Once you have sent your resume to a company and survived
the weeding out process, your resume typically gets passed
along to the hiring manager.
So why do companies conduct phone interviews? Phone interviews
give the company a chance to get a feel for your skill-set,
interests, desired compensation etc., and see if there is a match
between their needs and your strengths. If there is enough common ground,
then the phone interviews are almost always followed-up by an in-person
interview. Phone interviews are generally conducted in two steps.
The first step is with a recruiter in Human Resources. The second step
is a technical interview, usually with one of the people you would
be working with. Technical phone interviews are usually only conducted
for people living outside the geographical region. This is done because
the company wants to have some level of confidence in your technical
abilities before they decided to spend the money to fly you in for an
If you survived the initial phone interview, the next step is probably
an in-person interview. Every company has their own way of conducting
these interviews. Some prefer to have "panel-like" interviews, while others
prefer one-to-one interviews. Expect to interview with three to four technical
people (most likely the people you will end up working with) and maybe a group
manager. The entire interviewing process can take anywhere between 2 to 6 hours.
If the interview overlaps with lunch hours, the company will usually arrange for
lunch. Expect a wide variety of questions that range from common personal questions
to very challenging technical questions relevant to the job you are applying for.
Remember that the whole point of this exercise is for the interviewers to determine
if you have the skills to do the job you are interviewing for, and if you are
someone they would like to work with.