Placements 2012: Readers’ take
Placement season is one of the most emotional times of the year, with the ecstasy and anguish of fervent preparations, running around between interviews, impulsive decisions and of course the incessant attack on the F5 key to refresh the placement blog. With an increasing pool of candidates to be placed and the growing infrastructure crunch, the Placement Team (PT) does have its work cut out for it – with around 1400 students’ careers hanging in the balance.
InsIghT surveyed about 200 students who were registered for placements this year and solicited their responses on the work of the PT. Some of the numbers backed up our instincts while others took us by surprise. This article in every sense, is completely written by the candidates; these are their opinions and their comments. Largely, people seem happy with the execution of the placement process, with 67% of the respondents rating it 3 and above on a scale of 5 for November, and 61% rating it 3 and above for December. However, on scratching the surface, there were a number of problems that respondents commented about repeatedly.
In terms of execution, tests, in particular, seemed to be a major bone of contention for students with a majority of the respondents commenting poorly on their execution and scheduling both in November and December.
The major complaints were ‘inconvenience due to inadequate net connections for the online test procedure’ which was heavily followed this year leading to some students unable to give tests properly and the packed schedule of tests during some crunch days. In addition to the scheduling, students also feel that more stringent steps are necessary to curb malpractices during tests by better invigilation, which they felt might have hampered their chances.
The ratio of unhappy students was significantly high on the first 5 days with 55% of respondents being unhappy with tests in December, and fell sharply to fewer than 30% after day 6.
A huge source of discontent for students was the slots assigned to the companies. These were seen as arbitrary, and often contrary to student opinion. For example, this year, two companies – Pocket Gems, a mobile game development company, and HUL, a reputed FMCG company – decided to withdraw from the placement process after not being given the slots of their choice. “Company A shortlisted 12 people and B shortlisted 25. A poll was conducted for only the shortlisted candidates. Company B then got Day 1 in spite of having a lower reputation and lower package than Company A. How is this fair?” asks one student.
Candidates were largely impressed with the work of the volunteers with over 58% people being satisfied with their role in conducting the process smoothly and ensuring students were informed and facilitated. Still, 25% people felt that they are sometimes unable to perform their tasks to the fullest because they are not sufficiently empowered. Surprisingly, a few students also complained about the unavailability of volunteers during the interview timings
On the matter of availability of information through website, blog and volunteers approximately 45% of the people felt that the information was readily available.
Several people complained that the blog for the whole of Day 1 was not updated till 5:30 AM after
Day 1 Slot 2 got over earlier at around 3 AM. Even companies had not informed selected candidates, which meant that those who did not find their names in the list at 5:30 AM had to report for interviews again by 8 AM including a few people who were selected in Day 1 Slot 2 who ended up reporting on Day 2 due to errors on the blog. In a particular case, a student was erroneously slotted as placed on the blog, leading to his automatic disqualification from other companies and a lot of anguish. similarly, a number of people also complained about their names missing from shortlists and GD lists.
Delayed scheduling: Students commented that on the jam-packed Day 1, sometimes even volunteers did not know where a student was supposed to be at a particular time, causing delay and mishaps. Things were worsened by the two venues LCH and H4 being far off for people who had to shuttle between the two for multiple interviews on Day 1.
Inaccurate and conflicting schedules: Problems like missing interviews due to mis-communication, clashing of GDs with tests were reported. “I had to miss my EnY GD due to a Paypal test at the same time, as the PT asked me to do so. EnY still refused to entertain any request from me”, said one student.
Schedule not followed: Nearly a third of respondents said that the declared schedule was often not followed, leading to chaos: students missing out on interviews, students having to choose between companies when they