How to Answer the Top 10 Software Development Interview Questions

The world of software development is a HIGHLY fast-paced one. With dozens of programming languages to learn and study, and new discoveries being made on a regular basis, working in this industry is demanding as well as rewarding.

If you’re applying for a position as a software development specialist, it’s important that you’re prepared for the questions you’ll be asked. Here are the top ten questions that you’re likely to face, as well as advice on how to answer them:

1. What is your current position? Tell us about it…

This question is designed to determine what your skills are RIGHT NOW. Considering how fast-paced and ever-changing the world of software programming is, skills you used a few years ago may no longer be relevant.

2. What is the project you are most proud of?

The interviewer wants to know what you have achieved or accomplished, and what projects you feel you did your best work. Take the chance to show off a bit.

3. What is the project you are least proud of?

This is the question that will establish how you handle perceived failures. Respond with an answer that shows that you recognize your mistakes, evaluated what needed changing, and made steps to prevent it from happening in the future.

4. What are your biggest programming challenges?

This is meant to establish what your weaknesses are as a programmer. Don’t worry – everyone has one area in which they fall short. Make sure that the interviewer knows you are taking steps to develop your skills in those areas.

5. Tell me about your problem-solving process…

The interview will usually give you a tough challenge that you will need to "solve" right there for them. They want to know how thorough you are in winkling out the problem, so explain how you would go about finding the solution to the tough challenge. Be thorough and detailed in your answer.

6. Can you provide examples of your past work?

Another chance to show off your achievements or the programs you are most proud of. If you can’t use your current software as an example, it’s worth working on one in the comfort of your home and bringing it to the interview.

7. Do you have security clearance?

It may sound odd, but the truth is that programmers with security clearances can earn more money than those without. If you don’t have one, it’s worth looking into before going in for the interview.

8. How much experience do you have with "X language"?

There are a number of programming languages that you NEED to know to be a good software programmer, but there are always more to learn. If the interviewer asks you this question, it’s likely that their programs use that language.

9. Tell me about your programming habits…

They want to know your testing methods, what you use for source control, how you make your application architecture decisions, and more. Think about your programming habits and see if there are any you have that would make you look bad. If so, take steps to change those habits.

10. Tell us about yourself…

This isn’t really about YOU, but it’s about you as a programmer. Talk about hobbies and interests that make you a better programmer or developer, and highlight character traits that help you to excel at your job.

Follow this advice, and you’ll ACE that interview!

What other questions have you been asked in a software development job interview? Let us know in the comments section below!