If you’re interviewing for a business strategy or operations role at Uber, there is a good chance that you’ll receive at least one case interview or case study interview.
To land a job offer at Uber for these roles, you’ll need to nail every single one of your case interviews. While Uber case interviews may seem challenging and daunting, they can be mastered with proper preparation.
If you have an upcoming case interview with Uber, we have you covered. In this comprehensive Uber case interview guide, we’ll cover:
- The seven steps to ace any Uber case interview
- Six Uber case interview tips
- How to ace the Uber written case interview or case study
- Resources to prepare for your Uber case interview
The Seven Steps to Ace any Uber Case Interview
A case interview is a special type of interview that is typically used by consulting firms. However, business strategy and operations groups at companies are increasingly using case interviews in their assessment process since they employ so many former consultants.
Case interviews are 20- to 30-minute exercises in which you are placed in a hypothetical business situation and are asked to find a solution or make a recommendation.
First, you’ll create a framework that shows the approach you would take to solve the case. Then, you’ll collaborate with the interviewer, answering a mix of quantitative and qualitative questions that will give you the information and data needed to develop an answer. Finally, you’ll deliver your recommendation at the end of the case.
Uber case interviews are generally candidate-led. This means that you will be expected to lead the direction of the case. You’ll be responsible for asking the right questions, probing for data, and proposing each next step.
Follow these seven steps to solve any Uber case interview or case study.
1. Understand the case background information
The case interview will start with the interviewer explaining the case background information. Make sure that you are taking notes while the interviewer is speaking. You’ll want to focus specifically on understanding the context, the company, and the objective of the case.
The most important part of the case interview is to make sure you understand the business issue and objective of the case. Addressing the wrong business problem is the quickest way to fail a case interview.
2. Ask clarifying questions
Once the interviewer has finished giving you the case information, you’ll have an opportunity to ask questions.
While you can ask any question that you want, try to prioritize asking questions that help you better understand the situation and problem. You want to avoid asking questions that are too specific or not relevant to understanding the case situation.
Most candidates ask between one to three questions. You’ll be able to ask more questions later in the case interview if you need to.
3. Summarize the information and verify the objective
Once you have finished asking your immediate questions, summarize all of the major case information and verify that you understand the objective correctly.
In this step, many candidates make the mistake of stating every fact of the case verbatim. Instead, you should summarize the case concisely and clearly in your own words. This demonstrates that you can synthesize information effectively.
4. Develop a framework
The next step is to structure a framework to help guide you through the case.
A case interview framework is a tool that helps you structure and break down a complex problem into simpler, smaller components. Think of a framework as brainstorming different ideas and organizing them into different categories.
To develop a framework, ask yourself what are the three to four major questions that you need to answer in order to make a confident recommendation?
Many candidates make the mistake of using memorized frameworks and applying them to their case interviews. Interviewers can tell when you are using a memorized framework because not all of the elements of the framework will be relevant to the case.
Using a memorized framework reflects poorly on your capabilities because it shows that you cannot think critically for yourself. Therefore, practice creating unique and tailored frameworks for each case that you get.
To learn more on how to create outstanding frameworks, check out our comprehensive case interview framework guide.
When creating your framework, it is acceptable to ask the interviewer for a few minutes of silence to collect your thoughts. Afterwards, present your framework to the interviewer.
5. Kick off the case
Once you have finished presenting your framework, the interviewer may agree with your approach or may provide some feedback or suggestions. Afterwards, it is time to start solving the case.
How the case investigation will start depends on whether your case is a candidate-led or interviewer-led case. Most cases are candidate-led.
Candidate-led case: In this type of case, you will be expected to drive the direction of the case. You will be suggesting what areas to explore, what analyses to do, and what the next step should be. So, pick an area of your framework to start analyzing. There is no right or wrong area to pick as long as it is relevant to solving the case.
Interviewer-led case: In this type of case, the interviewer will be leading the direction of the case. They will be asking you specific questions that you will answer. After each question, they’ll direct you to the next question. For interviewer-led cases, the interviewer will typically kick off the case by asking you a question after you finish presenting your framework.
6. Answer quantitative and qualitative questions
The majority of the interview will be spent answering a mix of quantitative and qualitative questions.
Quantitative questions may have you estimate the size of a particular market, perform some calculations to determine profitability, or interpret various charts and graphs.
When solving quantitative problems, make sure that you walk the interviewer through your approach before you begin doing any math. When performing calculations, make sure to talk through your steps out loud so that it is easy for the interviewer to follow your work.
Qualitative questions may ask you to brainstorm potential ideas or ask for your judgment on an open-ended business question. When answering these questions, try to structure your answer as much as possible.
After answering each question, make sure that you take your answer and connect it back to the overall case objective. How does your answer help you solve the case? How does your answer impact your potential recommendation?
7. Deliver a recommendation
At the end of the case, the interviewer will ask you to prepare an overall recommendation. It is acceptable to ask the interviewer for a minute to look through your notes before you give your recommendation.
Based on the quantitative and qualitative questions you have answered, what recommendation do they collectively support?
Structure your recommendation in the following way:
- State your recommendation
- Provide the two to three reasons that support your recommendation
- Propose next steps that you would take if you had more time
After you deliver your recommendation, the interviewer will conclude the case interview. If the case interview was based on a real life project, the interviewer may explain what actually happened in the case.
Don’t worry if your recommendation does not match what actually happened during the project. For case interviews, you are not assessed on your answer, but on your process.
Six Uber Case Interview Tips
Follow these six tips to make the most of your Uber case interview preparation.
Tip #1: Start preparing early
Mastering case interviews takes time. Many of the skills and techniques needed to solve case interviews can’t be learned in just a day or in a week. Ideally, start preparing for your case interviews at least a month or two in advance to give yourself enough time to learn and practice.
Tip #2: Practice with a case partner
Practicing case interviews with a partner is the best way to simulate a real case interview. There are many aspects of case interviews that you won’t be able to work on if you are doing mock cases by yourself. Casing with a partner lets you practice your communication, presentation, and collaboration skills.
Tip #3: Keep a list of feedback from each case
You should keep a journal or log of all of the different pieces of feedback you get from your case interview partner during practice. This way, you’ll be able to identify trends and prioritize what improvement areas to focus on. For example, if you consistently receive feedback in each practice case that you need to structure your answers, that should be your top area to focus on.
Tip #4: Focus on improving one thing at a time
After doing some practice case interviews, you’ll likely have a long list of feedback and improvement areas. Try to focus on improving one thing at a time. Before each practice case, decide on the one thing that you really want to focus on and nail. This will be much more effective than trying to improve everything at once.
Tip #5: Use a hypothesis-driven approach
During the case interview, you should have a hypothesis of what the answer to the case is. A hypothesis is simply an educated guess based on the knowledge that you have. As you analyze data and gather more information, make sure to be constantly changing and refining your hypothesis.
There are two benefits to using a hypothesis to drive the direction of the case. One, it ensures that you are focusing on relevant areas that will help you solve or answer the case. Two, by the time the interviewer asks you for a recommendation, you will already have a refined hypothesis on what the answer or solution to the case should be.
Tip #6: Be 80/20
You have limited time during a case interview to solve the case. Therefore, you won’t be able to cover all of the different areas in your framework and get answers to every single question that you have. Therefore, focus on the most important issues and use the 80/20 principle.
The 80/20 principle states that 80% of the outcome comes from 20% of your effort. During a case interview, focus on the most important questions or areas that will have the biggest impact or effect on developing your answer or recommendation.
How to Ace the Uber Written Case Interview or Case Study
In addition to traditional case interviews, Uber may also give candidates a written case interview with a presentation component during the final round of interviews. Here’s how the Uber written case interview works:
- In advance of your final round interviews, you’ll be given a packet of information that will help you answer a business question or problem that Uber is facing
- You’ll have roughly a week to read the information, analyze the data, and create presentation slides
- During your interview, you’ll be given roughly 30 minutes to present your slides
- Following your presentation, your interviewers will ask follow-up questions based on your methodology and recommendation.
Follow the steps below to perform well on the Uber written case interview and presentation.
1. Understand the business problem and objective
The first step in completing a written case interview is to understand what the objective is. What is the primary business question you are trying to answer with the data and information provided?
2. Read the list of major questions
Your written case interview should provide you with a list of key questions that you will be expected to address or answer. Read through these questions first since these will be the questions that you will want to prioritize.
3. Skim the materials
Next, flip through the information packet that is provided to see what information is available. Identify what data you have and what data you do not have.
The goal in this step is not to read and analyze everything. That would take too much time. Instead, by seeing what information exists, you will be able to better prioritize what you spend your time reading and analyzing.
4. Create a framework
Before you begin reading and analyzing the information in the slides in more detail, you should create a basic framework to help guide your analysis. The list of key questions will help set the foundation of your framework.
5. Read and analyze the material
Afterwards, read and analyze the information that is relevant to each area of your framework. As you begin answering questions and drawing insights, make sure to write a one or two sentence summary. This will make it easier to decide on a recommendation later.
6. Decide on a recommendation
Review the list of key takeaways that you have summarized from answering all of the major questions in your framework. Decide on what recommendation these findings collectively support.
Remember that there is typically no right or wrong recommendation. As long as your recommendation is supported by data and evidence, you will be in great shape.
7. Create your slides
Once you have a recommendation, it is time to start creating slides. Write your executive summary first and make sure that it tells a clear and logical story that leads to your ultimate recommendation.
Then, write the headlines for your slides. Make sure the headlines summarize the key point of each slide. If the interviewer were to only read the headlines of your slides, they should be able to understand your entire presentation.
8. Prepare for potential questions
If you have any time remaining, brainstorm potential questions the interviewer may ask you during your presentation. They may want to know how you performed your analysis or how you reached your conclusions.
Preparing for these potential questions will help your presentation go much more smoothly. You will also feel much more confident while presenting.
Resources to Prepare for Your Uber Case Interview
If you’re looking for the best way to learn and practice case interviews or case study interviews to land a job at Uber, give our one week case interview course a try. The material in the course has helped 6,000+ students land offers at top-tier consulting firms such as McKinsey, BCG, and Bain, so it’ll be more than enough for your Uber case interview.
If you are considering alternative resources to use, below are the two books we recommend. They are available in digital or paperback format on Amazon.
- Hacking the Case Interview: Learn exactly what to do and what to say in every step of the case interview. This is the perfect book for beginners that are looking to learn the basics of case interviews quickly.
- The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook: Hone your case interview skills through 65+ problems tailored towards each type of question asked in case interviews and 15 full-length cases based on real McKinsey, BCG, and Bain interviews. This book is great for intermediates.