Essential Placement Interview Tips For College Students

9 April 2021
In today's time, setting yourself apart from others is a prerequisite for success. Due to breakneck competition, college graduates find it challenging to get a foothold in the job market.
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In today’s time, setting yourself apart from others is a prerequisite for success. Due to breakneck competition, college graduates find it challenging to get a foothold in the job market.

As per the Business Today report, the job market competition has risen by approx. 30% since the pandemic. So, this makes the current job scenario even more thought-provoking. As a college grad and job seeker, you have to pass the twin litmus test. It implies you have to prepare and brand yourself to reap the results.

Once you graduate, two things start taking prominence in your mind. Either you can select the next stage of your career or plunge straight into the job market. Every candidate looks promising enough to secure the corporate cream slot. 

But, upskilling is the need of the hour to crack the interview success code. The advancement of new technologies and pedagogies is one of the reasons. The institutes stream their unique courses while assuring good placements.

Relevel’s experts have the leverage of knowing the pulse of the job market. So, they have curated essential placement tips to help you crack the interview.

Let’s get started!

1. Build Self Confidence And Self-esteem

The most essential and foremost trait you need to instill is “self-confidence”.

There are plenty of career opportunities in the job market. But only the confident and well-prepared ones hit the jackpot. This statement may seem trivial. But, the skill can get you a long way – even after the interview ends.

A skilled candidate can be redundant due to a lack of confidence. The current job market is more favourable to candidates who project positive vibes and self-belief. Even arriving on time signifies a polished identity. So make sure you arrive on time with full confidence.

2. Research the Job Market/Company

Before your placement, a general norm is to research the sector you intend to enter. It’s pointless to apply to the wrong places where your interest and skills don’t match. 

The hiring manager can also point out at any stage – why you intend to shift your career line. There should be a valid reason to switch over and a deep inclination for career growth.

Reskilling yourself with a certificate course can also speed up the job search. Registering for online courses and acquiring new skills is going to brighten your chances in the job market.

The next step is researching the company. Many candidates neglect this part. We have observed this trend many times, which catches the candidates off-guard. 

It is common for candidates to give it a bird’s-eye view while jumping straight to the job description. It can backfire due to a lack of knowledge and enthusiasm for joining the company.

In your interview, there can be questions involving the company’s products and services. There can be questions about the latest trends and developments. Each of your answers should project – you want to add value to the company.

3. Mock Interview Preparation

You must all be familiar with Snow White and the Queen’s fairy tale, where the mirror provides truthful answers to Snow White’s questions. Mock preparation is similar to it.

Conduct a face-to-face mock session with your family, friends, and colleagues. Doing so will provide an accurate view of your performance in front of the panel.

It will also spot your weak points while interacting. That’s not all. Even your subtle expressions such as eye contact, body language, and nervousness come to the forefront during such a session.

I have enacted a few situations using this technique and received quite many insights. This type of informal setting will help you to deal with real-world circumstances.

4. Polish Soft Skills 

When it comes to impressing the interviewer apart from your educational background, soft skills win hands down.

Non-verbal signals like eye contact, body language, smile, displaying warmth, positive attitude, mood, and behaviour play a pivotal role in acing interviews and personal life situations.

  • For instance, leaning forward when talking gives the impression of being attentive to the discussion. It also builds an instant rapport with the speaker.
  • Use the weapon of a smile when things look unfavourable. But using it will often transport the discussion to a very casual level.
  • Being cordial and polite in front of the panel is a non-verbal trait that provides an overview of your social skills. Speak up your mind without being jittery.

Soft skills are non-verbal and verbal signals passed between the communicator and the receiver. Voice tonality, speech frequency, speed, and accent play a prominent role in influencing the discussion.

Interspersing and using these skills during the interview can also be a game-changer. At times, the candidate may sound too aggressive in his tone and be rushing to finish the interview off. These are signs which the employers are well adept at picking up.

Even your accent can determine the outcome of the interview. A candidate with a commanding and smooth accent towers over someone who huffs and puffs and loses track of words.

The latest hiring trends also point to non-verbal communication as a criterion for passing interviews.

Unacademy Pro is a leading provider of custom-designed, tailored online courses to help you cruise through the interview process.

5. Tailor Your Resume To The Job Role

We have given more prominence to personality building before resume building to bring complete growth in a candidate.

In traditional recruiting, resume building had the lion’s share in deciding the fate of job seekers. But nowadays, the more visible you are on online career-related portals, the more are the chances of success.

Visibility doesn’t only imply your resume, but how you react and comment online matters too. Employers are like omnipresent creatures who keep a constant tab on the online ecosphere. So be sure to present your best self online, without indulging in any negative behaviour.

The needs of every job differ. Resume building should cover essential areas such as,

  • Career aim
  • Summary
  • Tools and skills learned during academics.
  • Vocational courses and projects
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Your general interest areas
  • Social and community initiatives
  • voluntary activities.

These sections are crucial for an entry-level graduate or a fresher with no prior experience.

  • Try to keep the resume crisp, concise, and brief up to 2-3 pages in length.
  • Project the job-related keywords upfront to get them highlighted.

College graduates with no experience can take a leaf from this trick of displaying job-related keywords matching the academic course contents.

It is where most of the candidates go wrong. At Unacademy Pro, one of the largest learning platforms, candidates can register for the following modules:

  • Comprehensive custom-designed career-related courses
  • One-to-one coaching
  • Resume-building techniques and
  • Informative subject-related tutorials

These courses are compiled and structured by experts in their respective fields.

6. Revise Your Domain Knowledge

Most employers prefer hiring candidates who have hands-on experience for the job and are raring to go from the start. Since freshers are not job-ready, they need to be handheld for the first few months before taking off. Here the role of revising your domain skills comes into play. 

You can supplement your academic knowledge with in-demand employability skills. Apart from self-grooming, meticulous preparation, and personal branding, you can also seek online courses’ recourse. 

Try to find an insider in the organization who can provide you with some practical tests or assignments in real-time. Such a person can act as your mentor cum lead generator to get entry inside the company. 

Once you apply your domain skills to the company’s test, you can be almost sure to find a sweet spot inside. Solving the problem will make you aware of the day-to-day activities of the company. 

Remember, everything lies in your attitude. Always value yourself high, and don’t ever underestimate yourself. You never know when you may pass through the corporate corridors. 

Being present and applying through LinkedIn is productive at times. That’s not all. There are hundreds of fresher and graduate-level opportunities on LinkedIn. You can even contact the talent managers of companies from varied sectors.

But be careful not to spam their inbox, as LinkedIn is a very professional channel.

7. Honesty is the Best Policy

Being honest, truthful, and transparent is a trait that will fetch you long-term returns. There are many cases where a top-class employee gets laid off for being dishonest. 

With your excellent credentials and mark sheet, you must present your right career facts. Not doing so can take you back a few points or even on a negative scale in the company’s rule book.

Don’t worry if the employers ask you questions that sound uncomfortable. Being honest and right can turn the scales in your favour.

8. Be a Story-Teller

Story-Telling is presenting articulated facts from your personal experiences and logic. Don’t ever resort to weaving cooked-up stories.  Be bold and confident, and don’t force yourself to perform. 

A fact well-presented is half the battle won. Trying to present things logically and practically using your common sense and tact is an art. For example, an employer may ask you about your next three-year plan or what is so special about you.

When they fire such questions at you, they are not taking you on an African Safari but are checking out your articulation and presentation skills.

It may be for the role of business development or client management for which they are keen on recruiting. If you get a number-crunching question, then it may be for an analytical part. Take your time, compose yourself and associate the answers with practical examples.

Connecting real-world examples will immediately project you as a market-ready and knowledgeable candidate.

9. Dress to Impress

Armed with an impressive resume, unmatched skill sets, and desirable personality, you are sure to make the heads turn.

The first thing an interviewer notices upon entering is the shoes. Keep it clean and polished. Next in line are your clothes – your attire.

You should iron it to remove any creases. Always match your clothes with the colour palette. Do you prefer someone wearing a green shirt and yellow pants for a sales position?

I am sure not!

Colour selection is another aspect of success at interviews. Ensure that you wear light colours like White, Grey, Sky blue – a standard for formal meetings.

10. Starting and Ending Rapport Building

It is a proven fact that the first and concluding minutes are very crucial to end a conversation. There’s a saying ‘first impression is the last impression’. But even how you close your interview matters as it signals your interpersonal prowess.

Always maintain steady eye contact with the panel without losing your composure.

Some closing strategies can be:

  • Inquiring about the company,
  • Showing genuine interest in its products,
  • Greeting ‘Thank You, Sir/Madam’ at the end.

To Sum It Up

Filtering the techniques and utilizing their finer points during the interviews will ensure that you come out a winner.  Use the above tips to crack an interview or campus placements.

Learn and get tips for tackling interviews, and building a successful career in Sales/Business Development, Front-End and Back-End with our free Live classes with experts and our extensive library of career guidance resources. Find the next event/workshop by heading to the Boost page.

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