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Shift Technologies 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

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

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Shift Technologies Interview Questions

  1. 1.

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

      As a skilled software engineer, you have all of the necessary tools in your bag to be a successful engineer at Shift Technologies. This question is allowing your interviewer to get a better sense of your project management skills and people skills if you were to join the team at Shift Technologies. In your answer, talk about your ability to estimate the time and cost of a project, the staffing needed and the overall scope of planning for a particular project. If you have direct experience in being the lead on a large development project, be sure to discuss that experience with your interviewer.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Looking to join the team here at Shift Technologies directly out of college, I feel very confident in my abilities to manage the entire scope of a new development project. I have leadership experience as my campus' president of the software engineering club. In that role, I developed skills that would help me utilize staff and resources in the best way possible. During my internship, I was exposed to the planning stages of new projects and I have a very good feel of estimating the budget and length of time needed to have a fully functional system."

      Ryan's Answer

      "I would absolutely be comfortable if tasked with project manager duties here at Shift Technologies. In my last two roles, I have led successful projects that started with great planning and budgeting process and went through to completion with great people and processes in place under my leadership. While it's not a regular duty for me in my current role, I always welcome leadership duties."

  2. 2.

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

      As a reputable company, Shift Technologies 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 Shift Technologies, I also have experience performing perfective, preventative and corrective maintenance on software as well."

  3. 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

      "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."

  4. 4.

    If hired here at Shift Technologies and tasked with helping design a UI for a new mobile app, what important factors would you consider in that design?

      With consumer mobility being at an all-time high and only increasing year after year, just about every industry has entered the mobile app game and life at Shift Technologies is no different. For this question, it is important to have a good understanding of the different mobile UI designs and your job for this question will be tying the business needs of Shift Technologies into an effective mobile app. In your answer, talk about what you know about the business needs of Shift Technologies and then explain to your interviewer how you would build those into a great mobile app for their future.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Here at Shift Technologies, I envision users of your products in the banking industry to want security and ease of use in their products. In looking to design a UI for a new mobile app, my considerations would be a secure log-in screen and user profile section of the app. As well, I would put an automatic log out into place within the app. On top of these security items, I would prioritize ease of placement for a contact screen, services screen and an aesthetically pleasing home screen."

      Ryan's Answer

      "In the private insurance industry, I can imagine that an onboarding tutorial screen would be very beneficial to users using the app for the first time. I have experience designing these for a few different mobile apps. Other factors I would consider would be prioritizing the important information to have laid out within the app and how to best lay it out. If a menu will be utilized, I would work with key decision makers on what would make the most sense for a menu layout within the app."

  5. 5.

    A huge part of our business here at Shift Technologies is designing software for iOS. In this role, how would you steer away from retain cycles when using closures in Swift programming language?

      This question allows your interviewer to assess your technical knowledge and skills in designing apps for iOS products in a very simple way. To successfully answer it, make sure that you can speak knowledgeably about the swift programming language and using closures to capture and store references within the software. To piece together everything for your interviewer, give a clear understanding of why retain cycles must be avoided in your processing.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Because ARC handles most of the memory knowledge in Swift, I know ARC is prone to memory leaking and this can cause major issues in apps over time. The fix that I've used in my career to avoid retain cycles is using weak references in my coding."

  6. 6.

    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 Shift Technologies?

      At the heart of this question lies your interviewers desire to see what motivates you as a potential employee at Shift Technologies. 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

      "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

      "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."

  7. 7.

    Give an example of a time that you used a universal design practice in your work as a UI or UX designer. Why was it important to do this?

      In the technology, software and mobile app fields today, accessibility is a huge topic. As a designer with Shift Technologies, you will be expected to help create products that are as accessible as possible to as many end users as possible. In this two part question, talk about why you feel that universal design is important in the work that you will be doing with Shift Technologies and then really sell your ability to do this by giving an example of a time you used a universal design in your previous work.

      Ryan's Answer

      "From a very high level, the business success of a program really relies on being universally designed. If we pigeon hole ourselves, a product will only reach a very limited group of end users. But taking that a step further, universal design is the morally right thing to do to help reach people that may not have access to the average program design. Last year, I was part of a project that utilized a voice user interface for users that were deaf or hard of hearing. This simple yet effective design was a huge win for our current customers and in helping drive new business with our groundbreaking software."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Early in my career, the best piece of advice that I receive was from an experience designer and she said that when UX doesn't consider all potential users, we are no longer working on the user experience. We live in a very diverse world and the programs that I've designed for in the past have certainly had the goal to reach a wide audience. With your financial products here at Shift Technologies, this same philosophy applies. Last year, based on some feedback from current customers, we switched our design to include a strong color contract to make the system much more user friendly to color blind users. This was both a simple and very effective change to enhance the look of the program."

  8. 8.

    Do you consider yourself stronger in C++, C#, Java, or Python?

      Before your interview, do some research to understand what tech stack Shift Technologies 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

      "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 Shift Technologies."

      Ryan's Answer

      "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."

  9. 9.

    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?

      While using this question as a key indicator on how you'll fit with the team and the organization at Shift Technologies, it will be very important for you to research as much as you can on the work environment at Shift Technologies so you can match your priorities to that environment. If you have the opportunity to speak with an employee at Shift Technologies prior to your interview, that can shed valuable information. In the end, the culture and value of an organization are often a key indicator of long-term success in a job, so make sure that you reflect your values into what the company values.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As I begin this job search now 15 years out of college, I'm looking for an employer that promotes and encourages innovation, new ideas and collaboration among all members of the team. From what I know about Shift Technologies from speaking with others, you sound like a perfect match for what I am looking for in a career."

      Ryan's Answer

      "With all of the companies that I have both worked for and consulted with in the past, I realize that a company culture is basically the personality of the company and I am looking for a new organization that really meshes well with my personality. I am a casual person that believes in hard work, teamwork and having fun on the job. As I embarked on a job search, I was so happy to see that Shift Technologies was hiring because I believe our styles will fit perfectly together."

  10. 10.

    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

      "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

      "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."

  11. 11.

    If you can, please provide your thoughts on the function of managed object context in developing iOS apps and software.

      While the core data framework and the managed object context may seem pretty easy to comprehend and simple from a first look, a deeper look into managed object context shows that it can be misused to the point where obscure bugs can enter the system. Give your interviewer your own personal insight into the purpose of managed object context and how it works behind the scenes to help an app properly run.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current work, I work with both main queue and private queue manged object contexts. It is important that I avoid non user related data processing on the main queue of an app that I am developing. In times where this has happened in the past, the user interface becomes unresponsive and crashes. As well, I work to avoid instances passing between the main and private queues to avoid corruption of data within the app."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Knowing that a managed object context's job is to manage a number of records within an app, my job is to successfully manage each object within the app and assign it to a correlating context within the app. I have to consider the persistent store coordinator and code the app to fetch requests from the correct one."

  12. 12.

    What SDLC models are you familiar in working with?

      As a software engineer, you are very familiar with the software development life cycle. For this question, your interviewer is looking to hear what models you have worked on in the past. While there isn't necessarily a right or wrong answer to this question, try to show your flexibility to working with different SDLC models by bringing up your past experiences. Then, show you have knowledge of different models like the waterfall model or agile model. It is also a good idea to use this question as an opportunity for you to learn more about Shift Technologies by asking your interviewer which model they work off of.

      Ryan's Answer

      "During my training in software engineering and in my early career, the waterfall model was the standard. In this model, each phase of the development process happens in a set order and projects using this model are easily managed. But over time, as the development projects that I have led have become more complicated and intricate, I have implemented the spiral model. This model has allowed the ability of end users to give feedback early on and often during development and helps to build a more customized product to our customers."

      Ryan's Answer

      "In my current position with XYZ Company, my department utilizes the agile model in development life cycle. Since our products are so tailored to the needs of our customers, we get a working product very early on in the process and then I work hand in hand with customers to fine tune the software moving forward. It is a very effective model that has built a great reputation for our software among customers. I also have familiarity working with the iterative model and it has similar advantages to the agile model. If I were hired here at Shift Technologies, can you expand on what models you use here in your software development life cycle?"

  13. 13.

    If you were confronted with a time where you wouldn't be able to meet a deadline here at Shift Technologies, 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

      "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

      "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."

  14. 14.

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

      The key to answering this question with confidence starts with understanding that you are interviewing with Shift Technologies because your interviewer feels that you are a strong candidate for this position. What your interviewer is focusing on with this question is how they could be of most help to you if hired for the job. So, take the time prior to your interview to think about an aspect of the position that would be the most difficult for you to overcome to be up and running at full speed and then take time to explain how you would plan to overcome that hurdle if hired. This structured answer will tell your interviewer that you have put thought to your potential shortcoming with a plan of action.

      Ryan's Answer

      "As you can see from my resume, I don't have any direct working experience with the financial industry and I would see that as my largest learning opportunity if offered this position. Like I did with my current job in the healthcare industry, I would take the time to learn the basics of the industry that would help me design the most intuitive user interfaces in the products here at Shift Technologies."

      Ryan's Answer

      "Being a team player by nature, I've always considered my first challenge at any new company to be the task of getting to know my colleagues, their work preferences and their work styles. In the same breath, I want them to know who I am and how I best work as part of a team with them. To accomplish this, I would take the initiative to set one on one meetings with individuals that I didn't get to touch base with during my orientation process to get to know them better."

  15. 15.

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

      While this position at Shift Technologies 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 Shift Technologies 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 SQL, how do you explain the differences between clustered and non-clustered indexes? Can you name a time that you used each?

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  17. 17.

    What data cleaning methods are you familiar with and comfortable using if hired for this role at Shift Technologies?

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  18. 18.

    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?

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  19. 19.

    In designing Android software, what is your experience using parcelable versus serializable within an app?

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  20. 20.

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

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  21. 21.

    What unique values can you bring to Shift Technologies in your user experience design skills?

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  22. 22.

    In your current work, what are the important steps you take in the data validation process?

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  23. 23.

    What skills do you use to cope with the day to day stress and pressure on the job?

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  24. 24.

    Tell me about your problem-solving skills. Do you enjoy analyzing and solving complex problems?

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  25. 25.

    If hired here at Shift Technologies to develop iOS and Android software, when would you use a fragment rather than an activity?

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  26. 26.

    What programming languages would you consider yourself fluent in?

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  27. 27.

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

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