Shivani Bhalla

24 Feb Shivani Bhalla

Nationality :Indian
Work location: New Delhi, India
Job title: Senior Officer- Response
Company: Times of India-Times Group
Degree: MSc Corporate Brand Management

Once I finished my course at Brunel, I decided to come to my country and look for a job. The year I graduated was sadly the recession hit year and it was spread across the world. It took me almost a year to find a job a of my choice. Prior to my current job, I was working part time as a Brand Consultant to a branding consultancy in New Delhi itself. I worked there for about 4 months before getting an offer from the Times Group.

What my role involves
We are a group which deals in newspaper production, selling marketing. We have one of the largest & most selling newspapers in the world. The Times of India is the largest English daily newspaper of the world. So we have a sales & marketing arm of the newspaper called ‘Response’; our department looks at the advertising opportunities in the newspaper brands. In response we have a Corporate arm wherein we look at our top advertisers & initiate huge marketing/branding plans for them and enable them to spend more with our newspaper brands and ensure they get maximum response. Apart from this, we also plan integration with other medias owned by our company, like Radio, TV, Magazines, Internet etc.

What I did to get the job
Honestly, I knew the course I have done is specialized and that too from a good UK university. Therefore when I came back to my country, it was badly hit by recession and it was really difficult to find a job. The salary standards had also dipped & I did feel a bit disappointed that after spending a lot of money in the MSc, it was still very difficult to find a job of my choice with a decent salary offering. Anyhow, while I was working as a Brand Consultant (part time) I decided to look for a proper full time job, my criteria was to work for a good brand and get maximum learning out of the same. I had applied to various companies through job sites like, etc. I also tried to approach recruitment consultants but no vain.

What I have gained from the UK experience
I was lucky to find a part time job through the Brunel Job Shop and I worked for 1.5 months at the Alumni & Development office being a part of the Fundraising campaign. This was one of the most amazing experiences I had in the UK and I am very glad to have got this exposure. Since I was doing an MSc programme, it requires a lot of attention regarding assignments, exams and thesis therefore it was unfortunate that I did not get much time to involve myself in societies etc. I was a part of the Indian society and I had a wonderful time being a part of the Indian society and it gave me a fantastic opportunity to meet new people, engage in fun activities, find friends for life & engage with them socially. I was also a part of One world week and it is one of the most interesting initiatives taken by the university & ensures that students share their cultures & values with everyone else. I am in touch with a lot of friends that I made in the UK. I made a huge group of friends and they all belonged to different cultures/countries. Obviously, the kind of exposure & experience I have gained by doing my MSc at Brunel has extremely helped me. I currently work at a newspaper publishing house & one of the biggest ones of the country, there are number of brand initiatives that we take up in order to engage with our readers/ advertisers. Therefore my course, my experiences have helped me shape up and contribute to the presentations, case studies that we prepare here at work.

Top Tips for other internationals

  • One of the best ways is to attend all the Job Fairs that Brunel university organizes during your course time. They are a great point of networking with potential employers and you can get great leads.
  • The other is definitely the Brunel Job Shop- I think the team at job shop are extremely dedicated to their job and really offer excellent levels of service to all students.
  • Enquire about vacancies at different organizations where your friends/family /contacts you made in the universitywork & ask for recommendations from them.
  • One must upload a CV on all online recruitment websites; those things do take time but I know many people who have managed a job through websites use online job portals such as,, www. etc
  • Also it might be a good idea to approach some good recruitment agencies in your city.