Interview Kickstart is a part-time program preparing software engineers for technical interviews in Sunnyvale, CA and online. Courses are programming-language-agnostic; instead, the curriculum focuses on challenging questions about Data Structures & Algorithms and Large Scale Systems Design, along with preparing students to show off their soft skills.
Interview Kickstart courses are not introductory. Applicants should have a comfortable knowledge of at least one programming language. While courses are part-time, they are intense. Instructors are highly-experienced engineers from companies like Google, Facebook, and Box, so courses demand a lot of work. Students should expect interview problems followed by homework, an exit test, and graded mock interviews with feedback. The cost of the course varies based on a students’ level of experience.
Since its inception, Interview Kickstart is proud to have several graduates land jobs at their dream companies like Airbnb, Amazon, Apple, Docker, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Lyft, Microsoft, Netflix, Tesla, Uber, etc. Previous graduates received offers from entry level to engineering management.
Recent Interview Kickstart Reviews: Rating 5.0
Data Structures and Algorithms Interview Bootcamp
We are language agnostic, focused on core CS principles. We cover everything that's important for such an interview: 1. Challenging Questions on Data Structures and Algorithms 2. Systems' Design Questions [Scalability, Object Orientation and Multi-threading] 3. Behavioral Questions
- Payment Plan
- Minimum Skill Level
- You should have at least one programming language you’re comfortable with; your primary language.
- Prep Work
- It would be helpful if you brush up your data structures.
In PersonPart Time10Hours/week8 Seats
OnlinePart Time10Hours/week8 Seats
Large Scale Systems Design Interview Bootcamp
One important part of technical interviews, is an understanding of how you'll design systems, and scale them. To that end, we've seen certain specific patterns of interview questions that are asked at good companies. We'll study those in-depth and also do mock interviews in them, all in presence of formidable engineers, working in core systems at some of these top tier firms.
Soft skills for Engineers
It is very common for a software engineer to be very good at technical skills, yet get rejected in interviews. That happens because good engineers often get blindsided to non-technical aspects of an interview. Communicating with other stakeholders in a way that is effective, is a skill that's as easy and as effective to learn as any technical skill, and helps you just as much to grow in your career. We will have experts talk about how to improve on those and see the technical interviews in a whole new light. You'll practice 1x1 with coaches on a range of topics from Behavioral Interviews, all the way to Offer negotiations.
Interview Kickstart Reviews
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I went through InterviewKickstart a few months ago and found it very helpful despite having started studying on my own beforehand. InterviewKickstart forced me to actually adopt habits I already knew I should have adopted but hadn’t at. The program’s not for you if, when you go to prepare for interviewing, you:
- Successfully set up and follow a multi-month study schedule that sequences topics and has you spending 10–20 hours a week deliberately practicing solving Leetcode-style questions and systems design ones.
- Find friends who interview people at their companies and will give you critical mock interview feedback over and over again as your practice.
- Immediately jump into mercenary mode and start strategizing about your bound-to-be-successful negotiations when you get an offer.
Especially with the popularization of deliberate practice, many of us programmer types know we should prepare for interviews roughly how I described above but, as far as I can tell, very few of us actually do this. I firmly believe that getting people to do things they already know they should do but don’t is truly the “secret sauce” of InterviewKickstart
That said, I’ll briefly summarize the pros & cons of InterviewKickstart.
- Solid problem sets for most algorithms and system design topics. While the individual questions in the problem sets won’t blow your mind compared to what you might see on Leetcode, the order in which they’re presented and the solutions (and TA help) provided make getting stuck less common and less frustrating.
- There are a few really good teachers who teach at InterviewKickstart. In classes with these teachers, you learn not only content but also how someone who is better than you (or me at least) at thinking would approach a problem.
- The program includes 12 mock interviews and the mock interviewers (at least the ones that I did sessions with) are all solid.
- There’s a person at InterviewKickstart who focuses on behavioral/negotiation stuff and he’s quite helpful if you’re not naturally good at this part of the job process.
- I noticed some other commenters on this Quora post arguing that InterviewKickstart’s “all hype”. From what I can tell, that’s inaccurate in the sense that InterviewKickstart promises it can help people willing to work hard get jobs at big name tech company and does so at a reasonably high success rate. While one could argue that highlights a flaw in hiring processes as much as the value of the program, it doesn’t negate the fact that InterviewKickstart is succeeding at what it promises to do, help people get jobs they wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.
- There are a bunch of teachers who are just OK. While the really good teachers treat classes like exploratory learning ventures, the OK ones come off as wanting to show you that they are really good at interview style problems.
- Most people doing the program are, unsurprisingly, focused on finding a job at a big tech name. If you don’t like being in an environment where it feels as though people are openly trying to achieve a traditionally valued goal, then you’ll be frustrated by the one-track-mindedness of most InterviewKickstart students. That said, in my cohort’s case, the one-track-mindedness didn’t devolve into zero-sum competitiveness. People were still helpful to each other and encouraging about others’ job prospects.
To summarize, InterviewKickstart helped me do things I knew I should do but wasn’t doing. I’d definitely recommend it to someone who’s willing to put in 10–20 hours a week preparing for interviews, wouldn’t be able to maintain this level of focus on their own, and wants a job at a “big name” tech company that uses algorithms-style interviews to evaluate candidates.
I took this course in June of 2017 and it was worth every penny. Working in the industry for several years without having to interview, I was in dire need of a refresher since interviewing in the software engineering space is much different than work done on the job. This course was much more than that.
I signed up and was immediately scheduled for a quick 30 minute phone call with the founder, Soham. Why? They don’t just want sign ups for money; they want to make sure your goals are aligned with what the course offers.
After outlining the course and curriculum, I got started. I attended remotely via video. The course was an in depth dive into the key topics necessary for an interview. Trees, Recursion, Dynamic Programming, Graphs, Object Modeling, Scalable Systems, etc - these were each dedicated a full 4 hours each (12 for scalable systems and 8 for dynamic programming) along with homework and timed tests every week. Besides the topics, they also focused on interview problem solving approach - step by step guidance on how to approach each type of problem. Office hours for questions are also very useful.
During the course and after, I had access to several resources to further ensure my success - 15 mock interviews with senior/principal engineers from reputable industry leaders such as Google, Facebook, Apple, LinkedIn, Dropbox, etc. These folks provided feedback after each mock interview which is PRICELESS because this is something you wouldn’t get from a real interview. This allowed me to hone my skills prior to the actual interviews.
Another very important note, and it was shocking to me throughout the process - these folks actually care. Soham and other leaders of the course reached on to me on several occasions to check on my status and provide guidance. Nick spent an hour on the phone during late hours working on techniques to help calm the nerves during interviews and overcome fear.
This course was a life changer - I have since received 4 offers from top companies, Facebook included. Prior to this course (in 2015) when I interviewed with Facebook I didn’t get past the technical phone screen. I passed 12/14 phone screens, and got offers from 4 of the 6 companies I interviewed onsite with.
A couple of things to note:
- The course is extremely intensive - be prepared to spend 14 hours per week on lectures, tests, and homework
- This will give you a strong base, but you will need to spend additional hours practicing on your own - I’d recommend 4–8 hours per week
- Use the course resources! There are office hours, folks from top companies you can reach out to for company specific info, workshops for behavioral interviews, scheduling interviews, negotiating compensation, etc
Seriously, Its one of a kind boot camp to get prepared confidently for technical interviews. Instructors are really really good, humble, knowledgeable and provide great learning experience. Preperation pattern is of top-notch quality.To get 100% ROI out of this course please please prepare the course pre-requisites thoroughly before you start the program otherwise you will feel overwhelming and swamped.
Interview Kickstart is a terrific cohort with some insanely good faculty members who are industry pros and are hugely vested in your interest.
The culture is highly impressive with most of the people down to earth, approachable and very very smart.
Apart from being a coding bootcamp, IK is also doing a great job in covering other topics like Scalability, Concurrency, and Object Oriented Design
Thank you IK