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A COOL MANAGEMENT SITE
Web Watch

Most management websites focus on informing students about test patterns, entrance exams or admission alerts. But here is one that gives a peek into life on the other side of the fence — a site that talks about the rigours and joys of B-school education and gives an insight into the job market. Like its name, www.coolavenues.com is a cool site for all management needs — a one-stop shop for the latest B-school news, admission alerts, hot jobs, placement surveys and interactive forums. The website is positioned as a complete portal for aspiring MBAs, B-school students and management graduates.

The site is quite exhaustive. On top is a live ticker. The main part of the page has eight modules: MBA alumni, B-schools, MBA aspirants, knowledge zone, companies research centre, career resource centre, placement survey and cool avenues services. The lower part of the page lists B-school events, news and discussion threads as part of the interactive forum. On the right hand side is a long column where you can view the latest admission alerts, informative articles on management issues, updates on CAT 2009, information on executive MBA, MBA jobs, alerts on seminars and MDPs, personal accounts on B-school life and read jokes and some poetry as well.

For those preparing for management entrance exams, the site offers comprehensive information about CAT, XAT, MAT, CET and GMAT. From institute profiles to FAQs answered by admission co-ordinators of particular schools, the site has everything you would like to know about doing an MBA in India. While student diaries give a glimpse of life inside B-schools, articles by industry stalwarts give a holistic insight into management issues.

Promoted by Zygote Technologies Pvt Ltd, the portal was launched in February 2000 and is clearly one of the most happening MBA community sites in India. The site is trendy and the writing style and font are simple and clear. It is widely accessed by management professionals and students across India. The only sore point is the design — the use of colours is abysmally low and the site can do with some streamlining of data and layout.

While the website is packed with information, the layout is quite chaotic and can be confusing in the beginning. You can end up on the same page by clicking various slugs.

For instance, admission alerts is a separate slug listed on the top in a blue banner; it is again listed on the right hand side column titled What’s New This Week and you will again be directed to the same page if you click the MBA aspirants tag.

However, the site’s USP is that it is regularly updated and comes with several cool features: for instance, the mentor programme that enables B-school alumni to help their juniors. From how to do a project to guidance about choosing an elective, you can post your queries on the site and these will be addressed by a panel of experts. The other hip feature is the online bookstore that sells management books at discounted prices. There is even a classifieds page where you can find second-hand notes or even a roommate.

Enjoy the best of campus talk and management jokes at cafe@coolavenues. If you have a creative streak, you can send in your write-ups as the site encourages articles from students.

For the MBA graduate the site has loads of information about resumes, interviews, tips on networking and job hopping and also a section on writing e-resumes. The B-school student can keep himself updated about events and news in other institutes. The interactive discussion forum is a great section to get in touch with other students, alumni and experts. At the time of going to print the site listed 1,031 active users.

Here is one website that is going to stand you in good stead for a long time to come.

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