An insight into the experience of Richa Sharma who got placed in Barclays……
Please tell about the companies you appeared for and the placement process for the companies.
I applied to all major companies that came for recruitment till September as that was when Barclays came for the first time to NSIT. The procedure for all companies offering a technical profile is almost the same. They have a written test followed by rounds of technical interviews. The firms offering a techno-functional profile or a completely consulting profile focus more on analytical and interpersonal skills. Their selection process consists of case studies, group discussions, guess estimations and communication skills. Since Barclays was coming for recruitment to NSIT for the first time, we had very little idea about the process. They started with a written test on CAT pattern. What followed was personal assessment which was most grilling as it went for the entire day. We started with a case study followed by team group discussions where each member of the team presented a different case and led the course of discussion. This was followed by a technical interview round and lastly an HR round.
What preparations do you advice for various stages of placements?
To be honest it’s really not about a job choosing you, it’s more about you choosing one. Unfortunately we all look at placements from point of view of packages. My advice to everyone would be to analyze his or her aptitude first because once you are actually on board; it’s your flair for the work that takes you places and not the CTC of the company that inspires you. So Google yourself for the right answer first. And once you know the direction to follow, don't leave any stone unturned. It’s always helpful to develop an analytical approach towards problem solving. So, work out the solutions logically, be it a puzzle or a data structure question. Very often we tend to ignore HR interview round, which is a major mistake. So, never stay too casual with the HR round.
How much importance should be associated with academics? Are they the only deciding pointer?
Honestly speaking, when it comes to placements, academics are very important. Some companies have a real high cut off. And it becomes a tough fight if you are unable to clear those. Though, they are not that big a deciding factor, but it’s harmful if you have the skills and aptitude but you could not sit for the process as you were not eligible. My advice would be to keep your percentage above 75% as this makes you eligible for every company. But if you are on the other side of the river, don't be disheartened. Just prepare an answer to reason out, as to why your percentage is low. But then prove your mettle unquestionably.
What all internships and projects did you do in four years at NSIT? Could you elaborate on the kind of work undertaken in them. Also please mention how you got the internship.
I was a little reluctant to go for industrial internships and wanted to have a different experience. So I opted for only one intern and that too for an NGO named LEU Foundation. It’s an organization that works towards elementary education for underprivileged students
Working with LEU foundation has been an invigorating experience. Apart from dealing with kids, the most amazing feature was the tremendous flexibility offered to us as interns. We were assigned the job of monitoring the learning process of the students .And along came a lot more in the offering. When you are involved with kids, their disarming charm and innocence lures you in developing a bond with them and it just happens. The sparkle in their eyes when they get something new is all the more enigmatic. Initially the task at hand did seem easier but when you get to implementation, some new surprises are bound to make their way. And the first one i encountered was –the communication trouble. Their Bengali and my Hindi just didn’t seem to make a bridge. But as they say that ‘sometimes you don’t need spoken words to communicate, a simple understanding is all that is required’. True. Gradually, i succeeded in getting them to learn simple Hindi sentences and i, too, managed to pick up some Bengali.
Honestly, i was completely swayed away by the grasping power of some students. They had a remarkable learning ability fused with great pick up. Every child is unique in his or her own way. We just need to bring out the best in them. The only difficulty with kids is that they don’t understand the importance of learning. They are like potter’s clay. You’ve to mould them into proper shape and with proper tools. In the endeavor to blend the learning process with empowerment, team LEU has geared up for providing an environment that is conducive for growth and development. I am grateful to our ever assiduous team of seniors for being the guiding light.
The culture at LEU is to impart education with learning. We aim to uplift the underprivileged through empowerment. And the way we do it is by not providing them with crutches but by making them learn to walk.
And as far as the selection procedure is concerned, the organization always welcomes volunteers with open arms. Visit http://www.leufoundation.org/ for details on volunteer requirements and then you can drop in your resume to the organization for consideration. But the only thing i would advise you for is just be sure of why you are doing it. Take up the task only if you really want to do it and believe me you will be much more than satisfied at the end.
How would you rate the interaction between seniors and juniors in NSIT? Would you like to impart any advice for the freshers and the juniors?
The four years at NSIT are more fun filled if you know not only your classmates but also those who are your seniors and juniors for they make your four years complete. Its wise to learn from your own experiences but true wisdom lies in learning from experiences of others. So shed those inhibitions and make friends be it a senior or a junior. It’s important to work but it’s more important to work smart. And interaction with people is what infuses this sense. Never be shy of asking for help if you need it. It’s all about learning. And one learns best from people. So get over those boundaries of seniors and juniors.
Enlighten me about your best memory in NSIT?
Every moment spent in NSIT is a special memory. The journey through all these four years has infinite moments where we have laughed together, fought with each other and then again made up so that we don't miss out on those countless moments of joy and happiness. The four years spent here give you a life to live. You make friends for a lifetime and this is the best gift one ever gets. So cherish every moment you live here for its worth it. Exploit every opportunity that comes your way. Love it; feel it, live it is all i would tell you.
Software Developer, Barclays
IT, Class of 2011, NSIT