How to Prepare for Your Engineering Interview at MongoDB

Bryan Spears


MongoDB’s Engineering team is full of creative individuals who play an impactful role in building our industry-leading technology. Our interview process is designed to ensure that you and MongoDB are a great match, and, no matter how many interviews you have done in the past, being prepared is the key to being successful. At MongoDB, we do our best to make sure you have a great interview experience and an opportunity to learn about our company, culture, and the people you will be working with. To help you prepare for your technical interviews, we want to share some tips.

Research is key

Candidates who do research and come prepared for interviews at MongoDB are able to make the most of their interview process. People sometimes think they do not need to do research because they are already familiar with our products, but that will set you up for unexpected surprises.

Before beginning your interviews, you should have high-level knowledge of our company’s mission, values, and goals. The in-depth technical information you can learn about MongoDB and the role and team you are interviewing for may also help set you apart from other candidates.

MongoDB has a variety of products and Engineering teams, and this information will give you a chance to learn more about what we are working on, technical stacks we use, and what you’d be contributing to if you joined. Take a look at some of the resources below, and use them to your advantage.

  • MongoDB Blog: Our blog is updated regularly with new posts about life at MongoDB, news, products, and events.

  • MongoDB University: This platform was created to empower developers through education. We offer completely free online courses led by Curriculum Engineers for any learner, whether you’re just getting started or already familiar with MongoDB.

  • MongoDB Documentation: The documentation page has detailed information about our products and tools that will give you an idea of what you will be working on as an engineer.

  • MongoDB Developer Hub: The developer hub provides articles on and resources for how to get started with MongoDB. Learn from our Developer Advocates and the MongoDB community!

Types of interviews

After doing some initial research, it is important to prepare for the actual interviews. Our interview process usually includes one or two virtual interviews and then an onsite interview, which we are currently conducting via Zoom. This may change in accordance with company and COVID-19 guidelines. These interviews and what they cover will vary by team, so it is important to speak with your recruiter and ask for any additional tips or insight into what to expect. Our recruiting process is primarily team-based, which means you’ll interview for a role on a specific team, and many of your interviewers will be team members, as well as your manager. In general, you can expect to receive questions about your background, interest in MongoDB, and why you are interviewing to work with that team. You’ll also have the opportunity to ask your interviewers questions about all things MongoDB.

Technical Interviews

Technical interviews have a variety of areas that may be covered, including concurrency, distributed systems, algorithms, system design, and language-specific coding. An important part of the technical interview that often goes under the radar is the need for effective communication when talking through your thought process or discussing the problems that are presented. Below are some of the things our engineers look for in a good technical performance.

  • Writing code: strong understanding of the language being used, code is concurrency-safe, works in edge cases, good object-oriented design

  • Software engineering: understanding of data structures and algorithms, considering trade-offs (e.g., run time vs. memory), testing your code

  • Collaboration: clear and concise code that is readable and organized, responding well to suggestions or hints, effective communication about difficulties faced

  • Systems design: design a solution to scale to high levels of concurrency, throughput, and reliability. Does it avoid common bottlenecks, how do we prove its correctness, and what are the trade-offs or alternative solutions?

Behavioral Interviews

Behavioral interviews focus on how you may add to the culture we continue to build at MongoDB. Reviewing our code of conduct and core values will show you how we operate as a company and what we expect from our employees. Other topics of discussion you should expect in these interviews are successes and failures, what you have learned from these experiences, and what you are looking for in your next role. We will also ask you about your experience with mentoring and learning from other engineers and leaders, your goals and aspirations for the future, and your experience with owning or leading projects.

What we offer

There are a few things we can promise if you decide to interview for an Engineering role at MongoDB. First, you’ll have a speedy and transparent process with a single, dedicated recruiter. We tailor each of our interview processes to fit the role’s responsibilities and seniority level, and you won’t be asked any riddle questions that aren’t related to the work you’d be doing. Our interview questions are typically sourced from real problems we have had to solve.

You’ll also have the opportunity to interact with your future manager and some future teammates, and we hope you find that your interviewers are genuinely interested in you as a person and seeing you succeed at MongoDB. We believe different experiences, identities, and perspectives build a unique culture that helps us create and innovate the next generation of MongoDB.

In short, following this guide will help prepare you for a successful interview at MongoDB. Ensure you have gained some knowledge about our company, mission, and goals; the role you’re interviewing for and the team you’d be working on; and the types of interview questions you may be asked. And be prepared with questions for us! We’re so glad you’re interested in joining our team, and we look forward to seeing you in the interview process.

Interested in pursuing a career in engineering at MongoDB? We have several open roles on our teams across the globe and would love for you to transform your career with us!