One of the advantages when recruits reach out vs you applying on the company website is that in many cases you won’t need to update your resume and portfolio. It’s probably just my unique experience, but I did not update mine but linked my Medium articles to my website. However, I did spend a lot of time nailing down my presentation.
Interesting fact! I found all of my jobs through a cold application on company websites. While finding a referral is still an easier way to make sure your application is not going to be lost in a clock hole, it is definitely worth applying on the company website.
- How to keep your portfolio up to date?
I write case studies after each big project because, first, it helps to reflect on what you’ve done and share your experience with the design community. But it also provides design case studies for your portfolio. I have worked for 4 different companies, meaning I updated my portfolio at least four times previously. It’s super time-consuming and I never ever want to do it again. Instead, I write a case study after each project now.
- For how long have you been preparing for interviews?
Since 2014, lol. I’ve always wanted to work for one of these top companies to get experience designing for billions of users. I don’t think that there is a need to say that this is not the first time I have been interviewing with them.
I believe in a growth mindset and that means pretty much anything can be learned. It just takes time and a lot of hard work!
The process is pretty similar in both companies. First, you get a call from a recruiter to discuss your background and what you are looking for in your next opportunity. After Google, I had a one-hour call with a designer to talk about my background and present one short project. Facebook has two 30 min interviews: portfolio presentation and app critique.
The last interview is definitely the hardest and longest one. Facebook has a 30-minute presentation followed by 4 1:1 sessions, which include whiteboard design challenge, app critique, behavioral and more. Google has a one-hour presentation followed by 45–1hour 1:1 sessions including whiteboard challenges, behavioral, and more.
My overall impression is that Facebook has an amazing transparent process that takes 3–4 weeks, while Google is super messy, confusing, and slow!
I wish I knew all of these before applying. I would avoid making so many mistakes!
I heard several stories from my friends who are engineers about getting both offers, but something that sounded like a lot of fun in real life turned out to be a lot of stress instead.
Here are the things that I took into account before making my decision:
1. Facebook gave me an IC5 level, but Google gave me L4. I knew that Google tends to level down, but this would mean missing about two years of my career to get to L5.
2. The team and the project were the most important factors. I talked to multiple teams at each company, and I just really liked the Messenger team.
3. This is personal, but I am not a huge fan of material design and Android. While I do design for both platforms, iOS and Android, I did not find myself very excited about being stuck with material design.
4. Messenger is used by billions of people throughout the world, and designing for such a widely used app beats many of the other factors.
5. Based on my interview process I got a feeling that Google is much slower than Facebook. Meaning that it takes longer to make even smaller decisions and launch features and projects.
6. And last but not least, Facebook gave me such a great offer to help me make a decision so I couldn’t resist accepting it right away!
So yes, I decided to accept an offer from Facebook. Yay! I can’t wait for my first day on the blue squad!!!
What is your dream job?