Let’s take a look at some of the most important years that shape your career. Starting with class XIIth, when you appear for your board examinations and eagerly wait to get into a good college. Follow it up with the academic rigor of college and your extra-curricular pursuits, which shape you into a personality that is ready to conquer the corporate world. Sure, there are many brilliant entrepreneurs who start their own ventures but a majority still looks for plush jobs with high salary packages and benefits.
However, to get into your dream company as a fresher, there is a major hurdle in front of you – the HR interview.
For professionals having considerable work experience, the HR interview is merely a formality. Their real test of success is in the technical rounds and the ones with the senior leadership of the company. For freshers though, the HR interview in most companies is the selection or rejection round.
If you are a fresher, how should you successfully crack the HR interview?
After collating answers from various students in different profiles, the training and placement departments of leading institutes, and HRs of several companies, we have created a handy guide for freshers who have to appear for on-campus or off-campus interviews. Read on!
Create a High-Impact CV
There should be some sort of achievement in your professional repertoire that you can flaunt, else the interviewer will dismiss you as someone with no aim in life.
Be Professionally Dressed
If you want to get into a good company then don’t make the mistake of dressing up casually. There is one major oversight by students looking to apply in startups which are known for a relaxed working culture – they dress sloppily while going for interviews. No matter which company you apply to – startup, MNC, small/medium-scale, government or private – you need to be dressed like a proper professional in business formals.
Communication Skills – Top Priority
Most interviewers know that as a fresher, you will undergo an intensive training session with the company as part of your onboarding process. They don’t really require you to be adept at technical skills or be a coding wiz. They only need one thing from you – to be an excellent communicator in English. If you can convey your thoughts in a clear, concise and confident manner to different stakeholders in a company, then the HR interviewer will recognize that this person can be groomed to become a leader of the future. Work on your communication skills ALL THE TIME. Try to improve every day. If self-learning and self-improvement does not work out for you, then enroll in an institute like Pep Talk India to get the desired training for professional success.
Tell Me About Yourself
This is the first question that is asked by an HR interviewer. As a fresher, you need to focus on your strengths and highlight them in the interview. Do not give an overly long background of yourself unless asked. You do need to mention your hobbies and extra-curricular activities you have participated in to give a positive portrayal – people want employees who are fun and filled with enthusiasm, not boring working machines! You should also have a solid explanation for any hardball questions that come your way e.g. Why are your marks so low? You don’t have any special skill, why should we hire you? You need to be prepared with a polite and diplomatic answer. If the interviewer asks you something that you really don’t know, then you should mention the same.
Focus on Body Language
If you are a fresher, then the HR interviewer will certainly take note of your body language. It goes without saying that you need to sit in a confident and upright manner, as well as maintain a confident smile on your face. If you are twitchy and nervous, then it will give the impression that you are not cut out to handle professional pressure. To make sure everything goes smooth, you need to give mock interviews. It is recommended that you apply to any call center or BPO to gain practice. Give the interview in all seriousness and figure out the gaps you need to fill for the main one.
Remember, for campus placements and other interviews for freshers, there are several candidates competing with you. Most of them will be your classmates. Everyone will be eager to get placed and embark on a successful career. Some will be more skilled than you, while some could be ahead in terms of marks. Ultimately, it all boils down to how well you have prepared for the D-day. Interviewers won’t spend an hour analyzing you as the right fir for their company; it could take just 15 minutes. Make sure you come out with flying colors!