Thursday, February 16, 2006

Fresh Graduates Galore

'Tis the season for recruitment of fresh graduates in Malaysia. And although there are many students graduating all around the year with presence of so many universities and colleges as well as batches, most graduates of the public universities will be, or are going through their final year examinations at this point of time and will be seeking employment by April.

For me as usual, I'd put up my advertisements in Jobstreet in the hope of attracting the top talents from the local universities. And as usual, I will get the fair share of applicants who can't be bothered to give answers for simple questions or who give short abrupt answers or those like the one below.
1. Why do you think you can make a difference in this position?

First of all, I am a monash gradutes who studying in Business and Commerce degree majoring in e-Business. With the knowledge that I get from the degree, it is enough for me to make the difference in this position by using technology to improve the operation by shorter the time, reduce the cost and increase profit of the particular company. As for the customer, with the advancement of technology it can help the company to provide better customer service like providing 24 hours helpdesk service to the customer where there will be computer which assist the customer to solve the probelm and not the human. On the other hand, other than the business subjects, I also taken up other programing subject such as, and so on which equipe me with more idea in improving the business operation by usinr technology, web content and so on. Other than that, the eperience that I get from my previous employer is that, even the company is running is a lost, with some restructuring being carried in the company, sime investment on technology must be used to cut down the cost of running the business, for example by replacing workers with the networking system which link the front-end office with the back end office, which it can help the company to cut down cost on human resource by fire off the internal office boy as well as the back end manager and front end manager. With the network system that is available, the front end manager can control the whole business operation which including the back end office operation, and the boss can deal with one manager instead of two manager which help the company to save the cost. Besides that, it also help the company to reduce the time, where it is believe that time = money, with the network that is available in the company the document and other Private and confidential document can be handle properly in the shortest time as everything is through compnuter and no third party can ready the content.
I will not fault the candidate for effort, for his reply was one of those with a decent length. But typical many many candidates, the candidate was weak on two "simple" things:
  1. Long as the answer may be, if the reply does not "answer" the question posed, then the answer is as good useless. The above candidate spent a great deal of space giving a lecture about "office operations" instead of telling me why he can make a difference, simple as the question may be.

  2. The candidates English is no where near the worst of the lot of resumes which I have received (more than 200 in total for 2-3 positions). But I definitely have difficulty fully understanding what he is trying to say. There are obviously critics of my occasional lapses in English as well, but I believe its fair to say that I did not have language error(s) in practically every single sentence like the above composition.
So for prospective candidates out there, if you are serious about the application, think long and hard on the answers, and if you are weak in English, make sure somebody else good at it checks them too. There's no point getting knocked out before the interview stage when you might have a better chance to "defend" yourselves.

For more tips and tricks, read here and here.


Anonymous said...

I am not surprised from a graduate of an Australian institution, what really is there to expect from it?

Anonymous said...


Dont you think it is a breach of ethics for you to post people's answer in interview or something like that for everyone to look at?
Also if you dont mind me asking, I am curious, what is the name of your company? It is strange that you didnt show it in your autobiography in the blog.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous 2

1) Tony did not disclose identity of person. He only used response to one question to illustrate his point. No confidence is breached.

2) In this day and age, you can find answers to 80% of your questions simple by typing a few keys on your computer. Try this: Google "Tony Pua". His company is listed on the Sesdaq.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous@3:35pm,

No, Tony is not breaching any code of ethics for he did not explicitly specify the candidates name. He is merely giving an example of a situation that he had encountered before.

Anonymous said...

Stumbled upon your blogspot while trying to find some resources for my paper...anyway, cool blogs, interesting read.

I have always wondered the value of PhD's in about patriotism vs survival in the real world. Higher ed. in Malaysia...very complex, why on earth did I choose this as my research?

Anyway, just want to drop a note to say, keep this blogspot alive!!

Anonymous said...

One private institution of higher education is thinking of franchising a DBA program from an Australian uni but has done so under a different named local institution (1) which has taken monies of candidates and left them in a lurch. The latter named local institution has changed hands and now is not responsible for the fate of these people and the new institution (2) which has taken over is now asking for more money RM6000 more for every six months. Complained to the authorities and was told to be silent. All three institutions were interrelated and had strings that led to higher heaven. So really there was no recourse and was RM38000 poorer. So becareful of some new institutions offering a DBA program from an Aussie uni in future.

Anonymous said...

It is the bane of Asian education to lack contextual thinking. Given our heirarchical and order-seeking social structure, we lack dynamism in our educational system that promotes contextual and goal oriented thinking. Students and eventually employee concentrate on tasks rather than goals. It suits a manufacturing and industrial economy that basically sells low-wage labour without ambigous objectives but for value adding and problem solving for less definite goals, we have a long long way to go.

Without the practise of free speech, thinking and actions, we have a huge problem to overcome the shortcoming of our students and employees. Students and eventually employees that don't know how to work around different circumstances and goals will remain just clogs in a economic machinery controlled by someone else.

Anonymous said...

To the aspiring PhD student in US and other bloggers,

Frankly in many ways, I find that Malaysia Higher Ed is at the cross roads.

On one hand, Malaysian Universities esp IPTA aspire to be well known in the global arena, which means they require new blood (i.e. young PhD holders) to serve their institutions. So that new ideas on research, methodology and know-how can be transferred back to propel new waves of activities in local varsities..

new technologies such as nanotech,
robotics, RFID...just to name a few..

But on the other hand, they are NOT willing to pay market rate...and NOT very willing to take in any capable people (who might pose as a threat to existing faculties..)

and NOT to mention the unwritten rules of the ultra-B policy..

and to add a pinch of salt to the wounds, the hiring decision which may take months (3 months and above) in Human Resource Division.
Bureaucratic red tapes which mainly comprises of academics and non-academics (well-connected people) whom sit in those panel of selection committees...

So, come on, what attraction really we expect to present to those aspiring PhDs whom want to serve the our beloved nation?

That probably why Malaysian IPTAs only have as much as 30% of faculties with PhD degree reveals
the poor state of current state affairs ?

We try push them away yet we need those young PhDs so much to lead us out of current trough towards academic execellence..

Isnt that tantamount to the highest order of paradoxical
reality ?

Let's ponder about that...

especially to those whom emphasizes the form and NOT the substance,

who prefer to have strings of words as prefixes to their names...


...forms..YES..gaya ada..
...substance....we afraid e...e..

"An unexamined Life is not worth living"
-- Aristotle

"Those has caused pain, instructs"
--Benjamin Franklin

quoted from "Road Less Travelled" by M Scot Peck

Anonymous said...

An unexamined universitiy is NOT worth the rank.

Anonymous said...

"An unexamined Life is not worth living"
-- Aristotle


isnt that true if we apply to

"An unexamined universitiy is NOT worth the rank"..

"unexamined" in the sense they have their own standards that differ from the rest of world.

Anonymous said...

anonymous: "But on the other hand, they are NOT willing to pay market rate...and NOT very willing to take in any capable people (who might pose as a threat to existing faculties...)"

It's very hard for a country to progress when it is afraid of threats in many ways: threat to existing faculty and seniority (talk about the young PhD's), threat to the national language (is it really a threat?). It is very hard for a nation to progress, when it is over-protective of the values and beliefs that seem to make more sense decades ago than now, when the world becomes flatter and that globalization creeps into our everyday life. In envisioning 2020 for Malaysia, I think, we should think of how the contemporary strategies being practiced by more developed nations work and how Malaysia can learn a trick or two through examining best practices of successful ventures. Let's not be arrogant, let's not be piqued by shortchanging Malaysians of their potential.

Just my 2-cents.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps we can take a cue from companies like the one below on methods to bridge the gap between fresh graduates skills and the actual expectations of employers in the real world.
Infosys U.,the Taj Mahal of training centers

xaverri said...

Whoops its clear the candidate cited above did not attend any of the numerous employability/job-seeking workshops available to us Monash students on campus before he graduated..