Career Series – Siddharth Desai (JSW Steel)

As a part of our on-going Career Series, we are covering the experiences of several recent alumni who joined various companies and universities after their stay at IIT Bombay. If you are interested in contributing a piece, please feel free to get in touch with us.

The content on this website is strictly the property of Insight and the Students’ Gymkhana IIT Bombay. If you wish to reproduce any content herein, please contact us:
Chief Editors: Anshul Avasthi, Chirag Chadha


Siddharth Desai graduated in 2014, with a B.Tech in Metallurgical Engineering and Material Science. He joined the JSW group (one of India’s largest business conglomerates) a couple of months ago as a participant of the its fast track leadership trajectory called Graduate Rotation Program.

What all options were available to you? And why did you choose to join JSW?
I’d decided against pursuing further studies in my discipline towards the end of my third year on account of not finding a fit with my interests vis-a-vis the pace of work. My grades and profile weren’t too shiny enough to get me shortlisted in the top consulting firms which are generally the go-to options for generalists who aren’t sure about what to do next. Any finance based job or an analytics role didn’t particularly interest me either. There’s a severe dearth of core jobs for my discipline, notwithstanding my lack of inclination towards the same.

I had interned at JSW Group as a part of its Student Internship Program (SIP) alongside some of the smartest folks from other IITs, DU, MU etc. and it was a great learning experience. A good fit with the work culture of the company, the ownership of the work entrusted upon us during SIP and the prospects of being a part of an ambitious rotation program which would help me zero in and work towards my interests were primarily responsible for my joining JSW Group.
I had a pre-placement offer from the JSW Group where I had interned and had a hugely satisfying experience. Based on my interests and options available before me, I decided to accept the pre-placement offer.

What was the profile like?
The Graduate Rotation Program is a 2 year fast track leadership program of JSW Group which comprises of 4 months of an induction program to acquaint us with all functions of the group, followed by 2 projects lasting 10 months each. One project will fall in the techno-managerial domain, and another in the corporate domain. My first project which falls under the ambit of Supply Chain and Logistics Management spans all group companies and several verticals. After 2 years, should the company extend my employment based on evaluations and assessments, I shall work in a function of my choice with an option to pursue a company-funded MBA anywhere across the world with a rider to join the company for a few more years.

There are some aspects of any job which cannot be anticipated and must be dealt with anyway

Was it different from what you knew a priori? Was it different from what you had found out before taking up the job?
I had a broad idea about what I was getting into on account of having received detailed interactions and clarifications with the HR department. However, there are some aspects of any job which cannot be anticipated and must be dealt with anyway.

What’s the work culture like?
The industry is known to attribute prominence to a hierarchical setup, so I’d prepared myself for the same. Surprisingly though, JSW’s culture is anything but. It’s extremely encouraging of its young employees and one can approach just about anyone in the company for assistance.

Any specific advice that you have for junta sitting for placements?

Introspect prior to and during the placement process. Try to understand where your passions or your interests lie. Try to align the same with your skillsets and then look out for roles which best fit the intersecting area. Job profile, ownership and company culture are the critical factors.

Introspect prior to and during the placement process.

Try to gather as much information as possible about the aforementioned parameters through comprehensive research. This helps in rooting out uncertainties once you dive into the job.

What are your long term plans? How was getting a job at the first company helped you realize that?
Long term plans for graduating students are generally very dynamic in nature. For people who haven’t been able to figure out their calling, I think it’s best to consider goals in shorter time frames of 2 years. I would very well want to complete the first leg of Graduate Rotation Program (2 years) at JSW to understand the workings in a corporate environment and would like to take a call then.