I ask every room I present in front of this one question: Who here has been a job seeker before? I usually follow it up with, “I know you’re not listening if your hand isn’t in the air right now.” I get a few chuckles with that one.
Then, I suck all the air out of the room by saying these seven words: Do you remember what it feels like?
The hopelessness? The despair? That feeling that you have no control, and you’re at the very bottom of the list? It’s a feeling and insecurity that multiplies every minute you don’t hear back, wondering what you did wrong. It’s sweating all the small stuff and sitting in the discomfort of being judged. I asked on Twitter awhile back and I wasn’t at all surprised by the answers. A few did make me laugh out loud, admittedly.
Short answer: it sucks, and we all know it. I don’t need to explain why job postings matter or break down many philosophies to make anyone understand that.
I wish every recruiter and hiring manager would remember. We could change a lot about the world of work by injecting a giant dose of humanity into our experiences by writing for people, not about work.
So with that said, I’ve written the first draft of a Job Seeker Bill of Rights.
The Three Ears Media Job Seeker Bill of Rights
This is a list of the way we’d write the script if we truly treated candidates the way we want to be treated. It’s what I wish companies would do to stop the marathon effect and create a humane candidate experience.
- Every candidate gets access to the profile that’s generated after they take an assessment: every score, every time.
- Candidates may respond to ask for feedback on why they were eliminated from consideration. Responses are mandatory.
- Curious what they’re really saying in a job posting? Ask for clarification, and get it.
- Applications will not ask people to submit a resume, then manually enter the entire work history.
- Employers set expectations about the types of questions they’ll ask in the interview and what they’re looking for in an interview guide candidates get at least one week in advance.
- Honest answers about salary requirements for every candidate.
- Only editorial candidates will write cover letters.
This is just a start. What would you add?