An associate product manager assists product managers with their work by doing market research, gathering quantitative product data, and interpreting customer research to enable product managers to operate more efficiently and effectively. Associate Product Managers may also take on the responsibility of the development of new products, features, and product strategies to assist more senior product managers.
In terms of day-to-day tasks, associate product managers perform all of the duties of a product manager, just on a smaller scale. In other words, while you may not be in charge of product strategy or roadmap, you will be in charge of project priorities. You may not be responsible for presenting product ideas across the company, but you will be in charge of keeping your peers and boss up to date.
The following interview guide will take you through the process of interviewing as an Associate Product Manager at Google.
The interview proceeds in the same manner as any other interview. It all starts with an application on Google's career page or through LinkedIn. If you are chosen as a potential candidate, you will go through the following steps:
- Phone screen
- Telephonic interview
- Take-home assignment
- On-site interviews
- Final round with executive PM (optional)
Please keep in mind that you will only be eligible for the subsequent rounds if the recruitment team selects you as a suitable candidate.
The first step is to secure a Google interview. You'll need a solid resume and cover letter tailored to Associate Product Manager positions specifically aimed at Google.
Once you have all of your documents and paperwork in order, you can submit your application. It might also be beneficial to ask a Google employee or contact to recommend you to the internal recruitment team. Make a point of emphasizing all of your previous accomplishments and noteworthy projects.
If you are chosen, a recruiter will contact you within 2-3 business days.
Initially, you may receive a 45-minute phone call with a Google recruiter. The goal of this conversation is to make sure you're a good fit for the role. There isn't much prior work required here because it's a fairly straightforward call regarding your background and suitability for the post, but APM candidates have been asked a few "light" behavioral questions as well as general product design questions. As a result, preparing for a questionnaire is always a good idea.
What the interviewer will assess
- Whether you can lead efforts in engineering, design, marketing, and other areas to launch significant initiatives.
- If you are ready to grow yourself personally and professionally with mentorship, global experience, and hands-on learning.
- If you can join a vast community of APMs, many of whom have led Google's most successful projects.
- Be quite familiar with your previous work. Make sure you have a project from each of your past positions that you can talk about. Organize your thoughts ahead of time around subjects such as what you contributed, how things went, and what you could have done better.
- Keep your answers short, crisp, and to the point.
- This round frequently begins with the old standby, "Tell me about yourself," so having a nice brief intro ready to roll with is beneficial.
- Tell me about two of your strongest and weakest points.
- When was the last time you put something off, and how did you handle it?
- Can you describe yourself in five words? Why did you choose these words?
- What skills do you think are required to make a good APM?
- Can you describe Google in a short and precise way?
The Google APM phone interview stage will not necessarily be faced by every candidate, but it is a distinct possibility. It will most likely include product, analytical, strategy, or estimation questions. The questions on the phone interview are often lighter than those in the in-person interview. The interview will not last longer than 45 mins.
What the interviewer will assess
- Your hold in the core fields of product
- Analytical ability
- The capability of coming up with useful strategies
- Professional conduct
- Adaptability with the work environment
- Google has offered an extremely helpful video on APM interview preparation, led by two current Google Product Managers. This video covers a variety of topics and is a must-see before conducting any interviews.
- It is critical to be knowledgeable with Google's products as well as the organization. As a result, you'll need to do some research before your interviews to ensure you're well-versed in all of Google's products.
- Be very familiar with your prior company and its complete product range, particularly those you may not have worked on yourself. You will be required to have a Product Manager's perspective on the broader product line.
- Tell me about a digital product that you use almost every day. How would you go about creating a competitor?
- How much space is required by Google to house all of the company's servers?
- How do you handle goal-setting in your team?
- How adaptable are you when it comes to working outside of your comfort zone?
- What is the average internet bandwidth consumption in the United States?
- Could you describe how the JVM works?
- How many people will be online by the year 2050?
- Tell me about a time when you went the extra mile for a client with an issue.
Following the phone interview, you will receive an email with a prompt and a time limit to respond to the prompt. In most situations, the prompt is a situational inquiry that must be replied to with a well-thought-out plan that includes a step-by-step description of the problem. The majority of the time, the response consists of 2-5 pages of written content in response to the challenge.
Following that, you will be invited to an on-site interview where you will meet with Google Product Managers face to face. You will also be required to answer technical interview questions at this stage, and your product expertise will be put to the test. The interviews will last approximately 40 minutes and will be conducted by several interviewers. You'll also be able to eat lunch with at least one of your interviewers and take a tour of Google's buzzing campus.
What the interviewer will assess
- Your core PM skills and knowledge.
- Your decision-making and strategy.
- Ability to recognize possible risks and quantify them.
- Estimation and analytical abilities.
- Product design questions will typically lead you to construct a product in an open-ended setting and explore appropriate solutions, focusing on your understanding of quantitative reasoning around metrics.
- Try to be firm in your views and values. Interviewers may try to perplex you by challenging your response to a situational challenge or a solution to a problem presented by them. Maintain your confidence and do not allow them to make you doubt yourself.
- When answering your questions, attempt to follow the well-known STAR approach. The STAR approach is an organized way of responding to a behavioral-based interview question by detailing the specific situation, task, action, and result that you are describing.
- Which job has proved to be the most satisfying for you till now and why do you think so?
- Do you believe you can deal with stress and professional responsibilities without allowing them to impact your mental health?
- What changes would you make to dropbox to improve it?
- How would you design a reading product for visually impaired children?
- Can you calculate the cost of building a subway system?
- What would you do to reduce homelessness in San Francisco?
- You are the YouTube analytics product manager. What are the three most important metrics according to you?
- What will the market size be for self-driving automobiles in 2025?
- Tell me about a competitive move made by a corporation in the last six months and your thoughts on it.
- Google has developed a system that makes air travel four times cheaper and four times faster. What are you going to do with it?
- Why does Starbucks have coffee shops on both sides of the road at times?
- What should Netflix measure and assess on a daily basis?
- How would you describe a typical page load time distribution on a desktop? What about on a phone?
- What is your favorite product of Google and is there anything you would do to improve it?
- How much money do Americans spend on burgers every year?
- How much Internet bandwidth is necessary on a typical college campus in the United States?
- How much storage space is necessary for all of the Google Street View images?
- How do you decide which products to sell? How do you manage the product life cycle?
- Why are you going for the post of an APM and not a regular PM?
- Using an "ice cream business" as an analogy, explain the concept of "protocol" to a four-year-old youngster.
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If everything goes well, your next step will be an interview with an APM program executive. This has traditionally been a one-on-one meeting with an APM Program lead. This round will focus on assessing some last-minute traits such as behavior toward peers and coworkers.Your pay expectations, as well as other key considerations, might also be discussed.
If you succeed at each of these phases, and all of the interviewers are in favor of getting you on board, you will be offered a job. Good Luck!