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sundialsvcs 03-16-2013 12:19 PM

A lesson-learned about job hunting, and what to do instead
The world's full of "job sites." Post your resumé for free, the world's just looking for you, nothing to it. There are literally hundreds of these now.

But there's just one small problem: by and large, they don't work.

Why? Well, because they're like the seine nets used by fishermen: they're effortless to get into, and they indiscriminately catch way too many fish. Furthermore, they don't take you directly to the attention of anyone who has the direct ability to hire you. The actual purpose of a resumé site is to provide sales leads for the people who sell to those decision-makers. Those salesmen are called, "recruiters." And to further complicate the situation, none of them has an exclusive on access to any job. In most cases, they really don't know anything about the business to which they're selling or the role of any particular candidate in that business; nor do they care. They're competing with one another in what is pure-and-simple a game of numbers and (slim) probabilities. There could be thousands of hopeful resumés in that tank... and they need three. They grab three fish that look reasonably healthy and throw them toward the manager's desk, as does everyone else.

It's an inefficient process for everyone concerned, at every stage of the game. And, unless you're presently twenty-one years old and looking to move out of your hometown, it simply expects you to relocate. The job-board system can't be geographically sensitive if it is to scoop up enough resumés to satisfy the extremely small odds of a successsful placement. Huge volumes are necessary to the "recruiter" system. But the arrangement is simply no good for the individual hopeful candidate; nor particularly, if you've ever been there, for the hiring manager. (Essentially, it's "resumé spam.")

What does work? Believe it or not, "old school." You live somewhere; there's a distance from where you live that you're willing to commute. A circle maybe ten miles in radius. There are lots of jobs in that area besides the few that are advertising nationally. Instead of waiting passively for recruiters to bring jobs to you, look diligently and creatively for companies in that circle ... and contact them directly: no middle man, no middleman's commissions. Find user-groups and programmer communities in your area; join them. Let the word get out, then supply a concise sales-message to each fish that nibbles at the bait which you hold in your hand. You are now taking an approach that is not only much cheaper, but also much more efficient for the seller (you) and the buyer, who are now in direct contact.

Many of the best jobs are not publicized: they are created on the spot. It's called MAP = Money + Authority + Pain. Find all three together at once: someone who has the money to hire you, and the authority to spend the money, and the perception that you will help him ease his pain. Go sell to it. You have the field to yourself, because your competition's all staring at job-boards waiting for the phone to ring.

This is called "marketing," and of course it's as old as business itself. Don't be a box on a shelf waiting for someone else to sell you. There are ten-thousand more or less identical boxes on that shelf. If someone's gonna sell your box, that someone's got to be you.

ukiuki 03-16-2013 01:13 PM

Well said, those websites are around for quite some time, I've noticed something wrong about that but I wasn't really sure what, so those are just another fish catcher like facebook but in a different form. And yes all the other anomalies like spam, adds, and so come with that too.
Best is to create your own jobs, creativity is a natural gift every person have, all we need is to start imagining.


jamison20000e 03-16-2013 11:56 PM

I've gotten spammed this way... :( ...usually I give a different Email but now I guess I need two for spam and one for friends\family.

Have always done well using a good (like a States) job services postings, to find fax numbers and send my resume. :)

unSpawn 03-17-2013 09:22 AM

Thanks for another positive and informative post. Something I've been wondering about over the years though as you've posted quite a lot of these threads is the

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 4912923)
A lesson-learned about job hunting

part. Maybe it's a bit too personal so I don't mind if you decline to answer: is this based on recent personal experiences? I mean, I was under the impression you had your own business. Just curious, that's all.

unSpawn 03-17-2013 09:59 AM


Originally Posted by ukiuki (Post 4912942)
Best is to create your own jobs, creativity is a natural gift every person have, all we need is to start imagining.

Though it may be the right approach for you (how's the crowdfunding coming along BTW?) it sure doesn't apply to everyone or every job. Hell, there's even jobs where the "natural gift" of creativity must be repressed to provide the required end result and workers "start imagining" can lead to disastrous consequences. Too easy to say IMHO. Not that there's anything wrong with imagination and creativity. Great examples (well at least to me) are the way communities have changed the way of doing business when faced with economic downfall. But that's probably something for a different thread.

sundialsvcs 03-17-2013 10:37 AM

Definitely true, unSpawn. Lots of folks have "natural gifts," for writing, say, and nevertheless can't consistently produce a commercial product doing it. (All that they manage to do is to keep Writer's Digest in business. ;) ) And, oh yeah, they sure can blog.

The Internet, more than anything else, has proved to be a vehicle for "unfettered communication." But, in doing so, it has revealed some unexpected deficiencies in long-standing and long-accepted business practices, literally by virtue of having computerized those practices! This is an excellent example.

"The executive recruiter" used to be an important and honorable service business. Good talent was hard to find, so you were the gum-shoe who could find them, and you earned a commission when you did. Then, along came the Internet. You introduced a web-site to help you get resumés. And for a while, life was very good. You were flooded with documents from exactly the people you were looking for! Then ... then ... you just became flooded. There were no barriers to entry, but that was the least of your concerns. The presence of your grand-experiment not only changed the behavior of the laboratory animals that were in it, but also the laboratory itself and even the color of the building in which it was housed.

The need remains the same: people need to find jobs, and people who have jobs need an efficient way to find qualified candidates. But the prolific existence of web sites that were very-profitably designed to solve a problem ... and which, for a certain time, did ... has now created an altogether different problem that is driving people away as one-by-one they catch on. You notice that you're not rising as fast as you once did; you look down to see why; you discover your legs are gone. Oops.

It's happening, in hundreds of different ways, all over the Internet right now .. each case following its own manifestation of more-or-less the same dynamic. (Look at how "Internet marketing" has imploded ... "SEO" has become a hollow joke ... even the venerable 'phone-closet guy' is finding his own future threatened.) It's definitely not the end of the world, but the phrase, "oh, that's just so yesterday" sure is taking-on a whole new meaning. And those of us who've hitched our own star to this magic-rocket ride ("wheeeeeeeeeeee :) --eeeow! :eek:") had better, not only be able to hang on for dear life ourselves, but to enable our employers and clients to do the same.

ukiuki 03-18-2013 02:59 AM


Originally Posted by unSpawn (Post 4913332)
.... "natural gift" of creativity must be repressed to provide the required end result and workers "start imagining" can lead to disastrous consequences...

No, creativity shouldn't be repressed at all, period. How do you think Tesla come up with his inventions?
How about Van Gogh? Monet? Bach? Mozart?
And imagination doesn't lead to disastrous consequences either, unthinking actions does.


sundialsvcs 03-18-2013 11:38 AM

Uh huh, and Mozart's body was buried in an unmarked pauper's grave using a borrowed coffin.

Let's say that you just bought a product which was "imaginative" but poorly-executed? Leon Moisseiff called the (original) Tacoma Narrows Bridge "the most beautiful bridge in the world" ... but nobody cared about that anymore when the bridge collapsed into the Puget Sound four months after it opened. (It wasn't the end of his career, however.)

The people who hawk "pure imagination" are, well, hawking something. They have an agenda that they want you to believe, and they calculate that you are inexperienced enough to believe it. (Not stupid enough, maybe naïve, maybe you just haven't yet thought about it the right way and perhaps you can be parted with a little money.)

One of the principal rules of selling is: "Learn how the client thinks about himself and his company, then sell to that." For example, today we know that the twenty/thirty-something generation (beyond that and they know better) has the self-identity of "it's all about me. I'm important." Understanding this, that's what you sell to. You calculate that the person is probably a self-made programmer (whether or not he went to school), has achieved some self-judged successes himself that are truly not altogether without good reason for such a conclusion, but that he's a little wet behind the ears about it (doesn't know it) because his skills have never been truly tested in a team-driven situation. (He might be in a team right now, but he's bored out of his gourd.)

(How'd I do?)

And oh by the way, he can identify himself with Steve Jobs (R.I.P.). (But let me give you a sales tip here: if you're calling on Apple, do not wear "black on black." I presume that a "hoodie" would be equally verboten if calling on Facebook.

You must sell to whatever the client is presently wearing, but without putting it on, yourself.

So, the multitude of "job boards" simply calculate that there are hundreds of thousands of people out there at any particular moment who more-or-less hate their jobs, and that there are thousands of recruiters who will pay money for sales leads ... neither of them yet knowing that the whole model on both ends of the stick are flawed. Their strategies are carefully calculated to promise success to both parties, and to make both of them feel merely "unlucky" when it doesn't happen to them.

sundialsvcs 03-18-2013 05:20 PM

Here are some more perspectives:

Monster's revenue model includes a $10,000 annual subscription fee for companies that want to use its resume database ... The small businesses that won't spend $10,000 to see resumes, but which will do most of the hiring, can't find you there at all. So relatively more candidates are concentrated into a hiring funnel that relatively fewer employers can look into.

Monster competes by claiming it has a deep, constantly refreshed pool of top talent. Career counselors and job search advisors have been repeating Monster's mantra for years: "Keep updating your resume, even if it's only to move a space. Get to the top of the search results list." But if most of the hiring managers can't see the list, how valuable is that list to you?

To keep its pool fresh, Monster needs you to keep updating your resume. That's what improves their value proposition, whether you get the job or not.
Now you know.

ukiuki 03-18-2013 05:45 PM

@sundialsvcs Poor Mozart indeed, so was Van Gogh, unfortunately grace doesn't smile to everyone, still many people is happy with a humble life.

About the "little money" thing, you know the saying: "every head has a price" yes unfortunately many fall to that, still there are those who have higher values in life.

Buy and sales that is all what the system is about today, most people don't realize they live to buy instead of buy to live, today we can see the system before us, it's gears turning, surrounding us from every angle as the machine swallows us whole. But do we really need to live by this vicious circle? Reminds me the movie Metropolis.


sundialsvcs 03-18-2013 10:35 PM

Very fortunately, some of us don't.

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