After 3 months of networking and interviews, I will be joining Roblox as a Design Intern for Summer 2022.
Not gonna lie, the final round interview was stressful, especially the behavioral interview. I’ll explain why later.
In this post, I will share my entire application process for Roblox and takeaways. Hope this will help whoever’s interested in applying in the future.
Sep — Oct 2021 / Networking + Calls
Oct 20, 2021 / Application submitted
Nov 19, 2021 / Received Take Home Assignment
Dec 1, 2021 / Received email for final round interview
Dec 6, 2021 / Final Round Interview
Jan 7, 2021 / Offer Received
I was lost.
I was a college sophomore who didn’t know what industry or company I wanted to work at.
As a result, I locked myself in a room one day and wrote down all my career-related thoughts. I wrote down my strengths, weaknesses, things to improve, aspirations, everything.
And one key question I asked myself was:
What are the three industries I want to work in or explore as a designer?
I wanted to be specific. And I wanted to do something that interests or excites me.
In the end, I listed out these three:
This list gave me a sense of direction and focus for internship search.
At this point, if you know what Roblox is, you can guess that I was super excited because the company embodies all three of my interests!
And so, the grind begins!
If you get one takeaway from this article, it’s this:
I got all my interviews because of referrals. I rarely heard back from the ones I cold applied.
Because when you cold apply, the system scans your information first. There’s a possibility that the system won’t approve, and that’s game over. And even if you make it past, you will compete against thousands of applicants. The recruiters might not even have the time to read your application.
Now, you might say:
Maybe you’re just not that good of a designer Guo…
Woah there what’s up with the negativity? Okay, I may not be the best designer in the room, but I want to do whatever I can to be seen.
And if you want an internship, you should too.
So, back to my point: What do referrals do? You get to skip past what I just talked about.
For context, I talked to a total of five Roblox designers / design interns before I applied. And I got four referrals for the internship. I’m not saying that you need so many referrals, but it definitely helps.
Massive thanks to Ashley Miao, Emily Louie, Zhuoran Deng, Serene Supakkul, and Lesley Zhao for the amazing calls!
Without referrals, I know Roblox won’t even consider my application as a college sophomore.
Thus, I applied end of October, and got a email from the recruiter about the next steps around early November!
For this, Roblox gave me a week to complete it, which I thought was a reasonable amount of time.
Only that it was during Thanksgiving break…
I definitely lost some sleep trying to cram out the designs. I even emailed the recruiter for a potential extension.
But in the end, I still grinded it out and submitted before the due date.
If you want to know what I did for the assignment, feel free to reach out via LinkedIn! Here are some tips when doing it:
Have a clear process and articulate your design decisions. Be intentional with every step! For example, below is a standard process I follow:
This is more Roblox specific. But one of the company’s values is “Take the Long View.” Won’t hurt to think about this and present how you envision the interface in a few years!
Desk research, competitive analysis, user research: These are all super important!
Think about the following: app requirements, constraints, assumptions, and tradeoffs. This will help you make better informed decisions and show the depth of your thinking.
Here were some more resources that I looked at when doing the take-home assignment:
For the presentation, I used Figma to create my slides. I find it easier to use than Google Slides.
After I submitted, I got an email back in early December saying that I’m moving on to the final round interviews!
The final round interviews consists of two virtual interviews:
Description: This is our chance to get to know you and an opportunity for you to ask us questions about Roblox. Questions in this interview will center around resilience/grit, innovation, and team work amongst other qualities we value in our employees at Roblox.
Remember how I said the final round interview was stressful?
Let’s talk about the third reason.
To prep, I created a Google doc with common behavioral interview questions and my answers.
Roblox designers told me that the interviewer, likely a Design Manager, will ask me questions about teamwork and leadership.
What I didn’t realize was the breadth of questions the interviewer asked. I remember when he asked me:
Tell me about a time when your collaboration with others didn’t work out so well.
I know. I know. This is a standard question.
But I just didn’t adequately prepare my responses. I’m not saying that I’ve never had any bad collaborations.
Anyways, that was the first time I panicked during an interview.
Thus, in the span of 0.5 seconds, I remembered that I wrote down a response that’s sort of related, so I talked about it.
After I finished, the interviewer said:
Oh… um Guo… I was more interested in the inter-human relationship instead of the project logic itself. Do you have another example?
So, I came up with an example on the spot. And this happened for several questions during the interview such as:
But there was one highlight of the interview. The interviewer did like one of my last responses about my biggest design failures. In the end, he said this to me:
Don’t be afraid to show your vulnerability. Because that’s when I truly get to know you as a designer. And showing it demonstrates a level of self-awareness that will take you far down the path.
So, here are some takeaways from the behavioral interviews:
I fell short on this. This behavioral interview was a slap on the face. Remember, write down all the common behavioral questions and rehearse your responses! Be prepared! Your confidence rises when you know you did your work!
Remember, the interviewer is a human too. Make the interview more conversational!
This is crucial because it demonstrates your interests towards the position and company! Some of the questions I asked included:
For this round, I went through my design challenge with a Senior UX Designer at Roblox.
My presentation took around 15 minutes. Then, the senior designer asked me follow-up questions. Afterwards, we chatted about Roblox and the future of the metaverse.
I thought this round went a lot smoother than the previous one, and here are some tips for the presentation:
This is my personal preference. But I like to show my final deliverables to let the interviewers know what to expect.
To do this is, envision your persona using your app/product.
Let’s imagine Michael is on the subway and has nothing to do. He then…
This can set the context and help the interviewer imagine what it’s like to use your app/product. Walk through how Michael uses the app! Remember:
After the final interview, I felt bad. I didn’t think it went well.
Still, I waited for around a month.
And on January 7th, I got this email from the recruiter:
I tried to stay calm. This has to be good right?
After an hour, I received a call, and I was offered the summer design intern role for Roblox!
Before I finish the article, here are some of the things you can do to increase your chances:
Looking back, the application process was around one and a half month, which was faster than I thought.
One benefit of going through the application process is that I get to understand myself better as a designer. And I definitely felt that after the behavioral interview.
Anyways, I hope this article helps you in any way. For everyone who’s on the application grind, you got this!
Thank you for being awesome and reading this far :)