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Project managment case on interview: Contingency resolution
I am getting ready for an interview for the role of project manager and came across an interesting case. How would you approach this case in an interview?

Your team supports Google's internal service responsible for UGC moderation. The team consists of 3 Devs: one is on vacation, one works from 9:00 to 19:00, the third works from 11:00 to 20:00. On Friday from 18:30 to 19:00 managers of five other services who use your moderation and markup service reach out to you. They complain that nothing is working and needs to be fixed urgently:

Google chat moderation
Moderation of ads in Google Ads
Moderation of user reviews of movies in Video
Moderation of custom organization reviews on Maps
Classification of user trip complaints
Let's assume it takes a developer at least 30 min to solve each problem. What would you do in this situation?

I guess we need to prioritize tasks first (tasks related to chatting on the roads have a higher priority at this time of day) and ask the second dev to stay late. But I have no idea why we are given information about the 3rd employee being on leave.
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Not all developers may be capable of all tasks, so you must prioritize the tasks (including their existing assigned tasks), but also align the tasks to capable employees.

Potentially, some tasks may not be completed until the 3rd employee returns, or you may need to redistribute the tasks of the other 2 employees to both cover the task assigned to the employee on vacation, in addition to assigning newly required fixes.
My recommendation is: answer according what you will do in this situation. And mainly, try to get information about the company that will interview you, mainly its way of working and behave. What works in a company will not work in other company.
Nadezhda,

sometimes in tests or scenarios there is extra information without relevance. Like the guy on vacation.

From the statement of 'nothing is working' I sense a mood on the side of the managers that may also impact a rational judgement of urgency. So, what is your judgement which of the issues are urgent and which could be solved next Monday?

Thomas
There are a number of things not being said here so you have to develop and list the constraints - policy on overtime, availability of staff after hours, weekend work, staff capability, your capability to pitch in, task priorities.

Once you establish the constrains you develop your options.

Note, if you develop your options before establishing the constraints it makes it too easy to shoot you down. If you were to choose overtime you may be told that 1) staff can't be available, or 2) corporate policy precludes it. If you were to choose calling in vacationer you may be told they just had a baby. If you don't prioritize you may be told that some complaints are long-standing.

1) establish the constraints
2) develop your options
3) pick the most effective option that respects the constraints.

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