Systems Engineers are responsible for conceptualizing, installing, and configuring a company's computing infrastructure, ensuring that the networked system operates efficiently and securely.
The most suitable Systems Engineer candidates will have in-depth knowledge of all the many different technical aspects required to set up and run an organization's computer network. Be wary of candidates who lack decisiveness or leadership qualities, as this role often requires them to manage a team of technicians during installation, and make important decisions about the backbone of your business.
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Interview Questions for Systems Engineers:
1. Someone informs you that our website is running slowly. How would you troubleshoot this?
The candidate should have some sort of strategy for this issue, and be able to walk you through a step-by-step process of what they would do to fix it. They might ask follow-up questions for clarity, which could demonstrate their thoroughness and attention to detail in solving a problem.
2. Have you ever had to learn about a new technology while on the job?
Look for candidates who are always learning, and are able to find good sources of information to teach themselves. The ideal Systems Engineer candidate will be someone who always seeks out better, more up-to-date ways of doing things, rather than sticking to a tried-and-true method that could potentially be outdated or less efficient.
3. What are some questions you would ask before planning out a company's network?
The best candidates will be quite thorough with their questions, ensuring that they fully understand the company's needs and expectations before setting up any infrastructure. This question also tests communication skills, and candidates should demonstrate an ability to tailor their questions for a potentially non-technical audience.
4. How would you react to an IT technician who's made a critical mistake while setting up?
Ideally, the candidate should react in a level-headed manner when faced with an unforeseen problem. They should also understand that it is not necessarily their place to formally discipline or dismiss the IT technician. Rather, it is their responsibility to report any setbacks to the relevant management personnel.
5. What RAID configuration would you choose for our file server?
Good candidates might ask a few follow-up questions to find out your company's needs before simply answering what they think is best. They could also present you with different options, explaining the relative costs and benefits (such as fault tolerance or transfer speeds) of different RAID configurations.
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