Description

Whether it be social, recreational, or professional, some of what represents me is here. Post a comment, or contact me at Dallas@embracespace.ca should you so desire.

The posts are in reverse chronological order, and are pegged by topic on the links to the left. For more of an introduction, please see the About this site page listed above.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Things which bother me: the amount of work involved with getting a job

First thing I want to point out: I understand the irony and futility of writing about this. The irony resides in not using the time I spend here writing this in looking/applying for work. The futility resides in the fact that, other than perhaps having a few of you agree, it's not going to change anything.

As the title suggests, I hate the nonsense involved with trying to find work.

The first thing which bothers me is that I can never seem to find a job posting when I need to. I don't know if this is truly universal, but just finding work is a problem. Now, I'm not going to get into the larger issues concerning the state of business, employment, or labour shortages, but I will acknowledge their effect on my complaints. No, my problem is in the seeming lack of advertising, and perhaps, my lack of knowledge in finding positions for which to apply.

I am an engineer-in-training, with years of experience in mathematical/programming problem solving, team/time/project management, with a great work ethic, a strong initiative and willingness to learn, and I am a pretty decent people person, with what I hope are above-adequate communication skills. Yet, I am having trouble finding postings that are right for me.

I've looked into some of the big engineering firms, but of course, they require years of experience and are only looking for people who want a career, not a coop/internship/entry level temporary employment. Some friends, and colleagues, suggested several other places to work, namely, banks. So, I tried there as well, and after several hours, days, and weeks, of sifting through the job boards of the various banks located here in Toronto, I was only able to find 4 positions for which I could apply.

Maybe the problem is that I'm too specific, asking for too much even though I don't have the experience to be doing so. As mentioned, I am an engineer in training, and thus want work related to my field. I want to be given problems, whether they be mathematical, engineering design, or computer-related, and asked to solve it either on my own or in a team setting. Alternatively/additionally, I want to work on design projects, helping to create something, for the good of, preferably humankind, but I'll settle for the company. Also, I don't want to work for the rest of my life at any one position. Perhaps companies don't want to hire me because they know I'll need to leave them in 8 months and they'll see training a temporary employee a waste of their time and money.

My next problem is that it is nigh-impossible to do a job search based on skills. Sure, there are often categories of jobs by which you can search, and I guess skills are sometimes too vague or too specific to appropriately filter the job options, but I hate how many times I've skimmed through a job posting, based on its title, only to find out they are asking for something which differs completely from what I imagined the job title was asking.

My final issue is that old adage, "It's not what you know, but who you know." I am seriously tired of that. Far too often, has that adage proved true, and each and every time I have been slightly upset at it. I have ranted about this before, but when it comes to getting work done, I don't care who you know. Whether it be the Pope, Donald Trump, or my mother, I don't care at all who you know, I care about what you can bring to the project in terms of knowledge and experience. Even if I knew everyone and was able to get work just by asking a friend or family member who worked somewhere, I would still feel extremely bad if I thought for one second I was hired somewhere based on that and not based on my ability to fulfill the obligations and responsibilities of that position. N.B. To any of you who have been lucky enough to have been considered/hired to a position because of a connection in a company, I am not upset at you, I just hope it wasn't the only reason you got the job. I don't think connections are the only way to get in, I just envy the ability to get noticed through an acquaintance rather than a résumé. I understand how it works, but I'm working on making myself a little more noticeable. 

Let it be known that I don't mind the process involved with applying for work, or rather, I understand it. Companies want to know that you are worth their time, and that you will be willing to put the effort in to actually be considered. They don't want to make the application process too easy/automatic or else so too will their evaluation process be. I don't mind writing a separate cover letter each time, or filling out an online application, really, because each job is different and should require special attention.

Now, for anyone more interested in my current method of searching, so that they may offer criticism, constructive or otherwise, of my methods, here is what I have been doing to find work:
  • Updated my résumé, which is more like a C.V. and can be found here: Dallas Kasaboski's Résumé (Yes, I give a shortened version when the job asks for it/seems like it would suit the position better)
  • Have discussed the options with the Internship Program at York University, only to be given the dates of their job fairs and the names of some companies of interest.
  • Have gone to some of the job fairs, only to find all the positions are for surveyors, not for me.
  • Have gone through the careers/jobs/internships/coop positions on the websites of the companies referred to me both by the Internship Program and my colleagues.
  • Have scoured the internet, looking for job postings.
  • Have lowered my standards and opened my mind and availability to jobs and companies I normally would not accept before.
  • Have applied for, and written the cover letters for, only about 10 positions, and have not heard back from any of them.
  • ...am still looking.
  • Have written this blog, to get noticed/to feel better about things, as writing helps to sooth this savage beast.
Should you wish to contact me, to leave advice or criticism, you may do so here by commenting, or you may email me at dallaskasaboski@gmail.com.

In the meantime, as always, thanks for reading, and I will continue my search!

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