Breaking down the language of job postings

Don’t mine me today, I’m just ranting.

They say ‘Urgently Hiring‘ but what they really mean is ‘we’ll get to you when we get to you‘. I’m completely and utterly convinced that ‘Urgently hiring’ is a ploy to collect more resumes and faster.

Under type of employment they say ‘Full time, part time, contract’ and what this ALWAYS means is that it’s a contract position. More and more companies are leaning towards contracting employees because they don’t have to guarantee their hours, they don’t have to give them a benefits package and they don’t have to guarantee them a position tomorrow, if they don’t want to.

‘Bilingualism would be considered an asset’ means that you shouldn’t bother applying for this position if you’re not bilingual. Gone are the days when marginal understanding of a second language was enough to help. If you’re not fluent, written and speaking, in a foreign language – brownie points if it’s in French or Chinese or sign language – you’re really not going to be considered.

When they say ‘We are an equal opportunity employer’ that means they prefer men, but they’re not allowed to say that they prefer men. Thus, the questionnaire at the end of every job application has appeared where you’re required to answer if you’re male or female, consider yourself to be of a minority, and whether or not you have a disability. This information is none of the potential employers business whatsoever, but they’re required to meet a quota… so, you know, they can’t meet that quota if they don’t have this information before they even bother to consider/call potential candidates.

When they say ‘must be a fit individual who meets the aesthetic requirements of representing our brand’ what they really mean is ‘if you’re not skinny and beautiful, we don’t want your resume’. Honestly, I’m not even sure how companies can get away with having this on their job descriptions… but, hey, it’s 2020 and I’m reminded of just how closed minded the world still is about beauty standards.

When they ask ‘Do you have a diving license?’ what they really mean is ‘do you have a driver’s license?’ See, this one is just them trying to throw you off. What it actually shows is that no one proof-reads their content before it’s published. Which is not the best look for a company. But… you can decide if it’s worth it or not.

When they say they’re looking for someone to ‘develop and execute social and influencer engagement strategies’ what they really want is for you to find local ‘Insta Famous’ folk to pretend to use their products. It should be a giant red flag if a company solely wants to use influencer marketing to build its brand. A real marketing strategy has a development plan that executes all levels of marketing, not just Instagram.

When they say people of all education and skill backgrounds will be considered, what they’re really saying is ‘If you don’t have a Master’s Degree, you’re not welcome to sit at our table. Because you know, it’s 2020 and that Master’s Degree means everything.

When they say ‘Thank you for your application, after careful consideration of your information we will be moving forward with candidates we believe better match the skill set that we are looking for this position’ largely what they really mean is that they haven’t even looked at your application. Yeah… I don’t think a lot of them care about the fact that you can now see on both Indeed and LinkedIn which companies even bothered to download/open your application. I get a lot of these ‘after careful consideration of your application’ emails from companies who haven’t even bothered to acknowledge my application exists. They didn’t read it. They didn’t glance at it. They didn’t even download it. I just got filed in the ‘No’ pile, immediately.

37 thoughts on “Breaking down the language of job postings

  1. I learned something over the years. Usually, companies have someone internal in mind for the position. But they still have to go through the process of recruitment. Such a colossal waste of time. There were so many interviews where it was narrowed down to me and another person who was already in the firm. The job almost always went to that other person. I came close to working at the Legislature.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. This is another good point as well! I went through several interviews last year where I was told I was one of the final two or final three and then they ended up hiring internally. Your point is very valid!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sardonic lol.

    “develop and execute social and influencer engagement strategies”

    WTF, 🤮 in so many ways!!! My god, if I thought the concept of influencers was bad… INFLUENCER ENGAGEMENT STRATEGIES, is a Terrifying phrase…!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It wouldn’t be so bad if there was a well rounded group of tasks related to marketing and this was just one of the points. But, when this is the only marketing related point, that’s a red flag to me. People are forgoing actual marketing to just pay famous Youtubers and Bloggers in hopes that’ll do the work they’re trying to avoid…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Nahhhhh.
      They just have a stupid graduated licensing system here so there are a lot of people who don’t bother to ever get their full license. Companies have caught on and they don’t like that.


  3. I am sorry that you are still dealing with the psychological bs these companies do. I am still waiting to start working as well. I went to an interiew for an internship yesterday and I should be hearing from them tomorrow (Friday).

    I however have been hired by the US Census Bureau, but that won’t start until April 1st. In the meantime, I have to go for fingerprinting next Saturday and if I pass a background check then I can complete the onboarding for the hiring process. Dealing with background checks is very discouraging becasue even after a person has made all the positve actions to change their life, the “system” still hold them down. Almost as if the set the person back up to go back “inside.”

    I will continue to keep you in my thoughts and send out postive vibes to the universe for the both of us to be hired somewhere worthy of our skills, time and may it be fulfilling for us.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohh all kinds of companies ask. I’ve applied for a lot of jobs out in Ontario and there are a lot there who ask as well. Usually it’s the larger companies that ask in the application. Smaller companies will ask during the process.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Larger companies – Bell Media, Corus Ent., Rogers Ent., Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment, McDonalds, Tim Hortons, GM, Adidas all operate head offices in Ontario and ask this on their applications.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wait, you’re right. I dont know why i forgot. And of course they’re going to ask for your age. They dont want to hire a 13 year old. I got it mixed up with they not being able to ask minors about any criminal history (since that can’t be disclosed).

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I was going to comment on a random post to see how you’ve been since I haven’t really felt your presence but I saw this. How’s things been?

    Except in companies accountable to the government for contract reasons, in Nigeria most people don’t waste money on advertising vacancies for “real jobs.” The only ones you see are those for people with high school certificates or people willing to accept it because they’re opting not to die from hunger and gnashing depression and anxiety. Other than those,EVERYONE KNOWS that people “fix” people into position so if you listen to enough Nigerian songs you will hear of “connects/connections.”

    Nobody fights that. It’s also generally believed that if I have someone with qualification enough for it who I can help (also so that they no longer run to me for every need), why employ an outsider? Many people even employ people with absolutely no related qualification for the job or any other job for that matter. It’s not helped by the fact that despite that universities keep pumping out graduates each year, most of whom can’t afford to intern for free due to family responsibilities caused by a failing economy. Honestly, it’s tragic.

    On a lighter note, he repetition of “it’s 2020” reminds me of a J. Cole song where he says “… it’s twenty eighteen.” Good to have you back

    Liked by 1 person

    1. True story. They want you to hope that there’s a job available and you could be hired soon. But no. They have no interest in urgently hiring someone. They’re going to take a year and a half.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Wrong on the EEO thing. Well, in the US anyway they are required to report that data. They don’t have to meet a “quota” because the govt can’t control if the business you own is in rural Kansas and everyone is white. I don’t know how it works in Canada, but I don’t think it’s an excuse to just hire men… and if the requirements are similar to US than the person making the hiring decision is not given the EEO collection data. I get your frustrations but I can also see how your frustration might warp the reality of the situation sometimes.


    1. I didn’t mean it as though they were using the questionnaire as a means to hire only men. I meant it as they were using it as a means to ensure they could funnel people into categories so they know which people in which categories would help meet the quota.

      We have something called the Canadian Employment Equity Act which requires compliance with providing equal employment opportunities to four designated groups: women, Indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, and members of visible minorities.


      1. Well, at any rate lady I have some idea of how frustrating this whole thing is. I was unemployed for 5 months and had a perfect resume and thought I’d never get a job. I was feeling opinionated about HR stuff last night, but I probably shouldn’t have opened my mouth. I know how much you’re struggling and I really do feel for you. Honestly I’m pissed off that these employers will not hire you because I think you’re amazing. It seems to me that marketing (kind of like HR) is a highly competitive field such that people who are wholly qualified and maybe even the perfect person for the job will get brushed aside easily for the next person. I kind of want to slap every employer who has not hired you.


      2. I hope that you know when I’m writing my angry posts, they’re not directed at you. Sometimes I just have this overwhelming need to rant and I know it’s not the nicest things and I am sorry if it sounds like I am shitting on you at times. I’m just tired and frustrated with this whole process. I’m just tired of what feels like wasting my time. You actually seem to be one of the most genuine people I’ve met on this platform and I definitely don’t take that for granted.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Oh I totally get it. No worries at all. Sometimes I can be a little contrary and argumentative when really what you need is support and not people’s nay-saying. We cool. I’m a naysayer sometimes but i don’t mean to be.


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