It keeps coming to our attention. The lack of respect shown to job seekers – throughout the job hunting process. Not so new, but certainly tiresome. Job seekers at all levels are required to jump through hoops; to spend endless hours filling out online job applications to company sites as well as job boards. Frustration is high among those who are serious about their careers, serious about wanting to contribute and go to work every day, full or part time; they just want to work.
Yet, companies continue to make the process so difficult. Sure, when you can have the pick of the litter by weeding out candidates who may have forgotten to cross just one T or dot the I – you are left with all others. But maybe the good one just got away. Will that missed dot on the I really impact the job that needs to be filled? Sure, when it is an accounting or auditing type role. But then again, the employer has spent so much time setting up filters etc. and turning off candidates, that they may be turning off the actual talent pool they seek.
Candidates simply want to be treated respectfully. And why shouldn’t they be? Companies demand it, especially in this process! We all deserve to know where we stand.
At the point of being an applicant, here’s what’s on the minds of many:
- Did my application/resume actually get saved into their ATS (applicant tracking system) or is it off in the black hole?
- Did anyone actually even review my resume with regard to the position I am inquiring about?
- Would someone actually take a moment or two extra to see if I might be suitable for another opening?
- Will someone let me know, ever, if I will be considered — even if not ever?
- Can I be assured that my information is kept confidential and not accessible by those not authorized? This of course includes my home address, etc. which I’ve been required to give at the onset.
At the stage of interviewing:
- Will I be granted the opportunity to ask questions myself?
- Will I be given a fair and impartial interview, albeit one that is appropriate?
- Will someone give me a realistic picture of the job at hand, or will they paint one for me that is not the reality of the work or environment?
- Will I be led to believe I will have an offer and start to plan for such….or will I know right away that I won’t?
- Will I be invited to check back and follow up at a chosen date, or left hung out to dry – forever?
- If I am not chosen, and I ask why – will the hiring authority be forthcoming about why – or will they just sugar coat it?
- If offered the job, can I be assured it is a legitimate offer that comes in writing – with an agreed upon start date, etc.?
- If offered the job, will someone in the company stay in touch with me during the time between that offer and the start date, or will I just be a ‘number’ who shows up one day without any continuing communication from any division of the employer?
Oh, we hear so much. We’ve experienced so much. Employers need to realize that their reputations are at stake – as a company, as a community member, as an employer. Employers need to begin treating the candidates they have sourced – as real people, real individuals with likely relevant experience and a willingness to work. But many just don’t get the chance. Many feel they’re looked at as too old, yet won’t disrespect the employer by stating such a claim. Instead, they may just spread the word, of their own perception – that this company A or company B is not professional, or worse.
Mutual respect is a requirement – up and down and all around. If a company wants to attract the right people, then they should consider treating all people right. This conversation may go on, and it certainly can – if there are any ‘replies’ to this post. The moral of the story is to management: keep candidates informed and in the loop once you’ve had initial contact. And to candidates: please don’t assume that all companies operate unprofessionally, once you’ve had a negative experience. There are some that work very hard to walk their talk and become a sought-after employer, and deservedly so.