Yesterday, my professional society sent me links to three articles that illustrate our screwed-up world:
In what has become an annual rite for the tech sector, the US government opened applications for 65,000 spots for highly skilled workers under the so-called H-1B visa program.
US Citizenship and Immigration Services said it expects to receive more requests than available visas by April 5, and if so will set up a lottery.
So American firms are indeed hiring… just not Americans. I’ll bet the H-1B candidates don’t have to face the soggy saga that is the subject of the second item….
…the average duration of the interview process at major companies like Starbucks, General Mills and Southwest Airlines has roughly doubled since 2010.
“After they call you back after the sixth interview, there’s a part of you that wants to say, ‘That’s it, I’m not going back,’ ” said Paul Sullivan, 43, an exasperated but cheerful video editor in Washington. “But then you think, hey, maybe seven is my lucky number. And besides, if I don’t go, they’ll just eliminate me if something else comes up because they’ll think I have an attitude problem.”
It’s not just pipsqueak firms that go for overly elaborate hiring processes. So they don’t have money to actually pay new hires, but they do have money to burn on umpteen rounds of interviews. Is anybody at these firms doing any actual work? Or are they busily fumbling about on efforts like this….
A few years ago when Bank of America Corp. wanted to study whether face time mattered among its call-center teams, the big bank asked about 90 workers to wear badges for a few weeks with tiny sensors to record their movements and the tone of their conversations.
The data showed that the most productive workers belonged to close-knit teams and spoke frequently with their colleagues. So, to get more employees mingling, the bank scheduled workers for group breaks, rather than solo ones.
Let me understand this: Bank of America spent a pile on technology and software. They made their employees wear wires. And from this elaborate technological exercise, they established something that a half-decent manager from 20 years ago could have told them off the top of his head, with no software involved?
Yup: we’re nuts.