"We only look forward to the willingness and aspiration to learn new things", says Nokia.
Nokia is a world-renowned innovator in mobile networks, cellular phones, smartphones and digital healthcare. Nokia is also one of the finest international telecommunications and consumer electronics company and as such, they mainly focus on ECE, CSE and IT streams.
The Guindy Times had the opportunity to interview the hiring team from the company. Here is an extract from the session with Nokia:
Interviewer: Divya (GT)
Interviewee: HR of Nokia
GT: How did Nokia evolve and what is the nature of the work you do?
HR: Nokia was started in 1856 and is around 130 years old! Despite starting out as a company manufacturing paper, it has developed over the years into something different, a company working on mobile phones, smart homes and various cutting-edge technology!
GT: What is the eligibility criteria for selection?
HR: We expect 65 percent in SSLC, HSC, UG and PG. We mainly focus on ECE, IT and CSE students.
GT: What are the skills you expect from students who get placed in your company?
HR: Primarily, we will be looking for skills in Electronics and Communication, Networking and Programming Languages (like C, C++ and Python). As for soft skills, we look for effective communication, their aspiration for learning new things, good interpersonal skills and their ability to work in a team.
GT: What are the opportunities for professional development in your company?
HR: We specifically focus on "NokiaEDU", a website where people can learn soft skills, technology, innovation and so on. People who join our company are free to join any of the domains in NokiaEDU and develop on it.
GT: Does your company hire interns and do you expect it as a prerequisite?
HR: Yes, we do hire interns on campus and we don't really expect it as a prerequisite in placement.
GT: In an interview, apart from technical knowledge, what other factors do you look for in a candidate?
HR: Logical reasoning is one of the main factors we consider. You don't have to be good at technical topics, but it is imperative that you understand things. It is always better to have strong fundamentals. We see many students answering a lot of high level questions, but struggling with their fundamentals. We see students hesitating to writing things down. They can explain concepts well but they aren't able to represent it diagrammatically.
Generally, they are able to reproduce books but aren't able to understand as to how things work. Either they are not able to understand the subject or correlate it with its application. Application-based learning is very, very important.
Students should have sufficient knowledge in their own field of interest. For example, a CSE student cannot say that they don’t know coding. The interviewer will have some expectations too. We vary our expectations based on the department you are from. And most importantly, you need to make yourself stand out amongst the crowd.
GT: What are the training programs for selected candidates?
HR: The training given is specific to each field. We choose applicants based on their skill toward a particular product. We don’t have a general training session, instead we choose them for a particular field during placements itself. We have class room training first and then job training, where they implement what they’ve learnt.
GT: What are the difficulties you face while training and do you expect applicants to be prepared at the college level itself?
HR: We don't have very high expectations from a fresher but we look forward to their willingness to learn, their ability to grasp things quickly and self-learning. We can only guide them in a particular direction but exploring lies in their hands. We trust our employees.
GT: What is the most unique answer you have received from a candidate so far?
HR: In general, the ratio of meeting such candidates is very less. We actually don't remember many people specifically, but there are a few students who admit that they don't know something, which is a very good quality. It isn't unique but it is better than one who beats around the bush without knowing things.
One thing that we have learnt is that students ask us questions like, "How did I do?” or “What work do I have in this company?” and so on. We think questions such as these are inappropriate because we expect them to study about the company and their potential workplace beforehand.
The Guindy Times thanks CUIC for giving us the oppurtunity to interact with Nokia.