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The toughest companies for job interviews

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  • 1. The Toughest Companies for JobInterviewsThink ultra-selective companies like Google give the toughest job interviews? At least 20firms put job candidates through an even tighter ringer, according to a new report.A new study from Glassdoor.com, a Sausalito, Calif.-based workplace culture website,ranked the toughest companies to interview at, analyzing user comments about the interviewpractices of specific companies.The toughest firms put their job candidates through several rounds of interviews riddled withbrainteasers, technical questions and case study analyses. While a few of the usual suspectswere in the top 20, some of the list-makers might surprise you.At the top of the list were: consultancy McKinsey, proprietary trading firm Jane StreetCapital and semiconductor manufacturer Cree Inc. Firms like BP (No. 10), Procter & Gamble(No. 12), investment fund Bridgewater Associates (No. 16) and Amazon (No. 18), followed.Notably absent from the top 20 were tech giants like Google and Apple, both notorious fortheir high levels of competition and challenging interviews.Cutthroat interviews at firms big and small are indicative of the current job climate, saidSamantha Zupan, a Glassdoor spokesperson. "The pressure has certainly been turned up inthe interview process," she said. "You need to go in armed with information and with youreyes as wide open as you can."Some companies made the list for rejecting candidates who made only one mistake during alengthy interview process. "If you screw one interview out of seven, you will not have [a]chance to get hired," said one Glassdoor user, who commented on their experience as asoftware engineering candidate with eBay, which clocked in at No. 19 in the report."At the end, you are asked a simple brain teaser," said a Jane Street Capital quant candidate."I failed the third round phone interview with a trader. I got stuck at one problem and thattrader lost his patience on me." New York City-based Jane Street Capital was ranked secondin the report.Sprinting through marathon interviews felled other candidates. Sean Brody, recruitingmanager at Raleigh, N.C.-based Cree, which landed the No. 3 spot on the list, said that this iswhere he sees candidates slip up the most. "Most of our candidates arent local to Raleigh," hesaid, which means interviewees are flown in for day-long sessions. Stamina is a factor."Toward the end of the day, a candidate may have been with four or five people and may stillhave more to go," Brody explained.Being prepared to explain everything from your personal history and behavioral competencyto your high-tech know-how in a single day may require an exhausting amount of research."Preparation is an absolute must," said one candidate at Boston Consulting, which was No. 5on the list. "I know many people do not prepare, but I certainly did and I performed muchbetter because of it."
  • 2. So what can candidates do to get ready? Be comfortable with your skill-set and experience,rehearse responses to interview questions -- the common and not-so-common -- learn how tobluff, and try not to blow it. But overall, remember that a bombed interview might be a signthat the company wasnt a good fit for you after all."Dont forget that this is an opportunity for the company to interview you and for you tointerview the company," said Zupan. "Its tough out there, but you want to land somewhereyou feel comfortable and feel like you can succeed."Below is the full list of Glassdoors Top 20 Most Difficult Companies for Interviews:1. McKinsey & Co.2. Jane Street Capital3. Cree4. Bain & Co.5. Boston Consulting6. Palantir Technologies7. Teach for America8. A.T. Kearney9. Red Ventures10. BP11. ZS Associates12. Procter & Gamble13. Salesforce.com14. Altria15. Oliver Wyman16. Bridgewater Associates17. Stryker18. Amazon.com19. eBay20. Gallup

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