Oh, job hunting, how I hate thou.
Is it just me, or do companies really not give a shit about the people they’re supposedly trying to hire? They lack consideration, basic manners and the ability to properly communicate… all together.
On Friday I received an email from a man proclaiming that he was the Hiring Manager for a certain company that I applied with. He asked, by email, at 12:20 pm, if I was free to do a half hour phone interview at 2:00 pm. Knowing this was going to be a huge pain in the ass, I agreed to it anyways and ended up pawning off my babysitting onto someone else knowing I couldn’t take this call with children running through the background.
2:00 pm rolled around, no call.
2:05 pm, no call.
2:15 pm, no call. I emailed him to ask ‘What’s up?’ in a very polite, professional manner.
2:45 pm, I am at this point already moved onto something else with my afternoon when the phone rings. As I did not have this individuals phone number, I couldn’t phone him. I presumed he forgot, or got busy, and I went on with my day.
3:11 pm, my phone rings with a number I do not recognize. I answer the phone and I hear ‘Hi, this is so-in-so calling from ‘x’ company’. It’s him. The man who scheduled the call for 2 is calling me at 3:11.
I started to chat with him anyway, trying to be extremely professional and not let it bother me that he called over an hour late. As I was talking to him though, I got an iffy feeling. Things didn’t seem on the up-and-up. This man claimed in his email that he was the Hiring Manager for the company, so I thought I was speaking directly to someone who was involved with the hiring process. As he continued talking, though, he didn’t seem much like a hiring manager at all. He stumbled on his words, on his thoughts, on the basic ability to maintain a conversation on the phone. He seemed to be struggling in a big way, and he wasn’t comprehending the industry lingo that I was providing, consistently asking me to explain – though they were things he should already know.
Nevertheless, I continued on. When you’re unemployed, you kind of need to go with the flow, no matter what happens with respect to job prospects, because you don’t get to pick and choose. I think that employers definitely take advantage of that. It shows in how they treat their potential employees… not well.
At around 3:30 this call was wrapping up and ‘so-in-so’ said “Thank you for speaking with me today.” I returned the comment, thanking him for his time. Then he said “I will give this to the hiring manager.”
This confused me. As he said he was the hiring manager. I responded with “Oh, you’re not hiring for this position? I thought your email had said you were the hiring manager”.
His response: “I’m not the hiring manager. The hiring manager doesn’t conduct preliminary interviews like this. He’s far too busy.”
My response: “Oh, okay, thank you for letting me know. May I ask, what is your position? Your email had mentioned you were the hiring manager, so I am just curious.”
“I’m the summer student,” he said.
THE SUMMER STUDENT.
Suddenly, it all made sense. I was talking to the summer student. That’s why he struggled with speaking, with understanding what I was saying and with conducting the phone interview in general. Nothing against him, he was likely just thrown into the job and not given much of any information to go off, but HOLY FUCKING HELL.
You’re having your summer student conduct preliminary interviews for you? How? Why? On what planet is this a good idea?
Pardon me for being of the belief that a hiring manager should never be ‘too busy’ to hire people. That’s the very basic core of their job description.
You’re putting the preliminary phase of the hiring process in the hands of someone you’re not paying, who has minimal industry experience, who won’t be at the company in four months time because he’ll be going back to school and is lacking professional experience to do the task you’ve given him? Everyone has to start somewhere, I get that. But if you want to teach him, hop on these calls with him. Don’t make him conduct these calls himself.
That is a sign of a bad boss, in my opinion.
- If you say you’re going to call someone at a certain time, call them at that certain time. There is a small leeway for if one gets busy or if something happens at the office. That leeway is not extended beyond an hour later. Sorry, but that’s not right.
- If you’re going to hire someone, don’t put the summer student in charge. It’s not fair to him and it’s not fair to the people who are applying for positions within your organization. A summer student works these positions to get professional experience – to get shown the ropes, not to ‘sink or swim’.
- If that’s how you treat potential employees, I really have to wonder how you treat actual employees.