FAQ for our Free Online Mock Interviews & Coding Problems | Pramp

Frequently Asked Questions on Pramp

  • General

    So, what is Pramp?

    Pramp is a FREE, online peer-2-peer platform for practicing technical interviews. It is a community of software engineers who come together to prepare for their upcoming coding interviews. Why We Created Pramp.

    How does it work?

    Pramp automatically matches you with other engineers based on your availability, practicing needs, and programming language preferences.
    Interviews are live, 1-on-1 video sessions that take place on our website over a collaborative code editor. We also take care of the scheduling and interview prep content. Check what it’s like.

    Each practice session is bi-directional: Every user acts as both interviewee and interviewer. Interestingly, our data shows that you learn as much from interviewing others as you do from being interviewed. It makes sense. Putting yourself in the shoes of the interviewer helps you internalize the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” in an interview.

    Why are you called Pramp?

    Pramp is the acronym of PRActice Makes Perfect.
    Later on we noticed that urban dictionary defines it as: "a pro, champ or winner".
    This obviously can't be a coincidence.

    This feature rocks, that feature sucks. How can I let you folks know?

    We love feedback. In fact, our favorite discussion topic is you and us.
    Please email us any questions, comments, concerns, or other feedback to [email protected]

    Why do I need to sign up?

    Pramp personalizes every practice session to your needs. For instance, you’ll never be asked the same question more than once, even if you practice dozens of times on the platform. Also, by having an account, you get access to feedback that your peers gave you.
    It only takes 2 minutes! Try it and start practicing.

    Pairing & Scheduling

    Can I choose whom I get paired with?

    It depends. When you’re scheduling an interview with a peer, we will match you with the right person anonymously. If you want to practice with a friend, you can use our “invite session” feature.

    How do you match me with a practicing peer?

    Our algorithm takes multiple factors into account when it pairs you with a practicing peer. Your background, availability, practice goals, work experience, education, preferred programming languages, selected practicing topics and other factors, are all taken into account in order to come up with the perfect match.

    Why are the time slots on the scheduler different colors? What do the colors of the time slots in the scheduler mean?

    Regardless of which time slot you choose, we will find you a great match. Our success rate is over 90%. Based on your practicing needs and preferences, some time slots will be more tailored for you than others. Look for the green slots - they represent a perfect match for you. The yellow slots represent a great match, while the purple slots represent a good match. When a time slot is already scheduled by you, it will be grayed out.

    What if I have scheduled an interview but can't make it?

    We understand that sometimes things happen and you won’t be able to make it to your scheduled interviews. In this case, as a courtesy to your peer, we ask you to log in to your account and either cancel or reschedule the interview. We’ll make sure to find an alternative match for your peer, and you won’t be penalized for making a schedule change. Thanks for the consideration!

    Interviews

    What's going on in a Pramp interview?

    In each interview, both you and your practice partner interview each other for 30-40 minutes. You'll get to see each other, chat and solve the questions over a collaborative code editor.

    When it's your turn to be interviewed, you'll see the interview question for the first time. Good luck! This is where you'll have to shine in your practice. When you swap roles and become the interviewer for your partner, you'll see the question that you received in your email 24 hours before the interview, along with the solution and hints. Remember - your peer expects you to shine as their interviewer as well. Check it out - this is how it is like.

    How long is a practice interview?

    We recommend the interview session to be 60 minutes long. It starts by one of you being randomly selected as the first Interviewer (and the other side as the Interviewee). After 30-40 minutes, you swap roles – the Interviewer becomes the Interviewee.

    If you and your peer wish to continue, or swap roles again, you are more than welcome to do so, but keep in mind that the interview will end automatically after about 2 hours.

    How many interviews can I do?

    As many as you want! We just ask that you be respectful to your interview peers and show up on time for practice interviews. At the end of a practice session, make sure to fill out your peer’s feedback form.

    Are interviews anonymous?

    It's totally up to you. We don’t share any information about you whether it’s before, during, or after a practice interview. During the interview, you and your partner will see each other via the embedded video chat, but you can disable that and use audio only.

    We take your privacy seriously. Your name, email, and any other identifying details are kept private and will never be shared with anyone without your consent.

    My interview is about to start, how do I join?

    Are you excited as we are?! We’ll email you the link to join your interview session 5 minutes before it begins.
    You can also join directly from your account’s dashboard when the time comes.

    Can I execute the code during the interview?

    Yes. We fully support the option to run your code in all major programming languages.

    My video doesn't work, what should I do?

    We are using peer-2-peer video connection, so the issue is most likely something with your computer or your internet connection. Please use the code-editor window to chat with your peer and try to help each other to set things right. Don't worry, 95% of these cases are easy to fix.

    We strongly recommend verifying that your devices are working properly in your browser, and that your environment is webRTC compatible.

    Here are some troubleshooting steps to solve most cases:

    • Refresh the page (but don't click on "End Interview").
    • If your webcam isn’t working, it usually means your browser is blocking the camera from being enabled. To resolve the issue, restart your browser by closing all browser windows (not just the current tab), and re-join from your dashboard.
    • Try both Firefox and Chrome, and make sure that your media settings enable video sharing.
    • Another app or browser tab that used the camera before may still be using it, so close all other apps and tabs.
    • Is there more than one camera driver installed? Are your OS and browser using the correct one? (Make sure to restart after you switch drivers).
    • To make sure that your network connection doesn't block your video stream, run these connectivity checks.
    • If your bandwidth is low, try to use wired connection instead of WiFi. You can also use Firefox and avoid video sharing to better use your bandwidth for audio.

    None of these help? email us at [email protected] so we can help you ASAP!

    Can I turn off my camera during the interview?

    Sure you can, though we strongly recommend to leave it on. This way you might get additional feedback regarding your soft interviewing skills.

    Which internet browsers do you support?

    We support Chrome and Firefox on desktop Windows and OSX. Other browsers or OS might work, but we can't guarantee as we don't officially support them

    Can I interview from my phone or tablet?

    Since the interview experience is designed for coding, we recommend that you’ll use an environment to match. You can technically do it, but it’s better not to.

    Interview Questions

    What type of interviews do I get to practice?

    Currently, we offer practice for technical interviews for software engineering roles. We plan to add more types of interviews soon. If you want to get an email from us once we’ve add our practical engineering and system design interviews, please join our mailing list.

    Which programming languages can I interview in?

    We support 12 different languages including: Java, C++, Python, JavaScript, C, C#, Swift, Ruby, PHP, Go, Clojure, and Haskell. You can select more than one programming language to practice for your scheduled interviews.

    What kind of questions will I be asked?

    All of the questions in our database are real-world interview questions that are being asked by top companies. These are mainly data-structure and algorithm questions with a varying level of difficulty.

    As an interviewee, do I always get a new question?

    Of course. We make sure that the problem you solve as an interviewee is a one you've never seen on Pramp before.

    For my part as an Interviewer, what question should I ask?

    We take care of that as well.

    Once you have scheduled and confirmed your interview, we’ll email you the question you’ll ask your peer as their interviewer *. You also get the full solution and question-specific interviewing tips. Make sure to read it and solve it yourself. Please, come prepared and be an awesome interviewer. Your peer will do the same for you. It’s also great extra practice!

    * You’ll receive the question you’ll ask your peer 24 hours prior to your interview. It will also be visible to you on your account dashboard.

    Why am I getting the same questions to ask as the interviewer?

    Interviewing your peer with a question you've seen before makes you a better interviewer - one that is more experienced, knows what to expect and able to give hints and feedback from a wider perspective.

    Your part as the interviewer is devoted to your peer's interview, so it’s important that you’re prepared. They will be devoted to your interview, so you’ll both get the most out of the experience.

    Get a Job

    Can you help me get a job?

    Yes, we’ll be happy to help you

    We’re using a variety of models to decide which users are “ready” to be matched with companies, but there’s absolutely no downside when applying to Pramp Express! And in case you’re wondering, we’ll never share your information with companies without your explicit consent.

    We’re constantly adding new positions at great startups, so apply to fast-track whenever you’re ready to explore new opportunities!

    By the way, we’re currently only able to help place Pramp users who already have the necessary authorization to work in the United States.

    What is Pramp Express?

    Pramp Express is the opportunity to skip the resume screen and set up an initial screen directly with hiring managers at top startups. Our hiring partners understand that your performance on Pramp is a good measure of your technical potential, so no resume is needed to apply to fast-track.

    Once you pass the phone screen, you'll schedule an onsite directly with the hiring manager. The next step after that? Getting an offer :)

    So with Pramp I don't need to send my resume?

    No. We don’t need a resume to prove how good you are. We believe in results, and good feedback is our way to measure how much of a good fit you’ll be for a role being offered by one of our hiring partners.

    What's in it for you if I get hired?

    Oh, don’t worry about it! You won’t be asked to pay us anything, give us a percentage of your salary, or name your first child “Pramp.” The payment we receive for a successful placement is covered by the company who hires you.

    Do you have any advice for me before the onsite interview?

    Sure. Onsite interviews are always a stressful and awkward situation.
    Here are a few articles on our blog you may find helpful -

    Can I keep using Pramp after I found a job?

    Yes. Pramp was created not only to help developers practice their coding skills before job interviews, but also to help those who are already working. All developers can use Pramp to keep their coding and interviewing skills strong and relevant... By practicing on a regular basis, and not just when you’re seeking for a job, you’ll always stay ahead of the competition.

    And who knows, maybe we’ll even reach out to you with an offer you can’t refuse.

  • For Companies

    I'm looking to hire software engineers for my team. Should I use Pramp?

    Definitely! Pramp was made by engineers, for engineers, so we understand the challenges of hiring top talent firsthand.

    Pramp users go through at least 3 coding interviews before being matched to our hiring partners. Users join Pramp to practice for technical interviews, so we have a history of technical performance for each candidate, with some having completed as many as 55 practice technical interviews.

    Before matching a candidate to your position, we aggregate peer feedback comparing candidates against 50,000+ fellow Pramp users. We then apply additional vetting tools to hand select eligible users with top notch scores to apply to your open position, creating a pool of technically gifted candidates that match your job description and hiring needs. Once matched, candidates will be able to view your opportunity and choose to apply.

    If you want to stop wasting time going through resumes and phone screens, you can open a company account here.

    How does Pramp’s process work?

    One of the benefits that we provide our community of engineers who apply to jobs via Pramp is that we allow them to skip the resume screen, fast-tracking them to a technical phone screen with our hiring partners.

    At that point, candidates are able to directly schedule technical screens to the calendars of participating hiring managers, who are able to interview an unrestricted number of candidates per week. They’re able to do so over Pramp’s video and a collaborative coding environment.

    Following the interview, the candidate and hiring manager will each get the chance to indicate whether they’d like to move forward. If both say “yes,” we’ll send out an email introduction and the hiring manager can take it from there! If there isn’t a fit, don’t worry, we’ll promptly let the candidate know so that there’s no additional overhead on your end.

    Who are Pramp users and why do they join?

    Software developers come to Pramp primarily for two reasons: (1) Interviewing is a fundamentally different skill from working as a programmer and it atrophies, especially among experienced developers, so they sign up to Pramp to sharpen their skills; (2) Pramp users genuinely enjoy solving technical challenges and meeting other developers.

    So you're doing the initial screening of candidates?

    Exactly. The candidates you’ll interview are already pre-screened based on our vetting and matching algorithms to ensure they’re a good fit for your position. Not only do we screen candidates based on technical ability, but we also assess soft skills. Candidates will have had multiple engineers say that they’d enjoy working with them, communicate well, etc.

    How many candidates will I need to interview before I'll find the right person?

    It varies. Some companies pass every other Pramper to an on-site, while others feel that the large volume of options allows them to be more picky. Whichever type of interviewer you are, we ensure that candidates will never be a waste of your time, as they’ve been vetted for coding, problem solving, and communication skills.

    What's in it for you, or: do I need to pay you?

    Yes, but we’re substantially more affordable than the industry standard for sourcing and you get much more.

    You don’t need to pay for the candidates we send your way, unless you decide to hire them, and do so successfully at which point we charge a 10% placement fee, with a 4-month money-back guarantee.

    If you want more information about our pricing model, please reach out to Justin, our talent operations manager.

    I still have more questions.

    No problem! Just send us an email to: [email protected] and we’ll be back with an answer within 48 hours.

    I ♥ Pramp

    I love Pramp! How can I let everybody know?

    Oh, we love you too!

    Here are a few things you can do if you’d like to spread the word about Pramp -

    • Write a post for our blog
    • Put a link to Pramp on your blog/website (don’t forget to add /ref/name-of-your-blog. So we’ll be able to reach out to you if the link generates high traffic…). You can find our logo and instructions as to how to do it - here.
    • Be a brand ambassador for Pramp. If this sounds interesting, please send Lotem, our head of growth, an email.

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