Monika Pratiwi teammates

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Can you imagine landing a job at your dream company? Monika Pratiwi (pictured in the middle), Full-Time MBA 2017-18, has made her dream a reality and landed a post-graduation role at Google. Monika’s new position will be Account Manager in Strategy for Large Customer Sales at Google Advertising in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Monika credits the help of Imperial College Business School Careers as fundamental in helping her secure the role, from helping with her CV to conducting multiple mock interviews.

We speak to Monika in more detail about how the Business School helped get her job at Google and her Careers Consultant Emma Cooper’s top tips for getting a job in the tech industry.

Before the Business School

Before joining us at Imperial College, MBA, Monika worked in the banking sector at Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG). In the role of Relationship Manager, her clients ranged from local corporates in the finance, mining and retail sector.

For the six months prior to her MBA, Monika worked at a start-up called Grab, a ride-sharing app in Southeast Asia that has recently acquired all of Uber’s assets in the region. She crossed responsibility for two roles, Partner Engagement Lead and Product Lead.

Applying for a job at Google

Just before commencing the MBA, Monika saw an announcement on the Business School’s online jobs board page inviting MBA students to apply for a job at Google in the Asia Pacific region. Monika was then invited to go to an APAC MBA gathering in London at Google’s offices.

In total, around 70 MBA students from the UK and Europe attended this gathering. Here, Google explained to them what APAC MBA is, what the interview process is like and the open positions.

I decided on the Sales position because I really enjoyed my time as a Relationship Manager doing Sales for big corporations in my previous job at MUFG. One of main perks I earned from being in sales was to also learn about clients that are coming from different industries. I expect to not only have a deep understanding on Google’s product but also but also to be exposed to Google’s customers. After telling them I wanted to get into Sales, they looked at my CV and I was invited for an interview.  I will also be in charge for Strategy in Large Customer Sales.

Application and interviews

Imperial College Business School Careers provides a personalised experience to help MBA candidates with their career journey. This includes a careers consultant who provides one-to-one support through their career journey, career resources and skills sessions to develop negotiation skills, interview techniques and more.

After finding out that she had secured a first-round interview with Google, Monika arranged to meet with her Careers Consultant, Emma Cooper. Although the interview date hadn’t been set at that point, it was coming up in two to three weeks and she wanted to start working on it as soon as possible.

The first step was to work on an updated CV to send to Google. Monika attended a drop-in session with Careers where her coach and another consultant in the team, who is an expert in the technology sector, helped format her experience into a one-page CV.

The next step was preparing for the interviews, which was the part of the application that Monika was most concerned about. In total, Monika conducted four mock interviews with her consultant. Emma said:

Monika is a really credible person, she clearly knew what was important to share with Google. The passion for tech came naturally to her. The improvements we worked on were how she could frame and shape her experiences to be easy for them to understand. Also we worked on the confidence in the stories she was presenting and that was the improvement we saw throughout.

Careers also sent Monika example questions from Imperial College students who interviewed at Google in the last three years, which she found very helpful. Monika was also able to get advice before the interview process from a member of her Full-Time MBA cohort who had previously worked at Google. Monika said:

I think it would have been hard to get the job without the Imperial College Business School Careers because the mock interview process helped me a lot to shape my interviews.

Emma noted that there were many contributing factors to Monika’s success, including that she is a self-starter, made the most of the opportunities presented to her and was really good at reaching out to the Careers team and getting support from them. She said:

Monika had done a lot of career thinking before she began her MBA and that passion in the tech sector, particularly an innovative company, was really clear. However, she was really open to new ideas which is really important. She took the opportunity to explore her options and listened to feedback and used this to help inform her decision. She was successful early on because she was proactive and used feedback to get where she wanted.

From MBA to Google

Monika will apply the skills she has learnt on the MBA to her new role at Google.

Since the position is in Sales as well as Strategy, her modules in Marketing, Managing Negotiations, Hi-tech Strategy, and Design Thinking will be helpful to the new position. As will be the diverse cohort she has worked with. Monika said:

During my MBA I worked with fellow students who come from very diverse backgrounds. I think that will help me a lot at Google because there will people from all over the world working there.

Monika is more excited than nervous for the new chapter in her post-MBA life. She said:

Google is one of the biggest companies in technology and is still growing. Also, their innovation is mind-blowing. At the moment they also have a lot of innovative new products and they will continue to do so. By joining the team, I will be able to be part of a company that changes the world so that will be very satisfying. I am excited to sell Google products and work in a team that have brilliant brains. 

Career Consultant Emma’s top tips for getting a job in the tech industry:

  1. You have to be able to demonstrate your passion for technology, this is something both small and large tech firms talk about. You also have to have a clear passion for the company and an understanding of the company culture. Employers want to hire people who are just as passionate about their products as they are. A question that is often asked is which of the company’s products do you most admire or use the most.
  2. Make sure your knowledge and understanding is current because the industry changes fast. If you are an expert in particular area, make sure you are up to date with what is going on. Show and demonstrate that you can work in a fast-changing market.
  3. When students look at the sector, they often look at the larger companies like Google and Amazon. You can have an amazing career at these companies, but we also recommend our students to look at start-ups too. There are thousands of start-ups out there who are doing amazing innovative work in the tech industry.

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Nicole Pires

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