Do you have an upcoming technical product manager interview coming up?
While technical interview questions are typically asked less often during product manager interviews, you still need to be prepared for them. This is especially true if you're interviewing at 'techy' companies like Google.
In general, technical product management interview questions are asked to assess your:
These product management interview questions are usually open-ended and could be focused on all sorts of things or technical skills.
As such, it may feel intimidating trying to prep for them.
To help you do that, we've sourced 30 of the top technical PM interview questions from Big Tech companies like Google, Meta, Amazon, LinkedIn, and more.
Our product management interview course teaches you the essential skills you need to ace your PM interview, with hours of example questions, videos, and interview tips.
A product management candidate could answer this product manager question something like this:
"I see three main trends in technology that have and will continue to shape the landscape in the coming years.
First and foremost, the most important technology trend of the next decade will undoubtedly be Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning.
Companies are increasingly using artificial intelligence in nearly every domain, and machines' ability to effectively learn will continue to transform almost everything in tech and beyond.
Secondly, the market for the Internet of Things, or "smart" devices, is exploding and will continue to do so well into the next decade. Combined with the previously mentioned advances in artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things will produce substantial transformations in many domains.
Finally, cloud computing has already produced remarkable technological transformations and will continue to do so. Primarily, cloud computing has made it easier for more people and companies to access and use data in ways that used to be prohibitively expensive."
This sample answer is from none other than our co-founder, Jacob.
Check it out:
"Cloud computing is like going to a restaurant instead of cooking dinner at home.
When you cook at home, you have to do everything yourself. First, you must use your own plates, pots, and pans. You have to know how many people are coming over and buying the right amount of ingredients.
If more people join for dinner than you expected, you'll run out of food! But if fewer people show up, you'll have leftovers that go to waste. And on top of it all, you must do all the cooking, set up, and clean up yourself.
Before cloud computing, running an Internet business was similar: You had to buy your own computers or rent dedicated servers from someone else.
You had to predict the number of visitors coming to your website and ensure your servers could handle that traffic. And you had to do a lot of infrastructure and maintenance work yourself—the computer equivalent of washing the dishes.
On the other hand, cloud computing is more like going to a big restaurant or cafeteria. Restaurants can handle groups of all sizes because they (usually) have more than enough food and plates to go around.
If more friends want to join, the restaurant can move some tables around and give you more room. Of course, you'll pay more on average than cooking yourself, but you only pay for what you eat.
Cloud computing providers like AWS, Google Cloud, or Azure are similar.
They have nearly unlimited computing power, which allows you to worry about your business instead of buying and maintaining computers.
As your business grows, you simply pay for what you need. But, like fancy restaurants offering exotic menu items, cloud platforms also provide new technologies you can't find at home, like machine learning. And best of all—no washing dishes!"
Watch a mock product management interview that answers this question that our CEO Stephen conducted below:
You will undoubtedly need to answer other technical product manager questions outside the 30 we previously listed.
Don't worry, though!
No matter what questions come your way during your next product manager interview, you can follow this structure to ace the answer:
Let's take a closer look.
First and foremost, you won't be able to get very far in your product management if you don't listen closely to your interviewer.
Be sure to actively listen when being asked your interview questions.
Take notes as your interviewer is explaining the problem, but make sure to make frequent eye contact while you do so.
Once you've heard the interview question, resist the urge to jump straight into an answer.
It's always best to ask clarifying questions before going any further.
You never know; you may have missed a crucial detail required for a great answer.
Not only that, a product manager is always expected to ask clarifying questions on the job, so you should during the interview process too.
Your interviewer will always be happy to provide additional clarification on their expectations, so take advantage of that.
For example, you could ask:
However, if the question is straightforward or you don't have any other questions, you should always clarify.
Just say something like:
"So, you're asking me to _____. Is that correct?"
Now, it's not quite time to jump into your answer yet.
Believe it or not, just taking an extra 10-15 seconds to collect your thoughts and think through your answer can dramatically increase its quality.
Although you will probably feel social pressure to answer the question immediately, do yourself a favor and pause and think before doing so.
After briefly thinking through your answer, you'll be ready to start structuring it.
An unwieldy or disorganized answer won't impress your interviewer, so this is an important step.
And don't just keep this structure to yourself. Talk it out before diving in. Doing so will allow your interviewer the opportunity to redirect you if necessary.
There will often be a whiteboard available, especially for technical product manager interview questions. We recommend that you use it.
Now, we've gotten to the meat and potatoes.
You're finally ready to dive into and explain your solution. Be sure to talk out and explain your thought process along the way.
It's also a good idea to continue using the whiteboard extensively as you go along.
While explaining your answer, you need to periodically stop and check-in with the interviewer.
Sometimes, candidates will miss an essential expectation or need to be redirected, especially with technical product manager questions.
Don't sweat it if this ends up happening. Just remain calm and confident and pivot as needed.
Last but not least, you'll need to summarize your answer.
No need to go on and on in this step. Just take 30 seconds to reiterate the main points of your solution.
It's also helpful to know how your interviewer will evaluate your answers during the interview process.
In general, your hiring manager will be evaluating your technical knowledge, how you'd work alongside the engineering team, how you can explain product management to technical teams, and, above all, the technical solution you provide.
Here's how technical questions are typically graded:
Generally, technical product manager interview questions are designed to evaluate three primary things.
These are a candidate's analytical skills, critical thinking, and domain knowledge.
Many tech companies today use grading rubrics with five different options. These scores range from "missing" or "very weak" to "very strong."
Regarding technical product manager interview questions, six technical skills are usually the focus of these rubrics.
These skills are:
Let's take a closer look at each:
While some product managers' jobs can be very technical, especially at companies like Google, you must remember that product managers aren't engineers.
This means that the most important technical details they will likely be concerned are with data.
As a result, many technical product manager interview questions will evaluate your data literacy skills.
Always keep your answers data-driven to ensure you put your best foot forward in your technical PM interviews.
Along with data literacy, technical product managers also need to be comfortable using metrics. Most importantly, they need to understand which metrics are appropriate and which aren't.
Here's how this section of the rubric could look:
Part of the previously mentioned product manager interview question structure was a step that called for clarifying questions.
Not only is this important for your overall answers, but this is another evaluating factor in the grading rubric.
The reason being isn't trivial either. When working as a technical product manager, you'll be expected to ask clarifying questions and contextualize your technical challenges before attempting to solve them.
Technical product management interview questions, like many interview questions, are designed to gauge how you'd perform on the job.
Because technical product managers need to consistently evaluate tradeoffs in their day-to-day responsibilities, this will be part of how a candidate is assessed during the interview.
When it comes to technical interview questions, there are typically many possible approaches to solving the problem. As such, you'll need to be able to deduce the most appropriate one during your interview.
Suppose technical product management is a part of your responsibilities as a product manager. In that case, that means you'll likely be working closely with engineers at the company.
Product management candidates need to have the technical communication skills necessary for these partnerships.
This, too, is evaluated in many technical product manager interview question rubrics.
Hopefully, our list of the top technical product manager interview questions helped give you a better idea of what to expect.
But why stop there?
At Exponent, we have dozens of interview prep resources to help you ace your technical product management interviews.
Join thousands of other product managers, software engineers, program managers, and more that have used Exponent to land their dream jobs in tech.
💬 Study up on example product manager interview questions
📚 Brush up on your strategy with a list of the best PM books
📖 Read through our company-specific Product Management interview guides
👯♂️ Practice your behavioral and product sense skills with our interview practice tool.
👨🎓 Take our complete Product Management interview course.