Having No Social Media Is Antisocial

, , , , | Working | March 2, 2020

Several years ago, I suddenly found myself unemployed — partially a relief as I’d been in a toxic work environment — and went to sign on for Jobseeker’s Allowance while I looked for work. The advisor I spoke to when signing on told me about something called “Job Club” that offered advice for jobseekers and taught skills like how to write a CV, how to sell yourself at interviews, stuff like that. He informed me that if I went to Job Club it would count as me being proactive in my job search, so I signed up and went along.

The “club” did turn out to be useful as it helped me to boost my self-confidence, but there was one little incident that irritated me just a little. We’d been talking about Facebook and the importance of maintaining a presence on social media. One of the coordinators explained that employers routinely check out job candidates on social media to see what they are like. 

I explained that I didn’t use Facebook and had no intention of doing so. The coordinator didn’t like this and told me that I was “reducing my employment prospects” if employers couldn’t check me out on Facebook before an interview. I politely informed her that I wouldn’t want to work for an employer who’d rather judge me on my Facebook profile — which admittedly would be rather boring because I don’t go to wild parties, etc. — than on my ability to do the job. The coordinator sulked and told me that I wasn’t being very proactive.

In the end, I got a rather good job doing something I loved, and I didn’t need a Facebook profile to get it.

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They Need To Recruit Better Recruiters

, , , , , | Working | January 31, 2020

(During my last job hunt, I also start looking for jobs out of state, as my family and I have decided we are tired of the extreme weather and local politics. I eventually get a job offer out of state, and as we are preparing to move, I get a call from a local recruiter, whom I haven’t worked with before.)

Recruiter: “What would be a good time for you to interview with [Employer]?”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, but I’ve actually already accepted a job out of state. Thank you, though!”

Recruiter: “Oh… are you leaving immediately?”

Me: “Well, not for another week.”

Recruiter: “So, you still have time that you could interview with [Employer].”

Me: “I guess, but I’m not sure why I would?”

Recruiter: “Maybe they’ll make you a better offer!”

Me: “Are they offering six figures in their price range?”

Recruiter: “Um. No, but—”

Me: “Then, I’m sorry, but I’m really not interested. I’m very happy with the job I’ve already accepted, and we’ve already signed the lease for a new apartment.”

Recruiter: “Don’t you want to keep your options open if that job falls through?”

Me: “I’d rather be jobless there than here, so no.”

Recruiter: “Listen, you’d be doing me a favor if you did this interview. We want to maintain a good relationship with this client.”

Me: *realizing what’s going on, long pause* “You’re not going to guilt me into doing this interview.”

Recruiter: “That’s not what I’m doing.”

Me: *getting irate* “That’s exactly what you’re doing; don’t try to bulls*** me.”

Recruiter: “I don’t think there’s any need for that kind of language.”

Me: “And I don’t think I care about burning this particular bridge.” *hangs up*

Husband: *staring at me, wide-eyed* “What the h*** was that?”

(I guess knowing we were getting out of that place made me less patient with guilt-trips. I hate doing interviews, even for jobs I DO want. We’re quite happy in our new home and have no intention of ever going back.)

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Going Mute On The Commute

, , , , , | Working | October 22, 2019

(I am about to be made redundant and so have been searching desperately for a new job. I have posted my CV on several job sites and set up various alerts for jobs in the West Midlands. I’ve had various agencies call me offering me various jobs that either aren’t in the field I currently work in, pay way too little for me to accept, or in one memorable instance, require a little too much travel.)

Agent: “Hi there. I am calling on behalf of [Agency]. I think you would be a perfect match for a six-month contract we have.”

Me: “Great! What’s the job?”

Agent: *describes a pretty good job offer with good pay* “…and it’s based in Watford.”

Me: “I’m sorry; did you say Watford?”

Agent: “Yes, is that a problem?”

Me: “Just a bit. You know I live in Birmingham?”

Agent: “Yes… Is it a bit too far for you?”

Me: “It’s over 80 miles away!”

Agent: “Oh! Well, you could always stay in a hotel during the week!”

(I have done this before in a previous job for 18- months and hated it, so I am not willing to even entertain it.)

Me: “What? No way. I doubt the company would pay that expense.”

Agent: “Would you be willing to relocate maybe?”

Me: “No! Why would I leave a city I have grown up in, and move away from immediate family for a contract job? And nothing you have said hints at a relocation payment.”

Agent: “Uh, well, no, you’d have to pay for it yourself. Maybe you could stay with family close by?”

Me: “Okay, no. That is ridiculous. I am not taking a job that means I would never be home.”

Agent: “Well, it would only be for six months. Are you sure it’s a deal-breaker?”

Me: “Yes, I am, and even if distance wasn’t a problem, I have a pet…”

Agent: “Oh! Oh, yeah, I totally get that. Pets are a big responsibility! Thank you for your time anyway!”

(So, the fact that I didn’t want to have an eighty-mile commute, relocate, live out of a hotel, or couch surf for six months was not a valid excuse, but the second I mentioned having a pet it was understandable? Not to mention that this guy hadn’t even thought to check a map before calling me! I am still baffled to this day.)

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PDF = Pretty Darn Flimsy

, , , , | Working | February 18, 2019

(As I’m unemployed, I was assigned to a year-long jobseekers’ assistance program, which is farmed out to a UK-based company. I knew it was going to be awful from the stories I heard from friends who had also been on it, but this is one instance that I will share of how bad their employee training standards are. I have to sign up to a job search website and upload a copy of my CV. The site will only accept it in PDF format for some weird reason. I’m not a tech genius but I’ve learned a lot of basic troubleshooting from my husband and friends in various IT roles, and I manage to figure out how to convert my .doc file on the unfamiliar-to-me word processing program.)

Advisor: “So, how’s it going?”

Me: “Grand, now that I got the PDF converted and uploaded.”

Advisor: *shocked* “How did you do it? We haven’t been able to work it out and it’s made everything so slow! “

Me: “It’s… this button here.” *points to the toolbar on [Word Program] then politely shrugs* “Once I found that it was easy. It’s amazing what you can learn just on Google.”

(She calls over another advisor and tells him about my amazing discovery.)

Advisor: “Oh, my God, we’ve been printing files out and scanning them back in as a PDF! [My Name] should be working here with us! “

Me: *laughing politely along but cringing inside* “Well, if you need tech support, I am looking for a job!”

(I know I have a slightly higher-than-average competence and some office experience, but this was about the second time I’d used this software. They worked with it every day and the solution to their issue was literally staring them in the face. Needless to say, they did not help me find a job. I’m dreading the thought of being called back to that office.)

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When This Jobsworth Isn’t Doing His

, , , , | Working | February 13, 2019

(I’ve been in my field for over ten years, so I have a wide skill set and knowledge base. Every few months, a staffing/contract agency tries to recruit me. Usually, a polite “no, thanks” turns them away, but once a while, I get this guy:)

Agent: “Hello! I have this great opportunity that you’d be perfect for. When would you like to schedule an interview?”

(I read the job description. It’s pretty obvious he just did a keyword search and didn’t read my actual resume.)

Me: “Um, this job is located in Ohio.”

Agent: “Will that be a problem?”

Me: “I live in North Carolina.”

Agent: “Oh, the company does require you to be on-site, so you’ll have to relocate.”

Me: “No, thanks. I have a permanent position I’m happy with.”

Agent: “But this is a fantastic opportunity! Will relocating really be that difficult?”

Me: “Only if I’m seven months pregnant.”

Agent: “Have a nice day.”

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