📢 I landed in my dream company! Yes, I did!
Keeping aside all the excitement about interning in the company, whose pictures my first computer book had, I will be sharing with you the process that I went through. (Some tips too)
It is a support engineer role and is highly customer-facing. Apart from troubleshooting and providing support to customers, we also need to have in-depth knowledge in our domain.
- Operating System
- Azure (knowledge about Active directory and VM is a plus)
The process by which we were hired is known as the 'Fix-a-thon' challenge. It was 6 weeks long, learning+upskilling process (along with some fun).
Before the final selection, it had a number of rounds and challenges.
Kickstarting with the assessment test, which was held on Dec 27, 2020.
It tested our skills on:
- Data Structures and Algorithm
- Aptitude (logical and quantitative)
- Operating System
Shortlisted candidates were asked to share a video on 'Why you want to join the CE&S team'. (Only 100 students were shortlisted out of 11000 applicants)
Soon after this, the program was launched on Dec 30, 2020. It briefed us about the program timeline, introduced us to the Microsoft culture, briefed us about the role, and experts from the domain spoke to us about their experience. It ended on a fun note with some games.
From 4th Jan 2021- 8th Jan 2021, we had enriching sessions by subject matter experts on topics like Operating systems, Networking, and Azure. Each session was followed by a coach touchpoint, where we could solve your doubts and ask additional questions. We were also divided into different groups, we had fun knowing each other and learning together.
The learning capsules were followed by a Break-fix challenge, it was the most challenging part (according to me). Our learning capabilities were tested by this challenge. We were paired with a Microsoft employee and assigned some exercises that we had to complete in a given time (attention to the learning capsules can help you ace this phase).
This was an elimination round and only 50 of us qualified for the next phase, i.e the hackathon. Before the start of the hackathon, we had a virtual cafe with HR Global Leads and a Design Thinking workshop.
As we approached the final stages of fix-a-thon, the thrill increased. We were divided into 10 groups of 5 students each and assigned a topic to work on for the hackathon.
We were guided by mentors on how we could improve our proposed solution. The presentation went well, but our team couldn't make it to the finale.
The entire process of learning, break-fix challenge, coach touchpoints, various other activity went on for 6 weeks. Throughout this phase, we were judged on a variety of factors. Good performance bagged me a chance to sit for the interview and give a shot at the internship. A total of 31 students (both from the qualified and unqualified teams) gave an interview.
The interviewers were very friendly and they made sure that you are comfortable (though I had butterflies in my stomach).
The interview was taken in two rounds:
- Language Screening Round
- Managerial Round
The only mantra I followed was, being myself and being comfortable.
On 19th Feb, the program ended with the award ceremony, where hackathon winners and other individual winners were announced.
An hour later, my email rang with the best notification, which read " Congratulations!.....". (My heart literally skipped a beat)
This way of hiring is very unique, and as a learner, I loved how I built skills on subjects that were not on my course. Staying so close to the Microsoft culture, made us feel that we are already a part of it. I loved how we were treated (because I felt less of a candidate and more of an employee :P). It also helped us make new connections and friends and gave the employers a chance to monitor us and our skills closely.
As the article comes to an end, I would like to share with you some tips (these are very personal and have been followed by me since early 2020).
- Do not avoid your coursework, that's equally important!
- If you want to be a part of Microsoft, start learning about it. ( I learned about Azure, Power Platform, and even made major projects by upskilling from Microsoft Learn)
- Be a part of developer communities (they help you skill and make connections)
- Build a social brand for yourself (Creating content on your skill-set helps).
- Stay connected to recruiters to know about upcoming opportunities.
- Do not do things solely for the sake of getting hired, develop a passion for technology (things become less stressful and easier).