Something About Applying for Jobs

Written with Love and Commitment by Greg Eidlen, Partner of ACG Resources

We are in a world where technology and information are at our fingertips. A world where instant results and instant gratification apply to everything we do. Except when it comes to the job application process. A quick search into Google of “How long does the average job search process take?” and the result is “about nine weeks.” You must be saying the same thing as me if you were ever a job seeker, especially in the past couple of years.

Even at nine weeks, is the job search process keeping up with the times? With the number of recruiters and technology out there, you would think it can be a week-long process. Let us all take the blame for the extended process.

Quick Apply- The Disclaimer

Ziprecruiter, Linkedin, Indeed, and any other job board have this button created to make the application process easy. The “quick apply” or “apply now” button, which is comparable to the Staples “EASY BUTTON”. You press it, and in an instant, all of your information is sent over as an application, and the process takes the job seeker all of 30 seconds. Seems great and beneficial to the job seeker since there are no long forms to fill out and the idea that the hiring manager received your information in less than a minute. Let’s face it, with good comes bad, with easy comes difficult. It is the balance of the universe.

You did your job as a responsible job seeker and read the job description diligently, looking at the required experience and making the mental matches in your head. The role may be the only role you found suitable and applied for. However, what you don’t realize is the overuse of those “EASY BUTTON” experiences throughout the day. The number of unqualified candidates that fail to look at the job description and use the shotgun method of clicking every “apply now” button and having their application sent out to over 100 jobs. The hiring manager is now receiving multiple resumes, sometimes making the qualified candidate get lost in the shuffle. This adds time to the hiring process since there is an abundance of resumes to filter. Do not mass apply to jobs but take the time to read the job description and ensure you have the skills to help the community of job seekers and employers.

The Safeguards

Once we make it through the apply button’s gates, we now face the filtering and screening process on the other side. Did you happen to miss the qualifying questions or answer one incorrectly? If so, chances are your application just got tagged as “hidden.” Did you upload your resume and ensure the document was your resume? I can tell you I have had prospective applicants inadvertently upload drivers licenses, family photos, essays, and everything else in between due to a misclick. If you mass applied, multiple employers just received your picture of Toto, the dog. Your application is now bumped aside. Sometimes there is a ranking technology on the other end, which is some “all-knowing” piece of technology that can automatically decide if the resume is a match or someone hired by the company to just filter resumes based on keywords. Used an acronym for a skill and didn’t spell it out? You may not have made the cut due to computer or human error. Have MS Office but didn’t list it? You may be on the bottom or off the list. This just extended the process even more.

Finally, You Made the Cut

You did everything correctly, and someone saw your resume and decided you are a fit. They go to call you or email you. The digit on the phone number is off by one, or the email is missing a letter. Let’s face it, we make mistakes, and you now became unreachable. Maybe your information was accurate, but you haven’t checked your spam folder. You decided you don’t accept blocked numbers, out of state area codes, or unknown numbers. These are all things that when you are job searching, you have to be considerate of. The hiring manager, on the other end, may now be taking extra time to try to reach the unreachable candidate. Maybe the person in que right before you applied and was a match but decided to ghost the job hunt. Well, you can thank that person for their lack of communication, causing extra time to be focused on them and not you. Again, it is a community process, so please be considerate of all involved.

The Community

Communicate throughout the process with the hiring manager if you are selected. Other people are counting on this job you applied for. It is not as simple as just applying, but rather a web of effects on multiple people involved. The root word of community and communication is “communis” which means common, communiality, or sharing. The job seeker community should help each other, not hurt each other unintentionally.

Hopefully, you gained some insight to think before you click and if you are not guilty of being that person, hopefully, you realize why it can be an extended process. When we take the time to do things right, it helps everyone around us.