Salesforce is a cloud computing company that was founded in 1999. Mainly, Salesforce helps its clients (other businesses) create and maintain relationships with their current and potential customers through their CRM (customer relationship management) software. The Salesforce headquarters is located in San Francisco, CA, from where they manage their 30,000+ employees.
Salesforce employees receive a highly competitive benefits package. Recently, Salesforce has been named the Fortune’s top company to work for by Fortune as well as the best place to work in Europe. As an employee, you’ll have access to health and wellness benefits, paid time off, generous maternity and paternity leave, a 401K plan with company match, a health insurance plan, tuition reimbursement, employee stock options, and more.
Salesforce Job Interview Questions & Answers
Here are some of the most common Salesforce interview questions for the three most-applied-to positions: Software Engineer, Account Executive, and Business Development Representative. These three positions represent a wide array of skills and experience, so the interview processes will be largely different. However, you can expect a number of behavioral-based Salesforce interview questions to be asked in addition to questions about Salesforce itself.
A typical Salesforce interview process begins with a phone session with a junior recruiter. After the initial call, you will likely receive a second, more technical interview with a senior recruiter. If you successfully complete the second phone interview, you’ll either be flown out to San Francisco for a day-long interview series with various members of your potential team or you’ll need to schedule a video interview. Expect to hear back from your recruiter or a member of the Salesforce team within two weeks of completing your final meeting.
1.) Software Engineer Interview Questions & Answers
Q1: “Talk about a project you worked on that wasn’t handled as well as it potentially could have been. What could you have done to make it more of a success?”
A1: “When I worked for a small website development firm, I was part of a large project for a key client. Since the company had worked with the client several times before, we felt as though we were familiar enough with their needs and expectations to skip out on some basic discussions about project details. Therefore, we molded the new project similarly to the ones they had placed before and it turned out that the client had decided to go in an entirely different direction.
In the end, our team had wasted a day and a half of time and resources on creating assets that were now useless. Now, no matter what, I always make sure to communicate with every client thoroughly about every project, no matter how small it is or how familiar I am with the client.”
Q2: “Tell me about a time you had to complete a task that was extremely difficult. How did you approach it?”
A2: “I once had to learn a technology I was entirely unfamiliar with in the course of a week and a half. With seemingly impossible tasks like these, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. I made an action plan immediately after receiving the assignment to avoid feeling as though I would never pull through.
I also asked for help from one of my mentors, who is familiar with this technology – knowing when to seek out help can make or break situations like these. He pointed me to valuable learning resources and I was able to grasp the basics within a matter of days. I completed the task on time and it felt even more rewarding because I gained a new skill in the process.”
Q3: “Have you ever had to resolve a conflict with a coworker? How did you handle the situation?”
A3: “When I first joined my former team, a senior developer was often aggressive toward junior developers. He had been there for over ten years and was a huge asset to the team. However, his attitude was making us lose productivity because the team was focused on why he was being so negative.
After talking with him, I learned that he felt as though he was going to be replaced by a newer team member. When I brought up the fact that he was essential to the success of the team and that none of us felt like we had more valuable experience than him, he stopped causing issues. Eventually, my colleague went back to his normal, helpful, productive self.”
2.) Account Executive Interview Questions & Answers
Q1: “How do you plan to spend your required charitable time?”
A1: “I already volunteer at a local food bank, so I’ll continue doing that. I’d also love to branch out into other hunger-related charitable causes. I was looking into a soup kitchen nearby that looks like it does a lot for our community. After following the recent disaster-relief efforts in Houston, I became more aware of the fact that many people in cities across the world have more of an immediate need for food than what food pantries can provide.”
Q2: “Talk about your preparation process for a sales meeting.”
A2: The answer to this question will vary widely from person to person. You’ll want to list any methodologies you use as well as specific elements that go into your preparations. For example, creating and sending out a meeting agenda, preparing and speaking about case studies, involving the audience, and following up after the meeting.
Q3: “Why are you changing from your current position to the tech industry?”
A3: “Technology is carving out the future and I would like to be a part of it. Since junior high, I’ve been fascinated with computers. However, I never quite got a hold of programming and other tech skills. Working in sales for a tech company is something that, for some reason, never hit me until about a year ago when I discovered Salesforce through my employer. By shifting to the tech industry, I’ll be selling a product that I believe in and will help me feel more connected to my position.”
3.) Business Development Representative Interview Questions & Answers
Q1: “What do you do outside of work”
A1: “I have a blog and a related Instagram account where I write about cooking and healthy eating. It’s really taken off in the last year, despite the fact that I post once a week. I also like to go running during the week and hiking on the weekends. In January, I organized a charity run with a group of friends. Through this event, we were able to raise nearly $3,000 for the local food bank.”
Q2: “Why Salesforce?”
A2: “Salesforce is leading the charge in CRM solutions and I want to be a part of that. Customer service is so important for businesses of all sizes today because of the fierce amount of competition businesses face. Consumers have so many options and are likely to take their business elsewhere after a singular negative experience with a company. I love the idea of helping businesses better connect with and understand their customer base. The idea of helping small businesses grow especially excites me.”
Q3: “How do you typically deal with failure?”
A3: “While I try to avoid failures in the workplace, I approach failures as learning opportunities whenever they occur. Sometimes, you cannot learn from the failures of others as well as you can learn from your own. Outside of work, I’m not deterred by failure at all because it gives me a chance to develop my cooking and athletic skills. When something isn’t working, I either need to switch gears or consult a teammate or mentor.”
Salesforce Job Interview Tips
Get to know Salesforce
You’ll need to go into your Salesforce interview with a strong understanding of the company’s mission, products, and interests. No matter what position you’re applying for, you should start by understanding what Salesforce is and what it can accomplish for its customers. Then, try reading through the Salesforce blog to get an idea of where the company is headed and what they take interest in. This will help you provide a more unique and robust answer to the “Why Salesforce?” question and other similar Salesforce interview questions.
Be ready to explain your resume
With all of the technical and behavioral interview sessions to prepare for during a Salesforce interview, it can be easy to forget about your resume. Make sure that you will be able to explain any gaps on your resume, job hopping or other questionable items that may be considered negatively. Confidently communicating your reasoning for any issues without focusing on negatives will be key to breezing through resume-related questions.
Practice coding questions on LeetCode and HackerRank. Prepare projects to talk about. (This tip is for Software Engineer interviews only)
Software Engineering applicants should practice coding interview questions and gain familiarity with various algorithms to ace their Salesforce interview questions. The more your study, the better prepared you’ll be for your technical interview rounds.
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