IESE MBA

A student's personal journey at IESE Business School

MBA Summer Internship Interview with Uber

Introduction

The goal of my MBA was to join a big tech company. I held Uber in very high estime since the very beginning. Unfortunately, the company didn’t come during the career fairs and it was actually quite hard to meet them. Luckily we got the chance to visit the HQ in London during the tech trek and got the chance to network over there. The positions opened quite late (FYI I applied on 24th of March). The process is very clean and fast. Everything happened in 2 to 3 weeks.

Informal Call

After I entered my application, I got an email almost immediately (less than 48 hours later) to plan an “informal call”.
the call took place the next day and lasted around 30 minutes. They label the call as informal, but it was really a mini interview. The initial question is a “tell me about yourself” type but then it gets more complicated.

Few questions I had to answer:
– How would you describe Uber to someone who has never heard of us?
– How would you convince potential drivers to join Uber?
– How would you price a trip on a new teleportation portal technology?

Once I passed these few simple cases questions, I was told there were some open positions for internships. The recruiter went on to describe the different departments, locations and positions.

I made sure I clearly stated what I wanted. I wanted to work for Uber Ridesharing and not EATS. I made sure to explain the location was not really important to me. I also explained why a particular position was more appealing to me for example, It was more hands-on vs. strategic. More contact with the stakeholders vs. executives. The job is more operational vs marketing. etc… In general Uber expects you to know what you want and where you want to go.

The Analytics Test

Once you pass the first “informal” call you get an invitation to Uber online analytics test. It’s a 2-hour long test with a different type of questions. The first type is questions that are very analytic with an excel sheet to analyse using pivot tables. The second type is multiple choice questions about the Uber business model. Finally, there is a creative writing part.

I was really not confident about my ability to use Excel to solve the analytics test. I wanted to make sure I aced it, so I bought an online class about it. It’s available here on Udemy.It’s only around 10€ (depending on the promos) and it was amazingly useful. It breaks down the business model, described all the KPIs used at Uber to make decisions. I was never an Excel wizard, and it really offered a quick crash course in pivot tables. I passed the test with flying colours and I really think the course helped. It took me around 2 hours to complete the course. I strongly suggest you take it to maximize your changes to successfully pass it.
the creative writing questions where something along these lines:

-Write an email to the community of Uber driver promoting a special even
-Announce a new feature/program to the Uber users

My final comment on the test is that it’s not a very elitist test. I believe any corporate position at Uber needs to take the same test. Thus, it’s more a safety-check that you know what Uber is about, that you have basic Excel and analytical skills and that you understand the way they interact with their community of users/drivers. Relax it’s not that difficult.

Two video-interviews

The final round is two-video interviews one with a hiring manager, the other with a colleague? (I’m not sure but definitely was not as senior as the hiring manager). During both calls, I had more or less the same type of questions, in addition to the classic ones (tell me about yourself,etc..)

  • How would you prioritize the tasks in order to implement a complex improvement?
  • What is customer success for you?
  • What would you do to improve the customer experience at Uber?
  • You want to improve the customer experience from 50% to 80%. What would be the steps you take to make sure you deliver? Who do you talk to? How do you prioritize the action plan?
  • Where do you think you could bring value to the “customer experience” department
  • Have you had to deal with stakeholders in the past? If so how?

The Call

I received an email the next day, stating that my recruiter wanted to have a phone call to discuss feedback. The 3 hour-wait was one of the worst recruiting experience I faced. When I finally received the call, The told me I was rejected. I was not specific enough in my answers to the prioritization of tasks. The senior manager pushed me a little further. He really wanted to have specific answers to the “how would you prioritize your tasks in a complex environment” question. I was a bit unsure how to reply given the very low amount of details I was offered. I think my weaker answers on this front were the dealbreaker for them.
Be prepared to answer very broad questions with specific answers.

Overall impression

The recruiting process at Uber is very transparent and super quick. The recruiter was super helpful and responsive. They even send you an email to prepare you to the interview with some reading material. I really appreciated the time I spent with the two interviewers, they seemed like very brilliant and inspiring people. It was really disappointing not to get in. The only negative part was the email to schedule a call to tell me I was rejected instead of just saying it in the email.

Useful Links

Interview of the new CEO, it helps understanding the culture and vision of the company

https://www.wired.com/story/uber-move-slow-test-things/

https://hbr.org/2007/02/understanding-customer-experience?referral=03759&cm_vc=rr_item_page.bottom

https://medium.com/uber-under-the-hood/serving-the-whole-city-fde24b0b8685

https://hbr.org/2013/09/the-truth-about-customer-experience?referral=03759&cm_vc=rr_item_page.bottom

https://interviewsteps.com/blogs/news/26640004-how-to-prepare-for-the-uber-interview

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