The campus recruitment procedure has become one of the most popular avenues to recruit people into companies. Companies hire engineering graduates into roles that range from software application development, delivery roles, software/ hardware testing, research and development, application maintenance network security and support etc.
Management graduates are hired for roles in business development, IT consulting, business analysis, customer relationship management, HR roles, sales, marketing, finance etc.
Before a student braces himself to face the strenuous task of appearing for the campus selection procedure, there are a few points that are to be kept in mind. They are
The various stages that are involved in a typical campus recruitment program are as follows-
The pre-placement talk is a presentation that is given by the recruiting company’s HR and recruiting team. Various aspects of the company such as its profile, history, milestone achievements, organizational goals, its vision, mission, the job profile, products, services, product lines, customers, locations, branches, organizational chart, senior management etc. The role of the job offered as well as its description along with the selection criteria, CTC, designation etc. are also explained in detail. Generally the pre-placement talk is presented by a senior member of the delivery or the HR team. The general format of the selection process remains the same across companies that hire campus graduates. Minor variation may be present. Selection happens in the following stages.
Aptitude test is conducted to evaluate how effectively a student could respond to a task or a situation and their communication skills. In short, this area tests a candidate’s problem solving ability. The areas that are normally tested are numerical or quantitative ability, logical reasoning, verbal ability and data sufficiency.
Numerical ability entails multiple choice questions that are from the topics mostly covered in high school along with some advanced topics. The various topics from which questions may be asked are Number theory, Averages, Ratio and proportion, Time and Distance, Percentages, mixtures and allegation, permutations, combinations, probability etc. The purpose of this test is to assess the problem solving ability of a candidate under constraints in time. This area can be effectively countered if a student prepares sufficiently beforehand.
This area tests the communication skills, reading ability and also the grammatical knowledge of a candidate. The type of questions that may be asked in verbal ability include grammar based questions (sentence correction/ error identification), vocabulary based questions (para jumbles, synonyms, antonyms, fill in the blanks, cloze passages), idioms and phrases, reading comprehension and occasionally descriptive writing (essays, formal/informal letters, analytical/ issue writing section). It is mandatory for a candidate to have basic rules of English in place before he or she appears for the campus placement process.
This section tests the logical reasoning and the analytical ability of a candidate. The questions are generally given in the form of puzzles and a set of questions follow the puzzle. It is required by a candidate to rationally approach the puzzle by interpreting the logic. Verbal based reasoning questions such as cause and effect, assertion and reasons may also be asked.
Data is presented in various forms such as bar graphs, pie charts and data should be interpreted accordingly. In data sufficiency, a problem is presented with some data and a candidate has to determine if the given amount of data is sufficient for problem solving. The aptitude round cannot be underestimated because it is a process of eliminating candidates who do not have enough problem solving abilities, reasoning skills or acceptable levels of communication. While a few companies may lay more emphasis on communication and numerical abilities, a few others may stress upon analytical abilities. Regardless of how well a candidate fares academically, he or she should prepare sufficiently for the aptitude test as this stage is an inevitable phase of any campus selection process.
Those selected in the aptitude test will be called for group discussion. Group discussion is a process of selection rather than a process of elimination. The recruiting team will evaluate certain personality traits like confidence, communicating with the team, participation, ability to present one’s views in a clear and concise manner, interpersonal skills, leadership skills etc. These are the traits that the employers would want to see in their potential employees. The main intention of group discussion is to assess the behavior of a candidate in a group. In the GD round, there are usually a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 10 candidates. The topic of the discussion is normally related to current topics, hypothetical situations, problematic situations, abstract topics etc. Students who are confident, have a clear thought process and are able to articulate their thoughts lead the group discussion. Hence, students need to be positive, confident and dynamic in their attitude in this round. They should also develop effective listening skills that would enable them to listen and understand others perspective. Students are advised to keep abreast of current affairs and are expected to familiarize themselves with the popular topics in news. They are advised to form small groups and discuss various topics which would augment their efforts to successfully participate in the group discussions.
The pre final round of the selection process is the technical interview. A student appearing for the technical round should be thorough with the fundamental aspects of his subject. While a student may not be expected to know the entire subject inside out, he or she is expected to be proficient in the basic aspects of the subject and able to present the subject in a well formatted manner to his interviewers. It would greatly benefit the students if they would have completed their projects on their own rather than plagiarizing (copying) from other sources. This would exhibit the ingenuity of a student and increase his chances of clearing the technical round.
The HR interview is more of a two way process. A student is assessed for his communication, attitude, confidence, flexibility, enthusiasm, behavioral skills etc. The company HR will market their company through the HR round. A student should be confident, but not over confident in the HR round. He or she should be honest and polite in answering the questions and also ask questions to the company HR regarding basic policies, procedures and of course, the CTC. Many a time it is quite common for technically strong candidates to fail to get through the HR round. This may happen if the candidate has poor presentation skills, overconfident, rude or extremely timid in his or her attitude. Self-grooming is very important for a candidate to clear this round of the campus selection. The recruitment process weighs heavily on the attitude of a candidate. A candidate should exhibit positive thinking, learnability, proper body language, confidence, clarity of thought, interpersonal skills, future goals etc. This segment has about 75% weightage. Academic knowledge has a weightage of about 10%. This test the student’s fundamental knowledge of the core subjects in his or her branch and also its practical use. Communication skills carry a weightage of about 10%. Preparing a good resume is equally important while bracing for the campus selection process. The resume is the first impression a recruiter about the candidate. The resume should be prepared in such a way that it reflects a candidate’s capabilities, his strengths, achievements and areas of interests. Hence sufficient efforts should go into preparing a good resume. Knowledge about current affairs and extra-curricular activities carry about 5% weightage. These areas should also be concentrated upon to increase the chances of making it through the campus interviews. Thus, a thorough and systematic preparation in each of the areas mentioned above would go a long way in ensuring that a candidate gets through the right company.