Recently I saw an ad on Craigslist for a part-time job where they were looking for someone with a bachelor’s degree, at least 2 years of “relevant” corporate experience, and the skills to use some very complex equipment and software. Nevermind the fact that someone with these qualifications shouldn’t be expected to work part-time in the first place, my favorite part of the ad came at the end:
“Due to the number of responses we’ve had in the past my apologies for not getting back to everyone. Thanks for respecting our time.”
I’d like to send this company an application with the following disclaimer:
“Due to the amount of resumes and cover letters I’ve painstakingly crafted only to receive no response whatsoever, my apologies for not making this one relevant to your company or putting any effort into it at all. Thanks for respecting my time.”
Gee, I wonder if I’d get the job.
I’m sure that responding to hundreds of (often unqualified) job candidates is not the best use of a company’s time, but it’s the decent thing to do. Hey, why not task the new hire with sending out the rejection emails? I bet he or she would appreciate the job even more knowing just how many unlucky people didn’t get the position. (I’m kidding! Sort of.)
I really don’t think it’s a lot to ask that companies make the effort to respect their job applicants as much as they want to be respected in return. If I so much as make a typo, it’s a death sentence, but if the hiring manager is totally scatterbrained and/or completely careless, I have to grin and bear it!
I’ve been called the wrong name in correspondence. I’ve been stood up for interviews. I’ve wasted my time, and that of people in my professional network, applying for jobs that were already spoken for (A job was magically filled, just a week after posting, the day the hiring manager came back from a supposed week-long vacation.) It’s all starting to look like a really bad sitcom.
Not every company is like this, of course. I’ve spoken to managers who were very nice and very timely in their correspondence with me. Unfortunately, this has been the exception, not the rule.
I read once that it’s as hard (or harder) to get a job at Harvard than it is to be accepted as a student at Harvard. I don’t doubt it. But at least the admissions department sends out speedy rejection letters!