Thursday, July 11, 2013

My Qatar Airways Cabin Crew Application

I had my last recruitment experience with Qatar Airways June of 2012. I only made it to the final interview but the whole experience is something I'll always look back to and feel proud of. I'm not a flight attendant yet but I admit I still dream to be. I just don't want to rush things and stress myself about it. It's something I cannot put away from my thoughts but I just cling onto this principle, "Jesus is my source of hope and joy and not the things I thought could bring those in this world." I'd like to settle myself there first and wait if I would really become an FA in the future or not.

Anyhoo, the whole experience with QR recruitment team was nerve wracking. My heart beat's pumping all the time and my mind couldn't stop racing until finally, I received their regret email. Of course, after that, I also felt sad and disappointed. So, imagine all the waves of emotions I've coursed through in three months time.

I'll just try to summarize my whole experience using numbers and bullets and I hope you won't mind. So, basically, I went through four selection processes in three days, Initial Screening (Open Day), English Test, Group Dynamics (Both happened during the Assessment Day) and lastly, Final Interview. I am still grateful I made it to the final interview because as every QR applicant would agree, each selection process wasn't easy.

Open Day: Initial Screening

The initial screening/ resume submission/ initial interview happened during the Open Day. Three or four recruiters from different sides of the world and cultures receive the resume, do the small talks while screening each applicant. Everyone's lined up from the registration and initial reach test up to the submission of their resume. Once it is your turn, the recruiter will look/ stare at you (as if scrutinizing) while talking. They'll ask one to more than two questions but the number of questions asked is not the basis of your acceptance. I've attended more than two ODs and the questions I got were mostly, "What's your current job?", "Why do you want to be a flight attendant?", "Is this your first time to apply?", or "Is this your number?". Based on my experience, when they ask if the number in the resume is your active number, you most likely get the call.

At Manila Hotel with hubby
Tips: Wear location-appropriate make up. I wear heavier makeup if the hotel lighting is gloomy. And also, sit and walk straight but not stiff. Smile and relax. It's okay to interact to steam off the tension but, do not be too loud.

Assessment Day

1. Orientation

This is a 45-minute to 1-hour orientation about Qatar Airways. What will be tackled are QR's mission and vision, management, flights, fleets, etc. In here, they will also discuss about the Cabin crew's salary and benefits. There's question and answer portion. It's nice to participate but honestly, I didn't. Because I didn't know the answers. :) Former and current cabin crews in the room actively participated that time. It may or may not affect your chance of getting to the next stage but since I passed the first half of the assessment day without raising my hand, you don't have to worry if you weren't able to participate.

2. English test

If you didn't get a chance to participate during the orientation, you still have this period to create a good impression. During the exam (this exam is easy but still needs right amount of attention), each candidate will be called one by one to do a secondary reach test. During the reach test, you will remove your shoes and blazer and will be asked if you have any birth marks, scars or moles. There are two spot lights in front of you while this is happening. I bet this is so they can look at your skin clearer. Then, after a 15-20 minute break, everyone starts praying for their numbers to be selected for the group dynamics [at the start of the day, a number is assigned to each candidate].

Tips: Stand and walk with your posture straight and graceful. Smile and move and speak with poise and right amount of confidence. And then again, SMILE. Try relaxing and enjoying the moment to make this natural. Makeup for hotel lighting/ indoors still appropriate.

3. Group Dynamics

Another selection process sets off. The remaining ones will be divided into 3 to 4 groups. Each group are independent of each other. It's not a group versus other group competition. Based on my observation, they are only after seeing how each candidate works in a group.

A question will be given to each batch of groups. After the first batch of groups are done with the exercise,  recruiters will call out the remaining groups to enter the room.

I did the group dynamics twice. At first, the challenge was to think of three persons to represent and uphold QR's mission and vision that would help promote a new Qatar Airways Hotel. Our team thought of a local beauty queen/ architect, Obama and another local icon (can't remember who). Anyway, we were given a limited time to talk and finalize our answer. After that, the two groups were asked to face each other and every member had a chance to talk. Unfortunately, on my first GD, I was caught talking to my team mates about our answer and was scolded. And I didn't make it to the final interview.

For my second GD, the recruiters asked us to create a chocolate brand that would be given away to customers. Create a logo, design the chocolate and its wrapper/ box and make a tag line. During this exercise, I waited patiently for my turn to talk. And while others were talking, I smiled, nodded and listened to their ideas. While listening, I'm also thinking of a BRILLIANT idea that would make our chocolate the best! When it's my turn, I talked to the group smiling, my voice not too high or too low but clear. After this, another selection was made. Numbers of those who made it to the final interview were called one by one. And surprisingly, my number was called.

Tips: Keep your poise while sitting. Be respectful yet smart when you talk. And smile while interacting.

Final Interview

The final interview was a day or two after the GD. It was scheduled at the Ipams office. My batch were asked to choose and agree on our final interview schedule. I chose the afternoon sched since I'll be coming from work.

We were asked to be there 30 minutes before our schedule. So I went there 45 minutes before my time. Since interview of other candidates were fast, I got called in earlier than expected. The interview took not more than 15 minutes for me. I don't know about other applicants but mine did. I put on the same amount of makeup I had during the OD and AD, not aware of what it would look like inside Ipams office. I had no idea then. Their office was still in Manila at that time. If I have known that their office has many windows, I would have put on lighter make up. Anyways, the next time I'll have the same opportunity, I'll make my makeup as natural as possible. :)

The questions were mostly about my filled out QR application form which the recruiters gave at the end of GD, right after selecting those who will undergo FI. They asked about my hair color, visible marks, tattoos, scars, current employment. And I think the most important question they asked me was this, "Was there an instance in your current job that you and your colleagues or boss had a misunderstanding? What happened? Why did it happen? And what did you learn at the end?" I won't tell you what I answered but to cut the story, after three months or less, I received a regret letter (It's still in my email as a memento, haha).

One of the photos I submitted during the Final Interview
What I also can't forget was, right before the interview ended, one of the recruiters remarked that I have a close up smile. :) a token before they send me their regret email, lol.

Tips: First, as a disclaimer, the tips I write here are my personal opinion and are based on what I have observed or experience. It may or may not apply to everyone. I guess what matters during the final interview is how you will show them that you are fit for the job. I'm not saying you should have the experience but your answers might affect how they will perceive you as someone who can be a cabin crew or not. Aside from that, still apply other factors you've learned during the first and second day.