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Morgan Stanley Interview | Set 14 (On-Campus)

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Morgan Stanley recently visited our campus for post of Tech & Full Time Analyst. So here is how it went.

1st Round: Coding and MCQ round:
There were 20 MCQs and 2 coding questions and the test was conducted on Hacker-rank platform.
The MCQs were based on topics like aptitude, Basic Data structures, OOP and some input output questions.
The first Coding question was comparatively easy and the 2nd coding question was also based on finding the Maximum Sum Subarray.
I was able to code the first question and I could not get the time to solve the 2nd question, but my friends told that it was easy and as the test cases were very weak so even O(N^3) also passed.
After this round, 29 students were called for technical interviews.

2nd Round: Technical PI:
My interview was one of the first to be scheduled. I don’t know if it was random or my aptitude went well. But many of my friends were able to pass good number of test cases of the 2nd question as well and I was not able to code the 2nd question.

1. He first asked me that if I were given a file in which there are alphanumeric characters, I need to find the top 2 words having only alphabetic characters.
For example: “1. H1i hen 1ss you hen he s you hen he he 1ss 1ss¬“ should give the answer as “he” and “hen”

I asked him if there were two words that have the same frequency then should I print the word which was most recently accessed. He told me that it was my own choice to do so. I decided to implement this feature.
I first told him to use a Hash-map for each word. He asked me some questions as to how to check for the numbers that come between the words and then I thought that there was many test cases to handle in this approach.
Then I told him to use Trie and MinHeap. He then told me to code the logic and I did as I was told. I explained all the corner cases prior to him and he seemed pretty happy with this solution.

2. Explain me Polymorphism using this Kinley bottle. I do not know anything about Java so please do not use any jargons.

3. He asked me an SQL query which used GROUP BY but I cannot recollect the question.

4. Given an array, where only one number is repeating one number of times, find the number. (Using XOR in one pass)

5. If there is no restriction on how frequently the number is going to repeat for example there can be 5 numbers occurring 3 number of times and 2 number repeating 6 times and 1 number repeating once, we need to find the number repeating once.
Example: “1 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 5 “has got 1 as the element repeating exactly once.
He told me to do it in one pass of the array only. I did it using Balanced BST and I wanted to improve on this solution but as time was running out, he asked me to stop.
After this round, 11 students were selected for the next rounds. After this round there were no eliminations and then results were declared.

3rd Round: Group Activity Round:
Out of 11 selected members, we were split up into teams of size 6 and 5. I was the one in the team of size 6.

The time allotted was 30 minutes and there was a mentor from their side who would check how we did after 15 minutes and give some suggestions.

We were given the following task:

We need to prepare an idea for a start-up and present our idea in front of group of investors. We were given 2 chart papers, a Lego kit, few markers and Play-Doh.

In the first chart paper we were told to prepare the logo, name of start-up, objectives, features.

In the other chart paper we were told to provide the Business model, Unique Selling Point of Idea and when our company would start earning profits.

Our Approach:
We first discussed about the idea that we were going to work on. Amongst the brain-storming of ideas, I told to do something related to Health Care sector. But as everyone was interested in the idea to provide training for budding start-ups and work as the company to bridge the gap between investors and new ideas, we decided to take this idea.

We divided ourselves into 2 groups of 3 each. I was in the group to prepare the logo and everything (i.e. working on first chart).

Because I was not sure about the idea I asked some doubts to the person who had given the idea. I then helped in giving the name to the company and preparing the logo for the company. I also helped in cementing our objectives and features.

After 15 minutes, our mentor asked some questions related to uniqueness of our idea. He gave some advice and then we were again back to the task.


I was very nervous about this because there were more than 5 people evaluating us.

They asked us questions like:
a. We have already received such an idea. How is your idea unique?

b. Did you at any point of time think that the idea was not sustainable after deciding the idea?

c. How much did we require for our start-up and when would it start earning profits?

d. How will you publicise the start-up and how will people be attracted by you?

I was quiet during all of this and I simply nodded to what all were saying.

4th Round: HR Round:

1. Tell me something about yourself.

2. Tell me your family background.
Then there was some discussion about how I thought I performed in my previous rounds. I told him that I am very strong technically so I was most comfortable during that round.

I frankly told him that I was not my best during the Group Activity Round and that I could have performed better. He then asked me why I was not able to perform well during that round.

I told him that the idea was not my idea and in the initial stage I had to clear my doubts. Then after we divided us in 2 teams, I was the one who gave the idea of the Logo and the name of the start-up.

I also told him that in all the group projects, I have been the leader and I have been the person who keeps collecting the data before going to any meeting and that I was an active contributor to any of the group meetings.

3. He gave me a scenario that if there is some person in my team who is not doing anything, what would I do. I kept giving him response and he kept on saying that the person is too rigid to participate.
I finally told him that I would report to some higher authority.

4. What is the one quality about you that Morgan Stanley would hire you?

5. If I were to go to your college and ask your friends to list two qualities about you, what would they say?

6. Which is your weak point?

7. What is the problem that the Indian society is currently facing? He then asked me that if I were the advisor to the finance minister and we had conflicting ideas, how I would go about solving that dispute.

8. What are your hobbies?

9. If you are given 2 opportunities, one is to pursue your hobby and the other is the programming job at Morgan Stanley, how will you go about choosing one between them and also tell which will you choose.
I chose Programming Job.

10. If you have 2 job opportunities, Programming Job at Morgan Stanley and Programming Job at Google, how will you go about choosing one of them?

11. Have you ever faced any situations where you had to choose between two things that are of equal priority, how did you go about deciding which to choose?

12. Do you plan to go for higher studies? Why or Why Not?

13. 2 points that you have in mind about the presentation shown earlier about Morgan Stanley.

14. Any questions?

5th Round: HR Round/ Professional Fitness Round:
1. Tell me something about yourself.

2. Family Background.

3. Why did you choose Research Internship as compared to Industrial Internship?

4. How often you go back home? How often do you interact with your family?

5. Here too I told that I was not good in the Group Activity Round. He asked me many situational questions as what you did during the brain storming of selection of an idea etc.

6. Any questions? I asked about the work culture at Morgan Stanley. I asked him what is the thing that keeps the employees excited about the work they do because Excitement is the biggest driving factor for anyone.

6th Round: Technical PI
1. You need to evaluate an expression and the priority of operators would be given by the user. The associativity of operators is Left to right. He asked me to code the question and then he reviewed it.

2. Database design Question:

Design Database for the pay roll system for various companies having many departments. Every employee has his salary in 3 parts: Basic, HRA and PA. Every employee can have multiple accounts and he would give the percentage of salary to be deposited in each account.

To summarize:
Each Company can have many department. If any employee is in 2 departments, than I had another tuple for that. So an employee can be part of 2 departments.

Each Employee can have multiple accounts and Salary has 3 components: Basic, HRA and PA.

3. Query for the database:

Find the top 3 departments in each company that has got maximum sum of salaries of all employees under that department.

4. Any Questions?
It was very lengthy process and they don’t just judge you technically, they see your situational response, team management skills.

Here are some points that I think helped me to get selected:

a. Leadership shown during the Group Activity is not enough, you need to be the leader for your projects as well.

b. HR interviews are very difficult because they are very frank and they are like rapid fire rounds, so do not be fake. They are making notes about your personality and if you contradict with the response that you had given earlier, they will catch you.

c. Confidence during Interviews as well as the Group Activity. Talk out loud to the interviewer, let him know what is in your head.

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Last Updated : 02 Oct, 2015
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