I had my interview with Morgan Stanley for their Summer Internship program on 14th September 2018. Morgan Stanley was hiring for their Mumbai office for the role of Quantitative Model Auditor. The role was for their Internal Audit Department.
I had opted for Quantitative Finance as my specialization in my profile and was therefore shortlisted for the selection process. Morgan Stanley was looking for Quantitative Finance people for this role as the role involved skills in Model Development, Stochastic Calculus, Statistics, and Monte Carlo methods along with domain skills in financial markets and products. There was also a focus on communication and interpersonal skills as Internal Audit needs to work with the various departments of Morgan Stanley for data collection, compliance management, and risk analysis and modelling.
This was the first time Morgan Stanley was coming to IFMR and as they were hiring for a pure Quantitative Finance role, I was very keen to do well and get selected. I also was aware of Morgan Stanley’s brand value and its reputation as the largest investment banking and advisory company in the world which made it more challenging.
The selection process started with a Written test to test our knowledge of Probability, Statistics, Stochastic Calculus, and Quantitative Techniques. The test had questions to test our conceptual and problem-solving skills and covered topics which I had studied in my engineering and QABD at IFMR. The written test was moderately difficult. After the written test, we waited for a while to know the results. Nine of us were shortlisted for the interview process.
The shortlisted students had to then go through a selection process where we had to go through 3 parallel rounds of interviews. Two of the interviews were technical and domain specific and the third one was an HR interview.
The technical interviews had questions on Finance, understanding of internal audit, risk management, understanding of analytics and data interpretation and the use of technical tools. Since I had worked on both Excel and MATLAB and done some process modelling in my Chemical engineering, I was able to handle the questions on analytics and risk quite well. There were also a few business situation questions to test my decision making and analysis skills which I felt I managed to answer satisfactorily. This was followed by some general questions on my role and contribution in the committees in engineering college and IFMR and how I organized technical conferences and events. There were also a couple of questions on my internships and project work in engineering and my learning from these experiences and how they have benefited me. There were also the expected questions on what I knew about Morgan Stanley and why I wanted to do an internship there. They were also keen to know about the paper I had presented on Data Analytics in one of the technical conferences in engineering college. The interviews concluded with a few questions on my interests other than academics and about my family. Both the technical interviewers were very friendly, made you feel at ease and were non-intimidating. I felt at the end of the interviews that I had done a fairly good job and had handled the questions on risk, financial markets quite confidently even with my limited background in these areas.
The final interview by the panel was an HR one and the lady from HR covered some of the personal details in my resume like my academic profile, the schools I went to and my family background. She again asked me about why I wanted to do an internship at Morgan Stanley and whether I had any issues with a Mumbai location. She also wanted to understand the work I had done in my engineering college in the IAESTE and IICHE committees to assess my event organizing and interpersonal skills. The interview was open-ended, highly interactive and very frank and open.
Once the interview process was completed by the 3 member panel, we were asked to wait for the final results. After a little wait, I was informed by Placecom that I along with 2 others had been shortlisted for the final interview which would be done by a lady from Hong Kong who was part of their Morgan Stanley leadership team. I was a little apprehensive about this telephonic interview as it was a first time experience for me and as it was being done by someone from Hongkong I was worried whether I would be able to understand the accent well enough to respond well. After the initial preliminaries, she asked me 4 problems on probability and statistics which I managed to answer correctly. I was delighted when she told me that I had answered correctly. Once I had answered the questions correctly, she proceeded to ask me questions on my academic profile, family background and my committee work in college. She concluded the telephonic interview by asking me a couple of questions on the Data Analytics paper I had presented at a technical conference. I was very happy with my experience and was delighted to have done my first international telephonic interview well.
I went back to my room after talking to Placecom hoping for the best as I had given the selection process my best shot and was hopeful of getting selected. Two hours later, I received a call from Placecom telling me that I had been selected by Morgan Stanley for their summer internship program and I was in seventh heaven. I am very grateful to Ms. Nagarani and the Placecom team for all the help and support which made me achieve this milestone in my academic life and which will hopefully lay the foundation for a successful professional career.
I would like to thank the institute IFMR for facilitating this opportunity and the faculty for making this possible. The exposure which the institute provides to Bloomberg, Wall street journal etc. as well have surely been of great help to me and my fellow students.
"1st year MBA student at IFMR GSB Krea University"