Considering the job title in the analytics industry, it is heavily reliant on professionals who excel in proper segregation of data and are good with Data handling tools, and present excellent solving skills. This industry is the hot spot, with over 6 million jobs in the US alone.
However, things are different for freshers when they enter this organization. A fresher needs their time to hone the necessary skills to advance in this domain. So, suppose you are a fresher who is planning to sit for an interview with business analysts. In that case, it is integral for you to know that entailing puzzles, logical reasoning problems, and questions are the essence of such interviews.
In the current scenario, getting your first break in Data Science takes a focused effort. Around 30% of Analytics companies (especially the top ones) evaluate candidates’ prowess at solving puzzles. It implies that you are logical, creative, and good with numbers.
Getting into the data science field is undoubtedly the best thing for your career as the sector is expected to reach up to $16 billion.
One of the crucial aspects of any Analytics interview process is problem solving or puzzles round. This has huge importance in evaluating a suitable candidate, particularly when it comes to logical thinking and structured problem-solving.
Hypothetically, there is no limit to the kind of puzzles an interviewer may throw at you, but just like any other skill, some practice and going through some popular interview puzzles can go a long way. Let us look at some of the top interview puzzles candidates have faced so far:
Q1. Prisoners and Hats
In this interview puzzle questions, there are 100 prisoners sentenced to death. The warden in the jail provides them with a chance to live if they can develop a strategy together.
As per the question, the execution prisoners will stand in a straight line and need to wear a Blue or Red colored hat. None of the prisoners knows what color hat they are wearing. The catch here is that prisoners can only speak “Red” or “Blue.”
Q2. Lazy people need to be smart.
Four glasses are placed on the corners of a plate, which can rotate about its center. Some of them are upright and some upside-down.
A blindfolded person needs to re-arrange the glasses, either all up or all down. The rearranging rules are: Any two glasses may be inspected in one turn, and Lazy Susan is rotated after each turn through a random angle.
Q3. Bag of Coins
This interview puzzle question starts with ten bags full of infinite coins. However, one bag is full of forgeries where nobody knows about the genuine coins. However, the genuine ones weigh 1 gram, and forgeries weigh 1.1 grams.
The catch is that you need to identify the forgery bag in minimum readings; you are provided with a digital weighing machine.
Q4. Blind games
This game takes you to a dark room where you have a table. The table has 50 coins, arranged in a sequence where ten coins face tails, and 40 coins have heads.
The task in these puzzles asked in the interview is to divide the provided set of coins into two groups of your choice. The puzzle in the question is that both groups need to have similar coins showing tails.
Q5. Sand Timers
This puzzle questions for an analyst’s interview provides you with two sand timers, carrying the ability to show 4 minutes and 7 minutes, respectively.
The puzzle here is that you need to use both the sand timers, either together or after one other or any given combination. The main task in this puzzle question is to measure a given time of 9 minutes with sand timers.
Q6. Chaos in the Bus
One of the trickiest puzzles for business analysts is the bus’s chaos with 100 labeled seats. Further, there are 100 occupants, marked from 1-100, standing in a queue.
The trick part is that people board on the bus in sequence from 1 to n. The rule in this question is that if ‘i’ boards the bus, he sees that ‘i’ is empty. We need to find the probability of the 100th seat if the 1st person sits randomly.
Q7. Chameleons go on a date.
One of the easiest puzzle questions for the interview; this question leaves you on an island covered with chameleons. The island is covered with 13 purple, 17 maroon, and 15 yellow chameleons.
The tricky part of this question is that when two chameleons of different colors meet, they change their colors to a new third color. The candidates need to find out the sequence of pairwise meetings, following which all chameleons have the same color?
Q8. Eggs and 100 floors Google Classic question
This is a classic example of puzzles for business analysts. There is a building of 100 floors in this question, where the question is further divided into two parts.
- Will the egg break when an egg drops from the Nth floor or above?
- Will the egg break if it’s dropped from any floor below?
You are provided with two eggs, and you need to find ‘N.’
Q9. Life and luck
In this interesting puzzle, gangsters have caught you and your friend and made you play a game to determine whether you live or die.
The game comprises a deck of cards where both friends choose one card. The friends are allowed to look at each other’s cards but not their own. Your chances of survival lie in correct-guessing the chosen card. You need to find out the probability of survival.
This puzzle question for the interview comprises three mislabeled jars, one of which carries apple in the first and orange in the second jar.
The third jar in this game comes with a mixture of apples and oranges.
While you can pick fruits in any quantity to precisely label each jar, you need to determine the minimum number of fruits that need to be picked up for jars’ proper labeling.
Q11. 25 horses 5 tracks Puzzle
In this interesting puzzle for business analysts, Mr. John has 25 horses, out of which he wants to select the fastest three horses.
However, the essence of the question is that he has only five-track, allowing only five horses to run in those tracks at a given time. Moreover, Mr. John doesn’t even have a stopwatch. You need to find out the minimum number of races required to find out the three fastest horses.
Q12. Faulty Battery Puzzle
In the faulty battery puzzle, the question comprises 8 batteries, out of which only 4 of them can perform properly.
Your work here is that you need to use these batteries for a flashlight that requires only two working batteries for its operations.
You need to find out the minimum number of battery pairs you need to test to guarantee that the flashlight is turned on.
Q13. The Man in the Elevator
In these puzzles for business analysts, a man lives on the tenth floor of a building where he uses the elevator to reach the ground floor to go for all his work.
When he returns, the man takes an elevator to the seventh floor and uses stairs to reach the tenth floor in his apartment.
However, on the events of a rainy day, he refuses to use elevators if there are other people on them. He uses stairs to go to the 10th floor directly. The trick is whether he hates walking, so why does he do it?
Q14. Cake cutting puzzle
One of the interesting interview puzzles in a business analyst interview, the cake cutting puzzle, requires you to cut a birthday cake.
The tricky part in this question is that you need to cut the cake into eight pieces in exactly three cuts. You need to determine the possible way to make this division happen.
Q16. Find the minimum number of aircraft.
One of the easiest interview puzzle questions is related to airplanes. The question begins with an airport that is based on an unlimited number of identical airplanes. Every airplane present in the airport carries a fuel capacity that allows the plane to fly exactly 1/2 way around the world, given the world is a circle.
Moreover, the planes in these questions can refuel in flight without losing speed or spillage of fuel. With the island being the only source of power, you need to find the fewest aircraft necessary to get one plane around the world.
Q17. Red and Blue balls in a bags puzzle
One of the most interesting interview puzzles for aspirants of data analysis, this question comprises 2 balls that need to be pulled out sequentially.
The bag carries 20 blue and 13 red balls. Here every blue ball being replaced by a red ball is used. The question is that no balls are returned to the bag, and their numbers keep reducing. You need to find the color of the last ball left in the bag.
Q18. Weighing balls
This question leaves you with 12 balls, the weight of which is the same except one. The unique ball can either have a weight lower or higher than the normal.
You have a balance scale as a reliable tool. Here you need to find which is the odd one out with three weightings.
Q19. One bulb with 3 switches puzzle
This unique puzzle question for an interview of a data analyst leaves you with three switches in a room. Every switch is assigned for a bulb in the next room.
While you can’t see whether the bulb is on or off until you leave the room, you need to calculate the minimum number of times that you need to get inside a room to identify the exact switch for the exact bulb.
Q20. Burning ropes to measure time.
An interesting warm-up question is common in the exams; this question requires you to measure time with the help of a rope that burns at the rate of one rope per hour.
The chances are that this rope might also burn haphazardly. With the help of rope and the lighter, you need to calculate a period of exactly 30 minutes.
Q21. Bias and Unbiased
One of the easiest interview puzzles that you will come across in an analytics exam; this question requires you to calculate the probability of winning each player.
Player 1 wins when the sequence of tosses HTH appears, and Player 2 wins with a THT.
Q22. Three hat colors Microsoft Puzzle
These interview puzzle questions tackle a group of three people where every player walks into a room. On the way in, a fair coin is tossed, deciding that player’s hat color that can be red or blue.
Each player is allowed to see the other two players’ hat color but cannot see their hat color. The sequence follows as: “I have a red hat,” “I had a blue hat,” or “I pass.”
The responses are recorded but will only be shared after every player has recorded their response. We need to find a strategy to maximize the team’s expected chance of winning.
Q23. Inverted playing card puzzle
In this question, Mr. Puzzle randomly inverted 15 cards out of 52 cards and shuffled them. Further, he asks Mr. Fry to divide the card into two piles.
While Mr. Fry wasn’t sure of dividing them into an equal pile, he still divided the cards into two equal piles. You need to find out Mr. Fry’s strategy.
Q24. Six pirates and Gold Coin distribution puzzle
This famous puzzle question for the interview includes six pirates, but they fight over one gold coin.
After killing every crew member, they decided to arrange their priority in order:
1. Their lives
2. Getting money
3. Seeing other pirates die.
You need to choose two outcomes, where the captain gets the same money, and they don’t get killed.
Q25. The Red wedding
One of the trickiest puzzle questions for the interview; this question consists of a king with 1000 bottles of wine in his cellar. A neighbor queen sends a servant to poison the wine and kill the king.
However, the king’s guards catch the servant before he could poison the bottles. However, the trick here is that, even if diluted 100,000 times, the poison would still kill the king and takes one month to affect.
The king needed just ten prisoners to find that one bottle and still have 999 bottles for his wedding in 5 weeks. How is it possible?
Listed above were some of the trickiest interview questions. However, you can find more at:
With over 64% satisfaction with their profession, data analyst jobs are soaring new heights. However, the tricky part with these exams is the puzzle questions that can be a straining task for the applicants.
The search for logical puzzles for interviews has been more than ever. However, we believe that it is not only the questions you should be seeing but change a few ways around your preparation. Suggested below are some tips to solve interview puzzles:
- Leverage your experience in solving case studies: Being a fresher at a job can be straining, but this is where your expertise in basic algorithms comes into practice. Therefore, be it experienced/fresher, you need to brush up your basics and business to analyze data to get to the solution.
- Ace the desired technical knowledge required: Having a hold over basic tools like Excel, SQL, R, or Python (or your data analytics job description demands) is necessary. You must understand the working of these tools before attending a data analytics interview.
- Study the Basics of Statistical Concepts: It is nothing new in the business analyst interview. While the question might look tricky, the solution to the same might be straightforward and be related to elementary level statistical concepts. Therefore, keep an eye!
- Please read about the given organization: Yes, it is crucial to have basic knowledge about the organization where you opted for an interview. This puts up a good impression of you in front of the interviewers, increasing your chances.
Opting for a Business Analyst career is certainly the best thing to do in the present time frame. In a time where the amount of digital information is equal to the stars in the universe, it is certainly the profession to be in.
Therefore, if you are a fresher looking for a suitable profession, we bet you that data science is the place to be. With less than 0.5% of all data created is ever analyzed and used, this sector has a demand that can never be met.
Moreover, when you have a logical puzzle for an interview with an answer, things become quite easy for you.
You may also like to read: What Does a Business Analyst Do? Responsibilities, Roles & Salary