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Seagull Scientific 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
At Seagull Scientific, 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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How to Answer
While this potential role with Seagull Scientific will require your to be an independent worker that can think on your feet, you will also need to work as part of a larger team that is working toward one common goal. Because of this fact, your interviewer will want to hear that you thrive in an environment where you work with team members from other disciplines than you are trained in. In your example, stress to your interviewer that you have excellent communication skills and that you fully understand that every person on a team plays a vital role in the organization's success.
28 Seagull Scientific Interview Questions
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  1. At Seagull Scientific, 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?
  2. How do you stay organized and on track when working on multiple projects or duties at the same time?
  3. What software analysis and design tools do you have familiarity working with?
  4. What would you consider your technical specialty?
  5. Do you consider yourself stronger in C++, C#, Java, or Python?
  6. Do you have experience working with different CASE tools? If so, what do you have experience with?
  7. Walk me through your experience in enterprise software sales, and complex sales cycles.
  8. What programming languages would you consider yourself fluent in?
  9. As a consultant with Seagull Scientific, 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?
  10. Discuss a couple of software sales techniques. Which sales technique do you think is most effective for Seagull Scientific, and why?
  11. Beyond revenue, how do Seagull Scientific's products benefit our clients?
  12. Would you say that you are a goal oriented on the job? What would I be able to do as your manager to help you achieve your goals if hired here at Seagull Scientific?
  13. 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?
  14. What is one thing that really tests your patience when dealing with your coworkers?
  15. In our consulting services here at Seagull Scientific, we often have to work with people who aren't very tech savvy. How would you handle a situation like this if hired for this role?
  16. If hired for this position here at Seagull Scientific, would you be comfortable handling overall project manager responsibilities for new software development?
  17. The software we develop here at Seagull Scientific requires you to have working knowledge of both privileges and roles within Oracle. Can you talk about your knowledge and experience of both within Oracle?
  18. What methods do you use to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in tech?
  19. Our implementation consultants here at Seagull Scientific often face conflicts with our customers while onsite during implementations. What interpersonal skills do you use to handle conflicts with clients?
  20. If you were confronted with a time where you wouldn't be able to meet a deadline here at Seagull Scientific, what steps would you take when you made that realization?
  21. Do you have experience working with data in a cloud computing environment?
  22. In your experience in software testing, would you consider yourself proficient in both testing and debugging processes?
  23. As you reflect back on your career to this point in your search for a new position, what would you say is your ideal work environment or culture?
  24. When would you utilize a trigger within Oracle to execute a function automatically?
  25. As the onsite consultant for our clients here at Seagull Scientific, you may be privy to confidential information or data. How can we ensure that you will hold client data security in the highest confidence?
  26. Tell me about the most interesting project you have worked on this year and the biggest thing you learned from it.
  27. We are looking for innovators to join us here at Seagull Scientific. Where have you brought innovation in automation to a process in your career?
  28. When do you consider a project to be finished?
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15 Seagull Scientific, Inc. Answer Examples
1.
At Seagull Scientific, 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?
While this potential role with Seagull Scientific will require your to be an independent worker that can think on your feet, you will also need to work as part of a larger team that is working toward one common goal. Because of this fact, your interviewer will want to hear that you thrive in an environment where you work with team members from other disciplines than you are trained in. In your example, stress to your interviewer that you have excellent communication skills and that you fully understand that every person on a team plays a vital role in the organization's success.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Throughout my career, I've always enjoyed working as part of a larger team on the job and this personal enjoyment started with my love of and participation in team sports like baseball and basketball. Growing up playing sports, I learned that each team member brought a unique skill set that could help us achieve our goals. Through a great coaching staff that knew how to make these individual skills shine, this same philosophy holds true for a team that is looking to design a new software system. I know that my skills as an engineer are just part of the final product and I work very well with designers, architects, analysts and sales to help build the greatest system possible."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I am a people person by nature and my current role has me working very closely with our engineering and design staff on writing technical manuals for our products. While I certainly can handle long days at my computer in solitude, my desire to work hand in hand with others really sets me apart from my peers in this field. I have excellent verbal, listening and written communication skills that, if hired here at Seagull Scientific, your entire team would appreciate from my first day on the job."
2.
How do you stay organized and on track when working on multiple projects or duties at the same time?
In this role with Seagull Scientific, you will likely be expected to manage multiple projects at the same time. Your ability to plan, manage deadlines and handle high needs items that come up on a regular basis will be essential to your success in this role and your interviewer is looking to hear how you plan for success. Whether you utilize an electronic tool or a written list, there are no right or wrong answers as long as you can prove in your answer that this method works out great for you.

Ryan's Answer #1
"With any project that I am working on, I make sure to set benchmarks to meet deadlines ahead of time and set early personal deadlines to allow for some wiggle room. To do this, I am a proponent of using the Microsoft Outlook calendar and tasks functions to help keep me organized. I find that this method helps me stay on track with multiple projects while also leaving me wiggle room each day to fight the high needs fires that do come up in this job."
Ryan's Answer #2
"For me to stay on track, I make sure to take ten minutes at the end of each day to recap what was accomplished, what new came up on my task list and re-prioritizing my work for the next day. Then, upon arriving the next day and working through emails from the previous evening, I can adjust my task list for the day if needed. I tend to set aside two hours per day to work on long-term project needs while focusing a majority of my time on the short-term needs."
3.
What software analysis and design tools do you have familiarity working with?
As a software engineer for Seagull Scientific, 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 #1
"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 #2
"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."
4.
What would you consider your technical specialty?
Do you have any particular areas of interest or ability? Talk to the interviewer about your strengths and be sure to highlight any specific skills that you excel in. It's a great idea, if you can, to highlight particular skills that may be listed on the company's job posting/job description. If there is a related area of interest where you'd like to expand your skills, you can mention those as well.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Computing and Network Communications has always been a solid area for me. I have a big interest in how network communication improves our daily lives and our overall business efficiency. I see that you are looking for team members who are experts in network communications which is what caught my eye when I first saw your job posting."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I have been focusing my career on becoming a cloud integration specialist although I do have cross-platform app development expertise as well."
5.
Do you consider yourself stronger in C++, C#, Java, or Python?
Before your interview, do some research to understand what tech stack Seagull Scientific uses so you can best prepare and highlight your expertise. If you aren't as strong in one of the skills you feel is necessary, be sure to explain how you've used it and how you are growing your knowledge to become better. Be sure to be honest in your answer, as the company will likely test your strengths.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my last company, we had a bit of an outdated tech stack and used C# and .NET. I found myself fully immersed in those technologies, but had a strong desire to learn more and become more familiar with modern technologies and how I can apply that in my career. That's what has me so interested in this role. Over the last year, I've taken courses in Java and C++, which I noticed you prefer. I've become proficient in the skills and in side projects, applied my increasingly strong knowledge. I'm probably strongest professionally in C# as that has been where my experience lies, but my passion and dedication is on the Java and C++ side, as I feel that's the more modern alternative. I'm excited about the possibility of applying that knowledge in a role at Seagull Scientific."
Ryan's Answer #2
"I am motivated and excited about this new opportunity because it will challenge me to grow in my (X) skills. I love soccer and enjoy spending time with my teammates. I am interested in continuing my education by studying (Y) to further my career."
6.
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 Seagull Scientific 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 #1
"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 #2
"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 Seagull Scientific."
7.
Walk me through your experience in enterprise software sales, and complex sales cycles.
Software sales can be complicated, time-consuming, and rarely come with a quick close. The interviewer would like to discuss any experience you have had, selling software products into enterprise accounts, where the sales cycle is even more robust than the typical small to medium-sized businesses.

The typical software sales cycle includes:

- Prospecting and generating leads
- Initiating contact
- Qualifying the lead
- Presenting the product or offer
- Booking a product demonstration
- Overcoming objections
- Closing the deal
- Implementation
- Training

This list is just a simplified breakdown of the steps and could occur throughout weeks, or even months. Discuss the exposure you have had in closing complex software deals.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Although I have never had an official sales title, I am often called into the sales process as the subject matter expert when it comes to data migration and security questions. I know enough to understand the typical questions asked during the sales cycle, and also know that it's important to give case examples for most FAQ's. Decision makers feel much better knowing that their concern has been presented, and corrected, in the past."
Ryan's Answer #2
"My previous company was a startup that ran very lean, financially speaking. For that reason, I was both a front-end developer, product demonstrator, and sales assistant. I would be on the sales calls with the business development lead, offering my expertise for the most technical discussions. From the time we launched our product, to the first sale, was over 12 weeks, so I fully understand that the typical software sales cycle is complex and lengthy, especially when dealing with major corporations and large business."
8.
What programming languages would you consider yourself fluent in?
While this question gives your interviewer insight into the diversity of your programming language experience, they most importantly want to know that you are adaptable and able to learn on the fly if needed. Talk about the different languages that you consider yourself fluent in and, if possible, do as much research into Seagull Scientific as you can prior to your interview and try to speak to the specific languages that they work with.

Ryan's Answer #1
"From the start of college, where software engineering grew into a passion for me, I've become very fluent in Java, JavaScript and C++. My current role has me working primarily with C++, but I pride myself on my ability and passion to learn new programming languages and would be able to do so if hired for this role with Seagull Scientific."
Ryan's Answer #2
"During my training to be an engineer and then in my current role since graduating, a majority of my experience falls within Python. My current role delves deeply into artificial intelligence and Python is awesome with this advanced technology. As I understand it from talking to another engineer here at Seagull Scientific, a requirement would be for me to learn Scala. Though I haven't worked directly with Scala, I believe my experience and willingness to learn would have me up and running in no time if hired for this role."
9.
As a consultant with Seagull Scientific, 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?
Software consultants are the bridge between the end users and the development teams of new software to help come up with new and creative solutions for the business. In this role with Seagull Scientific, you will be expected to live in two different worlds and this question focuses on how you will work with end users of the companies products. In an initial consultation, focus your efforts on how you will learn the business needs of the client, talk about what can potentially be offered and then how you will start the creative problem solving process with them.

Ryan's Answer #1
"As an experienced consultant looking to break into the technology field, I will break a lot of awesome client focused skills to your team. In an initial consultation, my number one goal is to learn the business of the client and listen to what they are looking for in my products. Once their need is known, I can knowledgeably speak to the products that I work with to help them create a custom solution to fit their needs. If hired for this position, my first order of business would be to work very closely with the design and engineering staff to know the possibilities of customization. From there, my natural ability to consult with clients would take over in a win-win situation for all involved."
Ryan's Answer #2
"In consulting with a new client or an existing client looking for system modifications, my number one goal in a first meeting with them would be to lay the framework for how we will move forward and to set expectations moving forward. I would look to understand their business needs and talk with them about all of the solutions possible for them with us as their software provider. From there, I have the ability to set expectations on a time frame for a solution proposal and we can move forward from there. At the end of a first meeting, I want to ensure that the key decision makers are comfortable with me and the business that I represent so they don't hesitate to reach out to me with questions or for clarification on items discussed."
10.
Discuss a couple of software sales techniques. Which sales technique do you think is most effective for Seagull Scientific, and why?
The interviewer would like to see that you have researched Seagull Scientific, putting some thought into the most significant selling features of their products and services. When it comes to software sales closing techniques, you could:

- Offer a short trial for free
- Have a great email marketing campaign showing off the features of your software
- Give product or software demos, but keep the short
- Sell pre-paid annual memberships

Perhaps you have some ideas of your own! Discuss which selling options you think would be the best fit for what Seagull Scientific is offering. Be ready to support your answer with facts.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I recently read that free trial offers can increase conversions by up to 25% and, because, Seagull Scientific has a straightforward product, I believe it would be very effective to allow people to try it for free for 14 days. The prospective customer would quickly see that it's simple to navigate and incredibly helpful."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Since there are so many customizable features that come with your product, I feel that the best sales technique would be a free 30-minute demo, followed up with a short trial period. I think it would be important for prospective customers to see the product in action, and how it would work for them, specifically."
11.
Beyond revenue, how do Seagull Scientific's products benefit our clients?
An excellent software product can positively affect a business in a multitude of ways. From organization to client relationships, increasing leads, offering better data collection and, and information management. The interviewer wants to see that you have spent the time getting to know the features and benefits of their software before your interview. Discuss the ways that Seagull Scientific's offering can benefit potential customers far beyond revenue.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I fully understand that, although revenue is a significant driver, it is not everything to companies when they are deciding on their software products. Additional benefits to Seagull Scientific's software, from my research, include better organization of data so that information can be leveraged in areas of product development, market research, smarter hiring decisions, and more."
Ryan's Answer #2
"From what I see, there are a plethora of benefits to Seagull Scientific's products. When a company embraces organization, has access to insightful analytics and a full support team, they can make business decisions that improve not only profits but also employee morale, customer feedback, or research and development."
12.
Would you say that you are a goal oriented on the job? What would I be able to do as your manager to help you achieve your goals if hired here at Seagull Scientific?
At the heart of this question lies your interviewers desire to see what motivates you as a potential employee at Seagull Scientific. Make it clear to your interviewer that you certainly are motivated by on the job goals and do this by using an example of a time where you were motivated by and achieved a goal. Then, think deeply about the type of manager that you like to work for in terms of goal setting and helping our achieve your goals. Let your interviewer know what type of management styles you appreciate the most while being open to any style.

Ryan's Answer #1
"I would definitely say that I am goal oriented on the job in wanting to contribute any way that I can to the overall benefit of the organization. In my current organization, our leadership focuses on overall sales numbers at the end of the year. To help achieve these goals, our department creates our own goals to help achieve the sales numbers needed to succeed. Last year, one of those goals was to be as creative as possible in our user experience design processes. With the launch of an exciting new app midyear, sales numbers skyrocketed and our department was instrumental in that. For me, it was important that we determined our goals as a team with the final stamp of approval from our manager. While this style of management really helped motivate me, I can thrive under any management style as long as expectations and goals for my work are clearly set."
Ryan's Answer #2
"For me, my day to day work is much more meaningful when I have goals to work for. In my current role, we have set timelines for our projects and this helps lay the framework for our goals. If hired for this position, my expectations of you as my manager would be to have goals clearly defined and a supportive atmosphere to be provided to work within."
13.
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 Seagull Scientific.

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."
14.
What is one thing that really tests your patience when dealing with your coworkers?
While on the surface this question may seem like your interviewer is trying to get you to talk negatively about a situation, it is really more of a test to see what can potentially drive you crazy on the job in a team atmosphere and how you handle those situations. In your answer, be honest about your pet peeves when it comes to coworkers and do so in a positive light. Then, expand on your answer by talking about how you handle those situations.

"As a person that values diversity and differences of opinion in the workplace, there aren't many things that grind my personal gears when it comes to my colleagues. The only real true test of my patience is a coworker that doesn't pull their weight in a team effort. When I've been in this situation in the past, I first seek to learn if the issue is a lack of training or knowledge. If it is, I take the necessary steps to help my colleague get on track. But if I find that it is due to a lack of effort, I talk to the person immediately in a professional manner. The sum is only as good as the effort of all of its parts and a team efforts requires everyone's maximum effort."
Ryan's Answer #1
"As a person that values diversity and differences of opinion in the workplace, there aren't many things that grind my personal gears when it comes to my colleagues. The only real true test of my patience is a coworker that doesn't pull their weight in a team effort. When I've been in this situation in the past, I first seek to learn if the issue is a lack of training or knowledge. If it is, I take the necessary steps to help my colleague get on track. But if I find that it is due to a lack of effort, I talk to the person immediately in a professional manner. The sum is only as good as the effort of all of its parts and a team efforts requires everyone's maximum effort."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Having been raised in a rural farm setting, I have always been a stickler for being on time and holding meetings to set lengths of time. While watching people show up late for meetings has bothered me internally because of how I am wired, I don't let it bother me on the exterior. We are all very busy in our lines of work and showing up a few minutes late is only normal from time to time."
15.
In our consulting services here at Seagull Scientific, we often have to work with people who aren't very tech savvy. How would you handle a situation like this if hired for this role?
When working onsite with clients on new software and new technologies, most front line employees working on the new system won't have the technical acumen that you possess. Because of this fact, your consulting services will have to be performed in a fashion that is easy to understand for the clients. Give your answer a personal touch by explaining your ability to work with clients on a one-on-one basis and customizing your approach with them based on their level of knowledge. From a high level, then talk about certain techniques that you've found to be useful in the past.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my days in software sales and consulting, I've found that the best approach with clients is to always discuss things in terms of their business results as opposed to the processes involved. I've found that clients aren't interested in how a software program works to pull information out of a data table. They want to know the steps they have to take to successfully pull the relevant information to them in their work and I try to focus my efforts on that. If I get the sense that a certain person has a good understanding of the software, I don't hesitate to brag a bit about the creative programs that were designed behind the scenes because they can definitely show appreciation for that."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Having a lot of experience doing this in my time consulting and training with external customers, there are many tools of the trade that can be implemented. I always avoid technical jargon and use wording that makes sense to a client to explain technical processes. I find that customers appreciate the use of meaningful analogies and presentations that have a lot of visuals to help understand new processes that we will be working with."
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