Are online job applications more of a hindrance than a help? Was your dream job easier to land before the Monster.com’s, Careerbuilder’s and Google got involved? And is job software filtering good people out for the most minor reasons?
Some people think so.
Indeed, Peter Cappelli, a management professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and author of the book "Why Good People Can't Get Jobs” was recently on PBS to discuss just that.
In his interview, Cappelli said online job postings were drawing thousands of candidates for every position, significantly reducing any given individuals fair chance.
“Somebody told me that they had 29,000 people apply for a reasonably standard engineering position, and nobody made it through the screening process. The software told them nobody was qualified,” said Cappelli.
With the economy still rocky and the unemployment rate high, many internet job postings see themselves flooded with applications. This typically overwhelms regular HR systems, forcing many firms to start using software to sift through CVs.
Unfortunately, since software lacks human judgment, applications can be rejected on the flimsiest of reasons, creating a lose-lose situation for both job seeker and employer.
After all, there is no such thing as the “perfect” candidate for any job, but HR managers in the past, through face to face interviews and good old fashioned probing, have been able to discern between applicants and decide which is the “best fit” in terms of skills, ability to adapt to company culture and potential.
No wonder so many tech firms are complaining about talent shortages. Key words pulled coldly from resumes by machine are not going to find the diamond in the rough. So many firms claim to want new hires who display “out of the box” creativity, but if you failed to tick the right box, your resume may not even end up being read by a real human.
It’s time things changed. The Internet is a blessing for many things, but when it comes to landing that dream job, pick up the phone, be persistent and schedule a face to face interview.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments section below...
Sorry, but it's guys like you that make HR think they can hire people off the street to fill and 'engineering' job. ALL engineers should be degreed and licensed. Then lobby congress that certain jobs like defense, avionics, automotive safety, medical should only be handled by licensed engineers. This would cut down on the flood of H1Bs and outsourcing. This debate was had in the 90s and the free market zeaalots won. Now we suffer for the mistakes of past generations.
see above, get out white you can. I have two kids 15, and 11 and am over 40. Try looking for a job when ur over 40. Have skills up the wazzu and haven't found a job in a year. Go to law school instead of MSEE. You will thank me some day. Cheers.
You need to bypass HR. They are as overworked and short-staffed as everyone else. Besides filling openings is only a small part of their duties.
What is an engineer? One who can get the job done. I have worked with non-degreed and degreed engineers. I have trained engineers to design products and I am not degreed. Most non-degreed engineers have the title because they are competent.
If you select engineering as a profession, prepare to do something else before you reach age 45 or so. You will not be able to keep up with the changes in technology, you will be too expensive compared to new graduates and if you don't transition soon, you will be too old to be hired doing anything.
You also may have to relocate to China or India to find work.
Same experience here. Have been successfully using online searches and applications for more than 15 yrs. It does require investment in time for research and tweaking resumes carefully to fit each position description. Definitely a full-time job to search for a worthwhile position.
I've read that in regard to the specific automated "job search services" that get most of the business from corporations, the primary selling point is that they are terrifically effective in preventing successful lawsuits from applicants who were not hired, NOT that they were actually successful in locating applicants that met the job requirements! Could one possibly derive from this that the emphasis placed on the requirements for these services are a bit off-target? Or that once again the legal profession is putting their needs before everyone else and needs to be restrained by some other means? Just asking...
Should we be surprised that software designed by HR people is even more stupid and ignorant than so many of them are?
My favorite old example was the guy who didn't have specific DSP experience, according to HR. Actually he had extensive experience, but he made the mistake of spelling it out: digital signal processing. He persisted in finding out how it could be that he wasn't even granted an interview, and discovered the reason was HR ignorance.
Experienced employers see the candidates general back round based on their requirements and select easily. Then specific trainings are provided and when they mingle in the group ,automatically they get tuned and they perform better with new innovative approaches.
I agree that this software filtering is a big problem. I remember my application to hr@.... just vanished into a black hole. After few weeks when i called up the company, i was lucky to get to the Engineering director, When we discussed about my past experience.He immediately called me even though it was saturday,and i had an offer the following week. Later when i was part of the the company,i was told that my resume got filtered as it did not meet the requirement as per HR process :)
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