26.

    Talk about a successful training program that you had the opportunity to design and implement. What do you feel were the keys to success for the program?

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  27. 27.

    What is one unique personality trait you possess that would help you be successful in this role with ALICE App?

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