Friday, November 13, 2009

A Letter to Employers

I know this is a terrible thing to do here, but for three months we've endured such amazing injustices as far as the job hunt goes that I feel it's my duty to bring attention to the matter and call a spade a spade. To all employers *considering* hiring now or ever: You are NOT all that and a bag of chips. While I know I should continue existing in a faux state eager readiness and excitement at the prospect of ANY employment, it's just not happening any more.
For starters, I am 100% fed up with the false advertising of businesses. As hard as this may be to believe, there are actually businesses out there falsely advertising positions which do not exist. By that, I mean that these are positions which they hope to exist some day when they get that new account or when they start having the common situation of money flowing out of their ears. TWICE now, Jim has done interviews which seemed to go relatively well, until the point at the very, very, very end of the interview wherein the interviewer stated something generally to the affect of: "Well, IF the position becomes available, it won't be until JANUARY." Emm. . Excuse me? Your telling me that this position, which supposedly you (the interviewer) are handling right now (along with three other positions) won't be available until JANUARY? And emmm. . is that because you're hoping for some inordinate amount of money to somehow manifest itself within the company at some magical date in January? Great - thank you for wasting our time. My husband, he just really enjoys preening for people; it's his idea of a good time to sell himself; he likes demonstrating all of his knowledge when requested on the spot. . And he even more just LOVES acing an interview for a position which very well could NEVER exist. That's totally his idea of a real good time. Or what about the other interview he did just last week wherein he divulged all kinds of info about himself to prove what a 'very useful engine' (to coin Thomas the Tank) he was, only to have the HR lady on the other end of the line (who up until this point had seemed extremely pleasantly surprised and satisfied with Jim's answers) inform Jim that should their company acquire 'X' account, they may give him a call. . Well, thanks for all that! And of course Jim wouldn't feel like a used up whore or anything. . Of course he wouldn't! Really, I feel like this practice of conducting interviews for positions which at present (or possibly ever) do not exist should be criminal. And the fact that in both of these cases, the employer dropped that rather notable and critical bit of info at the VERY last possible moment in the interview just speaks volumes to the companies' integrity. Talk about being led on. It's on level with being invited to a fun pool party only to show up and have the host present 'the plan' to become a sales rep for xyz multi-level company. It's dishonest and disheartening.

Another amazing little factoid that I've come to be utterly disgusted with is the fact that employers simply will not accept the fact that you are willing to accept a pay cut. Again, it's been three months. . We would really appreciate some gainful employment at this point. Jim's not the type who would get hired on someplace, and then start sulking around because he's not getting paid what he got paid previously. And it appears this little issue of pay is a sticking point. People just will not accept the fact that you could be happy getting paid less - ever. News flash employers of America: every unemployed person in this country who has spent any quantity of time searching for a job has come to the realization that a pay cut is inevitable, and they have accepted it. . and it's HIGH time you people figured that one out too!

And for all the super neat-o managers out their with an inferiority complex, let's set the record strait for the unemployed folks: We don't want your job. That's great that you have a high and mighty position wherever, but we're not competing with you for your position; we're simply interviewing for the job your company advertised. While many of us are in fact far more qualified than you are for the work which you are doing, that does not mean we will be trying to edge you out the door. No, again, we're simply looking for employment - so quit being on the defensive. . it makes you look insecure and shallow.

My last gripe regarding prospective employment has to do with the manner in which people are informed of not getting the job. I received a letter in my inbox a couple weeks ago from an interview which Jim had completed at least six weeks previously. As soon as the interview was completed, though we both new it was a bad fit and just wasn't going to happen, we went ahead and sent a "thank you for the interview" card (how prompt and special of us!). I had pretty much long since forgotten about that interview until I received this special email informing us regretfully that he had not received the job. Again, we picked up on that when one of the interviewers began preparing to leave for lunch before all parts of the interview (as Jim had been informed) had been completed. . . That was our first hunch that it just wasn't looking so good. But to six weeks later get an email. . . an email? The level of utter stupidity of this is just mind-boggling. They couldn't even defer to the concept that their letter had somehow gotten lost in snail mail; no, it was an email. When an organization is that slow at simply sending out post-interview informative letters, it speaks volumes to their level of competency. Receiving the email made me realize just how close Jim could've been to getting that job (even if it wasn't totally up his alley); I mean, with time anyone can learn and accomplish anything, and clearly this little group seems to think that time is not a factor at all. Really, at that point it would have reflected much better on this group if they just didn't bother with sending out the notices at all. It should be noted that this was a position with one of the governing institutions here. WOW.

For right now, I don't plan on naming any organizations who have exhibited these extraordinary traits. But I would really like it (since I know this blog is read by lots of big employers) if the people doing the hiring and interviews could be a little more considerate to their prospective employees. Don't get our hopes up for nothing. Accept that we can accept you and your pay. Don't fret that we're going to take over the world (or your company or your job for that matter). And don't be rude. That's fair, right? If you can handle that, then you're hired!


Anonymous said...

Wow! I can't believe that there are that many companies out there that would advertise positions that, at best, may become available down the road. It's not like the economy is booming and they are trying to get a leg up on the job competition, good people are out there in droves. I'm sure that a huge percentage of people interviewing right now are out of work, it just seems cruel. It's like they took the Human out of Human Resources. They should definitely be more up front with people who are just looking for gainful employment now, not maybe- later-down-the-road-if-we-get-this-account type of deal.
To what multi-level company would you be referring to, hmmm?

Kieran said...

Hi, I'm over in the UK, and I was working for a software house, which specialised in banking software, when the 'crash of 2008' occurred. A lot of what you write about prospective employers and HR people rings true; I spent a year being told I was 'overqualified' for all sorts of jobs. Drove me mad. Anyhow, I'm fortunate enough to now have a part-time admin. job, which I actually quite enjoy. Maybe about 1/3 of what I was earning before, but I'm much happier. Hope it all works out for you. Kieran.

Danielle said...

Hi Kieran, thank you for your perspective and input - very much appreciated.