Why did you select this particular field?What options were available to you during placements?
I Felt APM profile was in line with my skills.It was a managerial position and also technically inclined
I was selected for three Day 1 companies. One was a consultant – BMGI, other was a Financial Analyst position at American Express, and the third was Housing.com, which I finally went forward with. Housing had multiple profiles like Associate Product Manager (APM), Operations, Business Intelligence, Software Developer, etc. but I was aiming for the APM profile. I felt it was in line with my skills. It was a managerial position and also technically inclined. I also had prior entrepreneurial experience so that helped.
How did you get in Housing.com?What was the selection procedure?How did you prepare for it?
It was initially a CV shortlist. I was shortlisted for APM (Associate Product Manager) profile and Operations profile at Housing.com. I went through multiple interviews in each profile sort of kept getting to the next round. Later, I decided to pursue APM profile since I believed I had a shot. Basically they asked all the APM candidates to draw basic Wireframes for a new App. We were divided into 2 groups: one was asked to design a “Note-taking App” and the other group was asked to design an “IRCTC App”. We were each given sheets of paper and asked to draw basic wireframes of the screens and elaborating on the User Flow. I had designed a good App and went on to the final Interview. In the final Interview I was grilled by two Product Managers of Housing.com in detail on my Wireframes and they also grilled me on my CV. They asked about my Startup and the Apps which I had made in my B.Tech Project and Startup.
As for preparation all I can say that I had worked on my CV and it was incidentally in line with what they wanted. I was in Kshitij and then General Secretary Technology (Gymkhana), so had ample managerial experience. Also I had sufficient technical knowhow heading the Kshitij Web Team. It helped that I had a Startup of my own and could relate to the values of Housing, which was in itself a Startup.
Can you describe your work profile/average day for us and tell us whether it was what you expected when you sat for placements?
A Product Manager is responsible for the end-to-end product or feature right from the initial requirements, to User Stories, to getting the screens developed from the Designers to getting it coded from the Developers.
In Housing.com product team, the structure is basically divided into Product Managers, UI/UX Designers and Developers. A Product Manager is responsible for the end-to-end product or feature right from the initial requirements, to User Stories, to getting the screens developed from the Designers to getting it coded from the Developers. It is basically a managerial profile.
Yes, the job is very satisfying as well as gives me opportunity to grow & learn. While I was sitting for placements, I had no idea about such a profile. It was pretty new to me then, but now it is gaining popularity because of the Startup boom and every startup requires a good product and good product managers. Come to think of it now, I cant imagine myself in any other job as a consult or in finance.
How would you describe Housing.com work culture?How is the work life balance?
I love it. The work culture is great. Flexible work timings, a fully stocked pantry, foosball tables and the Chaat stall in the evenings. Love every bit of it. We have an open door policy and we work together in clusters and people will be found sitting on beanbags, sofas, anywhere. Work life balance is also very cool. We get the weekends off. Also Housing organises things like trekking trips, gaming nights, poker nights, hackathons and what not.
What are your long-term goals?How do working in Housing.com help you get achieve them?
My long term goal is to pursue a career in this field (Product Management). I think I am learning a lot in such a dynamic company like Housing.com. Im learning new intricacies each day like user tracking, AB tests, growth, usability tests, etc.
Any specific advice you want to give for junta sitting for placements this year and juniors who aspire to be in the same ?
To the junta sitting for placements: Just be confident of yourself. Play on your strengths and keep your cool at all times. To the juniors: Work on building your CV and align it in the direction of your career aspirations.