Sea of Frustation/Resume Black Hole
[Chloe] Tyler, first it was the task of writing my resume. How do I take a lifetimeís worth of experience and abilities and reduce it down to just 2 pages?
Then Betsy was telling me that a lot of companies scan the resume for keywords and only look at the ones that have the most keywords. So then I had to guess
at what keywords to use in the resume. But then Betsy told me about an article she read where they did an experiment; they wrote ďperfectĒ resumes for a
job opening, but only 12% of them made it through the scanning process, even though they were all ďperfectĒ for the job. How aggravating! Iíve sent out so many
resumes already, and Iíve not heard back from any of those companies; its like all that frustration and then the resumes just go into a big black hole.
The Forest of Have Nots
[Chloe] Tyler, it seems like companies are more interested in what I donít have in the way of experience, education, or certifications, than interest in what I can do and do possess. They spend more energy finding reasons to screen me out than they do considering what I might do for them. Its such a negative process.
[Tyler] I know, Chloe, but donít get discouraged. Everything happens for a reason; you just have to keep that in mind. But because humans can only keep track of a certain number of variables, and they get so many resumes and applications for each opening, they have to have a way to get the pile down to a manageable size, and they do that first by weeding out, not screening in.
[Chloe] Tyler, I went to an employment agency today, and when they looked at my resume, they said Iíd have been perfect for a job they filled just yesterday. And thatís happened like that more than once already. It seems half of this game, if you want to call it that, involves being lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time. Ahhh, this is so aggravating!
[Chloe] Tyler, I know itís important to keep a positive attitude when Iím interviewing, but with all this rejection Iím beginning to lose hope. When we decided I should return to the business world, I was kind of excited. But now. . . all my enthusiasm is out the window.
[Tyler] Aw, Chloe, it will work out. Donít get despondent; it will show through in your interviews.
[Chloe] Glad I saw you at the back fence, Betsy. I need to talk to somebody. I keep sending out resumes for jobs that sound perfect for me, but I donít seem to get a second look from the companies. If only I could get an interview, I know I could do that job well and I could convince them Iím the right person for the job. This ďresume firstĒ process is so unfair Ė it stinks!
[Betsy] The process sure could use improving, but thatís how companies seem to go about the process. You just have to play the game and hope for the best.
[Chloe] So thatís all I have to fall back on Ė hope?
[Chloe] If I donít get a job soon, the bankís going to come and take our tractor; then how are we going to work the farm? We wonít be able to generate income from the farm and I wonít have a job in town either. Weíll lose everything, Tyler.
Should I Wait?
[Chloe] Tyler, what do you think Ė I had a pretty good interview with a human last week, and she told me to call back by the end of last week. I didnít hear from her, so I called. . .and called. Each time when I tried to leave a message, I got a mailbox full recording. Why do people tell you to call and then make it impossible to get through to them? Iím overlooking the fact that she said she would call me. What do you suppose this means?
[Tyler] Iím not sure Chloe, but keep trying. This is the only glimmer of hope youíve gotten in weeks. Iím sure the human is just too busy to call you or to clear out her messages.
Valley of Noís
[Chloe] Wow, the last time I interviewed it was on campus. Everything was so positive and the recruiters all acted like they were anxious for me to come to work for their companies. Nooww, dog, have things changed. All I get, if I get anything at all, is a form letter Ė sorry this and unfortunately that. All ďnoísĒ. And these are all jobs I could easily do with my eyes closed; so whatís wrong with me?
No Related Experience Mountain
[Chloe] Tyler, I donít understand why companies only look for applicants who have been doing the same job for their current employer that the new company wants them to do for the new company? If I were already performing the same job, in the same industry, in the same town, why would I want to change employers and be the low dog on the totem pole? I wouldnít be motivated, challenged, or inspired. Yet humans keep telling me I have no related experience, yet I have all the personal qualities, attitude, and competencies to perform the job well. Learning the ďhard skillsĒ would take me a week or two, but I would be challenged and motivated by the new experiences. I heard a while ago that some very successful airline company has a motto of hiring for attitude and training for skill. If that makes them successful, why donít other companies do that as well?
Job Fair Cattle Calls
[Chloe] Hoe, dog, Iím not doing that again.
[Tyler] Welcome home honey; what arenít you going to try again?
[Chloe] I went to a job fair, just to leave no stone unturned in this job search of mine, and what a waste of time. I knew some of the companies I have been applying to would be there, so I thought I could get some ďface timeĒ and have conversations with the people that make hiring decisions Ė you know, get some answers, and have a chance to tell them why Iíd be good on the job.
[Tyler] Sounds reasonable; what happened?
[Chloe] The place was flooded with people pushing their resumes at the representatives, who were out of reach standing behind tables like a barrier. The reps were junior employees who said they couldnít make any decisions anyway. They even admitted they were only their ďto represent their company to the employment communityĒ and that I should just leave a resume and theyíd review it later. They kept getting interrupted and distracted, and I couldnít even get any of my questions answered or get any info on what the company was like, except from some brochure they handed me. W h a t a n a b s o l u t e w a s t e o f t I m e!!!!
Field of Self-Doubt
[Tyler] Chloe, why are you crying?
[Chloe] Oh Tyler, maybe I donít have marketable skills and experience. Maybe those years when I was out of the job market have left me behind. What if thereís no place at all for me in todayís world. I guess Iím not as good as I thought I was. Nobodyís interested in what I have to offer. Iím just getting so depressed. Canít I just stay on the farm and work with you? This job searching is so demeaning.
[Tyler] Come on now, Chloe, youíve got to remember everything happens for a reason; that perfect job is out there, just waiting to find you.
Prickly Cactus Credit Check
[Chloe] Ė Oh, great; that company that was interested in me did a credit check and is no longer interested because our credit is not perfect. First of all, what does my credit score have to do with my ability to do the job? Second, farm income is not a weekly paycheck; managing cash flow is a challenge and a couple of times we were late making a payment on the tractor loan. Darn it, that doesnít make us a poor credit risk or irresponsible people Tyler. We are customers of that company, we buy a lot of supplies from them, but no more Ė they just lost a good customer!
Trough of No Feed-Back
[Tyler] Howís the job search coming along, Chloe?
[Chloe] Iíd tell you if I knew myself, Tyler. I never get any feedback Ė not when I send out resumes, not after Iíve gotten a phone interview or onsite interview; nothing! You know, it would be nice if I could at least find out where I stand. Or if Iíve got dog-breath, if someone would just tell me that, I could do something about it. But Nnoooooo, not a peep!
Garden of Abandonment
[Chloe] I give up, Tyler. No feedback, black holes abound; mailboxes full; no company reps. to talk to; starts/stops/restarts. . . I feel like Iíve been abandoned in the world of work. It is so dog-gone humiliating and downgrading Tyler.
[Tyler] Donít feel abandoned, Chloe; you just have to keep your chin up, have faith in your abilities, and keep in mind that everything happens for a reason.
[Chloe] Tyler, Iím so excited. Yesterday I found a job opening at this company that offered me an interview first thing; didnít even request a resume first. I went through all the steps in their selection process all at one time. Their questions were directly related to the job, so I could tell them exactly how my experiences from the farm Ė handling that lease arrangement for the new tractor and so on. And it was such a positive experience Ė their interview questions focused on what I could do instead of all the other companies that first focused on what credentials and experience I didnít have to screen me out. And they didnít even ask me for a resume first, they went right to the interview. It was all automated, but it seemed so natural. Such a time saver too! And I got feedback right as I finished as to how well I did and what to expect next. If Iíd known about this company first, I wouldnít even have applied at all those other ďresume firstĒ companies. Writing that resume first was such a frustrating experience I almost changed my mind about applying for jobs - trying to put a lifetimeís worth of experience and skills into just two pages and guess at what key words to use and all. And guess what, because I was able to tell them how my life experiences qualified me for the job, they called me in today, the very next day, for a final interview and offered me the job! Isnít that wonderful! And they have other jobs to fill the same way. Iím going to tell Betsy, Stella, Taniqua, and everyone else I know to apply there.