The Alumni Blog team shares with you the counsel from an  alumnus working with Shell to give our final years a quick look into oil and gas as a career choice.  This article hopes to prove insightful on Placement Interviews, Skill Sets and Expectations.

1012502_10151781471177789_988561695_nWe thank Kshitij Suhag (Batch of 2010, Mechanical Engineering)  for taking time off his hectic schedule and answering us with a great deal of thought and patience.

1.What is it that made you choose Oil and Gas as an Industry?

If I say that in insti I had realized the importance of energy and oil and gas and the scope of its impact on the world in general, I am sure I would be kidding myself. In all candor I had never even thought that I would get Shell. Not only was it low on the public radar in general, it was also one of the best core companies out there. While I was vying for the HULs & ITCs of the world, Shell just happened!

2.How do you think the students could arrive at the same as a decision while having multiple ‘Non-Core’ options in front of them?

Despite Shell being a “core” company, there is a variety of roles that are on offer in Shell. As some of you might have seen from the Malampaya case study that was conducted as a part of the Shell day, though roles on one hand are grounded in technical expertise, on the other hand Shell requires and offers a wide view of projects and the business. Shell offers roles where you apply and build on the technical base and are not stuck to it. My personal example would be a case and point in this regard.

3.What is your profile at Shell? What are the profiles for IITM hires?

I am a Project Risk Management Engineer at Shell currently anchored out of Bangalore. Our group is part of Shell Projects & Technology that is an internal technical and project management consultancy, with me being on the Project Services side. In layman terms, my role is to lead discussions with Shell capital projects across Asia-pacific (upstream & downstream) and help understand all that can go wrong in their projects (risks), try to put process in place to prevent it from happening (mitigation) and analyze these risks to allocate enough cost & schedule contingency for the same. This year I am not sure what exact profiles Shell is recruiting for, but Front End Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Process Engineering, Project Engineering, Project Services and Wells Engineering are few of the roles that grads from IITM have been hired for in the past.

4.How should one prepare for the Shell selection procedure?

I had my Shell Recruitment Day in 2009 and things have changed quite a bit since then so I don’t think my exact tips would be useful in this respect. Back then, since there was a technical interview we were expected to know one of our projects inside out. But apart from that there was an interview & a GD based on a case study, something that one can’t really prep for.

5.What did you gain at IIT Madras that has helped you in your current career path?

I cannot pinpoint one particular thing that I did or one thing that gave me a particular advantage. It was indeed the whole holistic experience of multitasking: handling multiple coordships, academics, HS minor, internships… the whole gamut. Things as small as the documentary that you saw on LAN or the quiz question that you came across will help in your small talk while working in an international and multicultural setting. Hence the overall exposure that I got as a student, both inside and outside the classroom & hostel has helped me diversify in my career.

P.S.: Final years who may have queries regarding job profiles and placement fundaes with respect to Oil and Gasand especially to Shell  may comment on this post or contact directly the Blog team ( to reach the alumni mentioned above. The team wishes to create an IIT Madras Network to enhance the placement process and experience for our final years. They are also requested to keep in mind that the above are merely guidelines that pass-outs wish to pass on and are not rigid or sure-shot ways to make it through interviews.

The Blog Team wishes all the final years sitting for placements all the very best of luck in their endeavours!

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