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May 14th, 2009


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09:33 pm - Grr...

Watching "The Apprentice" (reality tv show hosted by Donald Trump where candidates perform tasks to compete for a position to run one of Trump's companies) is depressing when one has no job.  The people on there are so competitive and aggressive, willing to take risks and jump into things head first. 

Then I look at the dozens of resumes I've sent out with no reply and it makes me all...aggravated.  Between May 6th and today I've literally sent out over 50 resumes, got 2 calls from job placement agencies for interviews, and just one actual job interview.  Isn't that depressing?  I don't get it, am I doing something wrong?  Is it the way I write the application emails?  Is it my resume?  I've looked up good resume writting tips and tried to follow them as much as possible.  Everyday I'm on the Canadian government's job bank website as well as Workopolis and Jobs Open, refreshing the page several dozen times a day during working hours for new job postings, sending resume to every administrative assistant, office receptionist, clerical work, data entry type job that is posted.  Is it just I don't have sufficient experience compared to others who are also applying?

What is this barriers that's stopping me from getting interviews??  Is it just lack of experience?  Lack of job openings due to the economy?  At the last job interview my interviewer told me they received about 240 applications for the position within 3 days or something.
If it's those types of factors there's not too much I can do except keep trying, but if it's something I'm doing wrong then I want to fix it as soon as possible. 

Anyone have any suggestions?  How do you write your resumes?  For mine, aside from the standard contact info I have my education on there, relevant skills and qualifications (experience using Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, government secret level clearance, etc.), my previous job experiences wherein I specify the title of the position, the dates of employment, the company/employer, and then I list out the tasks I was responsible for in point form using bullets (because apparently potential employers don't like reading paragraphs), and then finish off with my references.

*Sigh*  It's already May 14th, 2 weeks after my last exam, 50+ applications sent and only 1 job interview ;A;  All of my friends are organizing various get-togethers these days as we kick off summer and everyone wants to hang out before we all go our separate ways, but since I don't have a job yet I'm not even in the mood to hang out.  Even when I'm around friends my mind's constantly thinking about jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs and that makes me no fun to be around these days.  At the same time I really do want to spend time with friends since come September I'll be leaving for Japan, plus I'm graduating so it'll be harder to see a lot of them as often as I used to during school.  Argh, why is this so bloody hard??!


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[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 15th, 2009 02:26 am (UTC)
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Ok, so it's not just me, that's a bit more re-assuring :X

I've heard of those stories where people have sent out hundreds of resumes and hear back from like, 1 or 2 but I thought they were job-hunting myths or something. My interviewer who told me there was 240 applications for that one job said it didn't use to be like that a few years back and that university graduates almost always managed to find a pretty good job fairly quickly following graduation (it was a group interview with an individual interview following and a lot of the people in the group had just graduated like myself, so I guess we all shared the job-hunting desperations). I want to blame the economy but at the same time that doesn't help with anything either D: I wish I graduated a few years earlier, or a few years later...(albeit then if I can't find a job I can't find an excuse to blame it on something other than myself x__X).

Good luck to you with your job hunting!
[User Picture]
From:ah_chung
Date:May 15th, 2009 02:39 am (UTC)
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Convocation for me was last October and I'm still looking! For me, I think it's because I lack relevant experience plus I don't know French. That's a great barrier to entering the government.

I finally just got my reliabilty clearance *cheers* so hopefully things will get better. I tried to ask for one for the first agency I got in with and they basically told me they couldn't do anything for me. They apparently only gave clearances to people with potential and I wasn't one of them. They wanted me to get office experience first or if I knew French then they would help get one for me. But since at the time I had neither, they gave me nothing. And my agent ignores my calls. Terrible experience with that one agency... but I got in with another one and it's much better.

Anyways. Just keep trying and at least you have your Japan job lined up. I'm so glad I'm back in school and doing something productive while job searching or else I'll go crazy.

Good luck and try not too feel too down. I know better said than done though, I was quite depressed a few months back for the same reason. But I know a bunch of people that graduated like me and they either have sweet jobs (ALL because of their connections) or they're still looking like me (because they have no connections... like me). Oh, and I think connections matters A LOT.
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 15th, 2009 04:04 am (UTC)
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Wow, that first agency of your's sounds terrible O__O;; I've signed up with like, 6 agencies now and some are definitely more...active shall we say, than others. I agree, connections matter so much. It's the same everywhere, regardless of country, connections, connections, connections, and I find with government departments it's even more crucial to have connections than private sector jobs. I hate asking friends to help me job hunt though, I feel like I'm taking advantage of them, and my friends who do have jobs in the government are entry-level anyway so they can't help all that much.

Thanks for trying to cheer me up, I'm going to keep at it for sure, and good luck on your end too!
[User Picture]
From:abomvubuso
Date:May 15th, 2009 08:45 am (UTC)
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Every time i watch Trump doing show out of job interviews i have the "Yerk" feeling in my guts.
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 20th, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC)
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Trump's irritating I find (btw, what's the "Yerk" feeling?). He's all "do what you like and are passionate for!" and I'm all "yeah, but that's assuming you have enough money to pay the bills and rent first -___-".
[User Picture]
From:abomvubuso
Date:May 20th, 2009 05:26 pm (UTC)
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Yerk is disgust. He's making a show out of people's hopes.
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 20th, 2009 05:31 pm (UTC)
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Not to mention a lot of money in the process too x__x
[User Picture]
From:abomvubuso
Date:May 20th, 2009 05:33 pm (UTC)
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That, too :)
[User Picture]
From:surealistic_des
Date:May 15th, 2009 12:29 pm (UTC)
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Urgh. I'm in the same boat too. /o\

Mine is the standard thing with name, education, work, skills, then so and so on. They often recommend you put a career objective on the resume when you're applying for whatever position.

Does your university offer career advice or anything?
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 15th, 2009 05:46 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, I feel kind of odd sticking a career objective in my resume though, like I want to sound ambitious, but still interested in working for wherever I'm applying, but let's face it I don't really want to work in those entry-level positions for all enternity, lol.

My university does have something like that, and I've been contemplating getting someone there to at least go over my resume and give me some tips for interviews or something.
[User Picture]
From:surealistic_des
Date:May 16th, 2009 05:51 pm (UTC)
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True. Although that's what they recommend since its some sort of way to tell the employer you're serious and all.
I aim to go into entry level ones at the moment lol. Do you guys have graduate jobs? Where you work with a company like some sort of training/study and when you're done, you are guaranteed a job in their company



My university does have something like that, and I've been contemplating getting someone there to at least go over my resume and give me some tips for interviews or something.


I think it would be good to let them run over it and give you some pointers. Or other career people who can give advice on where you want to go and all.
[User Picture]
From:ruderal_species
Date:May 15th, 2009 04:42 pm (UTC)
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As someone who's recently reviewed a lot of job applications....

It really *is* hard right now, because every job you post gets a ton of applications. We got over 30 for a 15/hour week job for a "tech" person that required a lot of skills and didn't even pay that well. When I posted for *my* job, which was full-time, we got 300!

When I was reviewing them, the most important thing was the e-mail and the cover letter. A lot of the time people sent something really standard and I couldn't tell if they were interested in *our* job or just sending resumes randomly to every single place. Make sure your e-mail and cover letter mention the place you want to work and something you find interesting about it. And put it early in the letter - these people are skimming *a lot* of applications that look mostly the same. Also, if they have specific skills they ask for, try to address *specifically* how you meet them. Both those thing make the recruiter feel better that you're paying attention and want *their* job. And, of course, try to send a follow-up e-mail a few days later (or call, if they accept phone calls) to let them know you're still interested.

I don't know about other place, but those things worked on me. *g*
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 15th, 2009 05:42 pm (UTC)
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Ah, thanks for the tips! A lot of the jobs getting posted I find are also through a handful of those job placement agencies and I get so conflicted when I see 5 or 6 jobs I'm interested in being posted by the same agency which because I don't know if I should send emails applying for each job individually or just send one listing all the jobs I'm interested in that the agency posted @___@ I'm not sure if that happens a lot in other cities, but here in Ottawa it sure does, especially for all those government admin jobs, every single one goes through an agency.

It's so true though, with the flood of people looking for jobs these days the biggest barrier I think is getting one's application noticed. I'd be interested in knowing among those applications I sent how many actually drew the employer to review my resume instead of just skimming my email and brushing it off. It'd be nice if hotmail or gmail or whatever had a mechanism to notify you if the person you send an email to actually opens your attachments XD
[User Picture]
From:ruderal_species
Date:May 16th, 2009 03:00 pm (UTC)
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I actually got a lot of applications with a copy of the resume in the e-mail, so you didn't have to bother opening attachments...

As for whether to send one e-mail or separate - you could always call the agency and ask. :)
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 16th, 2009 03:51 pm (UTC)
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Oh, that's actually a good idea (adding a copy of the resume right into the email). I guess when the employer has several hundreds of applications to go through whatever makes it easiest and least time-consuming for the employer is the best way to go. I'll start doing that :D Thanks again!
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:koneko_desu
Date:May 20th, 2009 04:11 pm (UTC)
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Thanks for the suggestions and the encouragement!!

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