Product Support Engineer Interview

I recently received an email to interview for a position in Product Support Engineering at an eCommerce company. While I am trained as an Electrical Engineer and have been coding professionally since November 2015, I still consider myself as a novice when it comes to Software Engineering.

Honestly, the only thing here is my lack of experience… Adding up all of my experience point, I have about 2 years on Git and Object-Oriented Programming. I have virtually ZERO experience with C# and Powershell. I am also not too familiar with TSQL. I checked the manager’s LinkedIn profile, I saw that he specifically listed ASP.NET MVC eCommerce Platfom, Multithread C# client-integration, T-SQL, and Powershell…

Here is an insert directly copied from the job posting:

Qualifications

  • 3-5 years of object-oriented software development. C# experience is a plus.
  • Solid understanding of SQL and database fundamentals. T-SQL experience is a plus.

Additional Desirable Skills

  • Familiarity with Powershell.
  • Experience with writing a debugging front-end javascript code.
  • Knowledge of HTML, CSS.
  • Experience with git or other version control systems.

That being said, at the time of this posting, I have about less than 24 hours (Including sleep  and other activities…) to figure these out. In short, this post, to be published AFTER the interview, will be a note for me as I learn and review all of these materials. Let’s start with the easy ones…

T-SQL

T-SQL (T for transact) is a SQL extension used to interact with Microsoft relational databases. T-SQL adds procedural programming(), local variable, various support functions for string processing, data processing, mathematics, etc. and changes to the DELETE and UPDATE statements.

Example:

DECLARE @local_variable VARCHAR(500)

SET @local_variable = ‘local variable name’

SELECT @local_variable = Name…

If you have prior programming experience, such as using Python and psycopg2 to build ETL script, this may essentially save you 15% or more on data processing time based on the way you write your SQL.

PowerShell

Of course, why would you go to the official site for a quick and dirty explanation of what it is? Thank you to the extremely detailed description on wiki, I did what any programmer would… I visited StockOverflow for an even more simplified explanation. In which, from what I could understand… PowerShell is essentially the Microsoft vision of *nix shell, with the key difference as the I/O being a .NET object instead of text. Given that, instead of using text parsing functions as you would in Shell, you would use methods of .NET objects.

 

Post Interview thought

It was not technical AT ALL! I think I answered most of the questions pretty well. Nevertheless, there was one particular answer I wish I could have answered better. The Hiring Manager asked me what attracted me to this listing. I responded saying that I believe the qualifies it mentioned match with me really well despite there maybe some lack of experience in the C# department. His response was simply… “Interesting.” I couldn’t tell if it was his beard or his poke face, I was NOT able to read him as all… Other than that, the overall experience was pleasant.

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