Goldman Sachs is well known for their lengthy interview process. There’s no denying it. GS interview process is really, really tough but it’s certainly not impossible as applicants have proved it in the past and so has Nithin who hails from Bangalore and is studying at NITK Surathkal. He got an offer from Goldman Sachs for a position based in India. He spoke candidly with TopTalent on how he got his dream job at Goldman Sachs and what helped him win this unique opportunity many would die for. When asked about how he felt after knowing that he was one of the two lucky candidates who were selected, a humble Nithin responds, “I was really excited and was bursting with joy. It was a “Eureka” moment for me. The feeling was just fabulous!” The interview acts as a filter to determine if you have the necessary skills for the job, if you are motivated enough to do the job day in and day out, to figure out if you will thrive in the company’s culture and if the company is a good fit for you. It’s best to first figure out why you want to get into this company by questioning yourself about all these aspects. As Nithin mentions, “Unlike other companies, there was no aptitude test. Candidates were shortlisted based on their Resumes and CGPA. CGPA does matter but generally, they were looking for spikes or an X factor in a resume. Top 10-15 from each of the circuit branches (Electronics/Communication, Computer Sciences/Information Technology) were selected for the interview process.”
GS interviews are quite grilling and highly technical and the interviewers get the best out of you. “There were 6 rounds of interviews, 5 were technical and 1 was an HR interview. The questions were mostly focused on algorithms and concepts of probability”, he recalls. As we have heard GS has a consensus based hiring process in which all team members would interview you and you get selected only if all of them vote positively on you. Successfully navigating through 6 rounds of interviews is highly commendable indeed. So what made Nithin tick through all these rounds and what can others learn from his experience? Well, he puts it straight, “A good knowledge in data structures, design and analysis of algorithms and probability (also Mathematics in general) is very much needed. Also, the ability to communicate thoughts and ideas, in a clear, concise manner, is an indispensable skill that’ll be useful in all interviews.”
Preparing for your GS interview requires knowing your resume inside out, determining your key selling points and practicing your about yourself pitch. But what’s the X-Factor GS always talks about? Nithin believes that more than arriving at the right solution, it is the approach you take that really matters to them. He Says, ” I brought up different concepts to solve the questions and I think that really helped me get through. I just never gave up on any problem. Always, put your maximum effort and keep in mind that the interviewers do not always expect you to come up with a perfect answer.”
So, how much preparation should one put in and what would be his suggestion to others who are aiming at achieving a similar feat? In his words, the plan seems simple and straight, “I started off with revising the concepts I had learnt through the courses which I had taken in the past few semesters. Also, I had taken a couple of online courses during the summer and it really helped. I strongly suggest everyone to take the Algorithm Courses from – Coursera, Udacity and MIT Video Lectures. Apart from revising the concepts, I solved problems from ‘Cracking the Coding Interview’ and CodeChef. It really helped me streamline my thought process for the problems posed during the interviews.” As Nithin plans to join Goldman Sachs in their Strategies Division, we wish him all the best for this opportunity to wok with some of the smartest people in the world.
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