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I applied for a Java developer position in a big consulting company. I had a 20 min screening interview, followed by a 1.5-hour technical interview after which the recruiter called me and said I did great and they like to invite me for the next round which is the "manager interview".

The manager interview ended up being another technical interview exactly like the first one, including detailed questions and some coding! After that, I had 3rd technical interview this time (according to the recruiter) with the project team, answering some repeated questions. Now the recruiter invited me to another technical interview with the project, this time focused on the front-end (while I applied for a Java developer position).

Do you think it is normal to have this many interview rounds? (+ all the technical interviews were recorded.) I currently have no other interviews scheduled and would like to see their offer after all the time that I invested, but how can I politely decline another technical interview without losing my chance?

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  • depends on the company and also communication within company. You could be ending up in smaller and smaller pool of candidates (woot) or nobody is communicating within the company that you've already interviewed (boo)
    – depperm
    Apr 13, 2022 at 15:37
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    Do you actually care if it's "normal" or not? How is knowing what other companies might or might not do going to affect what you do about this specific opportunity? Apr 13, 2022 at 15:43
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    @PhilipKendall yes, if it's a red flag I would decline their offer.
    – Mhy
    Apr 13, 2022 at 16:08
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    Only you can decide if it's a red flag or not. Or are you saying you would decline their offer based on my opinion of whether something is a red flag? Apr 13, 2022 at 16:19
  • @PhilipKendall, StackExchange Workplace should have an official disclaimer: "All answers and comments are not binding advice on this website. We are not responsible for anyone's losing a job, or getting fired, or not getting a job offer..." :-) Apr 13, 2022 at 17:47

6 Answers 6

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Whether it is normal or not doesn't really matter. What matters is whether you want the job enough to put up with it or not. And how to push back in a constructive manner. Alison at Ask A Manager just covered something like this (Can I set a limit on interviews).

Essentially, she says you can ask what the remaining process looks like, and let them know that you will have limited availability:

“Because of my schedule, it’s getting tough for me to keep taking time away from my job. If this is the final interview I can make it work, but I want to be transparent that it won’t be easy to continue being available after that.”

She also says this is telling you something about the company as well.

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Yes, it is normal to have 4, 5, or 6 technical interviews for big tech companies such as Google, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, etc... (These are called FAANG).

For example, Amazon usually have 5 technical interviews for software engineer positions.

If you want to get a job from any company, you should take all of the interviews they ask you. All other applicants have to go through all interviews.

If you decline one interview, then you effectively drop out of the race.


BTW, please note that there are other companies that only require 2 or 3 technical interviews for a programmer position.

But, it is not up to the job applicants to decide how many technical interviews they want to take. It is up to the companies.

I usually ask the recruiters right up front: "How many interviews do you have for this position ?" This way I can estimate how much time I need to invest in the interview process, and plan ahead.

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how can I politely decline another technical interview

and

I currently have no other interviews scheduled

are contradictory. Let me explain.

You applied and started the interview process because you are interested. A(ny) company must do whatever organizational process it needs to follow to hire new employees. In some cases, it's just one round of technical interview and the the salary negotiation, in other cases it might be many rounds (as you're experiencing) - there is no industry standard about this - this varies depending on organization, department, level and teams. As long as the process in ongoing, that means, the company is also interested in talking to you. Good sign.

However if you've reached a point where you feel your time is being wasted by too many interviews (repeated), you can reach out to the recruiter and ask about the remaining length of the process. They should be able to help you with the process. In case you're not satisfied with the answer, you need to ask yourself:

  • Are you ready to let go of whatever progress you made so far (time and effort invested)?
  • Do you have a(nother) job offer / opportunity / interview lined up?

based on the outcome, you need to make your choice.

TL;DR It really does not matter whether it's normal or usual, what matters is how you want to react to the ask and what is the next step you want to take. Good luck.

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There's nothing "normal" or "standard" about interviewing processes. Every company has its own. Some give you a "homework" style project to complete at home in a week or so, some require an online test on platforms such as Codility, some just do one round with HR and one with a technical person and then you're good to go. And some, like the company you're dealing with, require you to jump through many many hoops.

You shouldn't be concerned whether this is "standard practice" or not. The only thing that matters here, is you want to continue with the process or not. Because if decide to not participate in the next interview they invite you to, you will effectively drop out of the "competition" for the position, no matter what. So the only thing you have to ask yourself, is if you are willing to go through with this or not.

TL;DR: This is their hiring process, and you either stick to it or you don't. Whether it's "standard" or not does not matter one bit.

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Do you think it is normal to have this many interview rounds? (+ all the technical interviews were recorded.) I currently have no other interviews scheduled and would like to see their offer after all the time that I invested, but how can I politely decline another technical interview without losing my chance?

For some companies this is normal, for others it is not. I know people that have gone through five rounds of interviews to be hired at their company. I have never gone through more than two rounds.

As for declining further technical interviews, there is no way to do this without losing your chance. If the company is ready to make you an offer, they will do so. If they request another interview it is because they have not yet made their decision regarding the position.

The best way to maximize your probability of receiving an offer is to follow the interview process. You have already gone through three rounds so one more should not be much worse.

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Do you think it is normal to have this many interview rounds?

Not unusual for a big consulting company.

I currently have no other interviews scheduled and would like to see their offer after all the time that I invested, but how can I politely decline another technical interview without losing my chance?

You likely cannot.

It's their job, and their process. If you don't want to do what they are asking, you can decline and move on to other companies.

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