Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Hell That Is Job Hunting

What started out as an optimistic search for my next exciting, fulfilling career has now turned into the bane of my very existence, and yet, one I can't really get away from if I have any hope of getting gainful, full-time employment again: job hunting. It's driving me completely nucking futs. Here is the worst of it:

Long, drawn out applications
You know its bad enough being jobless but some applications are too daggone long. I've filled out applications for the government that have taken 45-55 minutes at a time. I'm exhausted afterwards. The most hair-pulling aspect being that most of these applications ask you to upload an electronic resume only to then ask you to fill out a tedious application where you then are asked to type in ever field from your resume all over again "name__address__ number__, school's name____, supervisor's name___, her number___, zip code___ etc). ALL of that is on the resume but they still need to typed a 2nd time. Grrrrrrr.

Being asked things twice
And I don't mean what I just mentioned above. I ran into this while filling out another federal job application last night. Because I was applying for two grades, I needed to send two applications. During the first, it asked me to write, in 300 words or less, of a personal experience on the job. I had two questions to answer. I gave it some thought and penned my best response at that moment. I then moved on to the next grade only to find out they asked the exact same questions. And there was no saving or back button, so I had to think hard and try to remember verbatim what I'd written 10 mins earlier. And usually the first time is more eloquent. Had I of known they do that, I would have saved my first response on the computer somewhere. Maddening!!

Faxing stuff
What is the point of this?? I applied to a job that then required you to print out a documentation form and fax it in for confirmation. All day long I tried to fax it while the fax on their side never picked up. Puh-lease! Stop wasting people's time with this. And why can't I stick it in the mail? Why fax anything?

Registering for sites just to apply to jobs
Another step that I swear will only create more wasted web space, but I continually run into this. I'll go to a job board like, find a job that looks promising, click the apply button, only to be redirected to some recruiter's website where I then have to register a user name/password and fill out my life story plus the story of my conception and birth just to apply for one stupid job. I have registered now for a dozen of them by now and I can barely keep all the names straight if I need to opt out later. Far worse is when you spend all this time registering and you're now ready to apply and the damn site hasn't even stored what freaking job brought you there in the first place. Hello?? Remember? I came here with the job already found? Webmaster?? Somebody? Whoever the hell, needs to check that site and stop enabling this nonsense. I just wanna apply for a job, not join another useless organization. Productivity people! We have a black president now! We can overcome shoddy webmastering too!

Fake ads
Probably my worst offense and most have come from Craigslist which I barely look at anymore (see previous post on more). But early on, I'd run into many ads that listed descriptive qualifications, education, duties and responsibilities only to find out its a work-at-home scheme, a scam to get you to enter your info in some site or get you to buy some service. Also in this category are marketing jobs that are really sales jobs. I'm not stupid, marketing and sales are very different and if its a commission-based job, just call it what it is, a sales rep position and stop trying to pass it off as an "marketing" position.

Old ads
Also ran into this problem early on and that is with applying to ads that have long been filled but somehow still pop up online. I found a wonderful position one night and stopped what I was doing to prepare a resume and cover letter to perfection only to hear from the hiring manager the next day informing me that it was indeed filled weeks prior and that some sites hold on to the ads indefinitely. Slightly heartbreaking, though I got over it.

Scammers and other time wasters
I've also had a few alleged recruiters calling me to discuss a potential opening at their company (or for positions not even created yet), speak to me for nearly 20 mins. only to never hear from them again. I had a recruiter email me about setting up an in-person interview for a position I'd applied for. He gave me two available times. I agreed to one of them. Never heard back. I mean ever! WTH!!

Well that is enough of my rant for today. It could always be worse right? I mean I could actually be employed and faced with dealing with all the discontents that comes with that daily.

Pfff, I only wish.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Tales of the Unemployed II: Craigslist is a Joke and Where is All the Vodka Going??

Back on the scene, crispy and clean-- actually more like crunchy and a bit more on the broker side. Either way, I've been gone too long and I feel like I have some 'esplainin' to do but rather than to bore you good people with my diatribes, since I've been struggling with obvious blogger's block and felt inspired at the moment, I'm just going to spew out whatever's been on my mind. That ok? Good!

So 4 months in and nope! No job yet. Plenty of interviews but the same ol' BS, the economy, blah, blah, blah. You know the story, Meanwhile I have been keeping busy with personal projects to strenthen and enhance my work portfolio which includes studying web design, working on a writing portfolio, volunteer work, regular running sessions at the gym and various other things I'd have on my to-do list for the past several years. I guess I could say I'm being my own boss. But lemme tell you the pay and benefits are terrible.

First, I am so done with Craigslist! Maybe because marketing is easily tied to sales and scams but 90% of the ads I've come across are scams. They look like regular and reputable job postings but what you get back is another work-from-home-after-you-pay-an-initial-startup-up-fee garbage. And the level of ridiculousness in the ads are laughable. For a master's and 5 years exp, one ad promoted a pay of $12 hourly while another would train and touted "no exp. necessary" and work for home with potential to make, ya know, like $150,000 annually. Who is falling for this crap? Not Park Heights!

While I spend my days feverishly job searching and clearing my throat when the phone rings (professional voice ready! then dealing with the letdown when its just my mother), I've also caught up on lots of mindless TV. My latest drug of choice: Real Housewives of New York. Ugh! I cannot stop watching the madness. It is great. First, its a nice diversion from dreary Bmore life but I've also found watching these tight-bodied, successful ladies inspiring, especially my girl Bethenny; running her own business, with more one-liners than a seasoned comedian and the body of a supermodel. Where do I sign up for the seminar? No, seriously, seeing all that she's accomplished has motivated me to do more like starting my own side business and building a website. And the catfights! Too inticing. Kudos to Bravo for giving me a new fix in between Nip/Tuck seasons. Nothing like a good shot in the arm.

And speaking of fixes, I don't know where all the damn vodka and tequila in this peice is going? A whole bottle gone in less than a week. I'd love to know who around this mug is drinking up all my good stuff! And who knew tequila costs as much as it does. On my way to a "Brokeness" party I got my lil feelings hurt when I decided to be the margarita girl without considering the price of alcohol these days. I mean dayyyy-yum!

So that's pretty much my wrap-up. The kitties have been keeping me company during the day and my daily dose of lovin' comes to me as a chubby, fuzzy, lil furball curled up on my lap with her lil head and paw propped up on the keyboard (love my Muffin), purring and letting me know she's at home. Whomever does not like cats has never known a truly lovable one. And that's a pity.

It could be worse, so much worse, so I'm thankful for the gifts, small and large and making good use of my professional break. Cause when I'm back, I'm gonna be so back... and crispy clean, looking lean and hopefully making some mean green. (sorry for the wack rhyme, couldn't help it).