@Hospice_Houngbo, you asked, "How many of college graduates would have started working if they were offered a job just after they had finished high school?" and I think I can answer that one because that's what happened in my case.
I was offered a job doing exactly what I wanted to be doing right out of High School (I was freelancing during High School, which was very unusual but not impossible). Despite that, there was incredible pressure to go to college, so I went. But I only lasted a year: I ended up working most of the time anyways. And I got right to work and never thought about going back. At this point I have more than a decade of professional experience, so the lack of a formal education matters a lot less.
I agree that it seems like college is the only option in this society, but perhaps you might be interested to read this article: "If not college, then what?"
I have also encountered few good interviews. What I have marked is more learnerd the person, better interview he conducts. I generally liked following apporach for technical part of interview. First conduct basic written test for MCQ of about 100 questions of general electronics. This helps screen out above average candiadate.
Next, after initial introductions, aks candiate to give two projects of interest he has done in recent past and he likes most. We discuss these two projects in depth for about 30 to 60 minutes.
After that, asked him to give two topics of his choice, e.g. siganl processing, high speed, analog, FPGA IP cores ADC/DCA, sensors, control etc. Again we discuss these two topics in depth for about 30 to 60 minutes.
This whole process is very friendly. All question are provided with multiple clues to reach to final answer. The basic quest is to find out what candidates knows and not about what he does not know.
Again, both interesting and not so interesting part of work is briefed to candidate. So he is not dissapointed when recruited. Most engineers are capable of quickly learning and adepting to requirement, and I generally give them few weeks to come at par with all other and give them assignmnet slowly in increasing difficulty.
We reevaluate their performance with higher management after six months and once year. And always they do very good job for company and management is happy for enhancing their future.
I too have seen a wide range of common mistakes during the process; the biggest of which is the one that's driven by the "I have a good feeling about this one" mindset. Many people who interview candidates are often unhatted for the process. As a result, they see and hear what they want to or fail to look for key information. One way to cover this AND get a better look is to run the candidate through an proficiency/IQ/aptitude test - only if you think you want to take it to a higher level of course. The exam takes about 45 minutes and will give you an objective look at strengths, weaknesses that don't necessarily surface from below the social veneer of an interview.
Employers who do this often avoid a great deal of stress or mis-steps.
I like that, Flyingscot. Instead of applying the term "rock star" to anyone who is outstanding in his/her career, we should say "rocket scientist" because the desirable attributes really are brains and skill rather than star appeal.
This is an interesting article and I look forward to the second part. I agree with both statements. I think many times there are way too many people involved in the hiring process and this causes chaos and sometimes scares off the potential hire. I also agree that many times companies are looking for the "superhero" that they can bring in and save the day. Many times very qualified candidates get overlooked because they don't stand out like the "superhero", even though they are just as qualified. The hiring manager needs to stop thinking like the grass is greener on the other side.
I was amused to read the phrase "rock star" associated with what are predominantly "engineering" centric companies. I personally would cringe at the thought of hiring a "rock star" to do any job that required attention to detail, judgement and clinical techincal thinking. Give me a "rocket scientist" any day ;-)
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.