In Friday’s blog post (“Noah’s Job Search”, 8/9/13) I introduced the fine work of Gerry Crispin and Mark Mehler, founders of CareerXroads, a consulting company specializing in human resources, staffing, and recruiting.  As promised, I have been devoting additional blog posts to their excellent and enlightening report (“This Year’s Mystery Job Seeker: Noah Z. Ark, A Man For The Modern World”

CareerXroads found that Noah had a better experience in a couple important areas compared to last year’s mystery job seeker.  For example, overall, the online application process took less time, and companies have demonstrated enhanced efforts to convey better information about their corporate culture.  These are two improvements we can definitely celebrate.

Simultaneously, Noah found some serious deficiencies in his online job-seeking process in three key areas:

1—You Are A Number.  Canned responses, lack of information on status, and no screening questions all conveyed the company was looking at Noah as a number more than a person.  For example, about 75% of companies communicated no information concerning Noah’s status even after 90 days.

2—We Want You To Fight With Our Online System.  Noah encountered numerous online systems in which confusing error messages arose, information did not transmit correctly, and he laboriously had to input routine information already contained in his uploaded resume.

3—We Require Unrelated Personal Information.  Noah had to respond to numerous questions involving personal information that had no connection to his job qualifications.  For example, 8% of companies demanded Social Security numbers in the initial application step.

These three deficiencies are quite serious when you consider these companies tout their state-of-the-art, easy-to-use hiring systems.  They believe they are on the cutting edge.  Unfortunately, Noah’s experiences suggest something else entirely.  CareerXroads summarizes the sad state of affairs:

All this is reflecting poorly on organizations that pride themselves on their progressive attitudes toward hiring.  They may be losing opportunities to recruit top workers by leaving them frustratingly in the dark.  Without cultivating conversations with job seekers, they are also unable to see what’s working in their recruiting practices.  Perhaps this explains the lack of progress in recent years.

This seems to be a case in which Noah might righteously declare, “Practice what you preach!”

About James Meadows

Currently I serve as a training team manager for Johnson Controls at a customer-care center in Kansas City. Additionally, I am a business consultant, a freelance corporate writer, an Assembly of God ordained minister, a Civil Air Patrol chaplain, and a blogger. I believe we are living in the most fascinating times of human history. To maximize the opportunities these times present, I have a passionate interest in leadership development and organizational success, both of which I view as inextricably linked.

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