It was the year of college without college experience. No packed classes, no on-campus seminars, no conferences or meetings with foreign universities professor and students. College in the pandemic was not the experience that students had expected. . It was a dark year on the campus. But as the pandemic passed by, there was some surprising glimmers of light. But as the last academic year ended, some positive experiences and insights came out of it.
In India, COVID – 19 has severely affected the job prospects of students. Ongoing uncertainty coupled with complex family needs and the financial strain have presented unique challenges to everyone. With complete lockdown for months, firms have suffered huge financial losses, as a result, to cut down their cost, they slowed down their recruitment process. In fact many organizations were reluctant to hire people due to closure of markets and revenue losses. Many companies have decided to recruit students as unpaid interns or on some monthly stipend. Even the companies which were willing to hire, had cut down their packages resulting into demotivation to our students. Some companies who had recruited our students, put the offers on hold and in some cases, offers were retracted. As the situation started improving and the markets opening up, at first, many employers needed time to find their feet and work out their next steps, but it was not long before recruiters started to return our calls to discuss their recruitment plans for 2021. Fortunately, employers are still recruiting, just in a very different way to previous years.
In these difficult times, the world is facing a constant threat of disruption, lockdowns and regional and national border closure caused by the raging COVID – 19 pandemic. The effect of pandemic have been immense in different ways, on both our personal as well as the professional lives, but one thing that has helped us navigate through these unprecedentedly tough times: technology. A slew of tools and platforms and even social media have helped us stay connected and productive in physically distant environment, ensuring a quick flow of information to the stakeholders of the placement process.
In the early pandemic stage, the placement department of VBS transitioned its support and mentoring services online, helping students by way of virtual resume reviews, interview preparation and briefing on job opportunities available. As a part of its placement services, VBS placement team hosted a series of webinars to train its students on how to give online interviews and be successful. The placement team was in constant contact with the students to discuss with them about the resources available to find a job. More focus was given to all-inclusive job mapping, a unique in-house assessment that help create a comprehensive framework around behavioural competencies and skill based capabilities. The VBS placement team did virtual assessment, helped conducting virtual interviews while providing robust and actionable insights to recruiting organizations.
Experiential learning (EL) programs – which allow students to gain experience, engage with the community, develop technical and interpersonal skills, and build career readiness and professional networks – have been particularly hard hit. But the VBS placement team was instrumental in bringing live projects for students which gave them opportunity for experiential learning. Virtual internships are also becoming more commonplace, and most of our students completed their online internships successfully.
It is important for students to remember that this fragile economic state is temporary and many companies are putting back their recruitment plans in place. Although the job market is improving, it is essential that students remain motivated and keep their eyes on opportunities.
Here are some guidelines for successfully cracking the job interviews
• Be prepared. Attend your online classed regularly. Complete your assignments in time and be ready to respond to your faculty. You are responsible for your knowledge.
• Stay connected. Social distancing can make you feel lonely and isolated. Identify other means of communication to stay connected with your mentors, friends and teachers.
• Be Self Disciplined. Most of the students go silent during the online lectures which is not a good sign. The interaction between students and faculty is found to be less during the online sessions. Make sure you attend all the online lectures regularly
• Adapt to the changing times. It is difficult to shift from regular classes to digital mode of learning. But you need to adapt to the changing times. You have to sharpen your digital skills and enhance your virtual communication skills. Learn to present yourself virtually. May be the digital mode of interviews will be a permanent platform to conduct job interviews.
• Work on building your Social Media Profile. Build your profile on websites like LinkedIn.
• Stay updated on the industry trends. Read articles on the industry you want to join and make a career
• Aptitude Test. Participate in aptitude tests, hackathons, and quizzes to sharpen your critical thinking and analysing power
• Stay in Touch. Stay in touch with your academic and industry mentors
• Formulating Your Goals. Create and follow your goals diligently
The VBS placement team is continuously working to ensure that all the students get employed. As a student, you should always remember: “Success doesn’t come to you, you go to it”
For further queries get in touch with us.
- Mr. Arun Saxena