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KAL Software Interview
Questions

27 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brunner

Published December 17th, 2019 | Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.
Question 1 of 27
At KAL Software, we take security risks very importantly in our products. In your experience, what are the biggest security risks in software and what is your experience in any prevention methods?
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How to Answer
As an expert in software industry, you are obviously aware of the many security risks that systems face in this day and age. For your answer to this question, talk knowledgeably about the security risks that you are most familiar with combating in your day to day work. Explain why the posed risk is important to combat against and talk about the methods you used to minimalize risk in the finished product.
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1.
At KAL Software, we take security risks very importantly in our products. In your experience, what are the biggest security risks in software and what is your experience in any prevention methods?
As an expert in software industry, you are obviously aware of the many security risks that systems face in this day and age. For your answer to this question, talk knowledgeably about the security risks that you are most familiar with combating in your day to day work. Explain why the posed risk is important to combat against and talk about the methods you used to minimalize risk in the finished product.

Ryan's Answer #1
"As I'm fully aware, cyber-security has become a very important issue over the past ten years. In my current role, our biggest security risk is injection of code used by hackers to access information in our web applications. To help prevent any risks associated with injection, we've implemented the use of a safe API and using specific LIMIT and other SQL controls within queries to prevent loss of records in case of an injection."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In the healthcare field where I currently work, broken authentication vulnerability has allowed attackers to hack into electronic medical records and gain control over those systems. This type of attack potentially puts hundreds of thousands of people at risk within a given system. We use many methods to prevent this type of security risk. First, we take the time to properly test the code before rolling out new updates to software. We also utilize very detailed external security audits. Other details we have implemented have been multi-factor authentication processes and recommendations to align password requirements with the NIST guidelines."
2.
When do you consider a project to be finished?
When answering this question, be sure to understand what the employer is truly asking. They are looking to see where you think the project ends, whether that is when it's completed and all testing is done, or whether you think projects are ongoing and require constant work. It can be a trick question as many companies believe a project is never truly finished. Be sure to give an explanation with your answer to back up your belief.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my mind, a project is never truly finished. Once it's rolled out, upgrades will have to be performed, quality checks will have to be completed, and the product will inevitably change based on customer needs, new technologies, and trends in the market. We have to take that all into consideration when working on a project and while maintaining the product that was completed as a result of the project."
Ryan's Answer #2

"I should disclose to you that I have a mark on my criminal record. I have a DUI from 1998. Since then I have maintained a clean record and I am willing to comply with any form of background check that you require."
3.
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 #1
"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 #2
"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."
4.
Tell me about a time that there was a delay in the project and how did you handle that delay?
In your answer, be sure to tell your prospective employer why there was a delay, but most importantly, how you handled it and got back on track. It's important to use the STAR format for questions like these: situation, task, action, result. Situation: the delay. Task: resolving it quickly and getting back on track. Action: how you went about executing the task. Result: how the steps you took to resolve it led to the effective and successful resolution of that delay.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I was working with my team on the configuration of the new HR system we were rolling out and the HR team asked for a new module that we thought would significantly delay the launch. In order to meet our internal client's needs, we offered to add the new module, but to avoid delays to the project, we reallocated a resource to work exclusively on the module. We all chipped in extra effort on the major project parts to make up for our coworkers' absence as he was working on the module. The coworker who did the module did a fantastic job which didn't require many changes from the group. Through all this, we were able to roll the product out on time and within budget."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I am motivated by knowing something about the end customer and being able to relate to them as a person. A personal touch is always helpful for me."
5.
If you were confronted with a time where you wouldn't be able to meet a deadline here at KAL Software, what steps would you take when you made that realization?
At some point in any person's career, the inevitable happens and an important deadline needs to be missed. With your interviewer fully understanding this fact, they are solely interested in how you react to this situation and what you do to make the situation right. In your answer, focus on the refocused planning and communication needed while also avoiding blaming others for the situation. Your interviewer holds accountability as a desirable virtue, so be sure to take accountability for actions in your response.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current position, I am very used to handling multiple tasks and projects on a day to day basis. Last year, my team was tasked with what started as a low priority project. After assembling a team to initially discuss the details and set a deadline for completion with our management, the project unfortunately fell off the radar of everyone on the team with many more high priority projects coming up each week. As the initial project's deadline was within a week of being due, our CEO reached out to me for a progress report. I immediately took full responsibility for letting this fall off the radar and I ensured our CEO that we would have an updated timeline set by the end of the week. In doing this and completing the project to his satisfaction, this was really the tipping point in our department moving forward utilizing a detailed project management tracking system. To this day, I can't say enough about how appreciative I am about utilizing this awesome system. Moving forward, you can rest assured knowing that I take full accountability for my actions and do what is necessary to communicate new expectations and meet them fully."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Having been in this situation before, I would first sit down to gather all the facts possible in the situation. What was the deadline, why wasn't it met and what can be done are all important questions moving forward. From there, communicating to all key parties is extremely important and doing so in a timely manner is critical. In this communication, taking accountability and setting new expectations for delivery in a concise and tactful manner will most often put stakeholders at ease and allow for successful completion."
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