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SoFi Product Manager (PM) Interview Guide

Learn how to prepare for the SoFi Product Manager interview and get a job at SoFi with this in-depth guide.

From its roots in refinancing student loans to its various business lines now (investing, cash management, credit score monitoring, small business financing, and a broader array of loan products), SoFi continues to help its members get their money right.

Product managers at SoFi come from both technical as well as non-technical backgrounds. The company typically hires experienced PMs (though this may change as the startup continues to rapidly grow). SoFi PM openings are targeted for specific roles (as opposed to applying for a general PM role). Thus if the PM role you're applying for is one that requires technical depth, such as managing a platform, then a technical background will come in handy.

As SoFi grows and expands in the fintech world, it will continue to hire product people to manage its various product lines. In this guide, we explore everything you need to know in applying to a PM role at SoFi.

Interview Process

There are 2 stages to your SoFi PM interview: a phone screen and the on-site.

Phone Screen

If there is a good fit, the recruiter will contact you for an initial 30 to 45-minute chat over the phone. The recruiter tries to understand why you're interested in SoFi and the specific PM role you applied to.

Use this time to demonstrate your passion for the role. Keep in mind the recruiter will be looking for signs that you will be a good cultural fit, so be sure to also review the company's 11 core values.

Usually, it takes at most one week to hear back after your phone screen.

On-Site

In the on-site interview, you will meet with four to seven employees ranging from product managers to engineers to business folks. You'll meet with each person for 45 minutes. Senior roles often involve interviewing with more interviewers.

Here, you'll be asked a range of behavioral and product sense questions. You will also encounter questions that gauge your technical and data understanding, as well as questions that test your ability to work with engineering.

After the on-site interview, you will typically hear back within a week.

At this point, reference checks will be initiated as well as other standard paperwork. If the role you interviewed for isn't the right fit for you, there is a chance that you would have the opportunity to have an additional conversation with a hiring manager for a different role within SoFi.

Sample Interview Questions

In your SoFi PM interview, you will encounter 3 types of questions: behavioral, product sense, and engineering questions.

Behavioral

SoFi has 11 core values, detailed on their website. Ensure you are familiar with each one of them. Exponent recommends having at least 2 stories for each. This way, you are able to readily cite specific examples of how you embody each core value. Of the 11 core values, the hiring manager will choose a subset to evaluate you on (you will not cover every single core value).

Here are some suggestions to help you brainstorm stories for the core values:

  • Put our members' interest first - Show that you are user-focused
  • Run after problems - Show that are proactive and take action to solve problems
  • Embrace diversity. Everyone should feel welcome, included, and able to contribute - Show how you promote diversity in your team
  • Get to the truth and make principle-based decisions - Show your ability to be data-driven
  • Make your footprint bigger than your foot - Show how you think big and put the team's interests ahead of yours
  • Do the right thing. If you’re not sure, do the harder thing - Show how you do not buckle under pressure
  • Set ambitious goals, be gritty, be accountable - Show how you deliver meaningful business results
  • Take care of other people and help them grow - Show your ability to mentor others
  • Iterate, learn, innovate - Show your ability to think big
  • Be SoFi missionaries - Show that you will advocate for SoFi over the long term
  • …and don’t forget to smile - Have a positive attitude!

Additional behavioral questions:

  • Why PM?
  • Tell me about a time you failed.
  • How do you influence team members without having direct control?
  • Why are you leaving your current job?

Product Sense

Product sense questions test your ability to design a new product or improve an existing one. Be user-focused. The key is to ensure you're organized with your thoughts and have a clear goal in mind that will solve the user's problem(s).

One of the best frameworks is to go "broad then deep". First, "go broad" by listing all the ideas and solutions that come to mind. Then, pick one to "go deep" on and explain why that is the solution you chose.

Another approach we see candidates have success with is The Triangle Method. This framework will help you articulate your thoughts and help nail your points into the interviewer's mind. To accomplish this, first list three points. Then, dive into each point. Finally, summarize your three points at the end. This will help you articulate your points and subpoints.

Engineering

In your engineering round, you will not be expected to code. However, you should be able to discuss various technical principles and architectural tradeoffs. This includes knowing how long it may take to implement one solution versus an alternate solution.

It may be helpful to review concepts related to the fintech world. For example, know what happens when someone swipes their credit card at a merchant store.

Here are some tips for system design questions.

Hiring Decision

At SoFi, the candidate evaluation process is more value-driven and flexible when compared to that of other companies. After the on-site interview, the hiring panel will enter their feedback. They will then debrief together and holistically judge the candidate's performance.

Tips and Strategies

Make sure to do your research on SoFi. Show that you are able to think deeply about real-life financial problems and allow your passions to reveal themselves in the interview. This will show that there is a good "person-company" fit, where you will fit right in with not only the core values, but also with the other folks on the team.

At SoFi, product managers are extremely member-focused (the company calls their users "members"). They often host community events for members. It will be advantageous to show how you can contribute to this culture. SoFi also often calls PM roles product owners. The company expects those in product roles to truly own the acts of defining, executing, and delivering the roadmap for their area

Learn everything you need to ace your Product Manager interviews.

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