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How do you get a job these days?


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NuttyBar NuttyBar is offline
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07-Jul-2012, 05:11 PM #1
Unhappy How do you get a job these days?
It seems walking in the place and asking if they're hiring isn't enough like in the old days.

Resumes don't help either, unless you have experience/education completion/bragging rights of some sort.

I have filled out dozens of applications online for the lowest-level entry jobs available, and not even a single call back.

I have NO expectations - I will mop a floor all day long for minimum wage in a poor environment.

I just need an income to get a step up in life ... it will help me get my G.E.D., buy reliable transportation to get around, move out, expand horizons, have better resources at my fingertips, and continue learning computer programming/science/hardware as a whole.

Am I destined to be poor, sick and homeless? Because I'm already two of those, and three is coming soon.
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08-Jul-2012, 01:28 AM #2
Those are very good questions and you're obviously younger than me, and my world back when expectations were met...(There was always a good paying job after High School back then)....You're already showing a good direction in regards to learning about computer programming and such, but it mostly depends on where you live and what's available for a low income person...And always work at it the best you can, that's what counts...
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08-Jul-2012, 04:43 PM #3
What country are you in?
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09-Jul-2012, 04:12 PM #4
Sadly, there are no positions available, and all available positions are more stressful in terms of interaction(such as with employers, HR, managers, supervisors, etc.)than doing the actual job's requirements more or less.

I also don't have a high-school diploma or G.E.D. and no money either.

I live in the U.S.
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09-Jul-2012, 07:07 PM #5
In my experience of hunting for a summer job last summer, online applications aren't very good. I would fill out an online application and then hear nothing.

I spent about 2 weeks driving around applying to as many retail places as I could with a folder of resumes, a collared shirt, and kaki slacks on. I applied to about 20 or 25 places and got a call back. I was able to get around 30 hours per week. It wasn't full time but hey, it worked.

I'd really recommend applying in person.
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09-Jul-2012, 09:07 PM #6
Networking, I understand, is still the most effective way of landing a job no matter what level. If you know somebody working at a place with a job opening ask him/her to recommend you, or at least to submit your resume instead of you mailing it or turning it in yourself.

And, of course, ask your friends and acquaintances for any leads they may have.

On your resume, any job application and any interview you might land emphasize your strengths--maybe reliability ("never missed a day of school for six years"), maybe inventiveness ("I figured out a way to do such-and-such in half the time it took my uncle"), etc.

See what you can do (classes available) to work towards your GED. That may not be of much value, but it's probably a bare necessity.

Immigrant labor is getting hard to find in some states, so there are jobs available for citizens. It's not easy work though--cutting up chickens all day in some sweatshop or stooped over picking crops or climbing trees for fruit, etc.

Good luck.
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10-Jul-2012, 05:11 PM #7
I have no one to help me get in a job, so I'd, unfortunately, have to get in all by myself(which, really, is that such a problem these days?).

I don't understand why someone always need to know another to get a job. That doesn't prove anyone is qualified, it's just a socialized advantage to success for people with social contacts.

That's equivalent to saying, "I know someone who knows someone, so I can pay my rent. You know no one so there's no one, so you can't survive because no one will hire someone who knows no one."

If knowing someone in a workplace is what it takes to get a job, that must explain why slacking losers with no work ethic have jobs, and people willing and eager to handle the work, do your best, are the ones who never get hired because they don't network, don't have friends, and/or don't have connections in any way.

Might as well start planning my panhandling, while I see dumber, less capable people earning their minimum wage at cashier jobs all because they "knew somebody" or had friends.
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10-Jul-2012, 07:17 PM #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by axkoam View Post
In my experience of hunting for a summer job last summer, online applications aren't very good. I would fill out an online application and then hear nothing.

I spent about 2 weeks driving around applying to as many retail places as I could with a folder of resumes, a collared shirt, and kaki slacks on. I applied to about 20 or 25 places and got a call back. I was able to get around 30 hours per week. It wasn't full time but hey, it worked.

I'd really recommend applying in person.
Good advice!
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12-Jul-2012, 04:41 PM #9
But how does applying in person make any dramatic change?

The fact of the matter is that most places don't even want human-on-human contact.

So many places look at you like "Why aren't you doing it online?" if you do it in person.

It's just not the same as it was 20+ years ago.

Hiring managers don't want to "talk" and "get to know you" in person. They just want a piece of paper with enough edge for them to even consider you.

"Small talk", unfortunately, hasn't done me any justice, and applying in person has so far been just as successful as applying online(or worse).
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12-Jul-2012, 05:05 PM #10
Online vs. snail mail vs. in person depends a lot on the job and company. Large companies likely prefer online these days. A roofing company looking for somebody to work on a rooftop all day in 90 degree hot and 30 degree cold probably prefers in person, as they mostly want to know if you look hardy enough for those tasks.

In person can (but usually doesn't) make a big difference because you may luck out. The hiring manager just realizes he/she has an opening, you walk in the door before he/she starts shuffling through resumes and have the right skill set, and you get interviewed on the spot. Most times that won't happen and your resume/application will just get added to the pile. But you only need it to happen once, right? Just ask axkoam!
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12-Jul-2012, 05:08 PM #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
I have no one to help me get in a job, so I'd, unfortunately, have to get in all by myself(which, really, is that such a problem these days?).
It is if you're uneducated, unemployed, and don't want to network. What do you have to offer them? In this job market, there are lots of people looking for work, even unskilled labor, who have degrees (not just diplomas), or have current jobs that show their reliability, or have people willing to vouch for them. If you don't have those things, then you're at a disadvantage. On paper, you're not going to get hired, which means that the vast majority of the jobs you apply for online will be unsuccessful. There's absolutely nothing to make an employer pull your application out of the stack. That's why axkoam's advice is valuable. Go there in person, dress well, and ask to speak to a manager.

I have a friend who owns several pizza restaurants. A kid came by recently with an application (which he filled out online and then printed), a copy of his driver's license, references from teachers and friends, and said he'd be available to work any hours as a driver and asked if she'd keep his resume on file if they were hiring in the future. That's right, he did that for a job that wasn't even available. My friend called around to all of her stores to find out if any of them needed drivers. One did, so she asked that they move him to the top of the interview list. He showed a desire for the job, an ability to be professional, and a willingness to work and that got him an interview even though he had no job experience. If you don't have anything to sell yourself on paper, you have to sell yourself in person. It will take going to a lot of different places and facing a lot of rejection, but what else are you doing in the meantime? Even five places a day would be 100 places in a month and you only need one person to say yes. If the other 99 look at you like "what are you doing here?" then so what?
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12-Jul-2012, 05:24 PM #12
Quote:
uneducated, unemployed, and don't want to network.
I'm not uneducated. Is that someone looking down on me because I didn't finish high school or get a G.E.D? That doesn't mean I can't do what most entry level jobs can, and/or even better for that matter. Since when do you need secondary-school completion to have the skills to work as a cashier? That's a joke.

I'm only unemployed because nobody has considered the dozens of stacks of applications I've been making in person and online. I don't have money, I don't have help; it's not easy for me. I don't even have a functioning hard drive on my computer, and can't replace it either so I have to use a public computer to get by.

I don't have to network for jobs if I don't want to, and I shall not be barred from employment because of it, or be at any disadvantage. If me not networking is a disadvantage from getting jobs, I'd rather be homeless(which I will be soon). These days there's no such thing as getting a real job anymore, as there's so much effort required for anything little thing.

How much of an investmest in me will you lose if I do turn out to be a failure at mopping your floors, pushing buttons and performing 3rd grade arithmetic on a cash register device, and saying short-greeting sentences when someone walks up to me and walks away? Oh, right! Counting change ... that must be really tough.

Congratulations on making me feel even less confident, worthy, or dedicated in finding a job because that's what this thread has done.
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12-Jul-2012, 05:55 PM #13
You forgot the "if" that preceded the part of Wendy's sentence that you quoted.

Perhaps "uneducated" was a poor choice of words, but, to use your example, for cashier jobs you are competing with people who have graduated from high school, or who are still in high school moving towards graduation, or in many cases have formal education beyond that. If I'm looking at a bunch of resumes any that appear to be from a high school dropout are going to be quickly discarded unless something positive catches my eye.

Why does the education matter? Because if I'm hiring a cashier I want somebody reliable, somebody who will show up every day at the assigned time and work until the end of the shift, taking only standard meal or rest breaks. And I also want somebody who is personable enough to get along with the manager(s) and other employees. Finishing high school shows more probability of these traits than not finishing high school does. If you haven't finished high school you have to show something else to compete for the position. And if you can't show on your resume some experience that will hint that you may be reliable enough to show up and work your shift then you need to somehow get to talk to me (still pretending that I'm the hiring manager) and show me how you would be great, or at least satisfactory, for the job.

If you're looking for sympathy here you'll get a little, but not much. But, as you can see, we are willing to share our ideas and experiences on pursuing a job.

Remember what I said in post # 6 after the networking part. Especially the part about showcasing your strengths. One of those is obviously your writing ability. Your posts here, in terms of grammar and spelling and getting your points across, are better than the average stuff we wade through trying to help people with their technical problems. The average high school graduate has about a 10th grade vocabulary. Yours is much better. How come you're that good w/o a high school diploma? There must be a story behind that. That story may display other strengths you have. I'm not asking you to tell us; just make sure you think carefully about the subject and get the important parts into your resume and into any interviews you land.

EDIT: I went back and put a few sentences in red. Please take note of them, as they are talking about the "soft" qualities that hiring managers look for. You are correct that little formal education is needed to operate a register these days.

Last edited by TerryNet; 12-Jul-2012 at 06:00 PM.. Reason: emphasize some sentences
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12-Jul-2012, 07:22 PM #14
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Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
I'm not uneducated. Is that someone looking down on me because I didn't finish high school or get a G.E.D? That doesn't mean I can't do what most entry level jobs can, and/or even better for that matter. Since when do you need secondary-school completion to have the skills to work as a cashier? That's a joke.
You are, in fact, uneducated. You do not have a high school education or its equivalent. That is not the same as unintelligent or incapable or incompetent. I don't look down on you at all. I wish you success. And I don't question that you can do a great job at entry level work. But there's no reason for an employer to give you the benefit of the doubt unless you can show them something that makes you worth a shot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
I'm only unemployed because nobody has considered the dozens of stacks of applications I've been making in person and online. I don't have money, I don't have help; it's not easy for me. I don't even have a functioning hard drive on my computer, and can't replace it either so I have to use a public computer to get by.
It's not easy for lots of people. Lots of people don't have money and don't have help. But that's why you have to do everything you can. You're asking how to get a job. We're trying to help you. If you want the answer to be "you're already doing everything you can and everybody else is being unfair" then we can say that. But that doesn't get you any closer to employment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
I don't have to network for jobs if I don't want to, and I shall not be barred from employment because of it, or be at any disadvantage. If me not networking is a disadvantage from getting jobs, I'd rather be homeless(which I will be soon). These days there's no such thing as getting a real job anymore, as there's so much effort required for anything little thing.
You certainly don't have to, but you will be at a disadvantage if you don't. If getting the job is too much effort, then why should an employer assume that you'll make the effort to do the job once you have it? That's the whole thing. They're not going to hire you as a favor to a stranger or on faith. You have to show them you're worth hiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
How much of an investmest in me will you lose if I do turn out to be a failure at mopping your floors, pushing buttons and performing 3rd grade arithmetic on a cash register device, and saying short-greeting sentences when someone walks up to me and walks away? Oh, right! Counting change ... that must be really tough.
It's not tough, but lots of people can't do it. I deal with transactions every day where someone makes the wrong change and it's a huge risk for the company.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttyBar View Post
Congratulations on making me feel even less confident, worthy, or dedicated in finding a job because that's what this thread has done.
Listen, that's not my intent and I'm sure it's not anybody else's. We're trying to help you, but you don't need to listen to us. In fact, I won't respond anymore in this thread if you'd like. There's no doubting that it's hard, even for people with degrees and a job history. So it's extra hard for you. Have you tried temp agencies? When my husband was unemployed (with a double bachelor's degree and a stable job history, btw) he worked manual labor jobs through a temp agency. He told them he'd do any job they had and so he cleaned up demolition sites. It wouldn't hurt to apply for them and tell them you'd do anything. Or to tell places with a lot of turnover that you'll work for them even on a backup basis. Places like fast food or movie theaters might appreciate having someone on call. It might only be a few hours a week, but it would be better than nothing. Have you offered working for free on a trial basis? Someone might take a chance on you if they get to see you work before they make their decision.

I really wish you the best of luck.
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12-Jul-2012, 07:37 PM #15
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Originally Posted by TerryNet View Post
Because if I'm hiring a cashier I want somebody reliable, somebody who will show up every day at the assigned time and work until the end of the shift, taking only standard meal or rest breaks. And I also want somebody who is personable enough to get along with the manager(s) and other employees.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TerryNet View Post
One of those is obviously your writing ability. Your posts here, in terms of grammar and spelling and getting your points across, are better than the average stuff we wade through trying to help people with their technical problems.
It's also a lot better than I see on a lot of resumes when I'm reviewing applications. If you haven't already, you'd do well to write a fairly extensive cover letter on applications explaining that while you don't have the education or job experience, you do have strong writing and math skills. The writing will be clear from the letter. Even if it's not a job that requires writing, it may make an employer look twice.
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