The Hiring Decision – In the Current Job Market, Who’s on First?

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Here is a Blog Post from one of our readers Steve Eddington.
Steve Eddington - President of Electronic SearchSteve Eddington is President of Electronic Search, Inc. Wireless, Mobile and Telecomm Staffing Specialists. He has 25+ years experience in the Recruitment, Staffing/ Employment Industry as an Executive and hands-on Wireless Industry Recruitment Guru.
I have had the opportunity to observe and be directly involved in hundreds of hiring decisions through the years.
As the saying goes, I have seen (almost) everything.
As the headhunter, we have the distinct pleasure of being the guys in the middle. This allows us to speak with the employer and the candidate and get the perspective of everyone involved. Because of this, we sometimes find ourselves in the line of fire from 2 different directions.
The candidate perspective in the current market is generally “who do I have to kill to get the job” and the employer side is usually, “we see no reason to hire you at this time since you are one of 1000 guys who wants our job and we’re in no hurry cause the job can get filled whenever we see fit with whomever we want.”
Oops, have I inadvertently taken sides in the article?
No, no, no, not really. What I really want to talk about is assumptions and how they change when the market changes.
People will always assume things, but the kind of assumptions people make vary depending on what the current job climate happens to be at the time.
Nowadays, there are more desperate candidates on the market, so the employer tends to be a bit wary, and assumes that the candidate will say anything to break through the hiring barricade.
Ever hear these?
“He stayed for only one year in his last job so he will leave us in one year also. We want someone who will stay, so this guy is out.”
Or. “Yes, we see the references, but we want his REAL references. We want to know about the guys who hate him.”
He WAS laid off from his last 2 jobs (telecom guy, of course). It wasn’t his fault that Motorola and Nortel both laid him off, but the employer thinks that it is because he decided poorly when he joined a company that was going to have a layoff in 12 months. He should have known better, and because he did things that involved bad judgement, he will probably be a bad executive or a bad sales guy or a bad engineer. The other 800,000 guys who got laid off are all similarly flawed. It only stands to reason, right?
Personally, I think the 800,000 guys just all got hold of some bad sushi and went temporarily insane when they happily joined a “Telecom Giant.”
Usually, the way I see it, these days, the candidate just wants to work somewhere where he can contribute and get a fair wage and maybe have some upward mobility. Maybe he doesn’t want to rule the world, he just doesn’t want to get knocked down because someone in another country made a decision to dump the product he sells.
Sometimes he assumes that his age or his nationality or the size of his feet is the reason he was not selected and also assumes that the job market is impossible and he DOES have a secret bad reference that continually sabotages his search in the bottom of the ninth inning.
All assumptions.
The employer, many times, assumes that the candidate will stay only until he finds something better to do, or until the market returns to normal, or joined-up only to get health coverage.
The candidate assumes that the company has no loyalty, doesn’t really care about his life and will cut him as soon as they find a lower paid guy to do his job somewhere offshore.
In a confusing world, assumptions abound. I have never seen this set of circumstances make so many, so goofy, for so long.
What is the answer? There is no single answer but I am certain of one thing.
Everyone has to seek out the truth and present themselves honestly and not assume. If someone has made a decision based on an untruth, they need to be corrected. When in doubt…find out.