[TopTalent.in] Parag Reveals Few Secrets about getting into NetApp

NetApp is a leading company of innovative storage and data management solutions that helps organizations around the world store, manage, protect, and retain their data. Even though being in the enterprise space, Netapp is known for attracting the sharpest minds in the industry.  Meet Parag who got an offer from NetApp and is one of the lucky few to be working from their Bangalore office as a member of heir technical staff.  In an interview with TopTalent.in, he talks about his experience, what makes NetApp special and why he chose to work there.

You can also download Parag’s resume here.

1. What makes NetApp so special? Why did you decide to join NetApp?

Parag : NetApp is a “brand name” for storage. NetApp is a company with rich history, a culture of innovation and a great place to work. It has the perfect work-life balance, great products to work on. Most importantly its area of work matches my interest, which is File system. But there are many companies(like EMC, IBM, Hitachi etc.) which have almost same attributes, what drifted me towards NetApp is its capability of adaptation when it comes to new technology, products are being developed/modified taking care of new technological advances which are in pipeline and are expected to be feasible only after 5-7 years. I got a PPO through my internship at NetApp in the File system group.

 2. Can you describe the complete hiring process of NetApp?

Parag : The process started with a written round having total 50 MCQs, 10 Quantitative, 15 Data structures and algorithms, 15 programming and 10 systems related questions. And after clearing it 2 technical rounds were conducted, and after the shortlisting, managerial round was conducted. And if everything goes well HR will confirm the hiring. Resumes and consolidated report of the interviews of all the hired candidates will be sent to Directors having vacancy in their Business Units and they will choose based on their requirement and match of expertise.

 3. What were the tricky questions you encountered? How did you tackle them?

Parag : Most of the questions were related OS fundamentals. Interviewers covered almost all the concepts of OS like Memory management, Synchronization, Processes and threads, System calls, they even asked me about my internship project. There were some programming, algorithms and data structure questions, one need to have deep understanding about all these to clear it. One question was to emulate the behavior of page table given a program, accessing data from a disk, and the level of difficulty was increased by changing the replacement scheme and by introducing TLB. The tricky part here was to play with virtual and physical address space and mapping between them after consecutive data accesses considering replacement scheme.

 4. What is the application process for companies like NetApp?

Parag : NetApp has a very strong internship and referral programme. They give preference to interns for NCG jobs. But they do go for on-campus placement to a very limited set of colleges (Almost all IITs, some NITs, BITS Pilani and some Bangalore colleges). Referral programme is generally used to hire laterals.

5. Can you talk about what resources did you refer before the interviews?

Parag : As I knew that I will be bombarded with OS and DSA related questions, for OS I referred “UNIX Internals by Uresh Vahalia” and studied some concepts from “Operating systems by William Stallings. They are some finest books to build your base in OS, for DSA I referred “Introduction to Algorithms – Cormen”. I also referred my class notes and slides for both the subjects. There are some good websites for standard programming questions like careercup, geeksforgeeks and there are some good forums like stackoverflow, Daniweb to refine or clear conceptual doubts. For programming questions in C you need to be comfortable and patient with pointers.

6. What were some important factors according to you that made you stand out?

Parag : The most important factor is my teachers who played an important role by helping me strengthen the basics of all the subjects. Most importantly my mentor who guided me for almost 2 and half years and helped me gain substantial knowledge which eventually helped me, and also the projects I did in my college steered me through the interviews. One more very important factor was my internship project which was related to Delete subsystem of NetApp’s file system WAFL, it gave me more deeper understanding of file system internals.

 7. Currently, what are you working on and how has been the experience till now?

Parag : Currently I am in the Consistency point team of WAFL group, which works on maintaining consistent image of file system all the time and writing it down to disk so that in case of disruption user can switch back to last consistent image and hence won’t lose any data. It’s been a wonderful 13 months at NetApp, people here are very cooperative, generous, intelligent, they strive very hard to make the workplace fun beyond just being a place where people would show up, do their work and leave. I hope this work environment remains as it is for years to come.

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