You are not being hired because you are unemployed

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

27 months ago

In NJ they have a law that says you can't put in your job posting "unemployed need not apply"

I always thought what a useless law. Companies will still discriminate but just won't write it in their ad.

I rather if an employer tell me upfront that they will not hire the unemployed then I won't waste my time applying.

More people will have a gap because lay-offs are the norm now.

The employer doesn't owe society anything when it comes to helping reduce the unemployment rate. They should just pick the best candidate, employed or unemployed candidate.

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equality101 in Georgia

27 months ago

I didn't say employers owe anyone anything. All I asked was how is not hiring the unemployed helping with the current unemployment situation. Of course they will always give preference to someone already employed, however there are millions of unemployed with great skills. And employers don't always pick the best candidate. They should, but they don't. They have their own set of preferences that they don't make known to the public.

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

27 months ago

True what you said about the unemployed have great skills.

Truth is for most jobs.........you could be out 2 years and go back and you pick up where you left off 2 years earlier.

At the mandatory dept of labor class for people collecting unemployment I told the labor rep as a salesperson you don't lose your gift of gab or sales ability after 1 yr and a construction worker chimed in saying he hasn't forgot how to frame a house. This after the labor rep said people lose their skills after not working.

It's a myth that because your unemployed you lose your skills

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

Of course I'm not sure because I'm not in their shoes, but my guess is at this point that most major companies have a filter on their application screening program that flags unemployment gaps of x number of months, and if your number is greater than their x, you're automatically rejected.

Nothing is done by hand, anymore. Don't think that your resume is actually even looked at by a real person anymore, in most cases. If your application doesn't pass that computer program's checklist, no human ever even saw it.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

That's why I've applied for jobs on a Saturday, and been rejected already by Sunday afternoon. No one actually looked at the resume. I was cut by a computer program.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

27 months ago

If you have a gap of any length, you're undoubtedly wasting your time filling out online applications.

Even if you're inquiring of a smaller outfit and your resume and cover letter are being read by humans, a gap will be a killer. I could be Michael Jordan, Hemingway, Warren Buffett or Eisenhower, and it won't matter since I have a gap that trumps all in the minds of employers.

You better believe there's discrimination when it comes to the unemployed as well as to those who are older. There just will never be any evidence of it to you in the applicant position.

People will remain unemployed while people coming out of college will get hired. The unemployed will remain a huge problem in this country and a strain on the system unless those who want jobs are hired into the jobs for which they are qualified.

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York said: True what you said about the unemployed have great skills.

Truth is for most jobs.........you could be out 2 years and go back and you pick up where you left off 2 years earlier.

At the mandatory dept of labor class for people collecting unemployment I told the labor rep as a salesperson you don't lose your gift of gab or sales ability after 1 yr and a construction worker chimed in saying he hasn't forgot how to frame a house. This after the labor rep said people lose their skills after not working.

It's a myth that because your unemployed you lose your skills

I actually have more skills than I did the last day that I had a job.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

27 months ago

The problem is: how does this skill translate to a resume entry? Then, how does an employer know you have this skill honed well?

Many of the things I'm good at and bring to the table are nearly impossible to convey in a resume and interview. Employers would only get a taste of my skills if they were to hire me. And they're not hiring me because of the glaring gap right at the top of my resume.

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

27 months ago

Jeff in Arvada, Colorado said: As I posted in another thread, most hiring decisions are made by people with at best average intelligence (or at least average intelligence by college graduate standards) with little or no training on hiring. To compensate for lack of knowledge, most hiring managers rely on the standard assumptions:
1) the people with the highest salary histories are the most talented;
2) the person with the most relevant experience is the person who will perform best in the job, even long into the future;
3) people who have lost their jobs are less talented than people who haven't lost their jobs.
Even those these assumptions are obviously highly flawed, because just about everybody uses them the hiring manager feels safe.

everything is true above.

it amazes me how unprepared most of these people are who do the interviewing. they wouldn't be unprepared if they had to conduct a company meeting. or meet with a client.

one day i'm going just snap at an interview.

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Beth in Plano, Texas

27 months ago

The hospital I work at just layed off 15 people in management.
One guy had 36 years and a lady had 22 years at the same hospital :(

An employment gap is a kiss of death for a lot of people in HR. I worked 3 crap part-time jobs just to avoid any gap so my transition back into a real job was easier.

People are walking on egg shells at my job.

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Beth in Plano, Texas

27 months ago

The hospital I work at just layed off 15 people in management.
One guy had 36 years and a lady had 22 years at the same hospital :(

An employment gap is a kiss of death for a lot of people in HR. I worked 3 crap part-time jobs just to avoid any gap so my transition back into a real job was easier.

People are walking on egg shells at my job.

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois said: The problem is: how does this skill translate to a resume entry? Then, how does an employer know you have this skill honed well?

Many of the things I'm good at and bring to the table are nearly impossible to convey in a resume and interview. Employers would only get a taste of my skills if they were to hire me. And they're not hiring me because of the glaring gap right at the top of my resume.

And that's a big part of the problem. EVERYONE looks good on their resume. My first boss at my last job had a resume that said that he was "expert at software engineering", when his work indicated that he knew little about the subject besides the jargon. After being pushed out of his job, he managed to land a really good job that he only could have gotten had the new organization taken him at his word.

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

Beth in Plano, Texas said: The hospital I work at just layed off 15 people in management.
One guy had 36 years and a lady had 22 years at the same hospital :(

An employment gap is a kiss of death for a lot of people in HR. I worked 3 crap part-time jobs just to avoid any gap so my transition back into a real job was easier.

People are walking on egg shells at my job.

I agree and I have been there.

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Brooklyn Babe in Brooklyn, New York

27 months ago

They think that just because you have been out of work, your skills are not top notch. Most people have a computer at home or can go to the library and use them. Many people use excel spreadsheet to track personal things or have children in school that have homework assignments that require the use of Microsoft Office programs. They things keep our skills fresh and current. What is the next excuse they will pull, telling you since you are not a graduate of the current years class your degree is outdated? There are always mothers who take 10 years off or more to stay home with the kids till the youngest one is in school and they have always been able to jump back in and do an excellent job.

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Enra in Somerset, New Jersey

27 months ago

This is one of the stupidest reasons ever not to hire someone (as are poor credit scores), particularly when the hiring manager is informed that the prospective employee was a stay-at-home mother for several years and therefore wouldn't have an employment history without gaps. Nothing is sacred anymore (except the almighty dollar). Like...*gasp* How dare we want to give our children our undivided attention?! @.@

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

Welcome to the new corporate America, where "I have kids" or even "I have a husband/wife" is a liability to them. They want someone who has no life, no wife, no reason to stay anywhere, easily relocatable. Kinda like me! =D =/

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts said: Welcome to the new corporate America, where "I have kids" or even "I have a husband/wife" is a liability to them. They want someone who has no life, no wife, no reason to stay anywhere, easily relocatable. Kinda like me! =D =/

Actually, you are often what they are looking for. You know the question, "Are you willing to work overtime?".

There is only one right answer here.

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Bean counter in San Jose, California

27 months ago

Some hiring managers strongly believe there's a legit reason why some employees were let go -- and it's based on their own decision when the layoff time comes and they have to submit a layoff list to their boss. So it has to do with their very subjective perception that these laid-off employees have some undesirable issues related to either or bother work and personality.

And of course, in the real world, we have seen time and time again some good folks were let go and our managers preferred to keep the ones they 'like'... And the same goes with their hiring decision, likeability is an important factor in our livelihood.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

Hehe. I've never had a salaried position in my life. All of my past jobs DIDN'T want me to work overtime, because then they'd have to pay me for it. One of my old bosses actually wrote me up for having 5 minutes of overtime for the week. oO I felt like plunking down a quarter and asking her if we were square. But I didn't.

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Bean counter in San Jose, California

27 months ago

Try to picture you're the hiring manager, and with the assumption that most of the final candidates can perform the required duties, will you hire the one that you like the best or most comfortable with in terms of personality? Knowing human nature, I always believe there're more than just the technical skillsets that factor in in the hiring decision, and those 'other factors' are mostly politically incorrect and illegal that a hiring manager and HR most probably do not discuss in the process for fear of legal implications.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

If personality mattered, I would have been hired long ago. That's where I score high...it's the other areas I don't score high in. Specifically, a year gap in 06 (death in family) and two year gap 10-12 (just couldn't find a darn job).

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Bean counter in San Jose, California said: Some hiring managers strongly believe there's a legit reason why some employees were let go -- and it's based on their own decision when the layoff time comes and they have to submit a layoff list to their boss. So it has to do with their very subjective perception that these laid-off employees have some undesirable issues related to either or bother work and personality.

And of course, in the real world, we have seen time and time again some good folks were let go and our managers preferred to keep the ones they 'like'... And the same goes with their hiring decision, likeability is an important factor in our livelihood.

I can't speak for every place, but my perception is that the decision on who gets riff'd is usually based on which project or department they work for, not on merit or lack thereof. That certainly was the case at the organizations that I worked for.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

27 months ago

Nick, if you have the personality, you should be able to at least snow someone into hiring you. I think personality, likability and how the interviewee sells himself personally have a lot to do with getting hired.

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Help in Chicago, Illinois

27 months ago

I keep hearing that the average person over the age of 55 is out of work anywhere from 39-52 weeks while the person under 55 is around 35 weeks, where do they get these figures from? I know people who are out 2 & 3 years, which exceeds those number 2-3 times! Not many get a job in a matter of weeks unless they have good connections, and today even if you do know people they are not hiring and still cutting back so they cannot even help you.

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Bean counter in San Jose, California

27 months ago

The numbers quoted in numerous articles are nowhere close to reality. I also know folks who're unemployed for years. I suspect these statistics cited were from a decade or more ago; or from some writers who have been sitting in their home office for the last 20+ years and made up these numbers based on a few folks they knew....

There are just too few jobs and way toooooooo many applicants out there; not to mentioned the worsening and blatant age discrimination. Compared to past decades, this 'great recession' actually affected the greatest number of younger workers and I don't mean the 20-somthing only ....

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

I wish I could get some of this age discrimination my way. =D Or is 32 also too old? Get em out of college young fresh and stupid or don't get them, is that it?

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endoftheworld in West Hartford, Connecticut

27 months ago

In a recent article in the local paper, CT has recovered approx. 29% of jobs lost during the recession, the powers that be estimate it won't be until 2016! that all those lost jobs will be recovered and then they say we need an extra 50000 just for the new people entering the labor force and why should anyone hire someone whose been unemployed for years? I still do not understand how "they" say the Recession ended in 2009?

Am very depressed as a large "fortune 500" printing co. is closing a plant in my hometown, ALL 150+ EE's will be let go, I have applied there many times and now they will be my "competition" as the newspaper wrote an article indicating all those folks will likely have a new job in no time. Next time you download a book instead of buying one or getting from the library, think about what the loss of books means I often think I am the only one to realize that doing online everything means somebody is out of a job. The trend here is schools now give Middle/HS students I-pads, so no books or notebooks even. I am pretty sure that the average 16 yr. old is more technologically adept than me, heck, the average grade schooler.

Being long term "unemployed" in and of itself is not THE reason for being unhireable as there are several things that could lead to it in the first place and they are the key reasons. I am 43 but could easily pass for 33 lookswise but the age discrimmination that exists is that someone of MY age should be much further along on a career path, not still at entry level so in a way am being "age discrimminated" but not because I am old or asking for too much money but because my resume shows lack of growth over a 20 yr. period.

I was worried that if I don't get a job before college gets out mid May, am stuck untill September and here we have it, all the internships are taken and there are no lower level jobs left. W/O direct gov't intervention I don't see how I will be hired anyplace, if vets and over 55 can't get jobs...

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

27 months ago

guest in San Francisco, California said: If you are over 55 and lose your job then you should be planning on retirement.

why is that the case???

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Motor City in Farmington Hills, Michigan

27 months ago

The recession ended in summer of 2009, that is when we slowed down the job cuts from half a million or more per month, now we are adding a "few jobs" here and there. The few jobs are temp assignments that will be over before the next months data comes out. So some of those large companies that have short term temps, and keep replacing them are counted as gains month after month, when they are just recycling temps for the same project that someone with 20 years on the job was let go from because they were "too expensive" to keep around. There are many people I know that have been close to retirement in 2008/09 and still never found a job, are they exceptions to the average length of time out of work? To the government yes, they fell off the unemployment and now not counted anyway, but still have not found a job.

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

27 months ago

guest in San Francisco, California said: Because no one is likely to hire you at over 55 for a real job. Your employment is likely to consist of throw away jobs until retirement. If you have the money to retire at 55 then the best thing to do is to just pack it in. Of course not everyone is in a position to retire at 55.

Why?

I'm not trying to be funny, but why not hire a person over 55? What are the reasons?

I'm 40...and when I go on some interviews I can tell that I'm not going get the job due to age.

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

guest in San Francisco, California said: Because no one is likely to hire you at over 55 for a real job. Your employment is likely to consist of throw away jobs until retirement. If you have the money to retire at 55 then the best thing to do is to just pack it in. Of course not everyone is in a position to retire at 55.

Like my ol' Daddy use to say, "You can run a marathon when you are 50 but you ain't ever gonna win one". Heh!

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Motor City in Farmington Hills, Michigan

27 months ago

Insurance premiums cost more for the older works. They don't care that they are more dependable and harder working that someone who is 24 and keeps looking at their Smartphone all day.

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endoftheworld in West Hartford, Connecticut

27 months ago

"Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York"

I'm not trying to be funny, but why not hire a person over 55? What are the reasons?

I'm 40...and when I go on some interviews I can tell that I'm not going get the job due to age.
--------------------

Why are YOU not getting hired "due to your age" then?, are you applying for modelling jobs or jobs with the BOP/Military or some teeny-bop clothing store? I apply for front desk jobs and am pretty certain my looks have nothing to do with my not getting hired. You're saying you "know" you're not being hired due to age or do you mean something else by that. 40 is not exactly "old" by any means, well unless you are the 22 yr. old mgr. and don't wanna hire an underling whose old enough to be your dad which is what I believe a main reason for older folks having problems, even more if they are greying and remind Jr. of grandma or grandpa, i'd agree that would be awkward, i'd prefer to hire someone my age or younger and wouln't hire someone much older unless there was no other qualified candidate.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

I know for a fact that a lot of places hire for looks. Whether it's who they want to present to the outside world, or who they want to put "in the bullpen" for their hot shower sessions, looks do matter and sometimes a lot/more then they should.

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endoftheworld in West Hartford, Connecticut

27 months ago

"Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts"I know for a fact that a lot of places hire for looks. Whether it's who they want to present to the outside world, or who they want to put "in the bullpen" for their hot shower sessions, looks do matter and sometimes a lot/more then they should.
----------------------------

If THAT's the case, i shoulda been employed by now...unfortunately my interviewers tend to be slightly dumpy/overweight woman my age, go figure?

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Mike in Atlanta, Georgia

27 months ago

If you are 43 and say you look 33 then its better for you. I would hate to be 43 and look like I was 53. You must have good family genes.

Joe Gagill,
At 40 many companies see you as an old dog with no bite left.... plus you lack the energy and knowledge of a 22 year old college grad.

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endoftheworld in West Hartford, Connecticut

27 months ago

Mike, actually I have been told my entire life I look alot younger than my age, I think the gap is closing but am pretty sure I don't look a day over 40, in any event I sure don't act it! Considering I've been a Sun addict my entire life, am very lucky and next time somebody asks me how come i never smile I can say because I don't want to get wrinkles! Diet, exercise, rest and relaxation and avoiding chemicals as much as possible are also very important in keeping yourself looking younger, anyone can do it if they put the effort into it, genes help of course but being healthy counts for alot.

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

endoftheworld in West Hartford, Connecticut said: Mike, actually I have been told my entire life I look alot younger than my age, I think the gap is closing but am pretty sure I don't look a day over 40, in any event I sure don't act it! Considering I've been a Sun addict my entire life, am very lucky and next time somebody asks me how come i never smile I can say because I don't want to get wrinkles! Diet, exercise, rest and relaxation and avoiding chemicals as much as possible are also very important in keeping yourself looking younger, anyone can do it if they put the effort into it, genes help of course but being healthy counts for alot.

When they tell me that I am "overqualified", I say "I am over 50, I will always be "overqualified" now.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

I still get interviews despite having an 06 year gap and a 10-12 2 year gap, but interviews are just talking. I still haven't landed a decent quality job. I haven't had any health/dental insurance at all for two years now. It's like playing a game of russian roulette with your health. I wonder if a hospital could go after my relatives for bills that I incurred? Because I know I wouldn't be able to pay them...

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

27 months ago

I can not seem to even land interviews these days (except for the occasional phone interview with a recruiter touting a bogus job). A couple weeks ago, I heard of a possible job opening at a company about a mile from my house. The next time I heard anything, the person who had given notice had decided to stay (or at least that is the story I was told).

I have a friend in Massachusetts (who has a lower claimed income), and I am under the impression he gets assistance from the Mass government, including help with his health insurance. I thought Mass has the precursor to obamacare and more liberal than Maryland along those lines.

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts said: I still haven't landed a decent quality job. I haven't had any health/dental insurance at all for two years now. It's like playing a game of russian roulette with your health. I wonder if a hospital could go after my relatives for bills that I incurred?

No, they can't try to bill your parents or siblings or aunts or uncles or cousins.

I just received the good news that my health insurance company is raising my premium by 35 percent. It was already ridiculously expensive for "catastrophic" coverage. In fact, the new rate is only $40 a month less than I would have been paying if I had COBRA'd the HMO coverage that I had at my last job.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

RE: MA healthcare I currently make about 20K a year, which I think is about 2K more than "the limit" that qualifies people for free healthcare. I already tried applying to that once, and was rejected because I was actually making too much money from unemployment to qualify. =P

It almost pays to quit my current job and just live off the system like so many others are doing, except I'm too proud to do that. Just saying from a financial standpoint (and this is a sick fact) the system takes better care of you as a hobo than it does if you're working poor.

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Emkhey in Philippines

27 months ago

Of course, it is normal that the employers wants the best employee for their company and the one who can give their 101% in their works. They also want those that are highly experienced in their field, but how can someone posses enough experience if no one wants to give him a chance?

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Emkhey in Philippines said: Of course, it is normal that the employers wants the best employee for their company and the one who can give their 101% in their works. They also want those that are highly experienced in their field, but how can someone posses enough experience if no one wants to give him a chance?

And, unfortunately, experience is no guarantee of competence, though employers tend to conflate the two.

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

Jeff in Arvada, Colorado said: And, unfortunately, experience is no guarantee of competence, though employers tend to conflate the two.

If my age isn't against me, then its "the gap". If it isn't the gap, then they are looking for a 98% skill set match. Never ends.

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said: If my age isn't against me, then its "the gap". If it isn't the gap, then they are looking for a 98% skill set match. Never ends.

There will always eventually be someone whose resume says that they are a perfect match. Sometimes that person is intentionally lying, and sometimes that person is just naively over-estimating their skills.

I've come to the conclusion that the lower a person's standards, the easier it is to find a job. Unfortunately, I'm somewhat of a perfectionist who is in the habit of setting the bar really high. I've worked with people who brag about work that would have embarrassed me if I had done it. Guess who would have an easier time telling a potential employer that they are an expert.

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Nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

27 months ago

^ if that were true, I'd be long ago employed. I have almost no standards, with regards to employment. The only thing I wouldn't do, is fast food. I've applied to every job at every Home Depot within a 15 mile radius of my house, and *none* of them called me.

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Jess in Sacramento, California

27 months ago

Look-these companies that are not hiring unemployed are idiots. The way the economy is there are not many "employed" people that are willing to quit their present job and risk taking another one at another company-that might not work out. So I can't imagine there are tons of "employed" workers beating down the doors of these companies when they advertise an open position, those that are most likely have an "issue" at their current job-like maybe they are poor performers. These companies are severely hindering themselves finding the best candidate, who wants to work for idiots like these.

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Jeff in Arvada, Colorado

27 months ago

Jess in Sacramento, California said: Look-these companies that are not hiring unemployed are idiots. The way the economy is there are not many "employed" people that are willing to quit their present job and risk taking another one at another company-that might not work out. So I can't imagine there are tons of "employed" workers beating down the doors of these companies when they advertise an open position, those that are most likely have an "issue" at their current job-like maybe they are poor performers. These companies are severely hindering themselves finding the best candidate, who wants to work for idiots like these.

I keep coming around to the theory that few companies/managers know how to evaluate applicants' potentials, so they use arbitrary criteria, such as how long you've been unemployed or how much experience you've had with specific tools, instead. And the fact is that even if using these arbitrary criteria, which are little more than prejudices, means that the top few candidates don't even get interviewed, the company will still likely wind up with an adequate employee. There are few jobs that only a few people can handle.

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Bluetea in Texas

27 months ago

Jeff in Arvada, Colorado said: I keep coming around to the theory that few companies/managers know how to evaluate applicants' potentials, so they use arbitrary criteria, such as how long you've been unemployed or how much experience you've had with specific tools, instead.

My theory is that very few companies care about your "potential" anymore. They want experience, sometimes very specific, even odd experience and they want someone else to have paid for it.

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