While selecting an Engineering College, students tend to look for those colleges, which have good Campus Placement records. Finding a good job after graduation has become very difficult these days. Especially engineering graduates are the worst affected ones. With the increase in the number of engineering colleges, the number of graduates passing out each year has also increased. This has resulted in over saturation of the job market. During such times, campus placement is like a boon for engineering students. Using campus interview, bright students may land a decent job in well known Companies right after completing the course! In this article, you will be reading about campus interview tips. Along with the tips, a list of frequently asked questions (in campus interviews) and their answers have also been provided.
Before going to the main point- tips and frequently asked campus interview questions, let us go through some facts and figures related to engineering graduates in India and employment.
Article Overview and Contents
- Engineering graduates in India, skills and employment
- Important documents to carry
- Campus interview tips
- Frequently asked questions and answers
- Question- Tell us about yourself
- Question- Why should we employ you?
- Question- Tell us more about your project work
- Question- Have you got offers from other Companies?
- Question- Expected salary?
- Question- Your opinion about the Company?
- Question- Personal questions; Related to family etc
- Question- Your turn to ask questions
Engineering graduates in India, skills and employment
As of now, there are more than 4 lakh Engineering graduates coming out of private and Government Engineering colleges across India. Not all of them are employable though! In the eye of a layman, these 4 lakh plus graduates are Degree holders and are skilled in the area of their specialization (trade). But in the eye of an employee/Company, many of them are not even employable!
According to studies and surveys, it has become evident that 80% of Indian engineering graduates have poor technical skills and soft skills. They also lack very important skills such as- English proficiency and communication skills, learning behaviour and oral presentation.
Employees want graduates who have the skills that are mentioned above. What they need is a combination of technical skills and soft skills, in the graduate. Students must start working on their soft skills right from the start of engineering education.
Engineering students who are all set to take part in campus placement and interview must keep this fact in mind and prepare accordingly. You will be reading about these skills and tips to improve & develop them.
Important documents to carry
Before you are going to face campus interview, make sure that you have all the necessary certificates and documents ready. Usually the recruiters will notify well ahead about the documents that you have to carry. Arrange them well and don’t forget to carry them to the interview. The following documents and certificates can be said to be important ones-
- Resume (must be well crafted, up to date and appealing)
- Project information documents (must be appealing and well presented)
- Recommendation letter from faculty members (optional)
Make sure that the Resume is well composed. If necessary, you may take professional help and get the task done. Recommendation letters are not strictly important. But possessing them will help you earn extra ‘points’!
Campus interview tips
1 Brush up your technical knowledge
Technical questions related to your trade will be asked during the interview. Interviewers will check whether you know the basics right. They will gauge your understanding of fundamental concepts related to your trade. Prepare accordingly. Focus on basics and fundamental concepts.
Application of the knowledge is also an important thing that interviewers will watch out for. How well you are able to apply your knowledge to tackle real life problems is something that they will observe. Be prepared for situation based questions. Usually, if you have your basics clear, you won’t have much problem facing such questions. Quick thinking will help you negotiate such questions easily.
2 Boost communication skills
Many engineering graduates passing out of colleges each year have poor communication skills. I mentioned earlier about how employers are looking for graduates having good soft skills. Good colleges have programs dedicated towards polishing soft skills of its students. If a student has been working on his/her communication skills right from the start of engineering education, he/she won’t have much problems in this department.
Some good ways to improve your communication skills and English proficiency are- reading newspapers and other English magazines, taking part in group discussions, speaking with classmates in English etc. Students may also go for coaching programs and improve their communication skills and English proficiency!
3 Be up to date; Don’t just focus on syllabus
Try to have knowledge about the recent developments taking place in the Industry/trade that you are studying. For example, if you are an IT engineering student, having knowledge about recent developments (like new outsourcing trends, emergence of new Asian markets etc) taking place in Indian IT industry will help you! The same thing is applicable to students from other disciplines.
Employers value candidates who have an open mind, who are constantly in touch with latest updates and developments taking place in their relevant field. And they will gauge this trait in a candidate during the interview! In short, keep the learning process a continuous one. Don’t just focus on syllabus alone. Keep in touch with real time advancements taking place in your field!
4 GK & Current Affairs
Though GK and current affairs are not very important, you should not ignore them altogether! Adequate attention must be given to current affairs in particular. Recent reports have suggested that interviewers have been asking off topic questions, related to current affairs, during campus interviews.
5 Be confident
Once you enter the interview hall, be confident. Don’t let nervousness and fear get the better of you! The first 5 minutes of the interview is what matters the most. It will create an impression about you on the interviewers. Don’t panic or stutter during this time. Be calm and composed. Interviewers will observe your mood, posture, hand movements, and body language. Be in a relaxed and confident mood, place your hands on your lap, sit with a straight posture and have a smile on your face. Show enthusiasm. While speaking, choose your words carefully. Keep things simple. Be honest with your answers.
Before answering questions, take a deep breath and then proceed. If you don’t know answer of a particular question, pass it. It is better to pass rather than stuttering, guessing and stammering in such a situation.
6 Dressing tips
Dressing, to an extent, creates an impression on the interviewers. Dress well and professionally. It must create an impression. Multi colored, bright colored and glistening dresses must be avoided. Select solid light colored dresses. Accessories like tie, socks, suit etc must be in accordance with the color code.
Girls should avoid excess of makeup and cosmetics and ornaments. Be plain and simple. Avoid high heeled shoes or footwear. Male students must trim and style their hair well. Girls must pin long hair appropriately. If you sweat too much under pressure, use a deodorant before the interview.
7 General tips
Don’t consume too much spicy and heavy food just before the interview. Have a breakfast consisting of light food and fruits.
Reach the venue of interview early. Rushing things and arriving on the last minute will only make things worse!
8 Know stages involved in campus placement
Campus selection process commonly involves the following stages-
- Written test (initial screening test, technical in nature)- Brushing up your technical knowledge (1st tip) will help you perform well in this stage.
- Group discussion stage- Having good communication skills, leadership skills, quick thinking and confidence will help you perform well in this stage. This is the best place to show that you are a team player and that you interact well with others in the group.
- Technical interview- Brushing up your technical knowledge (1st tip) will help you perform well in this stage. Since this is an interview, you won’t be having much time to solve mathematical type questions asked by the panel. Having good analytical skills and quick thinking will help you do well in such a situation.
- Personal/HR interview- Confidence, communication skills and calmness will help you perform well in this stage.
Knowing the placement procedure stages inside out will give you an edge. It will help you prepare thoroughly for the individual stages. Preparing well will naturally boost your confidence level. You may also make use of the below mentioned tip to further gain an advantage-
9 Seek guidance from Faculty and Seniors
Faculty members generally know interview habits and rituals followed by recruiters. Sitting down with faculty members and obtaining ‘details’ about the placement process will help you out. Similarly, your seniors (they must be out of College and working somewhere) could also be of help. Ring them up and ask about their personal experience. Ask them how they faced the interview panel. You may also ask details about the nature of questions they faced during the entire campus interview process.
Frequently asked questions and answers
Technical questions asked during an interview may vary. It depends on the interview panel. But some questions are asked in almost all interviews. Those questions fall under the FAQ category. Below listed are some such frequently asked questions. Appropriate answers have also been provided-
Question- Tell us about yourself
Don’t give too lengthy reply. Tell important details like- name, place of birth, educational institutions attended, your areas of interest, project work etc.
Question- Why should we employ you?
Point out your strong academic performance (I hope you got that!) and convince them that you can bring that kind of performance to the work environment also. You may also give insights to the work you did on your industrial visit and the way you adapted to the work culture and environment there.
Point out good qualities you have, such as- leadership skills, team spirit, commitment, planning skills, technical knowledge, ability to adapt etc.
Question- Tell us more about your project work
Prepare for this question well in advance and draft an answer. Give technical details about your project. Describe the level of team work involved in it. Also give details about inputs received from Faculty members. Describe how your project is applicable in day to day life.
Question- Have you got offers from other Companies?
Honesty is the best policy, when it comes to this question. Answer yes or no. Don’t provide details unless they ask for it.
Question- Expected salary?
Be prepared for this question well in advance. You must be aware of the average pay band for freshers, when it comes to that particular Company. Quote a rate around that region. If they say that it is too much, remind them of the qualities that you possess and assure them that you will reward them well with your productivity for every penny that they will spend on you.
Question- Your opinion about the Company?
Talk about the products and how they influence day to day lives of people from around the World.
Question- Personal questions; Related to family etc
The interview panel may also ask personal questions and questions related to your family background, place of birth etc. Just give honest answer to each question.
Question- Your turn to ask questions
In the end, before wrapping up the interview, the panel may give you an opportunity to ask them questions. You may ask questions related to the Company’s office locations, training programs, work culture, management style, promotions, cultural activities etc.
Your academic performance, project work, etiquette and interview performance will play a huge role, when it comes to final selection after the campus interview. Some traits, which will come handy are- quick thinking, confidence and enthusiasm. Engineering students may make use of the tips and facts mentioned above and achieve success in campus placement.