Finding your next job abroad as a software engineer

 This blog post is about my personal experience of how I got the job offer in Europe. I was a Software Engineer with 2 & half years of experience in Egypt when I started looking for a job abroad.

I was planning not to write this blog post unless I travel abroad as a Software Engineer & pass the probation period, to be sure that I’m writing something useful!

Finding your job abroad is not rocket science. “Thousands of people did it before you & more will do it after! So it’s really simple if you have the desire & the dedication  for it”, said Mostafa Nageeb

I will try to summarize what I did, maybe it would help someone to answer the How To Start? question. It took less than 6 months from the day I decided to move mainly to Silicon Valley or Europe.

How did I start looking for a job?

I thought it’s super easy, I will just apply for a job then get into the interviewing process then offer, sounds like super easy. Isn’t it? Unfortunately, it’s not!

I started applying for the top companies in the world (Google, Facebook, Uber, Airbnb, Linkedin, ..etc), my CV is not passing any filtration process. Then I was applying for every vacancy through Linkedin, only rejections! Now I’m sure it’s mainly because my CV didn’t catch the recruiter eyes in the first 10 seconds.

Then I was googling software engineer CV and a huge number of websites till I found this this is how it should be done. I updated my CV and it was only the beginning.

Updated CV .. Ready .. Steady .. Apply!

Here is my secret of how to get into the interviewing process:

  1. Apply for only matching vacancies, that you can really fit.
  2. Check the company website, apply there on the matching job.
  3. Get a couple of recruiters for this company from Linkedin, send them a private message that you applied for this job with a link for it & check how can they help you to get in the interviewing process.
  4. If you follow these steps, I can guarantee that 90% you will get into the process.

My First Interviewing patch .. Google, Booking & Bloomberg!

I received an invitation for a call from a Google recruiter, I had the call then I asked for 4 weeks to prepare for the technical interview.

I had no idea how to prepare for an interview, after some search, asking friends who had the same experience before. I had an initial idea about how to start (I will summarize in steps at the end of the post).

After a couple of days, I got an invitation from Booking & Bloomberg with some other companies. During those 4 months, I was interviewing with around 10 companies.

If you are ready for Google, you are ready for any interview for a Software Engineer on Earth!

I got an onsite interview for Google, Booking, Bloomberg & Zalando. Rejected in Google & Booking final stage & joined Zalando!

How to prepare for a technical interview?

  1. Choose one the programming languages and know it very well. Know the basics, how the data structures work under the hood, operators, memory & threading.
  2. Read about threading, processes & what are the differences between them?
  3. Data structures (Stack, Queue, Linked List, Binary Search Tree, Vector & Array List, HashMap & Hash Table &Trie). It would be better to implement each of them yourself.
  4. Algorithms & Techniques (Breadth First Search, Depth First Search, Binary Search, Tree Traversing, Sorting Algorithms, Recursion & Dynamic Programming).
  5. How to calculate Big-O? This is very important.
  6. Memory (Stack VS Heap).
  7. Study this lecture (Lecture 9 Scalability Harvard – David Malan).
  8. Read Gayle’s book Cracking The Coding Interview.
  9. Solve problems on Leet Code as much as you can.

P.S If you know the answer for a question in the interview, don’t pretend that you are trying to get the answer .. Say that you know it! Honesty is a really important factor in the evaluation.

After this, you should be ready for Google.

In the upcoming weeks, I will write in more details how to prepare for a technical interview?

Good luck 🙂