Placement Fundae

November 7, 2019

Hi, I am Aditya Lakhe, a Y15 graduate who sat through the placement season. This blog is for some useful tips and tricks to ease the tension during placements.

Hey guys and gals!!! Welcome to the most hectic and stressful phase of your campus life-the much dreaded ‘placements’. In case you feel you are somewhat lacking in your preparations, stay calm and have faith in yourself. Many students are unclear about the kind of job they want. Talk to different alumni, seniors, and friends, who have had different job profiles to get insights into each domain. You should have a proper understanding of the skills required in each field and decide what suits you best accordingly. Keep honing your aptitude and coding skills through regular practice from various resources like, SPO preparation portal, etc. My friends and I used to practice guesstimates, case studies, and puzzles in groups to create a mock interview kind of an environment. It is certainly going to increase your self-confidence and be beneficial in the actual interview.

The most important part of your preparation is your resume. Your resume should be honest and to the point because a lot of time would be dedicated to verifying the points mentioned in your resume, especially in the HR round. You should be able to counter every possible argument that can be made about the points in your resume. While drafting your resume, get it verified by as many alumni, seniors, and friends as you can, from different backgrounds and experiences to get different perspectives. Always remember however much your resume sounds perfect to you, it is another’s perspective that is gonna decide your future. Once satisfied with the final draft of your resume, ask your peers and seniors to take a mock interview of yours based on that resume. Making a resume should be an iterative process, that ought to make perfect. Consult as many people possible and select the best fit for you:)

CGPA is undoubtedly one of the most crucial aspects of your resume as it is, in some sense, a quantitative measure of your academic life in college. But let me be clear, it is not the only selection criteria. Once you get an interview, if you are relevant for the job profile, no matter what your CGPA is, you will get selected if you have prepared well for the interview. If you can prove to the interviewer that you have the required skills and personality, the CGPA won’t matter much. So if you have a low CGPA just as I had, don't worry because there's little you can do about it now, instead try to focus on your other skills and prepare well for the interview. Some of the companies do have a strict CGPA criterion even after selection and might reject you even if you have the relevant skills, which happened with my friend, but this is the case with only a few companies. Most of the companies are just searching for a person most suitable for the job. That friend of mine, who got rejected due to his CGPA was placed the very next day in ICICI Lombard. CGPA might be a significant criterion during placement season, but once you get into the interview room, it is only your skills that matter the most. Don’t get stressed about your CGPA or any such stuff now. Prepare well for the interview because now that’s what gonna matter the most and have a blast on the final interview day!!!

One thing people having low CGPA usually bother about the most is getting the reason behind their low CGPA asked in the interview room. Don’t get nervous. Prepare well for this question from before and be confident while answering. In most cases it is the student's fault for the low CGPA, so be honest and let them know that it was your fault in the first place. Definitely tell them how passionate you are about the job and that this failure isn't going to stop you from achieving what you want to accomplish in your career or life in general. Also, it may be the case that you would have excelled in various other things on the campus like sports, leadership positions, cultural activities, etc. Let them know about these things, but never make it sound like an excuse for your low CGPA. Tell them that you have learned a lot from this one failure and it has made you realize the importance of consistency and dedication in life, thus making you more determined to work hard in your career.

Placement seasons are going to be a test for your patience well. Getting rejected in many interviews could also make you question yourself "Will I get placed or not?" but trust me if you stay patient and have faith in your skills, you will definitely get placed. During my placement days after getting rejected in a lot of interviews, I started losing faith. The question of getting placed started coming up in my mind and I sort of started giving up, but my friends kept supporting me. In one of my interviews, I was unable to answer the technical questions, which I knew was due to undue stress. I was so low in confidence that the thought of having to tell the interviewer every specific detail of the questions that he/she was asking made me not answer them. When I shared this experience with one of my friends, she helped me regain my faith and told me that I knew all these things. Her talking to me made me realize that I just had to inform them about my skills. It is not about answering the questions in a very detailed manner. Instead, it's about letting them know as much as you know about that specific job profile. What I have learned after so many interviews is that it is necessary to think out loud during the interviews and thus convey to the interviewer as much as you can. Think of it as a conversation about the relevant skills and not an interview. Also, quite importantly, stay with your friends during the placement season as they will prove to be a massive support system for you during this stressful period. Even after you are placed, help your friends as much as you can. Be patient, it’s just a matter of time.

Good luck to everyone for their future endeavors.Cheers!!

- Aditya Lakhe

edited by Ahana Biswas and Lakshya Rastogi