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  1. #1
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    PHP Development Job Interview - Technical Test?

    I have an interview for a PHP development role tomorrow and was wondering what I should expect in the technical test. Any advice would be appreciated, it is a Junior role but it still requires strong OOP knowledge and knowledge of Test Driven development. What kind of things might they throw at me.

  2. #2
    SitePoint Member fuhsheeez's Avatar
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    "What does the function echo do?"

  3. #3
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    Are you serious?


  4. #4
    SitePoint Member fuhsheeez's Avatar
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    I was just kidding, for real I am not sure because I haven't been in this position before.

    EDIT: They might ask you this question. Just to brush up could you help me out?

  5. #5
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    fully expect some level of testing. An idoit can say "I know php or .Net and so on". I just relocated recently and the job I got, I had to take multiple test. The first one was more to filter out the newbies and rookies. (It was an in depth sql writing test)

    Since it was a .NET position, then came the .NET questions (Datasets, grids and so forth)

    But honestly, if you know what your doing, don't sweat it. If your new to php programming or programming in general, you might want to back out or cram like hell. The worst thing you can do is get caught in a lie about your skills to an employer.

    Cedric

  6. #6
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    Thanks cis 0 I've been working with PHP for 3 years so I'm no rookie, it is my first interview though so I am a touch nervy, the fear of the unknown et al. Basically I was just fishing for some potential questions or anyone who has experienced this and might know something about the potential format the questions could come in, etc.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Evangelist jplush76's Avatar
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    I give a 25 question test to php applicants that covers basic php to advanced php using sockets and OOP. Some of the questions tests someones knowledge of the php community which is of vital importance for finding answers to questions. There isn't much cramming you can do the night before, you either know it or you don't at this point.
    My-Bic - Easiest AJAX/PHP Framework Around
    Now Debug PHP scripts with Firebug!

  8. #8
    SitePoint Guru arunkumar's Avatar
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    look out the different between mysqlconnection nad mysqlpersistence connection this may be a question
    Where there is a will there is a way
    ArunKumar

  9. #9
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    I think I'd do badly on the sockets question. (See my cURL thread )

    Other than that there aren't too many areas I'm weak on so I SHOULD be ok.

  10. #10
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    I wasn't calling YOU a newbie/rookie, I was speaking about that there are alot of people faking the game with skills they don't have. Thats why I said you most likely should expect a test.

  11. #11
    SitePoint Wizard mPeror's Avatar
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    Here are two of the common questions for programming job interviews :
    1) They'll show you a code and ask you to either tell what it does or what's wrong with it without even testing it.
    2) They'll show you a function\class ans ask you to optimize it.

    I never been to any , but that's what a plenty of programmers said.

  12. #12
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    Thanks, mPeror. I actually had the feeling they'd throw in something along those lines.

  13. #13
    SitePoint Guru worchyld's Avatar
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    I notice a lot of new media, web design companies now put in tests to see how good your php, javascript, .net, xml, and even some go as far as saying "this client wants a website, here his is logo, off you go".

    At one time I got annoyed by this process because some of the "sites" I built for a test lead to building the clients website for real from the test (which I built during the test) -- but the site would be totally different because at least you'd get a chance to talk to the client -- I've even come close to the point saying in interviews "Sure I can do this, but it will cost you £x".

    I never did though. Probably didn't have the balls to say I don't do work on spec... I mean would you go to a company's test and say sure I'll do your exam, but you're going to have to pay me for my time?

    Sounds silly, just shows you how annoyed I got at the whole interview process and just started to work for myself instead.

    But I'm sure you'll get the job...

    Good luck in your interview anyway.

  14. #14
    SitePoint Guru ujjwal's Avatar
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    1.what is the differences bet echo and print?
    2.Types of mysql connection?
    3.Handling regular expression?
    4.Date format?
    5.Mail function?
    6.xml handling?
    7.oops(what is class,polyphormism,inheritance,constructor,object)
    8.Date format...
    and rest the person and god knows.....
    Best of Luck
    -::Ujjwal::-
    Visit My Site

  15. #15
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    Expect questions ripped verbatim out of the Zend certification book. They're pretty easy, but there are a few that might throw you if you're not familiar with some of the various bugs / features / whyinthehelldidtheydothats in PHP.

  16. #16
    SitePoint Zealot harryzimm's Avatar
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    If you are based in the UK tell them you are over 50. Then it won't matter what you know... you won’t have a chance. (actually, you won't even get an interview)

    Seriously though, it would be impossible to know everything about PHP (or anything else for that matter) even after 3 years. Unless the employer is looking for an Einstein to work for peanuts I would expect the important thing to be basic knowledge, and the will and aptitude to learn. Personally as an employer, I would be wary of someone who "knows it all"... there needs to be some scope for personal development. Then it is "Win Win" for both parties.

    Good Luck!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by harryzimm
    If you are based in the UK tell them you are over 50. Then it won't matter what you know... you won’t have a chance. (actually, you won't even get an interview)

    Seriously though, it would be impossible to know everything about PHP (or anything else for that matter) even after 3 years. Unless the employer is looking for an Einstein to work for peanuts I would expect the important thing to be basic knowledge, and the will and aptitude to learn. Personally as an employer, I would be wary of someone who "knows it all"... there needs to be some scope for personal development. Then it is "Win Win" for both parties.

    Good Luck!
    Re above, Joking aside; 46 years old, 18+ years IT experience within UK, Could not find perm position always told, OVER QUALIFIED, very ageist. Wnt self employed contracting/own software company never looked back.

    Dont be afraid of technical tests. If you dont know the answer, say so but explain how you would go about finding the solution. Its not always about the 'answer' but how you go about solving a problem! good luck

  18. #18
    Non-Member fire_lady's Avatar
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    Based on my experience,Ive been ask about sql statements,difference of cookies and sessions,include and require and other stuff similar to that.
    Review you PHP notes and just relax and stay focus.


    Good luck

  19. #19
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    Thanks guys, some useful advice there!

  20. #20
    Web developer Carl's Avatar
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    Be ready to answer questions about other technology. In every interview I have been on they always go to Java or .NET and in many cases Perl. You may not know these but giving a good impression at this part of the interview will get you points.

    Be flexible but not confused. When the part about " do you have any questions for us" comes around ask them about their projects and people" be nosey as you can.

    A good trick to set things in their memory is to ask where the toilet facilities are or ask if you can walk through the work areas. See if you can get people to smile at you and eye scan familiar books and software.

  21. #21
    SitePoint Evangelist sputza's Avatar
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    I would expect they would test your general knowledge of PHP and the internet. If this position relies on OOP knowledge, expect to have your grasp of OOP tested.

    If I were hireling a PHP developer, I would test the hell out of him/her so see if they are going to be qualified enough for the position.

    I think that if you are “self taught” in PHP, expect even more testing. If you have some education credentials to show you have attended and graduated from some sort of programming class, that may help you in terms of your interview.

    I still feel that people are hired based on two things, talent and personality. You could be the best programmer on the planet, but if you have no/bad personality, don’t expect the job.

    My advice, knock their socks off with your personality first, then focus on the skills.

    Good luck!
    Steven Watkins
    Chief Web Ninja
    Code Monkey Interactive
    lowgravity.ca

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputza
    I still feel that people are hired based on two things, talent and personality. You could be the best programmer on the planet, but if you have no/bad personality, don’t expect the job.

    My advice, knock their socks off with your personality first, then focus on the skills.
    Agreed ...

  23. #23
    O Rly?? JakeJeck's Avatar
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    Bring in some examples of your code. I did for my asp.net interview and explained the pages and code (just a basic inventory management system I did for a company) and that showed them I knew what I was doing and I was offered the job.

    However if you're interviewing for some big company you'll probably be talking to some HR person who knows nothing about technology.

  24. #24
    SitePoint Evangelist sputza's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JakeJeck
    Bring in some examples of your code. I did for my asp.net interview and explained the pages and code (just a basic inventory management system I did for a company) and that showed them I knew what I was doing and I was offered the job.

    However if you're interviewing for some big company you'll probably be talking to some HR person who knows nothing about technology.
    I did that for an interview for my school "practicum". They offered me the job but I turned it down for another position I was offered elsewhere.

    If you have a notebook, I have friends who have shown their scripts "live" using their notebook. It’s like digital paper
    Steven Watkins
    Chief Web Ninja
    Code Monkey Interactive
    lowgravity.ca

  25. #25
    SitePoint Zealot MystaMax's Avatar
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    Great question. I'm no expert, so I won't say anything other than....

    GOOD LUCK!

    Also, let us know what they do ask, when its over!


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