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Its been quite a day! 5 hours of interviews stacked back-to-back with a bunch of the EAP team…and this is just the first round of in-person interviews. These were proceeded by two phone interviews a couple weeks ago. It was pretty cool meeting everyone and having the chance to ask a lot of questions about EA and the production roles here.

Craig Alexander told me the reason for the high number of interviews was that EA is very consensus oriented–I will be working with a lot of people very closely under a lot of pressure and it’s important that everyone get along really well. It sounds like a good idea to me. And I get 10 more people to ask about EA and learn more of the culture and way or working at my game company of choice. :)

Each interview was roughly a 45 minute one-on-one interview. I met producers and DDs of various ranks and interests. I received the “why its cool to work here” packet from HR. The questions asked of me seemed geared to gauge my passion for games more than my knowledge of them or my knowledge in general. I suspect they were already ready to assume (based on my resume) that I was at least a somewhat intelligent guy–the important question was whether I would be a fit and how much potential would I realize once I’m a part of the team. There was also a lot of personality probing I think–just wanting to see if I’m a guy they could hang with or not. The one repeat question I got though was “why do you want to work at EA,” which was to be expected, considering this website. :)

I explained that I want to work at EA because the people I’ve met have been helpful to an unusual degree, they have seemed to me smarter and more focused than other game companies, EA has an unrivaled grasp of the power of franchise, EA is the largest independent publisher of games in the US, EA doesn’t do hardware, only games, it seems like a kick ass place to work, and there are opportunities for a motivate guy like myself to make a difference and grow with the company. I haven’t scripted my answer, so it varies a bit each time, focusing more on this or that aspect of EA, but I think I got the idea across that I had really thought that question through before I created this website and started to focus on EA as my #1 choice.

Craig and a couple of the other people I met with mentioned this website. Although few had had a chance to look at it to any great extent, they liked that it demonstrated creativity and drive. Craig told me that it’s refreshing to meet people that really want to get into the industry and work for EA with a passion. I had managed to get my message across to a lot of the right people and it’s the right message. I was thinking: this is so cool–they like it!

At about 6:15p we wrapped things up and I left EA to go ponder the day and enjoy a Friday evening in the Bay Area. Overall I felt pretty happy with the way things went. I felt that I had put by best foot forward. Or at least a good foot. ;) In my head I reviewed the recruitment process as I understood it:

  1. EAPs recruiters go through a bunch of resumes and find 40 they want to phone interview at least once.
  2. The first interview is conducted with each of the 40.
  3. Of those 40, about 20 make it to the second phone interview.
  4. Of those 20, about 10 make it to the first round of 8 in-person interviews.
  5. Of those 10, about 2 make it to the second round of in-person interviews.
  6. EAP decided at that point whether to make some offers or not.

So a lot rides on whether I made a good impression and even if I did manage that I am competing with talented internal EA applicants as well as more experienced external applicants. Besides that there is the question of whether the timing is right for what they need and what I can offer. Basically, I have no idea how I’m doing. ;) But was told I should find out around Tuesday of next week, after everyone powwows and decides whether I make the cut for the second round interviews. I can honestly say that its been a real pleasure to make it even this far in the process–I’ve had a chance to meet some incredible people and learn a bunch about EA. I cant complain however it goes. But I’m keeping my fingers crossed!