Tag Archive: interview


I’ve been wanting to share this for quite long. Am extremely happy to say that I got placed (along with @madhuvishy @TheAkj and Divya) in the reputed eBay-PayPal for a pretty decent compensation package. 🙂 So here is the story how I made it.

eBay - Paypal

eBay-PayPal is the first company that came for recruitment in my college. So almost everyone of us was really excited about how the interview process is gonna be. We discussed a lot among ourselves about how the questions might be and had a good laugh over some really funny arguments. Pure #Naivety 😛

Initially the eligibility criteria for attending the recruitment process was 90% in 10th, 12th and in college without standing arrears!! Manasatchilessly daunting, isn’t it? I see that you couldn’t help yourself from avoiding that jaw-dropping expression adorning your visage. That’s how we stared at our Placement Officer when he announced it. When he found that only one person was eligible from the whole college, he relaxed one of the constraints. From 90%, the cutoff dropped to 75% till 6th semester in college. Yet the 90% in 10th and 12th remained. I WAS IN!

The recruitment process started on August 1st (My  Birthday 🙂 ) The first round was a written test. The “legen-dary” Multiple Choice Questions. We had 30 questions out of which (to our surprise) about 60% was based on Java and C++, while the rest of the questions spanned around verbal and quantitative abilities. To be more specific, here are a few niches you could focus on..

  • OOPS concepts – Data abstraction, Excapsulation, Virtual Destructors etc.
  • Database – SQL Queries and the basics
  • Networks – Subnet addressing
  • Probability – coupled with Permutation/Combinations
  • Analogies

We were given the question paper, an OMR sheet and 45 minutes to crack the questions. To be frank, the questions were easy and I was wondering how the eBay recruitment team is gonna choose from the competitive scores. But after half an hour, a set of 22 students were shortlisted from the talented lot. And I was one among them 🙂 That marked the end of the day.

The next day we had a series of Technical Interviews. The interviewers tested our knowledge on pattern matching, logical thinking, problem solving skills, Java, DBMS and Data Structures. And regarding Java, most of the questions were from java.util.Collections Framework. Poor me! Having no idea about this one topic, I was struggling with the Java questions. I m pretty good with the DBMS concepts, so that overshadowed my “Java Deficiency Syndrome”. And all thanks to my considerably strong resume. And I hold an 8.6 CGPA – neither too good nor too bad. So I had my resume as the trumpcard. Since I had two really good projects on DBMS and Java, one submitted to IBM and the other which fetched me a 30k bounty at the National Level Database Design Competition at IIT-K, I was confident. Another challenge I faced there during the interview was that I was more of a computer networks guy than a hardcore programmer, yet I had to project myself as a software developer there.

In my case, the third round of Technical Interview was skipped. And finally, by the end of the day, they read out five names including mine. I thought that it was done and I was in! But then dawned the ultimate twist. The HR interviewer Ms.Kalaivani said, “You guys are shortlisted for the final round, which will be held at eBay office tomorrow”. On hearing that the inner voices of all five of us resonated “OMG! Not AGAIN!!”. Of course, everything is for getting into a good company.

The next day, a gorgeous Innova drew up near my hostel gate at around 1 pm. I was comfortably escorted to eBay office where I met my four colleagues. The workplace was cool (pun -the A/C :P). The employees there dint seem tensed at all. So I was really motivated to get such a tension-free yet high-paying job offer.

There we went through two more rounds of technical interview. This time it was us who did the talking. In my case, the interviewers were keenly interested in knowing about every line in my resume. Thus it was almost a cake walk for me then.  The final round was a HR interview with the mundane “Tell about yourself” and “What your strengths and weaknesses”. After everything was done, the same Innova car ensconced me back to my hostel. Thus ended the awesome experience!! And the very same night, we got the results from the eBay office. Thus after a written aptitude test, four rounds of Technical Interview and an HR Interview, I WAS SELECTED!!  So this is where I would find myself in a few months..

eBay-PayPal Office in Chennai

Thus happily everafter 🙂 Cheers!

Today I had my first experience of a phone interview, and it was from the NGO named Teach For India (TFI) . To describe TFI in a few words,

Teach For India is a nationwide movement that aims to bridge the educational gap in India by placing outstanding college graduates and young professionals in low-income schools to teach full-time for 2 years. - TFI

Inclined to social service and already being a part of Bhumi Foundation, I wanted to see how TFI, one of the biggest social service foundations, work to enhance education in India. So I applied for the Campus Ambassador post for the year 2011-12 less than a week back and today they called me at 12.30 noon for the interview. The lady with the sweet voice introduced herself and asked if I was ready for the interview. This happened when I was waiting for food in a hotel wearing a hunger-stricken face. But I was OK with it and the interview began. Though I was overwhelmingly excited on my first phone interview, I tried to maintain a grim and complacent voice replying her every statement with a perfectly professional toned “Mm hmm” “Ya, of course” “That’s awesome” almost like an adjectived and adverbed version of Dhanush’s GD in Yaaradi Nee Mohini. Then she asked a few of the cliched questions in the history of interviews like “Say about yourself”. I managed to answer that as short as possible. Unfortunately, she was expecting a more verbose edition of the same reply and waited for me to continue #awkwardsituation. Being an Engineering student, it was easy for me to bloat the answer with some cleverly articulated anectodes (from my own life, honestly) and went on for an alarming 15 minute reply for the same question. She was like “Wow!!”. And I was like “Nalla vela”.

Then came the tricky part – Role playing. I have to don the role of a Campus Ambassador and she is a fourth year college student. I have to persuade her to join TFI. Pretty interesting stuff.. I started with “Hey wassup?” and she replied with a tedious answer bringing the words “GRE” (to which am pointlessly allergic), “Placements”, “Exams every week” and she characterized herself as a typucal busy, geeky girl in final year. Without an explicit hint, she made the point clear that she is a stubborn, studious girl who is more focussed on her own life than on others’. That was pure talent. Maybe her 2 years experience in recruitment helped her with that. Btw I somehow managed to persuade her into TFI. Next, was another Role Playing wherein am the Campus Ambassador and she is the Placement Officer. This was tougher than the previous since she spoke flawlessly on the difficulties in becoming a fellow of TFI. I was left completely breathless. After a 10 second break, I started a counter reply, where I enlisted the advantages of becoming a TFI fellow after college and how companies respect the position of “Fellowship in TFI”.  Once again I succeeded in persuading her. And she remarked that the interview was “very well done”. But I am quite dubious about the result.

Moreover I myself am in a dilemma whether to pursue it or not. I do want to help the society. But is it the right time to dive headlong into it, is the question. Because we know “With great power, comes great responsibility”. In case, if I get to become the campus ambassador, I must dedicate the time the post of ‘Campus Ambassador of TFI’ deserves. Will I be able to do that? With this question haunting my mind, and letting Time to decide the solution, I end this post.

🙂