Capital One’s Interview Process & Questions
The info below is based on conversations with Capital One engineers in 2023.
Mid to senior-level engineers interviewing at Capital One can expect the following process:
- Recruiter call (30 minutes)
- Online assessment (via CodeSignal) (1.5 hours)
- Onsite, or as they call it, a “Power Day” (3-4 hours)
- Team matching
Capital One’s process is fully centralized. This is a recent change – before that, you had to apply separately to each team. Now, everyone enters the same standardized process, and team matching happens at the end.
Once you apply, a hiring manager will review your information and coding assessment to decide if they want to invite you for the virtual onsite (aka Power Day). If there are multiple hiring managers interested, you’ll have an opportunity to chat with them after your onsite and make a choice of team.
This is a typical recruiter call, where they’ll ask about previous experience, relevant projects, and why you’re interested in Capital One. They’ll also elaborate on the role and confirm that your experience and expectations are a good match.
It’s really important, at this stage, not to reveal your salary expectations, your salary history, or where you are in the process with other companies. We wrote a detailed post about salary negotiation that lays out exactly what to say when recruiters pressure you to name the first number. Just don’t do it – when you give out information this early in the process, you’re painting future you into a corner.
Capital One’s online assessment consists of three LeetCode-style algorithms and data structure questions: one easy, one medium, and one hard, administered via CodeSignal. You get 1.5 hours to complete it.
Capital One’s onsite lasts roughly 4 hours and consists of the following steps:
- Coding (1 hour)
- System design (1 hour)
- Behavioral (1 hour)
- Case study (1 hour)
This is a one hour interview. The expectation here is that you’ll be able to go in-depth on your design choices and that your design needs to be as functional as possible, given the interview time allotted. One common mistake we heard about from one of our interviewers at this step is that people get hung up on trying to perfect a small piece of their solution instead of getting to an end-to-end solution that works. With that in mind, make sure that you’re able to articulate your assumptions and call out any shortcomings in your design.
This interview can either happen live, in which case it lasts one hour, or in some cases it’ll be an asynchronous online assessment. In both cases, it’s pretty standard behavioral fare – you’ll get questions with the expectation that you’ll answer using the STAR format.
In this interview, you’ll be presented with a hypothetical situation and asked to develop a solution to the underlying business problem. This interview evaluates your communication skills and business sense, as well as your ability to think logically and quantitatively. It’s important to be aware of Capital One’s values and incorporate them into your responses.
Once you finish your onsite, your interviewers will submit their hire/no hire recommendations. If you were matched with only one team, you’ll be extended an offer. If you matched with multiple teams, you’ll have a brief chat with each of the hiring managers, so that you have an opportunity to decide where to go, at which point the offer will be extended officially.
This interview usually has two medium-difficulty LeetCode-style questions.
To figure out what types of questions to expect in your Capital One interviews, we did two things. First, we spoke to some current and former Capital One interviewers in our community. Then we cross-referenced all the anecdotes we heard with Glassdoor data AND our own data-set of mock interviews. Based on all of the above, here are the types of questions you’re likely to encounter:
The focus of this interview depends on the interviewer and your seniority. While there’s a general focus on high-level system design, some interviewers will let you choose the focus (OOD, UI, etc.). The most popular question we’ve heard about is “Design a banking system”.
Below are common questions that interviewers from Capital One ask on our platform. Since our data comes from mock interviews, questions may not be exactly the same as what you'd see in real interviews.
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