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Stupid Recruiters - Karen's Musings
Random Rambling
estherchaya
estherchaya
Stupid Recruiters
I'm not job searching, but my resume still floats out there in cyberspace, so I constantly receive emails and calls from recruiters, most of which I ignore. I almost universally ignore any call/email from a staffing agency or with the words "temp to perm" attached to the position. Every once in a while I receive an email so ridiculous that I send it back to the person who wrote me explaining why it's ridiculous that they even sent it to me in the first place. If I could access LJ from work, I'd search my archives so that I could link to the last post I made about this.

At any rate, today I received the following email:
Dear ,

I am [a stupid recruiter] from [a really dumb company] Consulting Inc. I was reviewing your resume online and would like to talk to you regarding a Full time position in ,Bethesda, Maryland. Your profile looks like a good fit for the position and wanted to know if you would be interested in this position. Below is a description of the position. Even if you are not available, but if you know someone who would fit this job , please dont hesitate to pass this on to them.

If you are interested, please reply to the questions following the job details and send them back to me along with an LATEST copy of your resume in WORD format. Even if you are not available, but if you know someone who would fit this job, please don't hesitate to pass this email on to them.

Job Details :
Job Title : ISSO
Location :Bethesda, Maryland
Duration :Permanent
Description:
Our Client is looking for an ISSO in Arlington VA
***************************
If you are comfortable with this requirement and if you are interested then as a preliminary step, I was hoping that you may be able to answer a few brief questions for me:
[questions snipped for brevity's sake, but take my word for it, they were dumb, contradictory, poorly written, and clearly a cut and paste job with badly covered-up modifications.]



Now, here's the thing... I could have just ignored the email like I do most of them. But this was so blatantly thoughtless that I couldn't take my eyes off of it. Here are the problems as I see them:

  1. "Dear ," -- There are a couple problems with this. First, "Dear" is an awfully familiar way for this guy who's never met me to be addressing me. Second, even if he did intend to address me that way, there should be no space before the comma. Oh wait, he probably meant to personalize this email in some way and put my name in there, right? So why didn't he?
  2. "I am [a stupid recruiter] from [a really dumb company] Consulting Inc." -- There should be a comma between Consulting and Inc.
  3. "I was reviewing your resume online and would like to talk to you regarding a Full time position in ,Bethesda, Maryland." -- Yeah, um, could you make it MORE obvious that you just cut and pasted this email and filled in some blanks? ",Bethesda, Maryland" indeed. And did you need to put "full" in bold? While we're on the topic of "Full"... why the capital F there? No need to emphasize this. All emphasizing that does for me is remind me that you're a staffing agency and I have zero interest in speaking with you.
  4. Your profile looks like a good fit for the position and wanted to know if you would be interested in this position. Whoops. Looks like the email you cut and pasted wasn't very well written in the first place! Who wanted to know?
  5. Below is a description of the position. Dude! You don't need neon lights to lead me to the position description. Especially once you see how disappointing the position description is in the first place. Do you really want to highlight something so useless??
  6. Even if you are not available, but if you know someone who would fit this job , please dont hesitate to pass this on to them. There are so many problems with this sentence I don't even know where to start. Seriously. First, you've got an extra "if" in there. Secondly, someone who would fit this job? How about someone who would "be a good fit for this position" instead? And you shouldn't have a space before the comma placed between "job" and "please" in the second half of the sentence.
  7. If you are interested, please reply to the questions following the job details and send them back to me along with an LATEST copy of your resume in WORD format. Again with the bold. Seriously... if I were interested in this position (and I can't imagine why I would be), I promise I'll read every word, even if it isn't bold. And why is WORD in all caps? The name of the product you are referring to is MS Word, or Microsoft Office Word if you want to be really picky. LATEST doesn't need to be all caps either. Here's a hint: If you need to make a word all capitals to make it stand out because you've already used up your ability to use bold formatting there, you probably aren't actually emphasizing as much as you think you are. Finally, this sentence refers to "job details" which implies that at some point I'll have some job details to read. But guess what? There are NEVER any details!
  8. Even if you are not available, but if you know someone who would fit this job , please don't hesitate to pass this email on to them. It's like de ja vu all over again! This sentence sounds awfully familiar! And the same problems are still there!
  9. Job Details : Yeah, um, There are no job details. Worse, what little there is contradicts itself. Location? Bethesda Maryland. Description? ISSO in Arlington VA? Yeah, um, which is it? And while you're at it, could you try describing the job requirements in the job description sentence? Primary duties expected? Background required? Years experience you're looking for? Anything? Any tiny little crumb?
  10. And don't even get me started on the dumb questioniarre that I snipped.


    Yeah. Literally some ridiculous problem in every single sentence. Well, you know me, so you must know that there is no possibility that I could let that one slide, so I wrote him back. Don't worry, I didn't give him the exhaustive list. I told him I wasn't looking for a position, but that I wanted to give him a little feedback on his recruiting method. The two things I mentioned were the ommission of my name (and therefore the obvious cut-and-paste job that this was), and the complete lack of a position description. Finally, I reminded him that IT Security positions are difficult to fill because there are more positions than qualified professionals right now, so it would be appropriate for him to find a way to approach candidates in a more professional manner.

    I figured I'd never hear from the guy again, but while I was writing this entry, I received a response back. I was going to just summarize it, but it's really just too funny. Obviously, English is not this person's first language. In my opinion, he either should not be in a position which requires clear and direct communication in English OR he should make sure he has someone proofread his emails before he sends them to compensate for the fact that English is not his first language. His response:


    Hi Karen, [gotta give him credit for remembering to insert my name this time]

    Thanks for your response. I am really very sorry for the big mistake that I have done, and I really appriciate you for removing some time and giving me some advice. I am really very thank full to you, as I belive that whatever you have said is absolutely correct.

    Also, I assure you that this kind of mistake will not be repeated in the future by me.

    Thank you very much.

    Thanks and Regards
    [Name ommitted to protect the guilty]


    I think that pretty much says all there needs to be said.

    I hope the formatting didn't get all messed up again. I know my last email-post was pretty difficult to read because for some reason all the formatting was messed up. Thanks for reading that one anyway! If this one also gets messed up, I'll eliminate the use of any markup tags in all email posts from now on.
12 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
drmellow From: drmellow Date: June 16th, 2006 05:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
6. "don't" really should have that apostrophe. The fact that it shows up in #8 (unless one of them is a typo on your part) highly amuses me.

My favorite part was that the locations were Bethesda and Arlington. Depending on where you live in the DC area, one of those locations is probably a reasonable commute while the other is a nightmare!

Thanks for sharing.
mortuus From: mortuus Date: June 16th, 2006 05:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
I would have sent the exhaustive list. But then, I'm obnoxious that way :-)
(Deleted comment)
sen_ichi_rei From: sen_ichi_rei Date: June 16th, 2006 05:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
The formatting came out fine. But that was an amusing read :)

Back in the day when I was on frumster, I noticed that most of the guys had a lot of typos in their profiles. It was quite depressing considering that if they are trying to make a good impression and attract a future wife, you'd think they would at least use spell-check before posting their profile. It automatically made me think of the guy as less intelligent, especially if e-mails were filled with typos as well.

So kal v'chomer a job recruitment letter should be well written. Or maybe this is the opposite of a kal v'chomer. Unclear which would be the kal and which would be the chomer...

I don't spell/grammar-check everything I write, but if it's something important then I try to check it by re-reading it, since spell-check is unreliable anyways.
xiphias From: xiphias Date: June 16th, 2006 08:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
The one "mistake" which you list that I don't consider to be a mistake is the salutation. "Dear [name]," is the standard business format for a letter going to a specific person. It's not considered overly familiar.

I agree with you on every other point, however.
chite From: chite Date: June 16th, 2006 08:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Except Karen didn't expurgate the name. The name wasn't included in the first place. Starting a letter with just the word "Dear," IS familiar, and she was just being funny.
ralphmelton From: ralphmelton Date: June 16th, 2006 08:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
I would look askance at an e-mail from someone I don't know that began with 'Dear Ralph,' merely because it's not the usual beginning for e-mail I'm interested in.

I agree that 'Dear ,' without a name looks horribly sloppy.
arosoff From: arosoff Date: June 16th, 2006 08:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Dear Mr. Melton" (or whatever your surname is ;) ) is considered perfectly appropriate business format, though. "Dear Ralph" is more personal and would generally only be used after previous correspondence at the very least.

(For some reason which remains unclear to me today, my junior high and high school English teachers all considered it vitally important to know how to write business letters correctly. Maybe they knew that even though we were in honors English, many of us would find our first post-college jobs to be "glorified secretary".)

Methinks the writer needs to learn how to use Mail Merge correctly :P (Oh, sorry, it's "Data Merge Manager" now).
ralphmelton From: ralphmelton Date: June 16th, 2006 09:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Good point. If I got mail saying "Dear Mr. Melton,", I would consider it entirely polite.
sethcohen From: sethcohen Date: June 18th, 2006 03:35 am (UTC) (Link)
You should be getting mail that says "Oh Great Lord over all He Surveys," if I recall correctly.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: June 16th, 2006 08:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, but absent a name, just writing "Dear" is as though he is referring to me by the name "Dear". This is a title that is almost universally reserved for my husband. Had he written "Dear Ms. Cohen" I would not have made the same correction.
cellio From: cellio Date: June 16th, 2006 11:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow. That was pretty grim. I might have consed up some error "output" from the perl script he probably tried to run to report the missing parameters (recipient name, position job title, etc), if I were feeling sufficiently snarky. :-)
12 comments or Leave a comment