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Author Topic: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74  (Read 4290035 times)

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White Dragon

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2910 on: October 26, 2012, 11:57:06 PM »
DH is part of the team which hires new technical staff for his company.

Recently he and a colleague arranged a Skype interview with an out of town candidate.
The interview was going fine the candidate realized that the firm was located in City L and not City C.

No one is quite clear how a well educated technical specialist failed to notice the location of the job he applied for, nor why he didn't do even a bit of basic research on the firm, but his response was...odd.

DH says that as soon as the candidate realized the from was in City L, the connection terminated.

They tried reconnecting. They called. They waited to see if it was a connection issue on his end.
Nothing. He'd just...hung up on them.

Cause nothing says "I'm a professional in a technical community whose members will talk to each other about my behaviour" than being a boor to a possible employer.
"I think her scattergun was only loaded with commas and full-stops, although some of them cuddled together for warmth and produced little baby colons and semi-colons." ~ Margo


Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2911 on: October 27, 2012, 09:33:38 PM »
DH is part of the team which hires new technical staff for his company.

Recently he and a colleague arranged a Skype interview with an out of town candidate.
The interview was going fine the candidate realized that the firm was located in City L and not City C.

No one is quite clear how a well educated technical specialist failed to notice the location of the job he applied for, nor why he didn't do even a bit of basic research on the firm, but his response was...odd.

DH says that as soon as the candidate realized the from was in City L, the connection terminated.

They tried reconnecting. They called. They waited to see if it was a connection issue on his end.
Nothing. He'd just...hung up on them.

Cause nothing says "I'm a professional in a technical community whose members will talk to each other about my behaviour" than being a boor to a possible employer.

Wow what an idiot.   For all he knew they could have another office in City C and he's just shot himself in the foot for other opportunities!

It's scary how many applicants fail to read ads correctly.  I frequently have people apply for jobs in locations too far for them to get to (without any intention of relocating), or for jobs with clearly listed salaries far below what they will accept (again, not just over qualified and willing to compromise, but legitimately failing to notice that they've applied for an entry level role paying $30k when they're currently in a role paying $55k).     It's one of the reasons I have a very detailed phone screen before I ever waste time on face to face interviews - best to iron out these "miscommunications"  before either of us waste our time.   (I say "miscommunications" but in reality it's applicants not paying attention to very clearly worded ads!)
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Slartibartfast

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2912 on: October 28, 2012, 12:57:53 AM »
Companies could stand to be more clear, though, especially in job ads.  Is a "software engineer IV" more demanding than a "software engineer I?"  Around here there are two competing companies which number their job tiers opposite of each other - in one your job title number gets higher as you advance, but in the other it gets lower.  To make things worse, they use a lot of overlapping job titles (think "software engineer," "computer programmer," "database manager," etc.) which can all have interchangable qualifications depending on which company is doing the hiring.  If companies would be honest about salary and job duties upfront, some of the hassle could be avoided!

onikenbai

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2913 on: October 28, 2012, 02:00:36 AM »
To make things worse, they use a lot of overlapping job titles (think "software engineer," "computer programmer," "database manager," etc.) which can all have interchangable qualifications depending on which company is doing the hiring.

You are probably in the US but, in Canada, you absolutely cannot call yourself a "software engineer" without an actual engineering license.  There was a massive brouhaha a few years back when Microsoft rolled out one of its training courses that gave you the title of "Microsoft, something, something Engineer".  It wasn't that big a deal in the US, but they got taken to court in Canada and, to this day, graduates of the programme can use only the acronym and connot refer to themselves in any way as an engineer unless they've got an engineering degree and an active license on top of the training course.  Even if you got the engineering degree but never wrote the license exam, you will be fined somewhere between $10-25K for trying to pass yourself off as an engineer.  Canada is very strict on the use of professional titles.

So, in the off chance you're looking for a computer job in Canada, there will be a salary difference in programmers and managers vs. engineers.  It takes a minimum of 7-8 years to get an engineering degree and license here, so I would expect a major salary bump.

kherbert05

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2914 on: October 28, 2012, 07:46:42 AM »
To make things worse, they use a lot of overlapping job titles (think "software engineer," "computer programmer," "database manager," etc.) which can all have interchangable qualifications depending on which company is doing the hiring.

You are probably in the US but, in Canada, you absolutely cannot call yourself a "software engineer" without an actual engineering license.  There was a massive brouhaha a few years back when Microsoft rolled out one of its training courses that gave you the title of "Microsoft, something, something Engineer".  It wasn't that big a deal in the US, but they got taken to court in Canada and, to this day, graduates of the programme can use only the acronym and connot refer to themselves in any way as an engineer unless they've got an engineering degree and an active license on top of the training course.  Even if you got the engineering degree but never wrote the license exam, you will be fined somewhere between $10-25K for trying to pass yourself off as an engineer.  Canada is very strict on the use of professional titles.

So, in the off chance you're looking for a computer job in Canada, there will be a salary difference in programmers and managers vs. engineers.  It takes a minimum of 7-8 years to get an engineering degree and license here, so I would expect a major salary bump.
This makes me wonder if there are similar rules here in Texas. After the New London School explosion in Rusk, the Texas legislature was the first state to require additives to Natural Gas so it could be smelled. They also passed the Engineering Registration Act. According to wikipedia in Texas the title Engineer is restricted to those professionally certified by the state to practice engineering.
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White Dragon

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2915 on: October 28, 2012, 01:15:40 PM »
To make things worse, they use a lot of overlapping job titles (think "software engineer," "computer programmer," "database manager," etc.) which can all have interchangable qualifications depending on which company is doing the hiring.

You are probably in the US but, in Canada, you absolutely cannot call yourself a "software engineer" without an actual engineering license.  There was a massive brouhaha a few years back when Microsoft rolled out one of its training courses that gave you the title of "Microsoft, something, something Engineer".  It wasn't that big a deal in the US, but they got taken to court in Canada and, to this day, graduates of the programme can use only the acronym and connot refer to themselves in any way as an engineer unless they've got an engineering degree and an active license on top of the training course.  Even if you got the engineering degree but never wrote the license exam, you will be fined somewhere between $10-25K for trying to pass yourself off as an engineer.  Canada is very strict on the use of professional titles.

So, in the off chance you're looking for a computer job in Canada, there will be a salary difference in programmers and managers vs. engineers.  It takes a minimum of 7-8 years to get an engineering degree and license here, so I would expect a major salary bump.

Interestingly, the job in question was for an Engineering job - in Canada.

DH said that what was odd about the interview (hanging up aside) was that the candidate was even that great. It was for an entry to low middle position, so this wasn't a shining star who would be able to dictate terms.

I get that the candidate made what was probably an honest oversight in misreading the ad, but he handled his error badly.
Engineering firms -especially firms specialized in one industry, will often find themselves working together on mega-projects. So the firm you are rude to today may be the same guys you work with next month.
"I think her scattergun was only loaded with commas and full-stops, although some of them cuddled together for warmth and produced little baby colons and semi-colons." ~ Margo


Ginger G

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2916 on: October 29, 2012, 02:51:36 PM »
All the karma/pawnage stories reminds me of something...Before I got my current job 9 years ago, I was out of work for nearly 6 months due to my previous employer shutting down their office in my city.  I had gone on an interview for a job that was being handled by a staffing agency.  Around that same time I also interviewed for my current job.  Well to my surprise after a 6 month job dryspell, both companies wanted to hire me!  I decided to choose the job I found on my own for many reasons: better hours, pay, more responsibility, etc.  The only advantage the job though the placement agency had was that it was closer to my home, so it was really a pretty easy decision to make.  When I told the lady at the employment agency about my decision (fairly quickly as soon as I got the offer), I expected some disappointment but she got really, really angry at me!  She yelled at me about what a bad position I was putting HER in! I'm not used to being yelled at, so I was completely stunned and mortified by the whole thing.

So here's the karma bit....I'm in HR, and I get contacted by staffing agencies all the time trying to get our business.  Guess who comes calling a few months after I started work?  I had not told her where I was going to be working, so it was just a coincidence.  I politely told her we would not be using their services, and fortunately never heard from her again.

Firecat

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2917 on: October 29, 2012, 06:28:45 PM »
I nominate the pizza delivery guy who delivered our gaming group's order last weekend. What we ordered: one thin crust, one regular crust, with: extra cheese, ham, mushrooms, and black olives. What we got: thin crust with the above, regular crust with: sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, and onions.

Note: My DH and I can't eat pepperoni. We're not allergic, but our digestive systems just don't like it, and let us know in no uncertain terms. We managed to get enough to eat anyway, since pepperoni can be picked off if you're not too particular about the appearance of the pizza.

When my best friend (who had placed the order) called back to complain, the manager (who had taken the order in the first place) told her that they have a delivery driver who likes to go into the kitchen and make orders....which he's not supposed to do...and then screws them up. So, they're sending BF (and a list of other people) a coupon for a free pizza. So this guy is likely not going to have a job much longer. We probably should have insisted that they remake the pizza, but at least we'll get a free one next time (BF indicated that once she gets the coupon, we'll use it with the gaming group, since we all chipped in on the pizza).

Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2918 on: October 29, 2012, 07:24:20 PM »
Companies could stand to be more clear, though, especially in job ads.  Is a "software engineer IV" more demanding than a "software engineer I?"  Around here there are two competing companies which number their job tiers opposite of each other - in one your job title number gets higher as you advance, but in the other it gets lower.  To make things worse, they use a lot of overlapping job titles (think "software engineer," "computer programmer," "database manager," etc.) which can all have interchangable qualifications depending on which company is doing the hiring.  If companies would be honest about salary and job duties upfront, some of the hassle could be avoided!

Sure, I'm not suggesting all job ads are well written - I've seen some doozies that are either badly written or too vague.

But when the role is described as "Entry level opportunity for a junior admin" and the title is "Assistant" and the salary is specified as "$30k plus superannuation", I don't understand why I end up talking to experienced admin applicants who are happily earning $55k+ per year in their current role and looking to stay on the same.   It actually makes me think "Hmmm, even if you are a really good administrator, I now question your attention to detail!"
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JadeAngel

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2919 on: October 29, 2012, 10:01:25 PM »
When I told the lady at the employment agency about my decision (fairly quickly as soon as I got the offer), I expected some disappointment but she got really, really angry at me!  She yelled at me about what a bad position I was putting HER in! I'm not used to being yelled at, so I was completely stunned and mortified by the whole thing.

I'm betting it's because she gets a commission, a percentage of your salary paid to her for putting you into the job. It's not an excuse for going off on you, she shouldn't have been counting her chickens... I remember going to a job agency once and I mentioned that I was being interviewed for my current position. The recruiter immediately got a gleam in his eyes and said ever so casually 'Oh really, that sounds interesting, where did you see it and what are the contact details?' Yeah, I'm going to tell you that so you can send two or three of your clients to interview for the job. Do your own research pal!

Years ago the company I worked for was opening up a second branch in OtherCity. As we were based in HomeTown the bosses decided to hire a recruitment company to handle the hiring of a Manager for the new branch whose job would be to handle the day to day running of OtherCity branch and report to the bosses, who would be shuttling back and forth between the two locations while they were getting the second one off the ground.

The recruiter advised us that she had some great applicants and was very excited about the prospects she had for our new OtherCity Manager. The bosses had been quite specific about the qualifications and training they wanted the new Manager to have, they were effectively leaving this person in charge when they weren't there and they wanted them to be able to handle the branch and its staff. Part of the requirement was experience with the computer software we primarily used which was quite a common system and easily picked up.

We made arrangements to send both of the bosses up to OtherCity to conduct interviews, which was quite an operation between flights, accommodation and having them both out of the office for several days. Imagine their surprise when they arrived in OtherCity and were presented with the candidates, none of whom had the experience or skills we were looking for and none of whom had any experience with the computer system they needed to run the branch. When they expressed to the recruiter that none of the candidates were suitable her response was 'you have to hire "Stanley" he was really great', to which the bosses replied 'Not going to happen because of all the candidates "Stanley" has the least management experience'.

In the end the bosses found a person who had worked for us previously at HomeTown and who had relocated to 'OtherCity' and gave her the job. When recruiter found out about this she rang the bosses and was quite rude to them accusing them of 'wasting her time' and threatening amongst other things to send them a bill for the hours she had wasted locating these candidates and setting up the interviews. To which the bosses replied that if she did they would also be sending her a bill for the travel expenses and time wasted flying both bosses up to OtherCity to interview candidates who clearly didn't meet our requirements. 

She didn't lose her job at the agency because every time we advertised a job vacancy for OtherCity she would send in a candidate - and it was always "Stanley" no matter what the advertised position was, (the running joke became that he must be her husband) but we never used that recruitment agency again...

Amara

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2920 on: October 29, 2012, 11:13:29 PM »
That's funny, JadeAngel. It reminded me of a story that isn't quite PD, but related.

CalTrans is the state's highway department. They have responsibility for maintaining highways throughout the state. Every so often they will offer tests that anyone interested can sign up for. They involve some math. I took the test one year and somehow passed and shortly thereafter was invited to interview for one position they had open in my area. I believe there were about twelve candidates being interviewed.

Earlier that morning I had been at the Job Placement Agency, another state department that helped job seekers with training, resumes, contacts, and so on. I mentioned to my "counselor" that I had this interview later that morning, and she told me that I should let them know that the agency would reimburse CalTrans for a large chunk of the first three months of employment should they choose me ("training").

Of course I was excited so spoke loudly. (It didn't matter if anyone overheard because you had to be invited to this interview.) But later when I was sitting in the small lobby waiting for my interview I saw a guy come in and head straight to reception. He said, "I understand you are interviewing today." I immediately put my head further down into the magazine I was reading and crunched up a little tighter into the chair, though my hearing was acutely tuned in. The woman looked surprised but answered, "Yes, but these people have all passed a test and were invited to interview." The guy said, "Are you sure?"

I hid a smile (and a snicker) because I had recognized him from the agency; he had been there and had overheard my conversation, then rushed over thinking he could get right in. I admit the my less attractive side came out and I smirked inside myself.
 

WolfWay

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2921 on: October 30, 2012, 01:25:24 AM »
Potential PD or potential tragedy, we don't know yet.

We had a junior analyst join us two weeks ago. Last week he stops turning up for work, and he isn't answering his email or phone. We're not sure what the heck happened.

Either my company scared him away and he went the PD route of simply not coming back to work, or else something really bad happened to him and we just don't know about it yet.  :-\
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Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2922 on: October 30, 2012, 04:40:45 AM »
He said, "I understand you are interviewing today." I immediately put my head further down into the magazine I was reading and crunched up a little tighter into the chair, though my hearing was acutely tuned in. The woman looked surprised but answered, "Yes, but these people have all passed a test and were invited to interview." The guy said, "Are you sure?"

I hid a smile (and a snicker) because I had recognized him from the agency; he had been there and had overheard my conversation, then rushed over thinking he could get right in. I admit the my less attractive side came out and I smirked inside myself.

Lol!  Who thinks they can just walk in somewhere and get an interview?? 

I do have candidates who phone up and say they are calling to "schedule an interview", which always amuses me.  When I have 200 applicants for a role there's no way I'm going to spend time interviewing all of them - there will be significant shortlisting based on their CVs & covering letters, followed by a further phone screen cull, and then a handful will get an interview.     But some people seem to think it's a given that they should get a "shot" at interviewing.... even if it's wasting both of our time!  Yeah that's not going to happen.  It's just not efficient or productive.
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hjaye

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2923 on: October 30, 2012, 09:11:35 AM »
Wolf woman's PD candidate reminded of this guy I used to work with.

Ten years ago I worked for a company as an computer system engineer, they hired another guy to manage their help desk. I don't know how he got the job, he had no idea what he was doing, had no management skills, and as it turned out, he was very unreliable.

After the first week of work, he didn't show up for work, for three days he was missing in action.  He didn't call in, didn't let anyone know where he was or what he was doing.  Why he wasn't fired right away I don't know, but the IT manager kept him on. He lasted about three months, but was finally fired after he pulled another no call no show for a week this time.

I have run into the guy a few times over the past ten years.  One time he was working for a moving company, the next time he was a contractor helping to test some software for a few months.

The last time was about a month ago.  The company I'm working for now is engaged in a large project.  We have a major client who is moving all off the servers from one data center to another.  It's very complicated, and very time consuming.  We hired a few new people as contractors, with the possibility of them becoming permanent employees.  This guy was one of the contractors.

I didn't say anything to my manager about him, I figured it's been ten years since I've worked with him, so I'll give him the benefit of the doubt.

After working on the project for a couple of weeks, we had a weekend move coming up where we were moving a group of servers.  He was scheduled to work nights, I was scheduled to work days.  He started work Friday night and worked through till the next morning.  He came back on Saturday night, worked for a few hours, and then disappeared.

Now the work we do allows us to work remotely, we don't have to be physically located at the datacenters.  So most of the time, there are maybe two people at the data center, and then everyone else is remote.  I myself work most of the time from my house as do a lot of the people on the project, and we communicate by a bridge phone conference and a group instant messenger chat.

So when he disappeared, it was a matter of him being on the phone and in the IM chat, and then he was gone.  He came back on line Sunday afternoon and said he had an emergency come up that he had to take care of, but he didn't elaborate as to what the emergency was, and why he didn't tell anyone he had to leave.  He then got off line and no one heard from him for the rest of the day and all of Monday, and yes, he is no longer working for us.  So I guess he hadn't changed at all in the last ten years.

Julian

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #2924 on: October 30, 2012, 07:36:26 PM »
I'm not sure if this is PD, SS or Brain Hurty...

BG - I work in public sector in Australia.  Govt agencies have very specific hiring policies.  At present the process here involves providing your CV, answering a set of selection criteria specific to the position (eg 'I demonstrate how I can perform a specific task, how my qualifications / experience will be utilised'), and a cover letter if you're applying for a position.  All of this is laid out very clearly in the application packages, which can run to 20+ pages, however the 'how to' is in a summary at the very start of the package. 

After closing date, a selection committee (usually higher level staff with experience relevant to the advertised position) reviews the applications, assigns scores to each selection criteria and assess the scores to enable a short list of applicants to be interviewed.  In general, for most positions, if the applicant hasn't addressed the selection criteria, the application is culled from the short list at this time.  End BG

I was asked to be a member of the selection committee for a moderately high level technical position - think accountant with IT qualifications, or IT pro with high level accountancy skills. 

There were the usual applications that had failed to address the selection criteria, but one stood out. 

This candidate had no experience whatsoever in the relevant field - he had essentially taught himself MYOB and acted as a treasurer for a club, no IT qualifications at all, he'd been long term unemployed for various reasons that he went into in painful detail in his cover letter.  He also went into great detail how he'd sued for discrimination for each and every other position he'd applied for and been rejected from, and acted as his own counsel in court, said discrimination being supposedly ageist (he was in his late 40's and successful candidates for some of these other jobs had been older than him, some younger).  He admitted that he'd lost each and every lawsuit, but quoted the judge in one case on how impressively he'd conducted his case. 

As he'd failed to address any of the selection criteria, and was grossly underqualified for the position anyway, he didn't get an interview.  But boy, were we careful about how we worded the rejection and selection report.  It's been nearly 3 years ago now, but I'm still waiting for the summons to come... 

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