Barclays takes students only from CE and IT departments with no backlog and matching their CPI criteria. They don’t accept students with diploma either. They had come at VJTI in the Month of November to hire interns for 2021 Summer internship for the role of Business Analyst – BA3.
Round 1 Online test (1 hrs 30 mins): It was at 7.00 pm on HackerEarth. It had 30 MCQs and two programming questions.
My seniors had told me that coding one out of two questions completely was sufficient but, in my experience, it didn’t matter because it hardly had any weightage. My programming questions were:
- https://www.hackerearth.com/practice/algorithms/greedy/basics-of-greedy-algorithms/practice-problems/algorithm/the-pile-game-14656545/ : Easy level question, could solve completely.
- This was related to pattern matching. There must’ve been some other solution but I used RegEx in python which worked for small test cases and was giving TLE for others.
The interviews were scheduled for the next day at 9 am. Instead, there was a lot of confusion from their side. 23 students got shortlisted and my interview was a week after the online test.
Round 2 Interview (30 minutes): There was going to be only one interview. I was prepared for all types of questions. It was conducted on Cisco WebEx. The interviewer was quite friendly just like most others. Also, on a side note, I have noticed that in Barclays, the interviews are taken by VP’s only. They generally don’t ask programming questions and are focused on a theory of subjects like DBMS, OOP, projects, and stuff mentioned in your resume as far as technical questions are concerned.
The interviewer was sharp on time and had my resume. He asked me the typical “tell me something about yourself” like every other interviewer.
Then he started asking technical questions:
- Deep and shallow copy. Technical stuff about python because it was mentioned in my resume.
- List tuple difference (not just basic difference but also on parameters like performance, use cases, which would you prefer, why)
- Memory management model of Python
- Lambda function in Python
I had mentioned that I am a committee member of Coder’s Community in my college. So, questions like what events are conducted, my role, and experiences. I also told him that I had mentored a few teams under one of the programs so a lot of cross-questions on that like
- Your exact role in the program and mentorship
- What motivates you?
- Qualities of a good mentor according to you
He went to my GitHub account and asked me to explain one of the projects mentioned there and cross-questions on that. A few people were asked to show and run the code and their work in the project.
Then came HR questions. You HAVE TO know the famous Barclays values – RISES. They are asked in Every. Barclays. Interview. So, I too was asked:
- Barclays Values
- Why Barclays?
- What do you understand by stewardship (riseS) and a life incident based on that
- Why is integrity important according to you?
The interview ended after dot 30 minutes with him answering my questions.
I felt happy with my performance that day. You just kinda-sorta know after your interviews, this company is the one.
Barclays results came in after TWO WHOLE RESTLESS DAYS FILLED WITH ANXIETY. 4 people were selected out of 23 and I was one of them.
(Keep reading for a twist:)))
BE THOROUGH WITH YOUR RESUME.
I can’t emphasize enough on this. DoN’t EvEn ThInK aBoUt LyInG.
Know every word, its coordinates, and every detail about it because they can go deeper than oceans on any topic that you’ve mentioned.
Unrelated: In one of my other interviews, the interviewer started asking questions about my hObBiEs! I had mentioned cooking, so he asked me favorite dish that I had cooked, a dish that took the longest time, and why and if I had started cooking in lockdown xD (that was not the case). He asked me about the significance of the number in my email ID and GitHub ID. He asked me if the sketch behind me (at home because virtual interview) was drawn by me because sketching was mentioned.
Resources for preparation for any company: https://github.com/yash0530/InterviewPrepResources
Read Archives: Read all of them available on GFG before sitting for any company’s interview. It will give you a fair idea as to what questions to expect and how does the process usually goes.
Do NOT wait around for motivation to start:
Don’t start preparing late and then regret as I did. Start your preparation LATEST by June start (assuming campus drive starts from September). I had prepared from GFG initially and switched to InterviewBit after a few months.
GFG has topic-wise questions so don’t keep waiting for motivation to start, just start solving. If you still need “motivation”, looking at your college leaderboard might help :)) InterviewBit is a level up. I wouldn’t recommend you to start with that. After you have a base of coding questions of almost all DSA topics, do one question from each bucket. This also helps when you just need to revise.
All of this is okay for generic preparation but PREPARE COMPANYWISE AS WELL.
Do good research about the company and its latest news: If you know your interviewer beforehand then get to know more about their work and show it during your interview that you’ve done your research and how you share their interests.
Know their tech stack: Either from their PPT or research or ask seniors.
Glassdoor and Quora: Read about the company and reviews from employees. Might help you decide whether you want to work for the company in the future.
- Keep your profile decent and updated.
- Leverage your college alumni and network to know about the company culture and other things.
- Search about the interviewer beforehand if possible.
(All of this will help you in asking questions at the end of the interview)
It is important to ASK GOOD QUESTIONS to the interviewer in the end: Please DO NOT ask things like how much will you earn, what is the culture, and other general questions. Listen to their introduction and ask them anything you found interesting in it. Ask about their own experience at the company or anything which caught your eye in the pre-placement talks, or questions about their tech stack. Basically, make sure to show that you’re a good listener and you’re excited to work with them.
First Impression Matters: Take some time to prepare “tell me about yourself” as that will be the first thing they will ask for. Be completely honest about your personality. You should be thorough with the points that you’re going to say for this question. Maybe practice it in front of someone or a mirror or record and hear and/or watch yourself.
Be Prepared with HR FAQs: This is so that you don’t stutter on the final day, especially for Barclays. You can easily find ideal answers on a single google search. Read about situational questions as well.
Practice mock coding interviews with others: Ask your seniors or try out websites like InterviewBit for mock interviews. Especially do this if you don’t have the habit of typing code without IDE on a doc or writing on paper. This is not specific to Barclays. None of us were asked any programming question.
Having an accountability partner might help: You may ask your friends. I didn’t have one. If you’re not familiar with the concept, just Google it.
HR dept of Barclays is not so great so don’t expect immediate results: The twist: The list of selected students came in two days after my interview. After a exact MONTH, they asked if six more students were available. Five of them were. So, we thought these five got selected. Then they selected four of them:)
Remember Luck is a crucial factor: Everything is not hard work and dedication. It’s Hard work + Luck + Patience. Period. Sometimes people who you don’t think deserved what they got do get what you were trying hard for. You HAVE to learn to accept and digest that fact. Nothing in any interview process of any company is ever fair.
Difficult Road Ahead: You will watch your friends getting internships/placements and here you are still figuring out kahan se padhun. There’ll be times when it’ll be difficult for you to be happy for your friends. Because they are achieving what they intended to and are focusing on other things now or chilling probably and here you are, still figuring out what’s missing.
4. You CAN do it.
All the advices “everything will turn out good”, “focus on what’s in your hand”, “don’t quit until you’re done”, “it’s JUST an internship which won’t even matter after a few years” etc., these things are easier said than done, IK. But, as cliché as they sound, they’re COMPLETELY true. They’re cliches for a reason after all. It IS going to be hard. But YOU CAN do it.
All the best!