k applicants would be justified in creating a Don't-bother-applying-here registry, themselves!
First of all, there are more job seekers than there are available positions; that by itself is a recipe for trouble. Add to that, most states require unemployed to submit some number of applications every week in order to continue to receive their unemployment benefit. If there are not enough positions that fit the applicant, they have to apply for positions or the benefit stops-- reapplying for the same limited group of positions won't count. Unemployed persons are told by the State to apply for any position they *might* be qualified for. What would you do?
I think HR creates some of the problem as well. Applicants learn quickly that applying to positions they feel qualified for is not likely to get a response. Desperate for a response of any kind, they start applying for lesser positions and related functions. Over time they learn that the connection between position descriptions, their resume, and interviews is tenuous at best. After a while it becomes a random hunt.
Quite frankly, I am tired of all the criticism directed at applicants-- They are told to match keywords, get it said in 20 seconds, provide detailed quantitative career accomplishments, on one or two pages, model this behavior or that, and tailor every resume to the job posting. We expect them to spend hours crafting a resume we will spend 20 seconds on? And then not even bother responding to the application (even with a canned response)?
That seems abusive to me.
Believe me, plowing through those resumes is no harder work than doing software development (I've done it, 80-90 hour weeks to make a deadline) or marketing, or any other position we screen for. If you want fewer applications, identify the sorts of accomplishments you will be screening for and then just check that those achievements show on the resume. You could even ask the applicant to highlight them for you on the resume. (Don't ask for a cover letter-- that is bogus if you don't tell the benefit you want the person to produce!)
When ever one group is placed in power over another (as HR is over employees and applicants), the preconditions for abuse are met. Because of the power entrusted to us, it behooves us to ensure that we are being fair and non-discriminatory in our dealings with others. For a glimpse of how bad things can become, look up the Stanford Prison Experiments.
Thanks for considering my rant!…