Well, who doesn’t know about Google? In all probability, you may have landed on this post because of the Google SEO and AdWords. One of the biggest players in its domain, it has offices in more than 40 countries across the globe and an internship in Google is one of the most prestigious internships for the college students all over the world.
What are the types of internships available at Google and who are eligible to apply?
Google offers Technical internships and Product Management internships to students pursuing graduate, postgraduate, and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science and other related fields. For graduates, normally, 3rd or 4th year students are selected. If you are from any other stream but have sound coding and algorithm knowledge, you have equal chances of getting selected.
Google summer internships for MBA students are 10-12 weeks long and are offered in a range of functions across the company. Students who have completed 1st year of their MBA can apply.
You need to apply early on (October to January being the most optimal period), as most of the summer internship positions at Google are filled before February.
How to apply?
There are four major ways of applying:
1. Online application: Internships – Google careers
Applying online on the Google internship portal. You will need your resume (in PDF) and transcript.
2. Employee referral:
Ask someone in Google to refer you. You can find them on LinkedIn or Facebook. This will only get you past the resume screening process. After that, the procedure is same for everyone.
3. Mailing the Google HR:
Find a previous googler (Xoogler) or a former intern and ask her to provide you the e-mail address of the HR. Mail the HR directly, clearly stating your purpose, with a well-crafted cover letter and resume.
4. Google Summer of Code:
It’s not exactly an internship at Google; it’s a global program sponsored by Google where students work on the projects with open source organizations (previously selected by Google) independently under some mentorship. Students contact the mentor organizations they want to intern with and submit a project proposal. It’s a virtual aka work from home internship program.
What after applying?
Your resume and transcript will be evaluated by the recruiting team, and if you are deemed fit for the role, you will be participating in a series of technical interviews – some over the phone or Google+ hangouts and others in person at Google India offices (Gurgaon, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Bangalore). Mostly the interviews are focused on Data Structures and Algorithms along with some general coding questions. Some of the ‘must-know’ data structures are – Linked list (Single and Doubly), Stack, Queues, Heaps, Hashing, Binary Search Tree, Basic Graph Traversal and Shortest Path, Tries, and Bit Manipulation).
Hiring Committee: Members of the hiring committee review the feedback from your interviewers, your resume, and other related documents. If you appear to be a strong candidate, your information is placed in a pool for host matching.
Host Matching: This is the step which requires you to have patience. There isn’t really any way to speed up the process, unless you know people whose teams are looking for an intern or have a competing offer. If you find a potential host, it’s followed by a couple of telephonic interviews which are generally non-technical. The host just tries to determine whether you would be a good fit for the team (and vice versa).
For Google Summer of Code: If your application is accepted, you spend a month integrating with your organization prior to the start of coding. You then have three months of summer to code, meeting the deadlines agreed upon with your mentors.
Google generally offers a stipend of 30K/ month to interns along with free food and team outings.
Word of advice from Xooglers:
Competitive Programming: It’s probably the most straightforward and easy way to prepare for and crack the technical interviews of all top-notch tech companies. A good rank or rating on CodeChef / TopCoder / CodeForces will help you to clear the resume screening which is often the biggest hurdle for most of the candidates. A good performance will not only help you in technical interviews (by improving your basics of Data Structures and Algorithms), but you will also get good referrals as the referrer can quickly verify the claims.
No Brainteasers: Don’t blindly trust the articles shared on the print and social media. Google stopped asking complex brain teaser-type questions in the interviews long ago. They realized that such brainteasers don’t really predict the performance and problem-solving ability of the candidates; instead, they focus on structured interview questions now. Check out this guide by Google on how to develop your technical skills- Guide to Technical Development
Do your research: Most students don’t get matched to a host because they are too rigid while filling the questionnaire. You need to do a bit of research about various Google products and the teams behind them for a better possibility of finding a team which resonates with your interests.
A couple of pro-tips: Get used to coding on a whiteboard, in Google Docs, and get comfortable talking about coding over the phone.
You can also watch these two videos prepared by Google recruiters themselves on Technical interview tips and Non-technical interview tips.
You can also read about the exhilarating experience of Anushka while she did her summer internship at Google.
Editor’s note- The information is based on the interviews of certain ex-interns of the company. Readers are advised to go through the Google website for latest information.
Image source: www.technocrata.hu