Job hunting has become one of the worst experiences for job seekers. Whether you are just getting out of school, trying to transition careers or find your next opportunity the struggle is real. It has truly become more about who you than what you know. The job descriptions are unrealistic in too many fields, candidates are told they are overqualified, get no feedback or no response. The ATS really took a lot of the humanity out of human resources. Good recruiters still exist but are hard to find and the head hunters are long gone.
For those tired of creating profiles where companies have your information and don’t call you and those who are tired of saying why they are great in 140 characters or less you are not alone. Too many people are feeling your pain. When people want to work it should not be so hard to get employed. It’s not something only one generation is struggling with, every generation is struggling when job hunting. There are unrealistic job descriptions, people saying you are overqualified, under qualified, haven’t used this skill in the last 6 months and it feels like no one is willing to let you learn on the job and companies are going we can’t find good talent. It is just a crazy circus going on right now. I know it is discouraging but you are not alone and hang in there.
A few months ago I was invited to apply to a position in HR and I did a preliminary interview with a bot. Have we gotten so bombarded that even for human resource positions we can’t take the time to talk to a person? With the ATS systems out there rejecting candidates because of a lack of keywords are companies truly getting the best talent? How can you ask someone to talk to a machine to get a job? From recording videos to the endless profiles for jobs, companies have made it very difficult for potential employees. The time to hire has doubled from the past and people cannot be expected to wait 3 months to hear a rejection from 1 job when they have responsibilities. Why have we made it so difficult for people to work? We want experts and not jack of all trades but the expert needs to be an expert in 6 things so isn’t that a Jack of all trade? Can there be some clarity as to what hiring manager truly wants in a role? Can we have job descriptions that are realistic? Don’t say you want someone with 7 years of experience in a technology that has been around for 4 years. The more stories I hear from job seekers the more I see how broken the hiring process is.
Not to say there are not things some job seekers can do to lessen the frustration or that recruiters aren’t out there trying to help people. Sometimes people just need to vent their frustrations. I have allowed many people to do that just so they can get back to searching with a positive attitude. I know qualified people who have spent 2 to 5 years job hunting for the right fit, taking random jobs or less pay just to make ends meet. They are told they are overqualified, under qualified, we can’t afford you (without being asked their salary), or you will be bored at this job and many other things. All while seeing the same job posted for 4 months with no hire. I feel their pain and just allow them a space to let of their pain.
From recruiters sending you jobs from around the country claiming they are close to you, to companies wanting you to hit the ground running with no time to accumulate to how they do things, there isn’t one solution. All you can do is persevere. Vent from time to time to a fellow job seeker then brush yourself off and give it another go. Update that resume again, get a fresh new style to it, work on your portfolio, think of the skills you do have that you are overlooking and maybe there is a stream of income in them. Reach out to a few more people in your network there is something for you out there. If you think your skills are outdated learn something new or volunteer with an organization to gain new experiences.
Going forward don’t get caught in the trap of having one stream of income, have multiple streams so you are ok if you lose one of them. Turn a hobby into another form of income just so you know you are covered if you ever lose your job again. When you find work again, make sure you continue to network in case you need to find another job again. Too many people are just comfortable in their jobs and don’t think to network until they need a job and that makes it harder. Just know through it all you are not alone but you can find the right opportunity for you. Keep your head up stay positive and don’t give up.
I wish I had an easy fix for this problem but I do not. We can spark a dialogue to make things better. How can we make recruitment a less frustrating process from both sides?