toxic jobs

Personal stories about toxic jobs and workplace woes.

July 26, 2007

online job applications ignored

Brooke is 18, the eldest of three kids from a broken home, and she's eager to find work after what she claims to be a wasted high school education, and she's trying hard to stay positive despite lack of response from employers and lack of encouragement from her mom.

"My mom is forever nagging me about why it's taking me so long to get a job and start contributing towards the household expenses," says Brooke, "and she's driving me mad."

"She thinks I'm playing around on the Net and setting a bad example for the younger kids," says Brooke, "and now she's threatening to cut me off the Net - but I am serious about getting a job!"

"She just doesn't understand how different things are today," sighs Brooke. "And not only different, but a lot more difficult too."

"There are no local jobs available - they all go to the 15 year old high school drop-outs - so I have to use the Net," explains Brooke, "and what my mom doesn't understand is that employers and recruiters who advertise online are being inundated with 100s of job applications."

"What chance do I have?" asks Brooke. "I don't know why I bother but I suppose it's because it's a lot easier and cheaper than sending a job application by snail mail."

"And just in case you're wondering, I'm not missing out on anything because I don't have a college education," says Brooke. "None of the jobs I apply for specifically require a tertiary education - and it's pathetic that girls older than me who've been to college and gained some fantastic degree are also applying for these jobs and getting rejected."

"My mom can't afford to send me to college - and actually thought she was doing me a favor to keep me at school for three more years, if only she knew what a waste of time that was," says Brooke, "but I don't want to go on to higher education in any case."

"My boyfriend wants to be a doctor and has to keep on studying," says Brooke, "but I've had enough of school and studying. All I want is to be rich, but I can't even earn a bean when I'm stuck at home without a job and not much hope in getting one."

"The twelve years I've spent at school already have mostly been a total waste of time. Colleges are just like schools - baby-sitting centers - I just want to get a job, get some money and get out of here! I'm fed up with my mom nagging me and my kid brother and sister annoying me."

"I'm doing a lot of reading about what to expect from my first job - and I'm really looking forward to the experience - but first I've got to find a job and I'm beginning to believe that the whole online job market is a joke," says Brooke. "I take great care with my job applications - and although I don't have a job resume I do have good references - but I have grave doubts about whether anyone reads anything I send."

"I show my mom all the job applications I sent out," says Brooke, "and still she doesn't believe that I'm trying hard enough. She complains that she's had to raise us on her own for all these years and she can't afford to support me any longer. As if I want her to support me! I can't help it if I can't find a job. What is she going to do? Throw me out into the street? It's not my fault that dad left her - she probably nagged him to death, too!"

"Honestly, I don't believe anyone even reads my job applications. There are too many of them and most HR departments would just skim them, if indeed they bother to read any of them."

"Also, my mom tells me to get up early and get in first with my job applications but with the Internet there's no time in the sense that she knows it," sighs Brooke, "and it's a myth that getting in first gives an advantage, an edge over other job applications."

"I never rush my applications because I know that everybody else is rushing like mad to be first in and by doing so they rarely bother to check what they’ve written."

"As many as a hundred email job applications can arrive on the first day a job vacancy is posted," says Brooke. "I time my application to arrive up a few days later in the hope, probably misguided, that by then all the shoddy applications have been trashed and mine will stand out because it arrives late and is pretty good."

"I have no illusions whatsoever about the job market," says Brooke, "and it makes me angry when my mom - who hasn't job hunted for 20 years - looks at all the thousands of online advertised jobs and thinks I'm not trying hard enough if I can't score one."

"What would she know about the job situation today? Her generation was practically headhunted from school. If anyone understands my situation it's my grand-dad who tells me about how bad it was for his family in the Depression."

"I get on much better with my grandparents than my mom and I wish I had been sent to live with them after dad left," confides Brooke. "I particularly love my grand-dad because he's been more like a dad for me than my own father ever was."

"As far as I'm concerned, those who are not in the position of a current job hunter have a totally misguided and over-rated view of what's going on."

"Jobs advertised online can reach millions of job-seekers worldwide within minutes, and sometimes I wonder if any of the jobs are genuine."

"I honestly believe that 99% of job applications never get read," says Brooke. "If I receive an auto-response saying that my resume has been received, I consider myself to be lucky."

"It’s widely understood that employers only acknowledge receipt of applications that pass the resume cull and the rest get trashed, but an auto-response means nothing."

"As for online resumes," laughs Brooke, "they were probably a great idea when somebody first thought of them - and in some cases they might have been a nice money-spinner for the recruiting agencies - but I have never heard of anyone who gained a position by posting their resume online."

"And, now that everyone all over the world is on the Internet applying directly by e-mail to online job advertisements, I'm hearing less and less about friends getting lucky applying online for jobs."

"Employers do a great deal better than job-seekers out of the online job market - and I also feel that the speed and convenience of applying for jobs online leads many job-seekers to make the mistake of mass marketing themselves."

"More is not better and I always target specific jobs."

"The whole online job market is like a lottery or a magical trick," laughs Brooke. "One day an employer may pull me out of the hat like a white rabbit - but I'm no bunny and I'm not banking on advertised jobs."

"I do hang around a lot in chat rooms," confesses Brooke, "but I don't think I'm a chat room addict. Like I tell my mom, chat rooms are where I'm likely to learn where the real jobs are."

"I'm young, smart, good looking and a Leo," laughs Brooke, "and the time I spend in chat rooms talking about my job hunting efforts is not wasted - I'm confident it will pay off soon. And when I do find a job I'm leaving home. I've had it with my mom nagging me."

"More than anything else I want a place of my own," confides Brooke. "I've had it with little kids annoying me at home, taking my things and messing my room up."

"All I need is a job," says Brooke, "and then I've got what it takes to get a place of my own and a life of my own."

"I think the only difference between my family and those that have both a mother and father at home is money," says Brooke. "But my dad is a loser, a drifer and a spendthrift and I doubt whether we'd be any richer had he stayed with us -- more likely we'd be poorer."

"Anyway, since rich kids from intact homes are having as much trouble as I am finding a job," laughs Brooke, "I don't think coming from a broken home is much of a disadvantage in the long run."

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