Who really gets the jobs?

This is probably the biggest question I have with regards to unemployment but why do I keep getting rejected for jobs where I fit the job to a T and would be someone the employer would like. However, this is not just affecting me now but my dad.

As I mentioned previously he had a job he loved as a maintenance superintendent. My dad’s skills are in lawnmower repair, small engine repair (he is certified in both), just cleaning up in yards like mowing the lawn, fixing cars (though he is not certified in this)and the like. People always come to him to fix their car or their lawn mower and he makes additional money as a lawn landscaper. Because he is receiving social security he isn’t interested in a full time job now but part time. He’s always been one of those anti college types who couldn’t understand why me and my brother attended college and both finished (me with a masters, my brother as a doctor). Knowing now of course I can’t blame him since I have been unemployed almost 5 years.

This brings me to this week. My dad happened to see a local store last week was hiring a groundskeeper/maintenance person who knew lawn mower repair. This store is a farming type chain and I know they have several in other areas but this is the only one within 100 miles or more. My dad heard they were hiring on Tuesday, he brought in his application on Wednesday, they called Thursday to set up an interview for this Wednesday. He had an hour long interview and was so sure he got it. Today he got a rejection notice. Honestly, why? there can’t be that many people who can do those things he can. I can only suspect that the person who got it was probably not as skilled and maybe not skilled at all.

14 thoughts on “Who really gets the jobs?”

  1. He is much better off starting his own business.

    This would be a fantastic find for anybody who needs his services. How many small machinery repair professionals are there that you can find who’d be there at the drop of a hat?

    Your dad’s situation shows everything that is wrong wrong wrong with the hiring process! 10 years ago he’d have that job wrapped up before he left.

    Indeed — he needs to open his own business. He’d make a pretty penny.

  2. He does do a lot of side work and I did tell him years go (when he complained about his job)that he had the skill to work for himself. He has a service people pay for big time. He is bummed and just told me something else and why I think he was turned down: they asked for his age on the application. He is 66 and mostly retired but doesn’t believe employers will think he’s old. I had to tell him that employers often think I am old at 41 so at 66 he is ancient.

  3. For what it’s worth, study after study has shown that the resume/interview process of hiring doesn’t work in the sense that it often fails to result in hiring the best candidate for the job. We get distracted by how people look or seem to be. Women didn’t start being hired by symphony orchestras in significant numbers until people auditioned behind a screen and were known only by audition number.

    I’ve been hired over the phone for my last six jobs. I’ve been offered an additional four jobs that I turned down. This has occurred over a period of eleven years. Hiring me over the phone might be lower risk than average because I had to survive a lot of selection criteria (i.e. academic degree, prior experience, etc.) just to make the list of qualified candidates.

    If your father does decide to start a handyman business, PLEASE have him get whatever business license that your town requires and business liability insurance.

  4. My parents best friend is the village clerk so they are checking with her to see what is allowed and what they need to start a business. He does do some work on the sly but yes some people might complain of course. I’ve been checking on this for myself as well and luckily this town is very easy when it comes to regulations. Not to mention I live off a major highway which makes a difference. Several businesses in town have the families living where their company is, like the pet store guy who lives with his mom and his store (on the major highway)is actually their garage.

    I have gotten jobs after they saw what I looked like but often this was because the interviewer was a male. I do better with men than with women. Then again there have been times they would see me and decide right then and there not to hire me.

  5. I had the bad judgement to hire an unlicensed handyman, and he goes to trial for theft from me in about three weeks. He has a current warrant for his arrest for not paying other fines, so I doubt that he will show up. It’s interesting that theft from a non-merchant in my town carries only 60% of the fine that theft from a merchant does. I think that they should be equal.

    A business license in my town is cheap, something like $50, but if one trims trees, they have to carry an additional $150K in liability insurance. Other businesses require other minimum amounts of liability coverage, and the insurance requirements should be covered in the municipal regulations of your town. Even if insurance is not required, it is still an excellent idea, because a sole proprietor puts at risk all of his property in a lawsuit. Some assets are protected, such as pensions and retirement plans, but I would recommend carrying substantial business insurance, and considering forming a limited liability corporation or a subchapter S corporation to protect his house and assets.

    When one does not have the required business license, they may be subject to fine for soliciting or for loitering. This fine is often twice or more the cost of the license.

  6. NWP: I have to agree with Dude and Madness. If your father is well thought of in the community, and can identify a group of potential customers, that’s more than half the battle.

    Yes, he’ll need to comply with the rules, including securing whatever business license is required, acquiring the necessary insurance, and incorporating. Having traveled this road, I wouldn’t run as a sole proprietor for anything bigger than a lemonade stand.

    Incorporation protects one’s personal assets in the event of a lawsuit against the business. A limited liability company (LLC) provides further protection in that it is difficult to sue an LLC and actually collect anything. (This is why so many companies have become LLCs in recent years.)

    While I hope I can point you in the right direction, I am not a lawyer, and I have no knowledge of Illinois business regulations. You’ll need to do your own research. SCORE, if it’s available in your community, is also a good place to start.

  7. I am convinced that nobody has a clue.

    How many interviews are there now, when one will do.

    How many candidates are they calling in to speak to, when 3 will do.

    How many hoops to jump through when no hoop is needed at all.

    How can you compete with these odds and this bullshit??? THIS is the real reason why most of us are having a hard time finding work.

    Even 5 years ago this would have been a done deal for me, NWP and everybody else out there who is trying to find a job. 10 years ago, same thing: this bullshit with hoops and 1200 interviews before the candidate was selected did not exist.

    And then there’s the bunch who have no clue at all: here’s a psych practice that is looking for a secretary. Turns out he really wants an office manager and he expects the office manager to get him new clients! He also had no idea how he was going to compensate each new client accrued.

    There were also no benefits and the thing paid $15 an hour. he told me flat out to “go to a corporate environment if you want a corporate salary.”

    That there is no staff is telling; he’s got his wife working there. He’s probably scared them all off or they’ve quit, because of him.

    Tear-worthy is what all of this is. I am fighting my ass off to get full time employment and it is to no avail. What the eff happened???

  8. I’ll argue for the psychiatrist/psychologist: he may be clueless, but he does know a few things. He has fixed costs in the form of rent and insurance for the practice and probably his mortgage or rent on wherever he lives. I’ve known a few psychologists who have no receptionist or clerical help. His wife may be doing the billing or whatever because that’s all that he can afford. She may be out of work as well. Second, there has been a huge shift away from talk therapy to giving people the SSRI of the day without talk therapy. This cuts into his potential business hugely. People are more interested in feeling better than doing better or making actual changes in their lives. Third, health care plans that cover therapy usually limit it to fifteen or fewer sessions annually. He’s in a business where his options are to provide short-term therapy or start doing patient evaluations and administering a lot more tests, and selling the tests can be a hard sell because psychological testing is often not reimbursed by insurance.

    He really needs private pay patients who pay CASH at the time of treatment for their therapy because the $X that he bills to an insurance company is likely to be reimbursed as $0.3 X or so. He might be able to collect a co-payment from the patient. It would be interesting to see how quickly he gets paid by health care insurers and any patients who do pay for their sessions out of pocket. What’s his net 30 days balance, and how is it trending?

    The shift from talk therapy to the SSRI of the day is one of the big reasons that psychologists have been lobbying for the ability to prescribe drugs. They would be able to get people into their offices once every few months for refills.

    He might do better to join another practice or sign up as a staff shrink at some local hospital and work for a salary. He also might do well to offer free group sessions in the hope that he can convert one or more of the people who showed up into regular patients.

    Doctoral degrees in psychology have been oversold nearly as badly as law degrees, and simply hanging out a shingle to monetize your degree isn’t the answer for everyone.

  9. I’m not really looking for a job right now, but I apply for a few now and then. Within a week of each other, I got the results from two applications for identical jobs at identical pay, but at different agencies. In one case, I was found to be not qualified for the job and in the other case, I was found not only to be qualified, but best qualified, and referred for possible selection.

    Tell me how THAT makes sense. Supposedly, the criteria for being qualified for a job are uniform across the federal government.

  10. What he needed to do: up front, when he called, say, “The salary is $15 an hour. Not negotiable; I have a budget. Do you still want to be interviewed” and let me make the call.

    He is better off with a housewife that doesn’t need benefits or more money or a student that can do it. Or a retiree. $15 an hour is best suited to a student, a retiree or a housewife..

  11. I agree that $15 an hour without benefits is more suited to someone who has access to health insurance from another route. Offering benefits would drive the wage down to $9 or so an hour.

    The pool of people who already have access to health insurance is getting smaller by the day. Benefits are being cut even for professionals. The Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins will give you health insurance while you are working for them (you pay part of it), but if you were hired after the first of this year, you can’t take your health insurance into retirement, period, not just pay some higher rate for retirees, so the idea of a retiree being able to do without benefits may no longer be true in all cases. If he wants a full-time employee, that leaves out the students and housewives to a large degree as well.

  12. itsallmadness: the psychologist and his wife both have a pretty ludicrous side business going; they have a very pretty penny. I found other information that showed me that these 2 are very very flush with cash so yes, they can afford benefits and fully paid health insurance for the employees — and it is a small practice; there are 2 support employees. So he can’t cry poverty to me.

    And I see nothing at all wrong with $15 an hour if you are somebody who does not need benefits — your spouse or your parents have health insurance coverage — or if you’re a retiree with a pension or if you’re a student who wants some money and perhaps there to use the boss’ name as one of your references to use at a later date when you are ready to look for a “real job.”

    We had full time employees who were also full time students — this was a long time ago when i was working in the computer room. The students went to school during the day shift and worked evenings 4-12 shift — or worked during the day and took classes after 6pm at night. Occasionally a student would do the overnight shift. This worked out just fine for them — and they didn’t mind a $7.50 an hour job (yep, this was a very long time ago, in the late 80s)

    There were also students who worked a part time shift with benefits at their company — UPS paid full tuition reimbursement — I think you had to work 30 hours a week to get it (this was back in the 80s agaijn) — we had lab students who worked the overnight 12-8 at UPS. They also got full benefits. (I don’t know how it was permissible to work a full time job in addition to being a student full time; if I was the education coordinator, I’d have said no to students working a full time job elsewhere when school was out for our lab students. It’s going to take a toll on you — how could you work and then come and be a student at our school from 9-5 pm?).

    Somebody will benefit from a $15 an hour job — let them have it; let us full grown adults who need a livable wage and benefits have the “real” jobs with benefits.

  13. When I was in high school my original job idea was to become a psychologist. I then figured I would go on to get my Ph.D and practice psychology. However I found out that in most cases they are self employed and many fail, like lawyers.

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