Couple months ago one of our friends applied for a Hadoop Developer consulting position for a famous pharmaceutical company. I will let you guess the company :-). The hiring manager did not even look at the resume (we think) but our friend received the below questionnaire in the email. The hiring manager wanted the applicant to answer the below questions before he can consider the candidate for the position.

SMART MANAGERS ASK SMART QUESTIONS

It’s a quite a unique request but we see the point of the Hiring manager. He wanted to filter out as many candidates as possible and only willing to speak with qualified candidates for the position. It is saving both his time and the candidate’s time.

Very Smart !!!

The other hidden expectation is that if he sees some very good answers from a candidate it not only shows the candidate is qualified but also shows that he is really interested in the position and interested in working with the company.

Here are the Hadoop Questions asked by the hiring manager

  • What is biggest Hadoop cluster you have worked on?
  • Give us the details of your cluster – node configuration etc.?
  • List your involvement in modeling, ingestion, transformations, aggregation and data access layer.
  • What are the biggest challenges you have faced during implementation of Hadoop projects?
  • What kind of HDFS file formats have you used?
  • What was the selection criteria in deciding the file formats and explain the alternatives considered?
  • What is your experience with traditional data warehouse/marts development? Be specific on activities you were involved?
  • Why did your organization choose to use Hadoop?
  • Describe a complex problem you have solved in Hive, Pig or Java MapReduce?
  • What is your selection process in selecting a tool from the Hadoop ecosystem?
  • Describe one or two performance issues you have resolved in Hadoop?
  • Explain your troubleshooting process.

That was very smart of the hiring manager and an excellent way to filter our candidates. This practise is not so uncommon in the Hadoop world these days and so be prepared and don’t take this lightly. Since answers to the questions not only explains your understanding of the technology but also shows your genuine interest in the position. So spend some time in giving good answers to the questions. Most of the candidates answer the questions very lightly and don’t even get past this point.

P.S. Our friend answered all the questions very carefully, got an interview and got hired in the following week. He is now happily working full time for this company and claims it is the most rewarding job he ever had.

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