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SDL Tridion BV Interview
Questions

28 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brunner

Published February 27th, 2020 | Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.
Question 1 of 28
In a technical support role here at SDL Tridion BV, we expect that you would be able to bring great customer service skills to the role. Describe your customer service philosophy in the support that you would provide.
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How to Answer
While your interviewer will be able to get great insight into your technical expertise during your interviewer, this one question will allow you the opportunity to describe how you will bring solid interpersonal skills to the role. Your interview knows that customers will rely on you to provide quick and sensible support for their needs, but the expectation to do that in a pleasing manner is of utmost importance. Talk from a high level about your feelings on why providing great service is important and give an example or two of ways that you have done that in the past.
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1.
In a technical support role here at SDL Tridion BV, we expect that you would be able to bring great customer service skills to the role. Describe your customer service philosophy in the support that you would provide.
While your interviewer will be able to get great insight into your technical expertise during your interviewer, this one question will allow you the opportunity to describe how you will bring solid interpersonal skills to the role. Your interview knows that customers will rely on you to provide quick and sensible support for their needs, but the expectation to do that in a pleasing manner is of utmost importance. Talk from a high level about your feelings on why providing great service is important and give an example or two of ways that you have done that in the past.

Ryan's Answer #1
"To me, my job duties aren't fully satisfied if an end user leaves our conversation without a smile on their face. While any technical support specialist can handle the customer aspect of the job, few have the people skills to do so pleasantly for their customers. In any interaction that I have with a customer, I talk in a calm and boosting manner. If they are upset or mad about a situation, I reflectively listen and never place any blame back on them. By taking this approach, my customer surveys in my current position have been excellent for the three years I've held that role."
Ryan's Answer #2
"If hired for this role here at SDL Tridion BV, you'll quickly find that my mantra in working with customers is speed with a smile. To do this, I need to be resourceful in providing them with an answer or triaging them to the correct person. I need to be knowledgeable in our product base to give them answers with confidence. And last, but not least, I need to be positive in all interactions with them."
2.
As a machine learning engineer, how do you avoid the curse of dimensionality in your designs?
To effectively answer this question, it is important to first understand what dimensionality means in reference to machine learning and how it can curse a project. As the number of features increases in comparison to the number of observations within a data set, some algorithms struggle in pulling correct data. Your job on this question is to talk about ways that you can avoid the curse in your designs. Some possible things that you may mention and describe are feature selection, correlation thresholds and variance thresholds.

Ryan's Answer #1
"A common example that I use with people to explain complications in dimensionality is dropping a pin on a 10 foot straight line. This would be relatively simple to find. Next, if you dropped the pin in a 10 foot by 10 foot square, the task of finding the pin becomes more difficult. Adding a third dimension to make a 10 foot cubed area makes it all the more difficult to find the pin if placed within it. In bringing this back to machine learning, my job is to somehow make the three dimensional field that the machine will pull from easier to pull from. Last year, I was part of a team that developed a system for pulling public health data. We were able to set many variance thresholds that removed values that didn't change much from observation to observation. After careful testing, the system was able to pull information quickly and accurately based on these thresholds."
Ryan's Answer #2
"As you can see from my resume, I've spent the last six years working in the electronics industry. Most of my machine learning work has focused audio data. To avoid the curse of dimensionality within the systems I've designed, autoencoders have been tremendous in pulling information. While a great amount of time and effort was needed to effectively train the systems, the work was well worth it in the end."
3.
Tell me about a time your manager changed the scope of the project in the middle of it. How did you deal with it?
With this question, your prospective employer is looking to see how you handle change, especially change that can be frustrating and disrupting to your work. In your answer, be sure to explain what happened, as briefly as possible, and how you handled that change to get back up-to-speed and on-track with your project.

Ryan's Answer #1
"We were working on a software upgrade project which was supposed to take 12 weeks; however, 4 weeks in, my manager approached us and requested different modifications, even though the modifications were almost 75% complete. I understand that changes can happen and it was my job to get back on track and get going on it. I immediately took action and worked with my team and manager to come up with a plan moving forward, as that disrupted our schedule. We were able to all pick up extra and through that, we still hit our initial deadline."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I can assure you that, if hired, I would put the customers of SDL Tridion BV first. When working in the financial services world, your customers can determine your success. I have a very high referrals rate which tells me that my customers are happy."
4.
Talk about your previous user interface design experience in detail. Why do you feel that this experience will translate well to this role with SDL Tridion BV?
While your interviewer can get a good sense of your experience from your resume, they are looking for you to talk in details about your experiences in UI design in your previous work. While explaining your previous experience, be sure to highlight the skills that you developed that will help you be successful in designing new products with SDL Tridion BV. Prior to your interview, be sure you research and are family with the products that SDL Tridion BV puts out.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Ten years into my career out of college, I consider myself very blessed to have such a well rounded background in user interface design. I have experience designing cutting edge mobile app designs, website design, video game design and software design. Here at SDL Tridion BV, your education software would greatly benefit from my creative designs to be user friendly and appealing to educators, parents and students and I'd love to bring these skills to work for you."
Ryan's Answer #2
"While my experience in user interface design has really focused on web design over the past five years, I think my current skill set will benefit the team here at SDL Tridion BV greatly. In my web design, I prepare mockups and wireframes for customers and have experience utilizing a lot of different resources in doing these. In the software world, I would love to use these same principles. As well, my web experience has really driven me to be user focused. In this role, a more user focused drive is required out of your user interface design and I would be able to bring that to the team here."
5.
Talk about a time when things didn't go as planned on the job. What was the situation and what allowed your to persevere in that situation?
As a professional in the tech industry, you have likely had a project that failed, a promotion that passed you over or a meltdown occur at some point in time. Realizing that your interviewer fully understands and expects that failure happens, talk openly and honestly about a situation where you experienced failure or failed plans. Most importantly in your answer, focus on how you overcame the particular situation and discuss lessons that you learned moving forward that you can bring to this role at SDL Tridion BV.

Ryan's Answer #1
"A couple of years ago in my first role as a UI designer out of college, my team was tasked with coming up with a very short notice proposal for a potential high end customer. With a week turnaround time, I set right to spending my time gathering information on the company to build a mock design. When the proposal was submitted, I found out that the potential customer scoffed at my idea and the customer went with another organization's proposal for their use. The biggest piece of feedback that I got was that the UI design just wasn't conducive to the type of customers they were expecting. From that point forward, whether it has been with short notice or long-term products, I take the time to communicate with key decision makers from clients to gather information for making my design as user friendly as possible."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Last year, I was working on a large scale project that put me face to face with a key customer. After traveling onsite with the customer to spend time with them, I exchanged contact information with two of the key decision makers. In the weeks following, I was sending them follow up emails with our business proposals and was getting frustrated at the lack of response from the clients. After my manager had questioned the viability of the potential customer, I picked up the phone and called them directly. It turns out that their responses back to me were being sent to a junk email folder that I neglected to consider. I apologized for the mistake, took action quickly and we came to a great agreement on future business together. After having a laugh about it with my boss, I now incorporate diligent communication follow ups both by phone and email with customers while also regularly checking all email inboxes."
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