How I got hired as a Software Engineer @ Bytedance Singapore

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Hoping to land a job at Bytedance Singapore? We sat down with Divyanshu Jimmy, a software engineer at the company, to talk about Bytedance’s culture, its hiring process, and top interview tips.

Divyanshu, Software Engineer in Bytedance

Tell us about yourself and your job scope in Bytedance

Hi, I’m Divyanshu, a Software Engineer at Bytedance Singapore.

I am working with a regional, highly talented and diverse team on a Cloud Data Warehouse team, which is a part of Data Platform. In May, it will be my first anniversary at Bytedance.

My job scope is varied. It involves iteratively performing requirements and feasibility analysis. There’s also design and development work. Lastly, I test and maintain products and services for large scale distributed systems.

What was your interview process at Bytedance like?

I had to go through three rounds of interviews. Broadly speaking, these rounds tested me on my technical knowledge, communication and problem-solving abilities, organization skills and culture fit. 

In the first round, the interviewers asked a lot of questions about my resume. I also worked on data platforms in my previous role. So, the interviewer naturally was interested to know how relevant my experience was to the role I was applying for. We went in depth into how exactly I contributed at my last company. Apart from that, I also had some coding problems, where I had to analyse how clean or readable a code was.

The second round tested my technical knowledge. I was given two coding problems. The first problem was about graph traversals. The second question involved some simple math and logic. 

The third round was more about the Bytestyles, which is what we call our company core values. There are six: Champion Diversity and Inclusion, Aim for the Highest, Be Grounded and Courageous, Be Open and Humble, Be Candid and Clear, and Always Day 1.

They asked questions based on the company’s core values to see how well I demonstrated these values.

How important are the Bytestyles to Bytedance’s culture?

As an interviewee, it’s important to know the core values well. We check the candidates fit based on these Bytestyles before and after the interviews. For example, are you able to express yourself clearly? Or how open are you to feedback?

We lookout for candidates with these values because we practice them in our everyday work. For example, my team truly champions diversity and inclusion. We have people from around 10 countries. When you have such a diverse team, you get so many different perspectives, ideas and thinking strategies. When you have people that grow up in very different cultures, you end up coming up with unique solutions to problems.

I also highly recommend whoever is interested in Bytedance to go through these resources: our blog, an article about interview tips and a video on the recruitment process.

Photo credit – Bytedance 


Can you share your Bytedance interview tips?

The first is to know your resume in and out. Recruiters will judge you based and how well the resume matches what you say during the interview. You have to be able to backup any achievements you write in your resume.

For the later rounds, my advice is to treat your interviewer as your teammate. Try and engage with them during the interview. Let’s say they give you a hypothetical problem to solve and you’re stuck.

You have to be able to ask the right questions so you can get the hints to the solution. This is where our Bytestyle of being Open and Humble comes in. You have to work as a team and communicate well. 

This process is how we solve actual problems at Bytedance. On a daily basis, we face so many problems that have never been solved before. Most times the only way we solve it is by teamwork. You can’t get good ideas unless you brainstorm.

Our interviews are not based on a fixed set of questions. They can be based on real-world problems. For example, I like to create questions based on problems my team members are currently facing. That’s why it’s so important to talk to your interviewer – it’s easier to think of ideas when you collaborate.

What are other important aspects of Bytedance’s culture?

Mentorship is one of the most important pillars at Bytedance. We believe in upskilling our talent pool. I’m always learning and going through training. And our mentorship program is a way to learn from seniors, who can provide guidance in our career path.

With mentors, people can talk about anything from understanding their learning curve in tech, how they can progress our career or figure out what they want from their career. Mentors play a very important role in shaping these decisions.

I'm both in mentor and the mentee. I just talked to my mentor today, and I will be talking to my mentee tomorrow. It’s a big part of the day to day culture.

If you’d like to connect, you can find me on LinkedIn or email me at divyanshu.jimmy@bytedance.com.

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