Why You’re Not Hearing Back from Employers

031714_Blog_MemeIs anyone out there? One of the biggest frustrations for job seekers is sending out applications and never hearing back. It’s as if the human element is missing from today’s job search process. In the article below, Mark Anderson, Nexxt’s former Vice President of Employer Sales, sheds some light on what’s happening on the hiring side of things and explains how you can break through and make a real connection.

As he sat at the dinner table listening to his wife and kids talk about their days, John didn’t really hear a word they were saying. He couldn’t keep his mind from wandering back to the big decision he had made earlier that afternoon. After years of apathy about his job — and years of dreaming about providing a better life for his family — he had finally done it. Despite his fears, reservations and resistance to change, the day had finally come — and he couldn’t wait another minute to share it with his family!

“Honey, kids, I have a little announcement to make… you know how you have all been telling me for years that I am really good at what I do and that I should expect more from myself? Well, I finally listened and I am happy to announce (drum roll please)… that I completed an online application for a new job today!!”

Although he was a little nervous that he hadn’t received a response yet to the job he applied for, it had only been a few hours and he felt confident it was just a matter of time. After all, he’d spent over 40 minutes completing every stinking question. Yep, he’ll get it. Why wouldn’t he? Hitting the refresh button one last time, he put the phone away so he could savor the moment.

Unfortunately for John, he would never hear anything back from his application. Despite his disappointment, he continued to pursue a new chapter in his career, applying to more promising jobs, all with the same outcome. Actually, he did receive one response letting him know that his resume had been received, but there were other candidates who were more qualified…

“More qualified candidates? How could they possibly know that, when they’ve never even met me? I even bought a new interview suit… Boy what I would do to get THAT $200 back. And of course now that I’m actively pursuing a new job, my ‘old’ one seems even less satisfying.”

John, like millions of hard working people throughout the country, knows his craft extremely well. And if you asked his boss, he would tell you that John is invaluable. Yet like many job seekers today, John is missing one skill that would help him get hired faster and easier — the ability to effectively market himself.

He’d never had to create a resume in the past, so he skipped over that step in the application since it was “optional.” He didn’t have all of the dates handy, so he took his best guess. Typing was never his thing (nor was it important to his job), so he didn’t notice that he had a few misspellings and formatting issues.

While John lamented his failure to find a new job and lost interest in his current job following his mental “check out” inspired by the decision to move on, a very different conversation was taking place over at ABC Company, the company where John initially applied…

The recruiter at ABC Company was preparing for her meeting with the hiring manager responsible for filling the position that John applied to, so she pulled her reports and looked over them one more time. She was VERY proud of her efforts and confident that he would be pleased. After all, since posting the job two weeks earlier on a variety of career advertising resources, she had registered over 1,500 views of the job, over 400 external clicks and over 250 completed applications. Of these, she was able to use high-level sorting criteria to instantly get that number down to 50 of the most “qualified” applicants. These were further screened by her “trained eye” to get the list down to just five candidates, exactly what the hiring manager had asked for!

“I sure hope this goes well. After all, if I want to keep my job I’d better make sure I’m delivering solid numbers and keeping things super-efficient.”

The reality is, in many cases the process of finding and hiring talent has become an impersonal numbers game. And while corporate recruiting departments analyze their dashboards to see how many thousands of “clicks” they got the day before, there are living, breathing candidates — many of whom would make excellent hires — getting lost in the shuffle.

These days, being a highly qualified candidate isn’t always enough – you have to be a highly skilled job seeker, too! So, how do you play this numbers game and win? Here are some tips…

Customize your resume for every position. That’s right, you should edit your resume every time you apply to a job. Review the job description and identify keywords used to explain the qualifications and skills required — then use those same keywords in your resume. That doesn’t mean you should add anything that isn’t accurate or relevant to your experience; it just means you need to speak the right language. This will help you get past those computer filters and, hopefully, in front of a real person.

Look for an inside edge. Reach out to your friends and other networks to see if you know someone at the company where you want to work, so they can put in a good word for you. You never know – your neighbor’s sister-in-law may just work for your dream company and be able to put your resume right into the hands of the hiring manager.

Put your best foot forward. Create an online portfolio that provides a visual overview of your career in a quicker, compelling way than a traditional resume. Include your email address and a link to your resume, so you have all of your bases covered. You’ll stand out from everyone who submits just a standard resume, or worse yet, only fills in the bare minimum application information.

With these three simple steps, you can begin to close the gap between the way job seekers search and the way companies hire. And the smaller that gap becomes, the closer you’ll be to your own end goal — a great new job.

104 comments

  1. Ok. Some managers are just rude and feel after you have not heard back in a certain timeframe, assume someone else got the job and you should just move on and look for another job. That’s how they see it. They forget it could be them in our shoes. They may know soon, or later.G

  2. Or better yet, have a recruiter call you, set a time for an hour interview and never call. I call the company to see if she is ill or something happened. Now she no longer wants to talk to me. How rude can a person be?
    It’s very sad to hear that a computer is looking for key words and it’s weeding out highly qualified people. I have created several resumes, but I still find that it doesn’t work. Getting discouraged.

  3. I whole heartedly agree-it gets very discouraging. The two “recruiters” I’ve had the displeasure of working with acted like they were doing me a big favor by condescending to talk with me. And the second one never contacted me again after she wasted three hours of my time testing me.

  4. It’s pretty lame of you to blame the candidate. How many job hunters tailor every single thing for every single job and never hear back? How many get the interview, but never get a “thanks for your time, but we hired someone else” email?
    Put most of this blame where it truly belongs: on the weak hiring supervisors and HR professionals.

  5. Tinker with the key words in the resume` and make them equal the key words in the screening process. Uh-huh. And you think everyone on both sides isn’t on to this game already?

  6. Jobs are not easy to find. I have tailored my resume to fit the job, had phone and in person interviews, sent thank you notes and don’t get the job. Shat am I doing wrong ? Any suggestions?

  7. Some hiring managers felt intimidated by very qualified candidate b/cos their own job will be at risk. A political strategy (office politics) is not to hire such candidate. Makes sense. Don’t hire someone more qualified than you. So… the job remains open until a more “qualified” candidate is found. And, why should they reply to rejected candidates. Tell tale signs – the job remains opens for months and months! Repeated over and over.

  8. 1.) Never apply to a job at a company you suspect uses software to weed out resumes. If the employer is so unprofessional as to not hire actual humans to read the paperwork of what could be a future senior manager, do you really want to work there?
    2.) Find out who the employer is and mail it. That’s right, Snail mail. On paper. Don’t make it easier for them to ignore you.
    3.) If the employer is confidential, take a pass. Chances are good that they don’t even exist. It’s a headhunter looking for resumes.

  9. Been unemployed for almost a year. Took odd jobs to get by. Must have filled out more than a thousand applications. Experienced in welding, plumbing, home improvement, and customer service. Tailored my resume for every application and submitted supporting documentation and certificates, no job! Finally went to a temp agency and got into a factory.While working at the factory I received an email thanking me for applying, and that I did not meet the criteria they were looking for. I received the email three months after I had started as a temp. I am now a full time employee. Companies need to get back to grass roots person tp person, face to face sitdown interviews.

  10. I wonder if the author has a clue that they posed a question in the headline that they never even attempted to answer. It wasn’t ‘why aren’t you landing a job?’ It was ‘why aren’t you hearing back?’ And to that the only possible answers are: laziness, lack of manners or of empathy. Even with the numbers cited in that case, 250 applied and only 5 selected for interviews, today’s technology makes emailing 1) we have it and will be in touch and then 2) thanks for applying but we’re not taking you forward a simple to automate process. I understand that one might not have the time or may fear lawsuits too much to say why, but that’s no excuse for not sending a nicely worded and timely form letter to folks who took the time and trouble to apply.

  11. This article stinks. The first problem is that 85% of the jobs posted are going to be filled by people that the employer knows. That leaves 15% that you have a chance at. Of those 15%. About 10% are out of your reach because you are over qualified or under qualified. That leaves 5%. Of the 5% that’s left the automated screening software will kick out 1 to 3%. Lastly you are confronted by people that are the first to review your resume that don’t have any idea of what it takes to fill the position.

  12. On more a serious note, resumes are solicited because employers are mining trade secrets, proprietary info, classified info, technical info, management strategies, salary histories, marketing info, etc. Using data mining, thousands of resumes received can create very meaningful data base use for data analytics. If NSA can use your phone records, why can’t resumes be used too. That’s why you are not hearing from employers! In fact, this info are given voluntarily. How easy is that. And, at no cost! Rogue employers or employees can use it too for many purposes. So..beware. All that glitters is not gold.

  13. Did you ever follow-up with a phone call? Did you write a cover letter? For hundreds or thousands of applications! I hope this gives you a clue.

  14. Been Looking filling application after application out. Sending out more resumes than I have money for stamps. Emailing the rest of the resumes out that I ran out of stamps for. Edit resume to fit each job. FINALLY got a call for CUSTOMER SERVICE……Got there and they changed up the detail to DOOR TO DOOR SALES…. Wasted half a day.

  15. Sorry, but “tweaking” (I.e., “creatively enhancing”, AKA “lying”) is just BS. The guy that runs TheLadders specifically stresses that this is a mistake. I tried this approach for a short while, and it was a no-win exercise in futility. Once again the Recruiter is telling us, the job seeker, what makes _their_ job easier. Bottom line is that recruiters have gotten so lazy that they want their candidates resumes to match the job descriptions _exactly_.
    When I worked for the DoD if a candidate submitted their application and resume that had more than a certain % of phrasing / keywords that were also found in the position description, then even if they made the final cut (the Cert list) their app was rejected.
    Of course, this basic position presupposes that recruiters are not lazy slugs looking to easily fill their positions with fraudulently fake resumes, so I guess that’s a bit of wishful thinking on my part.
    My ONLY concession to this not so novel idea is to have two resumes, one that shows my BA experience first and the PM second, and one that is the exact opposite, however, I use all the same text and keywords; I don’t magically grow abilities and keywords based on the position, silly me!

  16. The saying at the top is a lie the reason you can’t get call back from jobs is because they always want you to further your education when all your trying to do is get a job.

  17. I have been in IT Support for over 30 years. Got laid off at the start of 2009 and have been self employed since then doing PC service calls. Business slowed to a crawl about 2.5 years ago. Since then I have been digging through job sites, newspapers and agencies sending out at least 5 and as many as 10 resumes a day, and I am still looking!! Vast majority of the time I hear nothing at all, and when I do get a phone interview or an in person interview, more times then not I hear nothing ever again after the interview. I send emails thanking them for the opportunity to interview as a matter of course. Like several people have commented, no consideration or empathy at all, it is absurd!! In my 30 plus years I have had 4 jobs total so it is not like I jumped around!! I am getting turned down, or more accurately no response to jobs paying less then half of my last full time position!! It is beyond discouraging!!! Of course I am certain that my age does not help the situation being 57. Best of luck to my fellow job seekers!!

  18. I appreciate any opportunity to learn a little more about
    how to get noticed and get more results. Much of
    this I already knew.
    I would appreciate insight into how to get better results in my Beyond.com career alerts.
    Every alert I receive has opportunities for housekeeping, skilled nursing, cook, property management, systems (IT), and so on. 95% is not even remotely close to what I do. I’d have more time to submit resumes
    if I spent less time weeding through worthless alerts.

  19. I’m a nurse with 28 years of experience . I was fired a day after my 3rd surgery due to “exhausting medical leave and being unable to give a return to work date ” I am recovered and able to do nursing but more sedentary case mgmt jobs. I have been off a year ( unemployment not extended and I was short by 1 week, I only received 1 pay ) I have applied to many positions only to feel that I am being rejected …esp Highmark who sends me a repetitive email that “though my qualifications are good, the competition is strong and another candidate has been chosen ” I have had 2 interviews in the last 7 months. It is a frustrating situation and financially distressing. Even nurses are struggling ( yes I am 52, and education may be issue (ADN) but I am a good nurse with a lot of experience. To all of you struggling, I feel your pain. Let’s keep pushing on ! I would like to see exactly the process that weeds out good candidates like us !
    Jan Lee CH, RN

  20. I hold a Certification in Phlebotomy and a Certified Nurse Aide. My husband was relocated to another state, of course the family came also. I have been out of work for a year and cant get a job now. Why? because I left a job and moved with my husband and now have a gap in employment.Nobody will give me the chance to show what I have to offer. If they would only take a few minutes out of their time and call the last place I worked at,they would know what kind of worker I am and what I have to offer. I have had 2 interviews and a second interview then get an email we choose some one with more experience. I cant get temp services to place me in the field. But you see lots of jobs out there for what I do.

  21. I have been reading the conversations. I agree and I can identify with the pain. I have been unemployed for about two years and also have exhausted unemployment benefits and I have put in as well hundreds of applications. I have had about four interviews and also received the same reply that a more qualified candidate was selected. I have submitted resumes and cover letters as well. It gets frustrating submitting application after application getting no response. Yes I am as well in my fifties too even went back to school to try to pursue my bachelor’s degree. So what do I do? One thing I will continue to seek employment but it’s frustrating oh yeah I even went to job fairs. So are there any more suggestions?

  22. Much of all of the job seekers problems can be laid at the foot of ‘supply and demand.’ There are just too many highly qualified, well-experienced professionals either unemployed or underemployed right now attempting to be hired for too few jobs. Unfortunately, employers/recruiters are taking advantage of the situation and mistreating people in the process. It’s very unfortunate and professionally wrong. What has happened to our integrity and kindness?
    The tide will turn one day, though, but the key is everyone, like those who have commented here, should remember which companies treated them with dignity and respect versus the ones who did not. And when those who did not come calling in time of need, it is time to turn a deaf ear to them.

    Be generous with your expertise. Be trustworthy and clear with your words and actions. Be open-minded and adaptable to others’ ideas and opinions. Be persistent and present always. (no matter what others do to you)

  23. I would agree with the poster who said 85% are filled with people people the employer knows (people who already work at the company). I think this is spot on for many roles. Especially the more senior the role is. When I was a hiring manager I rarely hired outside the company except for entry level positions. This unfortunately is reality. As far as not hearing back. I don’t get to bent out of shape if I don’t get a response from a resume submission. If I were to not hear back after a phone or face to face interview- that’s just poor etiquette.
    My biggest issue was just getting the interview. I had two in 6 months. One I knew I wasn’t really the right fit they were looking for, the other I was offered a position and accepted. I was always confident that if I could get in front of someone- I could get the job. Unfortunately I never figured out the secret sauce to get in front of someone. Ironically, the position I accepted I never actually applied to. I had a recruiter contact me unsolicited.
    If you’re getting interviews, but not getting jobs- then it’s your interview skills. You need to treat the interview like a business meeting. My goal is always to have a dialogue not Q&A. You have to control the conversation and you have to get the interviewer talking more than you. For the position I accepted, the interviewer had a list of questions(I could see them). He got to one- tell me about yourself. From that point on I controlled the conversation and an hour and a half later we’re sitting around his computer as he is showing me some of their sales tools and we’re strategizing. You have to close them in the interview. Ask for the job. Ask if the have any doubts that you’re not the perfect fit. If they do, they will tell you and you can address them. If they don’t- they’ve basically said yes to hiring you.
    Good luck out their folks- it’s rough. In the end, I don’t think submitting resumes and applications to posted jobs really works. There’s just too much noise. You have to find Another way to get your foot in the door.
    I kind of laughed when I read the person who said they mailed in their resume. I didn’t think anyone did this anyone. But that may Actually be the one way to at least get your resume seen (if you know who you need to send it to). I heard a trick (20 years ago) of putting your resume in a tube (like for a poster) and mail it. Whoever receives it is absolutely going to open it out of intrigue. Might be worth a shot. Your resume will be reviewed, and they have to at least appreciate your creativity..

  24. Lost hope on the whole thing. feel sorry for how things turn out to be in this century where technology has simplify everything compare to 10-20-30 years back yet people tends to get lazy or don’t brother.
    lot of topics have been raised regarding the same issue, and you have all kind of unending blah blah about it that at the end of the days its stays just as blah blah with action taken or improvement noticed.
    welcome to the world of copy paste.
    i have disagree with many HR mgrs, bosses in regards to this topic. cause i always return a call or feedback to a candidate where by others find it waste of time or not really necessary…. and this pissed me off specially now that i have fall in the other side of the pitch waiting for a requiter or an employer to get back to me even with a word “unfortunately you are not shortlisted” for the paste a month plus.
    thats way the traditions of job has lost its value as well as people behind it.
    GL

  25. I agree with most all of these posts, as my experience has been much the same. I have a MS degree in HR Management, so when the jobs I apply for I never get a response from, I think to myself, yes they do need to fill this position, because the person responsible isn’t doing their job!

  26. I disagree with the claim that you need to be both a highly skilled worker and a highly skilled job seeker. Being a highly skilled job seeker is much more important than being a highly skilled worker. I have encountered numerous people who have good jobs but little ability. However, they sound impressive TALKING about their jobs.

  27. If I am so qualified and been doing my trade for 23 plus years, then why oh why are these posts to concern me? I have done every trick in the book to acquire gainful employment over the past 6 months. These are nothing new to me or probably most (if not ALL) the candidates above that have been so prompted to read the “tips” since they are not getting responses either to their field of choice.
    This frustration is more than just computers taking over and recruiters filling their inboxes with resumes to satisfy quotas, it is a sad but realistic fact that what you are reading right now above is the NEW NORM for employment seekers…

  28. I couldn’t agree more to many of the experiences shared. From the numerous job alerts and applications, I received only one professional response. Besides, the system is not user friendly. You have to first register with a password like some hectic security system to break through,then submit further personal info and that is where it ends or the page has expired. I also agree, that more often than not the job fit hardly matches.EFA

  29. Out of work for nearly 3 years. I have sent out more than 400 job applications, always including a professionally prepared resume and cover letter. I have more than 30 years of experience in leading organizations as large as 1,900 employees, am a certified PMP, have a Masters degree, and have a diverse background in logistics, transportation, and operations management. My referrals are rock solid (people in SVP positions, in highly respected companies) and I have networked extensively, using LinkedIn and a multitude of recruiters.
    So, what do I have to show for this? Zilch. I have not had a single interview, phone or otherwise, over this time span. How is that possible? I have noticed that a good portion of the applications require a date when high school was completed. Seeing that the position calls for a Bachelors, or Masters, there can only be one reason why they’re asking for a HS grad date, to see what age I am. I don’t know for sure that ageism is an issue, but I do find it strange that I am not getting any kind of feedback or even a “We’re curious about you” phone call.
    I started my own company so as to not have my resume showing my having been unemployed for nearly 3 years, but that has had no effect, or so it would seem. Any suggestions from those in the same boat?

  30. What a pile of dog cr*p. Write a new resume for EVERY job? I have time for that… Online portfolio?? I’ve been asked exactly 0 times ever in all my interviews for a link to my online portfolio. Which is it?? They’re either searching keywords, or they’re surfing portfolios?! Well, at least Mark’s drawing a paycheck…

  31. I applied for a position and was called by the HR Recruiter. Spoke to the Sr. Person on the phone, set up a interview was coming from out of town. When I got to the appt. I’m told we filled the position yesterday but we have another position I was not familiar with but had done part of the responsibilities in another job. The Controller was on the phone during the interview and even had my portfolio which the Sr person wouldn’t look at. I also asked questions about the company thst they couldn’t answer. After the HR Recruiter didn’t know that the other position was filled. I immediately send my thank you letters and wait. Later in the week I get an emai from HR Recruiter that read: you dif not get the job. Good luck! This was a waste of my time because they didn’t even afford me the opportunity to interview for the position when they made the appointment with me for it. Rude and very unprofessional.

  32. I’ve got 12 yrs expierence of working in Machine Shops,over 30 yrs expierence driving a forklift,shipping/material handling.
    I’ve filled out apps online like forever,anymore it’s like people don’t read any of them.
    Employers need to get away terms like”Refuse Collection Personal”where I come from we call them “Garbage Men”.
    Employers need to get away from using fancy terms for employees & call them what really are.
    Employers need to get back to talking face to face,and reading paper apps.instead of puttering with computer apps.

  33. Years ago if I didn’t get a job after an interview, or even an application I would receive a friendly letter in the mail. Well that was 20 years ago and now that I’m back looking for work I don’t even get a response! And I’ve applied to, drafted cover letter after cover letter and sent out over 1000 resumes, many to positions I was well qualified for and nothing…

  34. I agree with most of what has been stated and feel your pain. It can be a frustrating and daunting task when applying for a job. It’s not the same as it was 6 years ago. Back then I had more job offers than I knew what to do with. Now, there are so many master (myself included) and PhD’s unemployed that the bachelor degree is the new HS diploma. Some companies have even raised their standards due to this and all new employees, aside for manufacturing, must have a master degree. Most positions require a minimum of a bachelor. Even the nursing industry, including colleges and universities, are doing away with the ADN. I’ve seen more and more people starting their own business due to not being able to find full-time employment.
    There are jobs available…but where are they? I’ve found that IT, Healthcare (nursing, PA, NP), manufacturing (no degree or technical), and sales are where most of the jobs are. Most of the time these positions are not even posted anywhere. Instead they are given to a recruiting firm to sift through or seek out a candidate. Employers have their “wish list” of criteria the candidate needs to meet. This usually leads to taking 2-6 months for the position to be filled only because there is no perfect applicant for every job description.
    They mostly use Linkedin as a tool to find qualified candidates. Update you linkedin profile! They will also check you Facebook account to see what your extracurricular activities are…Ethical or not it’s being done.
    I agree there is no excuse for not getting a notice from a recruiter or HR department as to your application status. I do however try to keep in mind that they may get upwards of 200-300 applications for one position. I usually call them or find someone I know that works there to ask questions and find out if I was not selected the reason why.
    If you have a bachelor degree and are unemployed with an interest in teaching, there are adjunct instructor positions with almost every college and university. It’s on an as needed basis by semester but it’s something. I really enjoyed teaching so I would pick up a class or two when I was working full-time and then when unemployed (such as now), I try to pick as many classes as I can. It’s not $60,000 a year but it works.
    There’s always the option of returning to school, if you so choose. There are several ways to attend school full time and still maintain your household. It’ll take a strict budget though. I did this when obtaining my master degree.
    My two cents…not sure if it helped or not.

  35. Out of work 21 months. I’m a Senior Paralegal. I have over 10 years experience, a BA in Law and I’m a 2L law student. I have applied for paralegal positions all over the country. HUNDREDS of applications and resumes. Keywords in place. Resume immaculate. No calls. I am nearing homelessness.

  36. What do one do when they are telling you that you’re Over Qualified? Or they just refuse you just because you are not the same sex as their current employee?
    I have over 40 years experience as a auto and diesel mechanic, with 30 of those years serving my country as a diesel and aircraft mechanic.

  37. I have believed for many years now that the biggest attribute to high unemployment are so called Human Resources Department. What a joke of a department title. They used to be a whole lot better when they were the Personnel Department and actually cared about people. Now days they are Risk Management or the Gustapo, Hit Squad, Mob any thing but Human Resources. I say companies should outsource this department and renew contracts with HR Vendors based on an annual evaluation of performance measurables.

  38. It’s frustrating! I went on one interview that took 5 hours! When I called the recruiter two weeks later, she said they went with an internal candidate. That’s fine, but I had to call her to find out! Another interview I left with them telling me that I would “definitely” hear from them and that the interview was “awesome”. Sent a thank you note to both HR and my would be boss the nest day. Two weeks later I called and HR told me they had a major concern come up that put the position on the back burner but that she would “definitely” be in touch. Two weeks after that, sent another email asking if a decision had been made. It’s now 6 weeks after the interview and I have not heard a word! I just don’t understand why it has suddenly become OK to not get back to people. Even a simple email that says “hey – sorry – found someone else that’s a better fit.”

  39. I hate to say this but you are all FOS. If you are truly qualified and apply to jobs that suit your qualifications, you will find work. You may have to take less pay or move but there are jobs for college educated people who interview well.

  40. There’s a firm that I’ve always wanted to work for which had a job posted. Sent a resume, then again 2 months later. Finally I got a reply something like, “our computer thanks your computer for sending a resume.” No other reply. I was very disappointed.
    Now, zoom ahead 6 months…I’m at a trade conference and I meet the Director of Engineering at dinner. He was very happy to talk with me, “Darrel, we’d love to have you come work with us” and was very interested in hiring me except, by that time, I had taken another job. I told him about the lack of response from HR. He was pretty mad at them that they never had sent him a copy of my resume.
    I see this as an indication that the VP can’t get HR to communicate with the actual hiring manager – a clear sign of a dysfunctional company. loose-loose situation.

  41. As a hiring manager I simply run out of time to respond to all of the emails and calls. I can post a position that has very specific requirements and I get dozens of resumes that in no way meet any of the requirements. I spend hours weeding through resumes and cover letters. Many with errors. It has nothing to do with being rude or not caring, it simply has to do with time. In all of our jobs today we wear more hats than our necks can hold up and something is bound to fall through the crack. It can’t be budgeting, dealing with current situations, supporting staff, etc. Sorry job seekers and I am in the business of helping people get jobs…

  42. Looking for a job is a job in itself. It was alot easier years ago when a person walked into a company with an appointment and was hired on the spot. Now it’s an application, maybe a phone interview, then an interview with someone who is 24 years old and does not have a clue on what a real applicant stands for. If you’re lucky after that to meet the executive, then it’s another two weeks. Try following up, they never respond. If you’re interviewed by a Director or a VP you will have a better chance. This is where the problem is. Companies should realize that older workers are more dedicated and are not out for themselves. In the long run, it works for a big corporation. I will say Networking is key in finding a job.

  43. Thanks for the tips, but after seven months of doing all of these things, I am increasingly appalled by how rude and neglectful the hiring and HR managers are. I’ve had multiple face-to-face meetings that span over six months in duration, only to be ignored when the company elects to take a “different direction;” that is, they don’t even say, “thanks, we’ve decided to take another direction; they just don’t respond to follow-up of any kind at all! (This has happened numerous times.) I don’t know why hiring managers and HR people feel that treating job applicants this way is acceptable in a professional setting, but it does give me insight as to why so many talented people have become disengaged in the job search in this digital age. The issue is not just the shift in screening, it is also certainly the short-sighted and damaging attitudes of the acquisition “specialists.”

  44. Jennifer, as an HR person, you are an extension of the company’s brand. You are engaging with the public no differently than your customer service agents and communications people are. I don’t buy a certain brand of pasta any more, for example, because the HR person was so unprofessional with me before and after my interview. Bad customer engagement is bad for the company from any area of the business.

  45. Speaking as both a current job seeker of several years, and one old enough to have similarly gone thru the prior, deep recession of 1982 in similar fashion, I can personally tell you there is a WORLD of difference, and no excuse, for today’s LACK OF COURTESY on the part of employers. (And I’m an MBA Human Resources professional).
    In 1982, with my several hundred of resumes sent, I remember getting at least 75% or more responded to. In that day, most were by a nice letter thru the US mail. With such letters, they either acknowledged my application and said they’d get back to me should there be an interest, or even give a polite decline. But either way the courtesy of writing them was met with the courtesy of a response.
    IS THIS TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR NOWADAYS??? I don’t think so. With today’s autoresponses, computers, and email capabilities, can’t all firms: 1) Autorespond when receiving an application saying thanks and giving an approximate timetable for the position to be recruited and candidates contacted? and 2) Again give an automated response to all applicants (once someone reports for the job) that the position was filled with another but that either their application will be held for other opportunities or that a simple “thank you (once again)for applying” be given.
    BUSINESS COURTESY is something too many have either never known or have lost along the way. I have not…and refuse to lose such courtesy as “what comes around goes around”. When we talk about work place stress, bullying in the workplace, and other ailments which IMPEDE productivity and raise the costs of operations, how far do you think bringing back BUSINESS COURTESY would get us? I dare say quite a bit down the road…

  46. Until recently, every interview resulted in a job offer. If I looked good enough on paper that an employer wanted to talk to me, it was a done deal; the job was mine. As I passed 50, I thought age discrimination was a myth; the people who complained about it just hadn’t kept up on their skills, especially their technical skills. Or maybe they weren’t in great physical or mental shape and radiated “old and tired.”
    Now I’m 56. I’m very active and don’t look my age, but I no longer look like a young person. And for the past year, NO interviews have resulted in job offers. My skills are the best they have ever been, and I am more technically savvy than most people in my field. I’m careful to come off as one-of-the-guys/gals in interviews, not an annoying old coot or a know-it-all senior. I think I’m pretty smart about how I present myself. But…I’m 56. This is the sole reason I’m not getting job offers anymore.

  47. I think that many departments within large and small businesses got whittled down after the 2008 crash. HR is no exception. This gives them fewer people to peruse applications, filter through resumes and meet candidates one on one. Just like many other departments Human Resources has become more automated as well. I believe that this is why applications and resumes seem to go into a black hole. A black hole sucks everything in and nothing ever comes out of it. This has meant that job hunting has gotten a whole lot less personal. So the onus is on the job seeker to make it personal. Even applying to a place with huge turnover rates like a grocery store chain can get the same black hole event unless you show up in person and ask to see the manager. This lets them know that you have taken the initiative to get off the couch and make an effort to make an appearance. Good luck job seekers as I am in the same boat with you!

  48. I have “tailored” my resume to better fit a position but without any positive results. I have a BS in Business management and many years experience in my field, but not one return phone call. The interviews with big corporations have been made up by someone with a psychology degree and far to much time on there hands plus no knowledge of the fields the interview method will be used in. The vague, broad open ended questions are not geared towards finding the skill or experience of the candidate. I digress…

  49. These are all very good recommendations. I should point out, though; I’ve been following all three, except, perhaps, the third one, which I need to spend a little more time developing. In the spirit of networking I would like to elaborate a little more. I tried something a few weeks ago, for the first time, that may (and I want to emphasize MAY) yield dividends. There is a company that I’ve been trying to get into for the last few years. I even set up alerts so anything that comes up that matches my skills or interest gets flagged and I get an e-mail. However, like previously mentioned, I keep sending in an updated resume and I hear nothing from them, nada, zilch. A few weeks ago were no exception. But then I noticed they have a Facebook presence. So, I went to it and sent them a message that, politely, called them out and asked why I keep sending in resumes and applying for jobs that I’m perfectly qualified for and yet get no response. Well, not 24 hours later, I got an e-mail from the HR manager who said the hiring manager really liked my resume and wants to chat. After my phone screen last week he told me that he was very encouraged and has two positions that he needs to fill which, he thought, I would be very qualified for. He then asked to meet me and have breakfast with me (he’s flying in from the East coast and I’m in California, where the job is). That will be in two days. Don’t know what will come of that, but I am sooooo jazzed about it. Hope I don’t blow it. Anyway, I am now a full-on advocate for the power of social media.

  50. One more thing. Don’t know how much this will apply to others but, in my case, my career has been pretty interesting in that I have oscillated between two very discrete, but complimentary engineering roles. I started my career out of college in the QA function, then went into design (at the same company) for 10 years, then went back into quality (at another company), and now I’m a contractor (which I hate) in the design role again. If I get that job I’m interviewing for in a few days, I’ll be back in the quality role once again. This career trajectory might, on paper, look rather “bipolar” or, at least, look like I don’t know what I want to do (the fact is, other than at my first company, where I worked for over 14 years and went from a QA to a design position, whenever I’ve swapped job functions, it was because I went into a completely new industry and market and, whether it’s design or reliability, just getting into that field was important enough that the actual job position – both of which I love – was a secondary concern). Therefore, I’ve always marketed myself (in either role) as someone who understands the development process in the other, so, if anything, I think (or hope) this makes me a more solid candidate, no matter the position applied for.
    Having said that, I did have an HR person, about two years ago, give me some very salient advice. Looking at my resume, which includes and weights both functions equally, he said that hiring manager for the job I was applying for (it was a design position) thought I’d be a better candidate for a QA role (which he had no openings for) since that was the latest job I had (for only three years before they shut down their CA operation and laid everyone – including me – off). His recommendation was that I create two resumes: one that promotes my QA experience and one my design background. So, that’s what I did. In essence, there really is very little content that is in one that is not in the other (there’s quite a bit of overlap – as a reliability engineer, I’ve designed more than a few test/manufacturing fixtures, processes, and chambers and as a mechanical design engineer, I always factor in test protocols and reliability modeling in almost all my parts and assemblies). Of course, for those few openings that seem to want engineers with both skills I send in my composite resume (where both functions are weighted equally). Naturally, I now have three resumes that I need to update from time-to-time but for any QA role I send in my Quality-centric resume (adjusted slightly for the position applied) and for any design position, I send it the other. The jury’s still out if this has made a difference (to date, only the contract design job I currently have – for the next few weeks, anyway – I acquired after I broke out my resume this way. But I still think it makes logical sense.

  51. Most gatekeepers are too young and inexperienced to read a resume properly. Some younger managers don’t subscribe to the philosophy that they should hire above them so as to learn from their team and in turn make themselves look good. I’ve been in and out of firms the past 6 years as a contractor and found that due to the economic crisis of 2008, companies have been hiring more junior folks who accepted positions at much lower compensation levels. I’ve found these junior folks are now hiring managers who are ill-equipped to manage and not possessed of basic courtesies towards candidates–pandemic throughout organizations, HR or not. These young managers can’t wrap their minds around the statistic that you’re only as strong as your weakest team member. It really sucks when that team member is the manager.

  52. I think that all who have posted a comment ahead of this do not understand that the entire HR system has changed.
    As an example, I am in S.Cal where Johnson&Johnson has several operations. I am a senior quality engineer/quality manager w/engineering degree.
    I too have sent out many resumes with the same lack of success in responses that all of you have had. Virtually none.
    I have a close friend who works in HR at J&J. I asked her why this is. Her answer dumbfounded me.
    First, if you are reading this, you are assuming that because you found an ad for an open position at a company like J&J that an actual opening exists. Not so. You send in your resume, you get no answer; you assume something is wrong with your resume. Not so.
    Here’s reality. Companies like J&J post an ad on the J&J website, say for a Senior Quality Engineer at a particular plant in S. Cal. Websites like Career.com and SimplyHired.com and hundreds of other crawler-websites, check for these posts on most of the known company websites in the USA. You know them all. The crawlers prowl the web looking for job postings, capture them, and then display them on their own website. You go to these websites and use various filters to sort out jobs that you are qualified to do. In my case, I sort by “quality” and 10 miles from my home to see what’s out there. Alternatively, one can set up a robot that does that for your every day and sends you an email every day with the new jobs the crawler has found and the links to examine them for potential.
    You assume that if you find a job that you are qualified to do and respond to it with a resume that indicates that, that they you should receive a call for an interview. Sorry– not even close.
    In the old days, placing an ad in a newspaper was expensive; in a trade magazine, even more expensive. But posting a job on the company’s website costs nothing, and 200 crawlers will find it overnight and a billion emails announcing the new job will go out to everyone who set up a robot search engine. Hundreds of resumes arrive within hours at J&J. None are reviewed seriously. A cursory look by HR may happen, but not often. The resumes are entered in a data base after they are filtered for key words.
    Meanwhile back at J&J operations no job openings exist. The ad runs sometimes for a year (no cost, why not?). And then, one day, a Senior Quality Engineer announces his resignation or retirement. J&J suddenly needs to find an SQE. In two weeks, they will have a quality problem.
    No problem for HR at J&J. They merely open the database and start reviewing the last 50 resumes received, or the resumes received in the last 30 days. These are all new, and fresh and are immediately available. Interviews can start within days.
    Every “key” job at J&J from buyers, to assembly workers, to vice presidents has a job req open on the J&J website. Or, if they are concerned about moral, they cut a deal with one of the job websites and post there, all of these jobs. The cost is minimal compared to running ads in the newspapers.
    These are not open jobs. They are key jobs that J&J wants to be able to fill rapidly if needed. The posts continue year round, the resumes come in, and after a few weeks fall out the bottom of the “fresh” resume stack.
    That is why you are not getting responses to you resume submissions. You have to hit J&J when they are in search and find replacement mode. This doesn’t happen too often these days because folks are afraid of not being able to find another job if the quit J&J. That’s also why, if you were laid off from J&J that other employers figure that out from your resume.
    Note also, the latest, “Contract to Hire” scam is to allow the employer to evaluate you for six months instead of the three months max that the employer used to have under CA state law. If your contract expires and they don’t want to keep you, they don’t have to pay into unemployment.
    Welcome to the Brave New World of modern slavery.

  53. While I agree that job-hunting has become a losing proposition and the HR traps they use today are sadly predictable, pathetically lazy and indisputably inhumane, there is a point here missed by everyone.
    EVERY SINGLE ONE of these comments has AT LEAST ONE spelling, grammatical, punctuation and syntax error–and most have several. Some can be re-read numerous times, and even then, the writer’s point is completely muddled. It is horrendous slogging through them.
    If a first impression is key to getting positive attention, these comments are terrible examples for effective communication. And, I fully suspect the writers’ resumes match that same effort at proofreading.
    IF YOU HAVE A RESUME OUT THERE, DO NOT STOP UNTIL EVERY WORD, EVERY COMMA, EVERY SPACE, EVERY EXPRESSION IS 100 PERCENT CORRECT. THEN, have someone excellent in word use check it–and your cover letter, too.
    Then, and ONLY then, can you say you gave it your all and deserve to go to the next level in the hiring process.
    Just an honest observation, people.
    And, no, I don’t work in HR. I have a BFA in Communications.

  54. Larry, that’s not an entirely accurate picture of modern HR. In fact, it’s the exception. How do I know this? 33 years in corporate HR tells me. MAYbe J&J pulls these shenanigans, but it’s not at all cool to do it, and, thankfully, not at all prevalent.
    Posting nonexistent jobs smacks of stupidity b/c the aggregators (Indeed.com, etc.) relegate older postings to subsequent pages to make room for the new and PAID ones. CareerBuilder is not an aggregator but a paid site and not at all inexpensive. Paying to post for nonexistent jobs is merely a waste of money b/c a posting can be put up in minutes and only minutes later CVs will be submitted. Moreover, the posting last for 30 days before it needs to be renewed at the same cost as the original posting. As for the aggregators, job seekers tend not to look beyond page 3, so it’s highly unlikely that, anyone will see the old posting. 
    In the scenario you described, as that which is practiced by J&J, the resumes initially culled will be very stale after 90 days (in the tech sector, probably within 45 days). Job seekers don’t hear back from their submissions because gatekeepers and hiring managers are too inexperienced and insecure to recognize good talent and pursue it. I invite anyone reading this to google themselves and see how quickly your name and AGE comes up on page 1. So here you are, a 20-something neophyte screening resumes, you google the names who appear qualified (important factor in due diligence before presenting candidates), discover their age and you say to yourself, “oh she’s not a fit–too old and too experienced, will want too much money, too set in their ways, and too everything except for the fact that they’re a natural for the job.

  55. I am in HR, and believe me, this happens to us as well. I understand applying for jobs and not hearing anything back as there are reasons for this to be explained below. What irks me most is that when you actually have an interview, phone or in person, and then never hear anything back. I am embarrassed for our profession when this happens, yet it does and has happened to me on more than one occassion. There is no excuse for this practice. If it is a rejection, then let the candidate know so that they can move on.
    Some things to keep in mind:
    – Most HR departments are run pretty lean anymore, which means there is not a lot of time to review resumes/candidates.
    – If the employer is a federal contractor (and there are plenty in the Fortune 500), then they must follow OFCCP affirmative action requirements. Companies typically post positions to meet the “good faith” requirement of finding qualified women/minorities, even when they have an internal candidate in mind. Because of the volume of applications to any given job posting, HR/intrernal recruiters use statistical sampling to review resumes. This can mean 1 out of every 5 resumes submitted are only reviewed. Your submittal may never even get reviewed due to this process. HR must follow these rules for Federal contractors, like it or not.
    -Age discrimination is alive and well. Most hiring managers are looking for successors (succession planning is big) and candidates who they view as worthwhile to invest time and training. If they view someone is going to retire in a few years, then it fails those two typical requirements. Additionally, there is a bias that someone close to retirement won’t be as driven to succeed. Tip – don’t show dates that can indicate your age on a resume. This may mean truncating your experience (there is no requirement to show every year of your experience). This may at least get you in the door.
    Disclaimer: This is just some of my experience and observations. These things are not true of every company or hiring manager.

  56. This would not have happened if our country and industries hadn’t sold us out for a fast nickle. Bring back the jobs that have been sent overseas and your unemployment problem will seem to almost disappear. Even if Americans have to contend with a lower paychek than before, its better than no check at all. Without industry we are 2nd rate country on the decline. Let’s get back to where we once were and stand with pride. Americans for America!

  57. As an HR professional for over 15 years, I find it appalling that many of my peers don’t bother to communicate with candidates that were not selected for a position. I have personally been the victim of such behavior on several occasions. In each instance, the decision was down to me and the other candidate.
    It really is inexcuseable and a lack of integrity. I have always contacted candidates in one form or another. If it was a resume; I’d send the proverbial e-mail as there are too many to warrant a call. However, if the candidate was interviewed they’d get a call from me.

  58. It is so frustrating that I can understand why someone would just give up. I have emailed at least 250 resume’s for jobs that frankly are jobs that I would have never considered 6 months ago. As an insurance professional with a BS degree and 35 years of experience I have found myself ready to deliver pizza. The other rip-off is the constant hounding from India for schools. This is so frustrating as all I want is a job!

  59. I always wonder why recruiters don’t carefully read these articles that they write. If they did, they would see how ridiculous this process has become. It is not the candidates fault, it is theirs. Why are companies missing out on good candidates? Because of the recruiters, Then they give all this advice on what candidates can do to deceive them with their resume. Deceive who? them. Take a good look at what you have written and see what all the rest of us see, how foolish you and your profession has become and what a disservice you are doing to the companies that hire you.

  60. I think the whole idea of tweaking the resume is silly and here’s why: If they don’t like my honesty, they are not worth working for. What I have heard that it is either a game with ever changing rules that are never published, or it is matter of who’s embellishment of their work experience is enough to spark the interest someone who doesn’t really know the job they are filling, then hope they can live up to the picture they’ve painted. It seems like a sham to me.

  61. I share the sentiment expressed by everyone here. I am an RN and had a fulltime patient care job till june 2013. Iresigned because I was fed up of the direction nursing care was going. It was becoming more dangerous to work. Before then, I started looking for another job, and I did not realize how the job market had changed till then. I also realized that companies are becoming cheaper and cheaper, refusing to invest in employees. I see the trend moving towards contracting, so they do not have to pay you benefits. This has given rise to many agencies and job search media, acting as go-between for you and the company.
    The other thing I realized as an RN, is that the RN license ALONE is no longer enough to ge you a job. Almost every faset of patient care is becoming certified, and that hikes any nursing position to a level where some people would get it, unless they possess the certification. So, as much as I blame the companies, from a nurse stand point, I am considering adding more relevant skills to my qualification, with the hope that it would give me an advantage. In effect, what I am saying is that while the jobs are hard to come by, we should also equip ourselves.

  62. I realize that every industry has its own unique parameters and views towards what I’ve encountered in my own. But to fast forward to my own personal/ professional solid brick wall — it’s AGE.
    My background is what most would refer to as stellar. An unblemished track record of verifiable achievement in the top COO positions that I have held in the highest regarded institutions in my field. I am also amongst the most frequently published authors in trade publications over the past 2 years. There are no skeletons, no scandals and no gaps in a great career. Oh — well … ‘cept maybe the little one just right about now …
    While a personal shock to me —- I am living the fact that executives have a “shelf life”. I’ve been directly told by 3 top Search Firms specializing in my field that there is no question that I am one of the very best at what I do in the country. And, ONLY because these firms know me personally — they have also very candidly told me that their clients “Ideal Candidates” are not 60’ish years of age.
    I have not actively sought a new position in decades. The Search Firms always sought me — while I was not looking at all. But, now — since they know and respect me, they still all take my calls — but, there is nothing they can do for me.
    Sooooo — you go it alone.
    In that quest, I have formally applied to100++ potential employers. All specific. All personalized. All directed only for a specific position they are actively looking to fill. All with individually targeted cover letters engrafting their specific needs and my specific ability to address those needs. All with verifiable references.
    The results? Nothing at all. Not even a single personal interview. Not one.
    Now then — you’d be right to think that there must be more to this story. You’d be right to think that there just has to be something else going on that is not being shared!
    Yes. You’d be right to wonder. (I would!) But — you’d be wrong in this case. There is nothing undisclosed here. What we do have here is the fact that AGE alone can be a deal breaker — a non-starter from the get go.
    And — yes … Yup … Of course … I’ve expanded my horizons by looking to transfer skills to other industries … Exploring non-profits … Networking like crazy in civic organizations and service clubs. Yes — I now have indeed wrote that book I always wanted to. Yes, because of my background I do occasionally accept speaking engagements. Sure, I do the same with random consulting requests that make sense. All that.
    But — as far as again directly being employed in the profession I love and excel at …
    Very discouraging. Very frustrating. But — only due to my years of experience, I keep at it. Everyday … Because it only takes one. And, today could be that day. And if the phone rings … That could be the one.

  63. It’s not about resumes. Few employers ever see an application. Virtually every “job site” has no interest in you getting a job, or even serving the employers’ needs. These are multi-million dollar advertising and marketing businesses, nothing more. They love to justify their existence with lame articles on improving your resume, or how to dress right or have the “right attitude.”
    No one gets jobs because employers are too lazy to do anything except entrust their HR needs to inefficient, pointless web sites and online applications, unrevealing of any pertinent qualifications, repetetive wastes of time that set up cookie cutters anyone original or creative could never fit into, designed by idiots who grew up playing video games. Wake up, qualified world. The dorks writing the articles landed some job allowing them to do it, but they know nothing more about anything than you or I.

  64. Throughout my 14 years as a contract professional I’ve always had an easy time landing follow-on assignments. Not now. This made me wonder whether the “age factor” has finally come into play.
    Today, it’s a no-brainer to look up a candidate’s age with just their name and address, using locators such as Peoplefinders or Zabasearch. Youth-biased recruiters, client reps, or hiring managers can quietly and simply dismiss “seniors” in favor of younger applicants, and the unenforceable anti-discrimination law will be none the wiser.

  65. Well at least I don’t feel alone in my search and disappointment. But the good news is “Unemployment is down” yea, right! It’s down because benefits are exhausted. I wanted to share a response I received for a position in a medical facility. I applied for Medical Front Desk for a private practice in a hospital-Here is the response:( We have received your application for ” Unavailable Variable position” (?????)in the Unavailable Variable department. Althought your qualifications and background are most impressive, another candidate has been selected. and it was signed: Sincerely, Unavailable Virable ~ Talk about insulting? and this is a well know medical facility. It’s demeaning and does a number in your self esteem. You get to the point where you say, why bother? Especially if your over 55 they toss it …

  66. I was hoping to learn something as I read this article. I learned I totally agree with all the comments. I have been off work for only 3 months and feeling very discouraged. I do not have a degree but I do have 18 yrs experience as an Administrative Assistant. This online resume application is just crap. If I had one person give me an interview they would see and hear the qualifications I am capable of doing. Do they even check the references? They probably do that after they decide you are qualified for a job. I have had to apply for Welfare at this point as money is running out. I am 54 yrs old. I don’t think I deserve this in my life. I am very qualified for many jobs. Employers need to go back to doing interviews themselves and not depending on some online company to hire for them.

  67. Another problem a lot are facing now including myself since we have gotten older is age discrimination. I have 25 years experience in insurance have both my property & casualty & life health insurance licenses but, I have applied for numerous positions advertised and rarely hear back from anyone. I just turned 50 and I know companies look at people much different at this age or older then they do if you were younger. Never seen it as tough as it is today to try and find a decent job!

  68. I have to agree with a number of people posting here. The article stinks. I’ve also got the feeling that it’s written by someone who really couldn’t hold most other jobs. Mr. Anderson seems to be in the blather business – and this was blather.
    I think we’re up against some very large and uncivilized facts in our world. This is the land of the MBA and the MBA mentality. It is about “the numbers,” and that’s all. I’ve been to interviews where I’ve gotten by the screening software. The 23 year-old Junior Management Punk behind the desk was horrified that a 59 year old was in front of him. Even cutting half my resume away – I only added terror to his horror.

  69. Cheat and lie to get a job. Nothing to loose if yoy have the skills and experience. Mosr jobs aee easy whwn you statt work in your field of expertise. Employers wants to much this days.

  70. Most of you probably don’t get jobs because you can’t write or spell and you don’t proof anything. I too am looking and do get interviews–great ones but I never get the second date. How do you all keep an employers interest?

  71. I agree with most of what has been written above by everyone.
    I am a very good nurse, but I lost my job last month due a policy infraction, which was the official reason. I also have had other terminations on my resume. I am a strong patient advocate, but they always seem to find an “official” reason when they want to discharge me. It is very hard to get an interview, much less a phone call to interview. I just don’t know what to do, any suggestions from anyone?

  72. I agree as well with many posts, I’m 56, have held 4 jobs in my life. One the assistant branch manager of a successful bank. 30+ years of customer service, many awards for excellence. Yet you walk into one of the largest casino’s in Las Vegas to watch all of the twenty somethings gain the majority of all jobs. I actually knew one of the young girls that had just been hired. I actually applied for the same position as she. In the customer service area I thought I should have this hands down. I then receive the short note, you do not have the qualifications we are looking for.
    Like someone else said, you have no idea of who I am, what I am capable of, what I have accomplished in the past. Did they ever bother to look at the resume, or filter us seasoned applicants out be age.

  73. Hi All,
    Same problem I am seeing over and over and over again. I have spent hours upon hours filling out apps, networking, adding to my Resume, shortening it when requested which is hard to do after 26 years. I have two head hunters shooting out Experience/some of my work bio and education. It is difficult. But it is even more difficult when you see 2500 people viewed the job. If just 5% applied you are still competing with a sizeable group. Now they can line up their 5 prospects and either look for the cheapest employee or one that has more qualifications but requests a higher pay and rightfully so.
    This is what I have to say to those companies. If you aren’t human during the application/interview process then your company more than likely runs the same way. Experience is needed in the “Human” resource departments. Knowledge of what is really needed in an employee for a certain department is paramount. It takes speaking with the candidate and figuring out if this will be a mutually beneficial business relationship. You invest in your employees and potential employees. If you don’t you are already sending a message to that potential employee that the turnover is probably quite high.
    I think it is atrocious that as nurses we are unable to speak to the Director of Nursing herself. Back in the day, the DON would have her name in print with a phone number. Imagine that! I’m that that old but not that young either. The point is, I was able to meet with the DON. We hit it off. I was hired on the spot. It had more to do with how we interacted and how my nursing skills would be an asset to that hospital. It worked. She invested in me and I worked there happily for over 5 years.
    Filling out all of this information for these ridiculously long applications is like the mirror that allows you to see others in a room but they cannot see you through the glass. Something seems so WRONG with that on so many levels.
    For those of you who are in Human resources or Talent acquisition and really take pride and care about your jobs, you are in the minority and I hope to meet up with you in the near future.
    Until then, nurses, we need to clean up our act a bit. We have to stop accepting these ridiculously low salaries and really stressful and dangerous work situations. We need to really be supporting each other. I will be staring my own blog for nurses. I have networked with thousands and I think it is time we start taking care of ourselves.
    Wishing you all quick employment that pays well and suits you as best it can.
    Stay strong and stay patient focused not matter what kind of nursing you do.

  74. he part of it I find so discouraging is the recruiter cannot answer most of my questions about a position but decides if I am a good fit or not and if I am not (in their sole judgment)the process just goes dark.

  75. You’re not hearing back from employers because HR processes have brought any chance you have to be considered a candidate to a screaming halt. Employers need to be taken to task for looking for a “perfect match” to the job description when instead, they should be hiring on the basis of ability to do the job. Newsflash: there’s an unemployment crisis that shows no sign of slowing down – in fact, it’s getting worse. And employers have done zip, zero, nada to help the situation. In fact, they’ve made the crisis worse.
    Companies won’t even consider viable candidates who are currently unemployed. And whoever put forth the notion that skills become stale and that the unemployed need “retraining” after six months of joblessness needs a reality check. Instead of speaking with a candidate and recognizing that many skills are transferable, HR operates on the perfect match system and outside the realm of common sense.
    I run a nonprofit (Operation Boomerang) to help the unemployed over age 45. You can find us on the Web – opboom.org.
    Agree with Allan’s comments about controlling the interview. It’s neither the time nor place to be playing a game of Q&A. Good luck to everybody – it’s a wicked world out there.

  76. Been there tried all of that. With the exception of mailing a tube. Interesting idea perhaps with flames, neon signs, dancing bears and a twenty one gun salute. Do you think a drum roll would be over the top?
    The problem is in Washington we need more actual good paying jobs. Less partisan bickering.
    Good luck to all I may not have a job but still have a sense of humor. Keep your spirits up don’t lose faith in yourself.
    Find the employer that deserves you and your unique talents.

  77. I can’t help but think my applications are going directly into oblivion! Another thing that let’s me know there is no job it would seem, is that I know for a fact some positions are posted for legal purposes but with an intended person to fill it.
    I also question the amount of redirects on job sites, “job-helpers” who send you links you’ve already seen on other sites and third party recruiters. The whole experience is impersonal and the kindest words you will receive are from those companies who also want to link you up with a college. As soon as you tell them you’re already in school or have completed your education endevours they damn near hang up on you.
    Thanks for the “help”!?!?
    I don’t miss hand written applications, but at least I know someone’s eyes might see them. At this point, I only apply directly on the company site, where I also know I will not be solicited for things I cannot afford because I am unemployed. And I have found cover letters make me feel like I have spoken specific to a position. How it makes HR feel, I have no idea!
    But that’s just it isn’t it, we take it very personal. Our career path is an important element in our lifestyle and well being. It provides for us and our family our needs and hopefully fulfils some personal satisfaction along the way. So yes, hearing back is important. Wandering about the house pacing with the phone in hand and refreshing email feels daunting. Yes, a simple, “gone with another candidate” email would make all the difference.
    When I get those responses that at this time I am not a candidate I reply if I can. You drained me of personal and professional information, as a recruiter, I’d like your reasonings why? What can I do better to improve my chances? Of course…I get crumbs back. They can’t legally tell why they may have discriminated against a qualified candidate. They can’t say, I just don’t like your name or we think you live too far away. Honestly, this should all change, just as job hunting went digital, it should now go personal. Employees love personal touches. So do candidates. Those man hours to respond to everyone who didn’t get the job, is worth their reputation’s weight in gold!

  78. I have heard just about most of everyone’s comments and it gets very frustrating to be told someone else with more qualifications was selected when you have 15+Yes of training and qualifications. My frustration is those hideous personality assessment test.

  79. I must agree, most of these stories are very similar to mine. Moreover, I am tired of looking for someone to provide me my dream job. At this point, my ambitions for success has changed directions and I want better not only for myself but for my nation. How many more of these passage must we read to comprehend that a change has to be made? How many more of these condescending, belittling, supercilious episodes will we continue to endure without taking a lesson from it?
    I for one will not take this any longer without seeing a bigger picture. The bigger picture will be to create. I do mean create! How many of us have gone back to school to make life better? How many of us have 2-3 different types of resumes with work experience? How many more test, certifications, loans will it take just to see the American Dream?
    Have we not gotten the experience needed? Have we not collected the education necessary? So, why haven’t you created something? I am talking about individual empowerment?
    I for one will not wait without seeing a bigger picture. While I work in the job I am over qualified with I will prepare my own dream job. I will create it from starch. I encourage you to dream and from that dream bring it into reality. I have been working with an idea for the last 3 years and I have made a business plan and now I must enact it.
    Moreover, before, I graduate I will set sail with my own goals. If I fail than I will have skills added to my resume which can not be over looked. Dear, reader(s) I believe we are smart enough, wise, ambitions and creative individuals. You dont need an employer to tell you this. Dont stop! Dont be discouraged, if anything live and stop surviving. Allow it to motivate you, innovate you and create. These voices are voices of the future. If we dont push to make jobs better, no one will!

  80. From the black hole: I am a recruiter- and I hear what you are saying but let’s be honest here- you aren’t upset that you didn’t get a no thank you note- you’re upset because you didn’t get the opportunity to interview. If we do send you a letter you then complain it’s a form letter and came long after you applied. If we call you- you then would ask us for feedback- and we can’t since we have learned being honest and open only starts arguments. So we don’t go there.
    We are not trying to be rude- and we usually don’t send rejection letters till the job is filled which usually takes months. It’s hard enough to conduct a job search and keep a great attitude. Don’t go looking for reasons to take offense. Just don’t expect to hear- move on- get busy with something else- and if you do get the no thank you email- please ask yourself- did that make you feel better? I doubt it. Just gives you more to not like. Falling victim to being negative and bitter and focusing on this unforgiving world will do you no good. Stay positive. Each attempt is a singular experience and has nothing to do with the one before or the one next. Lastly- please don’t mail your resume- this lends us to believe you are very old school and haven’t embraced technology- Or- you are desperate. Neither of which are selling points.

  81. Wow. It’s nice to find out you’re not alone with certain frustrations. I’ve been out of work for over a year. Finally had an acquaintance leave me a message asking if I was interested in manual labor. She owns a small roofing company and work is picking up. I started last week. Even though I’m in Computers and Electronics, I was in the military years ago and therefore no stranger to hard physical work. I literally couldn’t straighten my back the following morning, but I’ve had a few days to recuperate before the next job. It’s certainly not ideal, but it’s much better than the alternative.
    My story, even though anecdotal, is evidence that you’re more likely to get a job from someone you know than not.

  82. I completely understand what everyone that has been and still is unemployed. It is Bullshit that now days with so much technology that we have the problems in getting a job. Back in the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s we could walk into a business, fill out an application, and speak to an HR person or a supervisor but now we can’t even get any response to any resume or application submitted online. It is not fair and I am also tired of the way this world has gotten when it comes to anyone finding a job.

  83. I think technology and modern business models have made it tougher for more skilled people to get hired. A lot of businesses embrace a business model that minimizes the necessity of highly skilled employees. That makes people more dispensable and easier to replace.
    I also noticed a lot of the above responses coming from older workers, like me. I have heard of “age discrimination”, which may be true to some extent, but I suspect the more accurate term is “skills discrimination”. The vast majority of jobs available require a lower skill level to perform. It is safer to hire a lesser skilled person who is cheaper, than risk a higher skilled person who may get a better offer in a year or so.
    I also have noticed the exact same help wanted ads being posted for more than 3 years straight. Same company. Same job title. Same everything. I think it is common practice now for many companies to always have a help wanted ad out, whether they are hiring or not. My old company did that (and still does) for the full 10 years I worked there.

  84. Trust in God! That’s my one and only tool and I know it’s going to work! He didn’t bring us this far to turn his back on us now! TRUST IN THE LORD WITH EVERYTHING YOU DO!
    Signed,
    Unemployed 3 weeks

  85. FYI… I have been unemployed before so please do not think I’m being a naive rookie. Instead, try my method of trusting in The Lord and watch God work!

  86. If anyone who is complaining about not having a job and voted for OBAMA, please stop complaining you are now receiving the change you believed in. You were told before he was elected, all that is happening now was going to happen. Those of you who did not vote for Obama and cannot find a job, do not put all the blame on yourself.

  87. I don’t appreciate the fact that no matter what resume or career you have listed…… You are hounded by 45 different companies that think you are a perfect fit …..to sell insurance…..

  88. Thanks to all of you who have posted your discouraging words. Now I know I’m not alone. I’ve spent months on the internet too. NO CALLS and just a few rejection emails. I feel the internet is a great tool but please all you employers take time to know the person. If your tired of searching through all our applications, know that we are tired of being tossed aside. We are good people looking for good jobs. Again, my salute to all the good people out there searching. My tears haven’t been in vain.

  89. I attended a military transition class (mandated by DoD), that are now run by the Department of Labor, when I left active duty after 30 years of service. The one glaring statistic they gave us (that most of us in DoD who work with defense contractors already knew) is the simple fact that between 80-90% of all hires are based on the fact that the individual knew somebody in the organization they applied to that got them in the door.
    “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know”. Right now I’m in a position, largely due to my military pension, to focus on my contact network in my job hunt and stay away from throwing resumes into black holes. My wife is a HR/recruiting professional and she gave me the complete run down on how that works, and it was discouraging. She has only used her network contacts in getting jobs since she left active duty. I had one recruiter contact me about a contingent DoD job that was being bid on, and I gave her all the information she asked for and a time that we could speak on the phone, and I never heard back from her again. However, I did pass on her name and company to people I knew that were working in the organization thinking about using them to fill the contract. If you are part of a “people” profession, you should treat people, well, professionally.

  90. Allen’s comment is spot on about interviewing. When I interview
    I also get to a point where I turn the interview into a strategy session conversation (dialog) on ways I could/would help them. You know you have hit a home run, when the interviewers (especially f they are going to be your boss) nearly hug you at the end.

  91. This guy is full of shit. Look who he works for. First of all, consider the realities of his life. His job is to generate advertising dollars by getting people to click on this page so the company can tell advertisers “Look 100 billion billion people look at our site.
    His comments and blog are wrong and the reality has nothing to do with helping people find a job.
    By the way, Beyond even posts opportunities that are clearly illegal in that they request “females” and specific age groups.
    Beyond is mostly automated scrapes of other sites.

  92. Norm Morris. Recruiters are lazy? Have you ever been a recruiter? I thought not. I am part of HR and recruiting is in my job description. I have been a corporate recruiter for more than 10 years. Most often we are bogged down by a plethora of job responsibilities. One job posting can generate hundreds of resumes. Would you like to read hundreds of resumes? I thought not. Over and over again I am disappointed in the wasted time when I phone screen candidates who are not qualified bc they beefed up their resume. Just be honest for pity sake. As to the article writer: Thanks Captin Obvious. Yes, make sure there are no spelling errors, no unexplained gaps in employment (death nail) and always ALWAYS have a synopsis of your achievements. Companies want to know that you made a difference.

  93. I read many of the postings from various people struggling to find a job in today’s economy.
    I fully share all of their frustrations as I am one of many dealing with the same problem.
    One thing I learned, the age discrimination is a reality!
    Second, is not the people failing the system is the system failing the people.
    The system has to change from its foundations or else our children and future generations will have to deal with extreme hardship.As hard as it might be for us it will be much harder fro them. We are all victims of a society that has no traces of humanity left in it and expects everything form everyone without being able to give anything back in return.
    Looking back into the history of mankind we will be able to observe the same trends and above all the incapacity of men to govern themselves.

  94. I think I have experienced almost all of the job hunting maladies you guys have mentioned. And I am a member of maybe 20 different recruiting sites (careerbuilder, ziprecruiter, etc) who have my data base listing of skills. I get emails daily of open positions that supposedly fit my talents. However, what really bugs me is when I get the same job listings as I did yesterday, last week, last month – and they all say NEW TODAY or that they were posted 2 days ago. Yet they are the same jobs from the same companies.
    I went ahead and reapplied for the same positions over and over hoping that maybe my repeat performance would illicit some response from the recruiters. No dice. I have come to believe that many of these websites are nothing more than a game of numbers – just corporate analytics justification for the advertisers that appear on those job posting web pages.

  95. Age discrimination is out there, you better believe it. They look at your age and pass you by no matter how qualified. They want 30 year old individuals with 30 years experience and pay them less money.
    I am qualified professional candidate, with excellent management skills, it is not what you know, it is who you know and then there are the professionals who worry if they recommend you, they may loose their job.
    It’s the pits out there. We all need to work, should be jobs for all.
    Thanks

  96. I just had 4 interviews by 3 people for 1 position lasted 4 months. I got the chance because I had two strong references in the company. In the last interview and for the first time the hiring manager asked me some technical questions, but I thought he was wrong about the issues, I tried to explain but I thought he didn’t feel well and rejected me the next day. Of course he had enough reasons such as my bad English.

  97. I am a victim of age discrimination when it comes to job hunting. 36 years in the steel fabrication business as QC inspector and blueprint designer and still no one will touch me. They see my age (58 at present) and in spite of my knowledge and good work record–only three jobs in the aforementioned 36 years–I still never get any response. I guess they think I’m just looking for some place to hang out till I can collect S.S.

  98. Been looking for over a year, applied to probably 75 positions in all fields. NOTHING! The whole job seeking thing is total BS. If you don’t know someone on the inside, you’re screwed. That, and being a Veteran is hurting my chances, I am 100% sure of it. People are scared to hire Vets. Disagree? Prove it to me and hire me!

  99. Too many capable people are out of work perhaps those in HR not giving a response seems to be the norm and unacceptable. Ironically, those HR specialist may find themselves someday in this circumstance to appreciate good people are being over looked.

  100. I believe there is age discrimination going on out there. I’ve tried it all and have had no success at landing a job. I’ve been unemployed for 3 years and 4 months. The process of applying for jobs over the internet has beat down my self esteem and left me burnt out. I now get told employers are not interested because I have not held a legitimate job in over 2 years. It seems as though us 50 and up are not wanted in the work force.

  101. All comments are true, but don’t forget there my also be 2,000 applicants for a single job.

  102. Am I the only one who noticed that 80 to 90 percent of the comments on this story have typos. Just saying…

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