Office Space…Filled?

Dear Employers:

I have been on the job hunt for the first time in nine years. It has been a very harrowing experience to say the least, as so much has changed in such a relatively short period of time. During this five-month-long journey, I have encountered a number of issues that appear to have made my, and undoubtedly many other job seekers’, experience more difficult than it needs to be. Now, let me preface my concerns by saying that in no way am I attempting to tell you how to do your job.

However…

I really am.

Continuous improvement is an integral part of any organization, right? Well, here are a few ways by which to accomplish that:

1. Clean-up.

If you have filled a position or positions within your company, then logic dictates that you would ensure that you have completed all necessary follow-up processes to remove said position(s) from your careers/HR pages and job boards in a timely fashion so that people do not waste their time tailoring their résumés and cover letters to fit the verbose (and often superfluous) requirements you outline. It really is a pain in the ass, not to mention disheartening, for a job seeker to pour one’s heart and soul into an application for a position for which one knows he or she is qualified only to receive a response indicating that the desired position has been filled. That time and effort could have been better spent applying for a position for which a job seeker would actually be a contender.

2. Respond.

I get it. You have hundreds upon hundreds of job seekers applying to be a part of your team. You have received résumés that range from the professionally written to those written in Burnt Sienna Crayola. However, I am pretty sure that a minute percentage of those job seekers take the time to actually follow up on a résumé submission. I know I sure do. If a job seeker has taken the time to make sure that they are still a contender for that sweet gig with your company so that they can show you what they’re working with while increasing your revenue, perpetuating your brand, or achieving some other objective, then the very least you can do is respond to a direct inquiry. It’s bad enough that algorithms, rather than human eyes, determine by keywords which candidates should be interviewed. It seems rather unprofessional to let a job seeker’s direct message to you just sit in cyberspace. Moreover, think about the reputation of your company. It’s not just employees of past and present who write reviews about you; job seekers do to, and if they were not happy with the hiring process, then the world will also know. Don’t believe me? Check out some reviews at Glassdoor.

3. Feedback.

This is in reference to the rejection letter sent/phone call made to candidates. Again, I completely understand that there is a sifting process involved to screen out candidates for interviews and that difficult decisions have to be made in terms of who gets the immediate rejection, and who goes through first-, second-, and third-round interviews. However, again, take into account that it is not just your time that is being spent here. Many times, job seekers are tapping into their meager monetary means to travel to a remote location, usually in the boondocks and just barely accessible by public transportation, only to have a 20-minute meeting that could have been held via Skype or FaceTime. If the job seeker is lucky enough, then he or she may be invited back to sit with someone else for another 20 minutes to be asked the same questions that were asked 2 days prior. The job seeker is then told that they will hear back within a certain amount of time (which almost never happens), and when they do, they receive a form letter saying something like:

The advertising for this position has attracted a number of qualified and highly skilled individuals which has made our selection process difficult to distinguish.

After careful review of your credentials along with information gained during your interview we have decided not to progress further with your application at this time.

Really? That’s it? So, the job seeker has no right to specificity? As stated above, job seekers write reviews about employers, too, and they will not hesitate to note a company’s lack of transparency regarding the actual hiring decision. Feedback on the interview, on the résumé, the background check, and so forth, should be provided – and not “as available,” as it obviously has to be available in order for a decision to be made. That way, the job seeker can incorporate the feedback (assuming it is valid)  into their repertoire so that when they have another interview opportunity, they won’t blow it. Also, “overqualified” is never a valid reason to turn someone down for a job. Though a job seeker’s credentials may scream “Oh, this person will get bored after three days with us and start eating his toenails at his desk while watching Breaking Bad on Netflix,” how do you know whether the expectations of the position for which the job seeker has applied do not fall in line with the job seeker’s interests? It’s one thing to determine whether someone is intellectually and aptitudinally able to do the work. However, you do not govern what a person’s professional passion is. If the job seeker was not interested in the work, then he or she would not have even bothered to apply.

I sincerely hope that you take these suggestions under advisement. You are passing up many people like me who would love to work for you, who would be loyal to your company and, and who would exemplify the company’s mission. Well, actually, I cannot really speak on behalf of other job seekers, but I know that I would kick butt.

Best,

Harried Job Seeker

P.S.: Perhaps you need to hire someone to take care of these processes for you. I’m available, FYI. 😎

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