Does having work experience an advantage in UPSC Interview?

The UPSC Personality Test is the third and final stage of the civil service examination. The UPSC interview is a one-on-one personality exam. The IAS interview is a 20-minute long interaction with a UPSC panel that may lead to a position in the desired cadre/service. This round is designed to assess applicants’ mental acuity, general knowledge, social etiquette, and overall personality. The questions in the IAS interview round cover a wide range of topics.

Candidates who clear the UPSC Prelims and Mains are invited to the UPSC Interview. Following the interview, a final merit list is created based on the marks obtained in the Mains exam and the Interview stage. The interview is usually based on the candidate’s background and the optional subject taken by the candidate. In this article, we will look at whether past job experience has any bearing on interview selection.

Note- Visit Essential Tips to Crack IAS Interview, to ace the UPSC interview.

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Factors on which Candidate is tested in UPSC Interview

  • The UPSC interview questions are designed to assess candidates’ mental acuity, general awareness, social etiquette, and overall personality. The questions in the IAS interview are not designed to test only theoretical knowledge, thus instead of mugging up the facts, applicants should concentrate on their soft skills.
  • The UPSC interview panel questions candidates based on the information provided in the DAF form. Thus, an applicant must be well-versed on everything listed in the DAF. For example, in the case of a candidate’s name—or any notable person with the same name – the meaning of the name/surname, place of birth, state to which one belongs etc.

Note– Learn all about UPSC Interview- Process, Guidance and Questions in the linked article.

Importance of having a Prior Work Experience in UPSC Interview

Various applicants assume that past job experience will help them in the Civil Services interview, as it does in some management tests. In the UPSC interview, however, no such benefit is given, and applicants are evaluated primarily on how they perform on the day of the interview as well as the marks received in the Mains examination. Whether you are a recent graduate who has just turned 21, a housewife over 30 years old with no professional experience or someone with an experience of 10 years in the corporate sector, everyone will be regarded equally and purely on the basis of their performance in the exam. Work experience may benefit a candidate’s soft skills and confidence in answering questions during the interview stage, but it has no extra marks in the Interview.

There are many examples of the candidates who have successfully qualified for the exam despite having no previous work experience. Tina Dabi who secured AIR- 1 in UPSC 2015 was a fresh graduate. Similarly every year numerous candidates with no prior work experience not only qualify but emerge toppers in the Exam. Similarly, many candidates who have many years of work experience fail to make it to the final list. Thus, don’t get nervous if other candidates seem to have more experience or knowledge. Everyone present at the venue is in the same boat and all are there on merit, including you.

The IAS interview questions are more akin to a discussion between the UPSC board and the candidate. In general, an IAS interview lasts roughly 20 minutes, and candidates are asked questions on a wide range of topics. The UPSC IAS interview panel is a challenging experience, but prepared with facts and information, a confident applicant with suitable soft skills may easily ace the interview.

Following the IAS Interview, candidates go through UPSC Medical Tests which you can know by checking the linked article. The commission declares the UPSC Civil Services Final Results after successful completion of the interviews. Candidates can fetch the result in the linked article.

UPSC aspirants can also get tips on How to Speak Confidently in the UPSC Interview at the linked article.

We hope the above article helped you clear your doubt. You can visit the BYJU’S website for more information on the government exams.

You may also like to go through articles which are relevant to UPSC IAS examination, given in the table below:

6 Quirky Ways to Beat Stress during UPSC Exam Preparation Motivational Books to Read for an IAS Aspirant NCERT Notes
UPSC Notes UPSC Syllabus IAS Toppers
Study Hacks for Working Professionals to Crack UPSC Exam This Day in History A Journey from Call Letter to Interview Room: IAS Interview


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