A look at social media giant Facebook (plus advice for getting hired there)

Facebook is the brand that kicked-started society’s fixation on social media. From major marketing campaigns, to social media influencers, to selling furniture you no longer have a use for, social media has become so much more than what it started as, but Facebook wants to remain as a tool for people to build communities and bring existing ones even closer together. So what does a company culture look like at an organization that is all about community building? Ladders spoke with Renee Albert, the Senior Director of Facebook’s Life@ program, to find out all about the company culture and get a look at the interview process.

Facebook rundown 

Industry: Internet

Locations: The company’s headquarters is in Menlo Park, California, but it also has an office in New York, New York.

Founded: February2004

CEO: Mark Zuckerberg

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Facebook

Mission: According to the company’s investor website, “Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.”

How much do Facebook employees make?

The average salary for a Facebook employee is $135,446 per year. Ladders estimates are based on our calculations.

 

Facebook Jobs

Facebook is currently hiring for a System Software Engineer on the AR/VR team to work in the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park. The New York office is looking for a Strategic Workforce Analyst to join the Mission Control team. View Ladders’ Facebook Jobs page for a full list of open roles and information on how to apply.

Facebook company culture

The company’s mission is to aide in community building, and that theme transcends deeply into the company’s culture, according to Albert.

The company uses the Workplace by Facebook tool to aid in building a community within the organization. Workplace, described as an internal Facebook just for your company, allows the organization to be in constant communication about a variety of issues. For example, Albert uses the platform to get feedback about the benefits program and see how she can best help employees with the policies and programs.

“When I go back to some of these areas that we’ve partnered with startups and benefit programs around the fertility, mental health, cancer, et cetera…we actually can create Workplace groups that are specific to those experiences, and people can opt in and start to share their stories,” Albert said.

The company uses Workplace to discuss about issues such as mental health, benefits, and fertility, but also allows employees to connect through shared interests like a cappella, running, magic, or even improv.

“One of the groups that really stands out to me is a group in Chicago from our Instagram group, and they actually connect and they go out to the community, and they work with kids in underprivileged areas,” Albert said. The group teaches the children how to do photography and use the Instagram product, but also helps develop the photos so that they can sell them to raise money for the community.

Workplace makes it easy for employees to find peers with similar interests or issues, but the company also creates resource groups where employees can find employees who go through similar experiences. There are resource groups for women employees, gay employees, black employees, and veterans, for example.

Another great perk is that Facebook offers employees the flexibility to work from home. Employees are free to be flexible with their work days, whether that means leaving work early and finishing the rest of their work at home, or adjusting their day if they’re not a morning person.

“It’s about work and impact,” Albert said. “It’s not about the ‘butt in the seat,’ which is really nice.”

Facebook interview process

  1. Submit a job application or send your resume to your recruiter.
  2. A recruiter will review your resume.
  3. If selected, you’ll speak with a Facebook recruiter to learn more about the role you’ve applied for and what it’s like to work at Facebook.
  4. If you advance, you will have a phone or video interview with a hiring manager. These interviews aim to evaluate your interest in and ability to do the day-to-day work of the role.
  5. If you advance, you’ll be asked to come in for an onsite interview to meet potential teammates, managers and cross-functional partners.
  6. Each person you interviewed with will submit their feedback and the team will decide if the role is right for you, or if there is a better position that makes more sense for you.
  7. You will receive feedback from your recruiter and can discuss the next steps.
  8. You will hear back with the final decision, and can accept the role, if offered.
  9. The last step is to determine a start date, complete paperwork and finalize relocation details as needed.

Interviews for technical roles at Facebook

Candidates interviewing for technical roles may participate in multiple coding interviews via phone, video chat or onsite, during which they’ll solve problems based on CS fundamentals, systems design, and more. Coding components of technical interviews are just one part of a multi-faceted interview process. The interviewers also takes into account the skills and strengths necessary for the role and level, as well as how well each interviewee will operate in Facebook’s environment.

What Facebook looks for in a candidate

For both tech and non-tech roles, the company values candidates with diverse backgrounds, traits, and experience levels. Facebook is a strengths-based company, meaning it is always looking for someone who is great at what they’ll be doing in the role they’re interviewing for.

Whether interviewing an engineer, a finance analyst, or a designer, the company is looking for builders, or people who like to build things and solve problems. Since teams are constantly innovating and iterating, the company looks for people who can identify areas of potential impact, move fast to create solutions, and can help continuously improve how and what it builds.

How to prepare for an interview at Facebook

The first piece of advice for someone who has landed an interview at Facebook is to do your homework. Understand Facebook’s mission and values, and think about how your own experiences and strengths align with each of those.

Next, prepare examples of your past experience, brainstorming some concrete, detailed examples from your career. You should practice telling the stories of these examples and be prepared to do so on interview day.

Facebook is big on innovation, so think of times when you’ve built something, improved something, or collaborated with others to create something better than you could build on your own. Practice explaining the problem and your approach.

For technical interviews, the company recommends practicing coding. Review CS fundamentals like data structures and algorithm design/analysis, and practice using the specific platform that you’ll use to code during your interview. While you code, practice talking through the problem and your decisions as you go.

Ask your recruiter what else you should be doing to prepare and work with your recruiter to understand what your specific interview process will include.

How to answer Facebook interview questions

Interview questions will vary depending on the role you’re interviewing for, but there is one question that the company always asks.

“On your very best day at work—the day you came home and thought you had the best job in the world—what did you do that day?”

The company asks this question to each candidate because it helps interviewers identify someone’s true passions and strengths, as well as whether those match what the company is looking for. The organization believes that when people do work they enjoy, they’re more engaged and more likely to be successful.

For other questions, the company believes that there is rarely a wrong answer because interviewers are gauging how a person approaches problems, not how well they can guess how Facebook would want the problem solved.

Employee benefits

  • Health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance
  • Flexible spending account (FSA)
  • Supplemental life insurance
  • Occupational accident insurance
  • Mental health care
  • Accidental death & dismemberment insurance
  • Health care on-site
  • Performance bonus
  • Equity incentive plan
  • 401K plan
  • Stock options
  • Supplemental workers’ compensation
  • Maternity and paternity leave
  • Fertility assistance
  • Adoption assistance
  • Reduced or flexible hours
  • Family medical leave
  • Work from home
  • Unpaid extended leave
  • Vacation & paid time off
  • Paid holidays
  • Sabbatical
  • Sick days
  • Bereavement leave

Employee perks 

  • Employee discount
  • Employee assistance program
  • Commuter checks & assistance
  • Mobile phone discount
  • Company social events
  • Legal assistance
  • Free lunch or snacks
  • Gym membership
  • Travel concierge
  • Diversity program
  • Job training
  • Professional development
  • Tuition assistance
  • Apprentice program

Employee reviews 2019

Reviews on Glassdoor range from two-star reviews titled “good for fresh grads who can sell their soul” to five-star reviews titled “doesn’t get any better than working at Facebook.”

“I have worked at lots of other companies and the range of talent, skill, and professionalism usually varied widely,” one reviewer wrote. “So far my experience at Facebook has been working with amazingly smart, talented, and just super kind, fun people. Forget all the other many perks. This is the best part for me.”

The company has good ratings, with 88% of reviewers recommending the company to a friend and 92% approving of the CEO.

Facebook funding and acquisitions

Facebook has raised a total of $2.3 billion over 14 funding rounds. The latest round, was announced on March 10, 2012. The company has acquired 79 organizations, with the most recent being CTRL-labs on Sept. 23.

High profile acquisitions include Instagram in 2012, and WhatsApp and Oculus VR in 2014.