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My how things have changed since I stumbled into the job market a while back. I'm gathering ideas for a page about how to approach finding a new job or changing jobs in today's world of giant job boards, email thank-you notes and unacknowledged application submissions. I have plenty of ideas about what might be useful to readers, but I'd really like to hear from you. What's the biggest challenge you face, have faced, are facing, in the search for your perfect job? Is it how to format your resume? Is it protocol? (Do you send a hand-written thank you note after an interview, or is it okay to email?).
What about your friends? How do you network?
Please leave comments.
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Bureaucracy affiliated with Resume validation!! Just for the fact that my Resume does not carry a degree it is rejected by the mere non-technical people who have no idea of my potential or skillset!!!
I'm not currently looking, but I found "unacknowledged application submissions" to be an issue when I was looking around. Plenty of places won't even take the time to send an email saying, "sorry the job is filled". If someone took the time to make a resume and cover letter for a job, I don't think it's asking too much to expect a generic email back saying "sorry, that job was filled". I also found an HR department that didn't even return a phone message (and this is not a case of just being a really lousy candidate, because I was calling to clarify something on the job posting before sending in my application).
You might find some useful info in the career and job resource guide we put together this month. We include links to several HR recruiters who might address your specific concerns in their blogs.
I found a number of things to be big issues. One of them was that recruitment agencies appeared to have most of the jobs - not a few with all of the roles I wanted, but a lot of agencies each holding one or two of the roles I wanted. Thing is, I have found a number of things tend to be true of recruitment agencies; 1) They are eager to get you in, take copies of your ID, get you to repeat verbally and in person everything you told them already and what is on your CV that they have in front of them. 2) They do not call you back after the first or second jobs they put you forward for. 3) After putting you forward for one or two jobs (if you are lucky), the contact name you have for that agency does not have any work for you, and often is not at their desk or is on another call or is in a meeting or in training etc, and does not return your calls or reply to your emails. 4) They have a lot of jobs for managers, project managers, sales managers/executives and secretaries/pa's. The other thing that is an issue for me is that I do not want to do extensive research on each comapny and role that I apply for. This is because I am applying for a lot of roles - and it is time consuming to research extensively and then translate all the spin into English to get behind the words the agencies/marketing departments/HR people use. None of these people say anything in a straightforward way, none of them are up front. That's marketing folks. When I actually get into the job - it is not as advertised, and the role spec does not match up if you take the more literal view of the spec. Of course, if you take the agency/marketing/HR view... So put all that together and then ask me to tailor my CV for each one of these roles following extensive research and translation. No - is the short and sweet answer. There has to be an easier and more honest way of doing this. I will have to have a lot of patience I suppose. I'm studying for a degree to improve my chances, degree is in Law so I will double up on that chance. Phew - hard work this.
I am but a mere Manufacturing Technician for a major corporation, but I rountinely help do hiring interviews, including resume review, phone verifications, and face to face interviews. The HR folks I work with design technical questions, that they have answer sheets for, but have no idea how the answer is arrived at, they are HR, not tech's. Poorly trained HR personel are everywhere, and are the major reason good people go unhired, and slugs with degrees get jobs. HR folks seldome know anything about the jobs for which they are hiring. Best way to gain access to hiring is through networking!
Descrimination. I am a financial analyst with 16 yrs of solid experience from a well known publicly traded company. I sent my resume online to recruitment agencies and was so happy to get 2 calls in just an hour. One interviewed me on the phone and was impressed by my qualifications and experience, she said it would be easy for her to find me a job. then suddenly she asked me when did I graduate, when i told her 1975, she just continued and then told me that she will send me an email to get me into an interview with a company. She never emailed or called me back. I wanted to call her back but why bother its obvious its my age.
work sucks but we need the bucks
For 10 years I was an Office Manager for a mortgage company. The real estate market went bazurk and our company was bought out by a larger one. We all lost our jobs. A few months went by and a friend asked if I wanted a job cleaning offices at night,the money was good and the hours were better, so I did that for about 4 years. I got burnt out and missed "dressing up" for work, so I started sending out resumes. I was called for 3 jobs I sent resumes out to, the first was a small office, I got hired and was told within 2 weeks I would hear from him on a start date. Yay I got a job, 2 days later I got a call saying there were some setbacks and he couldnt afford to hire an Asst. at this time. Ok, minor setback, got a call for the 2nd resume I sent out,(during my 10yrs I also worked part time in a beauty salon)we spoke on the phone, she loved me and wanted to meet to finalize things, as soon as I walked in and she realized I wasnt 100 pounds, she seemed polite and she said to me "thank you so much for coming here but I have hired the neice of one of our stylists, but thank you for your time and if it doesnt work out with her, we'll give you a call." Ok, thats a little depressing but not a problem, I had another interview set up for the next day. I got to my 3rd interview and the man asks me "why should I hire you instead of the girl I interviewed yesterday who has a family with mouthes to feed?", Something in me snapped and I said to him "You should ask yourself why your wanting to hire her, I wont call you to tell you that there is a fog delay and I'm going to be late, or little Suzy is sick today so I need to stay home, or oh no, my son has been suspended from school and I need to go deal with this" I said to him "I drive a brand new 4x4, I live 10 minutes from here, I dont even need snow as an excuse for me being late, thats why you should hire me, instead of the girl you talked to yesterday with the family and mouthes to feed." He looked at me and said "well your personality is charming and you're put together well, we'll call you." It's been a week.
I have a an MA (in History, ugh!), spent 9 years in the US Marine Corps (including 16 months in Iraq), and have a myriad of skills (including the ability to speak 6 languages). I have been unemployed for nearly four months! I have received a few calls from some employment agencies but, like one of the posters abouve, they told me "We'll be in touch" and do not call or email. I am now attempting to get a job at a restaurant, since waiting tables seems to be the only thing available. So much for hiring a Vet...I guess I should have gone for the MBA.
I have been looking for a job for 2 years. I have a master's degree and have been teaching adults for the past 9 years. I've sent out 86 resume's, and I'd say 80% did not even bother to respond to me. The few interviews I was able to get I didn't get the job; a few said I was over qualified, a few said they were hiring someone with more experience (even though I've practically been doing that job for 9 years!. I just got a job at target making less than $10 an hour. I'll take what i can get.
I am a recruiter who does not go through HR if I don't have to. I personally call the Presidents, CEO etc whatever it takes to get my applicant a job interview. There is a place for everyone. In my twenty years as a recruiter representing job applicants, the ones I dismissed foung jobs from other recruiters, so I work with everyone until something hits that is a good fit for the candidate and the employer.
Like many that have posted, the main challenge is finding work that pays what we are worth! Tons of resumes - agencies that don't call - over qualified. Now I'm working overnights at a grocery store. This is nuts! Do you know how great that looks on a resume? What do you do now...uh, stock shelves... Makes you look very needy and that you'll take any pay they offer, which sadly at this point, I will.
I was just offered a job this week and couldn't be more thrilled. I HATE the job hunting process. It is much more difficult than it needs to be. To answer the question, I network by asking friends if they or anyone they know has anything available in my field. A few say they'll "pass my resume along" and I go from there. I got my first real job out of college this way. I didn't network this job hunt, mainly because I moved to a new city and don't know many people. Other thoughts: In two and a half months I applied to 67 jobs and was invited to interview for five. Most of my applications went completely unacknowledged. At the very least, I think employers should send a generic email saying they received the application. I attended 3 career fairs and all were a complete waste of time. The HR people just told me to check their websites and apply online. I could do that without dressing up and driving downtown. When a potential employer tells a candidate they will call him or her in x amount of time they should do it! I interviewed for one job and the company said they'd call with a decision on this day and then they changed it to another day, and when that day came they changed it yet again. I never did get a decision from them. Another HR person called to tell me she would be calling for an interview, but then never called. Come on! I also hate dealing with HR gatekeepers. I prefer interviewing directly with a manager. Every job I've been offered came from interviews with a department manager. If an HR person was involved I usually didn't get very far. Being judged, interviewed and rejected by someone who doesn't even work in the same field is frustrating. Job hunting sucks.