My recent post about job applications created a lot of interest and clearly touched more than a few nerves with other business owners, I received a lot of replies from business owners – all agreeing with me…
I made the mistake of inviting my readers to share their thoughts and experiences with me via email, rather than by commenting at the bottom of this post so that everyone could share in their wisdom. One reply particularly caught my eye though, so I asked Bill for permission to post it here as a Guest Post. Fortunately, he has agreed, but he just wanted me to point out that these are his personal thoughts, and not the views of his employer.
YES to all points!! I also have encountered a flood of resumes that leave me heartily unimpressed.
One particular screening method I use is the email address given by an applicant. One stands out in memory – “hotsexy69er@…” was immediately consigned to the bin. This may work for dating sites but certainly impresses me as someone who has a less than serious attitude to work life. This may be presumptive but I don’t want an applicant that spends the week planning the party regime for the weekend.
Along with this, I am an avowed protagonist toward “Spellcheck”. I have given up counting the number of applicants who obviously have not bothered to at least change their dictionary from US to Australian.
Another annoyance is the texting format that poses as a written statement of the applicants abilities. An example; “I would luv 2 work for ur company”. Seriously, this is what I encountered in one resume I received some twelve months ago.
One more bugbear of mine is the line “I am passionate about vehicle hire”. Really? I am passionate about child welfare, the Culinary Arts, Music etc. As a vocation, I am passionate about ensuring the success of our business. However, it is decidedly mainstream, so I am a little suspicious of those who espouse a passion for a particular component of a particular industry. I suspect my potential employee includes this in each and every application.
And don’t get me started on grammar!!
All of these examples serve to make the culling process that much easier.
The second phase of hiring, for me, starts with the initial contact to book interviews. I will generally call the applicant as this gives me an insight into telephone manner and attitude. I will give them a time and date for an interview and only if there is a legitimate reason for declining the proffered appointment time and date, I will generally advise them that this is the only time available. I have had a response along the lines of “Sorry but I have a hairdressing appointment at that time”. Good grief!!
Another little hook is at the commencement of the interview. I will generally greet the applicant and begin by “lightening the mood”. I will ask them if they are nervous and if so, assure them they can relax. In other words, I attempt to get the guard down. I will then ask them if they have viewed our website or Facebook page. The typical response is “Yes”.
To confirm if they actually have, I will ask them to comment on a less than obvious item. While this is not a solid indicator of confirmation, you would be amazed at how many applicants stare at you blankly. I will then ask for comment on a more obvious aspect (latest post on our Facebook or a prominent aspect of our web homepage). If I again get a ‘glazing over of the eyes’ – out you go!!
Having said all of this, there is an upside. Those applicants who fit the bill will invariably stand out like a beacon on a lighthouse, which makes the hiring process that much easier.
No doubt I have missed an asset along the way by employing these methods. Haven’t we all. But I can say that those I have hired under this regime generally turn out to be fine additions to our company To exemplify this, we have very little turn over in staff at our branches. The following shows this:
Current Maximum Tenure: 6 years
Current Minimum Tenure 2.5 years
Current Maximum Tenure: 8 years
Current Minimum Tenure 1.5 years
Current Maximum Tenure: 4 years
Current Minimum Tenure 2 years
Current Maximum Tenure: 4 years
Current Minimum Tenure 4 years
These numbers are impressive when you consider the turn over rate in other companies in the hire industry. While I would like to think as an Employer we are well-versed in Employee welfare, it would be remiss not to state that the quality of the Employees themselves was evident at the interview.
To put this in a nutshell, I look for those who fall in line with my late Father’s philosophy, as given to me when I first started out in the workforce
– “There is no Employer in the world who is obliged to give you a job. Work is a privilege, not a right”
Thank you & regards
Bill Gane – Area Representative
1300 Meteor Rentals
c/- Cairns Branch: www.1300meteor.com.au”
Well said Bill! I must admit that I left out the email piece in my original post. Really, it doesn’t even cost any money to get a serious gmail address to use on job applications. Leave the frivolous ones for your dating service account.
Another reply to my original post contained this gem…
Bravo – my favourite is “I am honest, trustworthy, hard working, reliable blah blah” I often ask for examples of this – they rarely have any – it is a template from school. I interviewed one young bloke who had those things listed and asked him where that fitted in with him having been convicted of breaking and entering … ?
Please, jobseekers out there, don’t see these posts as “bagging” people who don’t craft a good job application. Take good notes and avoid these errors in your next application.
By Bronwyn Reid
March 3rd 2016
If you have any further hints for the people who are applying for your jobs, please leave them in the comments below.