Job Postings are Not Real – an observation by Mark Rowbottom

Job Postings are Not Real
By Mark Rowbottom

This is an observation of mine:

When perusing various job boards, websites, career and postings, one must keep in mind that any job posting is an invitation for anyone and everyone to apply. Not surprisingly many people do apply.  We often hear the frustration of candidates who have applied for many positions they have seen and do not get any replies – at all.

May I ask you a question that may have not crossed your mind? Whatever, I’m asking – did you ever wonder if the posting actually has a real position behind it? Companies, recruiting firms and job sites have many postings with no positions behind them. I can list a myriad of reasons for this: (not that they will alleviate your frustrations).

The job has not been approved, and the poster is “getting a jump” on the position while awaiting approval, it has been filled and they “forgot” to remove it, they want to load their database, it looks good for the company to have openings and more. One of our candidates wanted to leave his employer, a small software development company because they were financially unstable and had lost some key clients. When I researched the company I came across several job postings on their website. This prompted the inquiry as to why would they be hiring if the company was financially unstable? The candidate replied that the owner wanted to have postings so that the remaining clients thought they were financially stable and growing. Currently, we have a client with 5 positions posted and they have a hiring freeze on. This observation of mine is from real life experiences.

Seriously, I refer to applying to these postings as you are just entering the “black hole”. Recently, a client engaged us on a position that had been open for months and had over 300 applicants via LinkedIn. Do not think for a minute that they responded to those 300 applicants. Clearly, they had other respondents from their career site and other postings as well who did not hear back from them.

Can you imagine the hassle of vetting through hundreds of resumes for one position? It is a huge mess and not a job many people would want. How many of those candidates follow up with emails and phone calls? Who would want to be the recipient of all of this attention and how would someone manage it?

That is a simple question to answer – by doing nothing at all.

The next time you see a posting of interest, think twice and if you do respond manage your expectations. I acknowledge individuals clearly have been hired through postings, but it is the black hole for most applicants. May I suggest you find yourself a reputable recruiting firm and that is a whole new challenge!