Why Are You Wasting My Time?

 In Michael's Corner

Does this complaint sound familiar?

You just found your perfect job on CPGjobs. You filled out your candidate profile completely and updated your resume. Then, when you submit your application and BOOM! You’re sent over to the hiring company’s website where you have to do the same thing all over again! You want to rip your hair out.

I wish I had a $100 for every complaint I receive from candidates about this scenario because I would be very rich indeed. It seems nonsensical.

For the record, let me say that I wish that you only had to fill out our profile and then seamlessly submit for as many jobs as you wanted without having to fill out anything more. Unfortunately, it’s not a perfect world and as someone said to me the other day, “ Life is not as easy as it could be.” Still, it can sometimes help if you understand the reasons for all of this red tape.

The Sarbanes Oxley Act (SOX), also known as the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act, was enacted in 2002 to set new or enhanced standards for all publicly held US company boards, management and accounting firms. The Act was passed as an effort to foster increased corporate responsibility among public companies and included – among other provisions – more financially independent boards of directors.

Although the main focus of SOX was board governance and accounting practices, the Act’s reach also extended into various corporate administrative areas – including human resources. Without going into all of the details here, (if you want to know more, just Google Sarbanes Oxley), the provisions in SOX with regard to the handling of employee complaints, corporate retaliation against whistle blowers, record keeping and more had the effect of corporations establishing and maintaining much tighter controls over internal company records – including the personnel records of potential applicants and current employees. Thus, most public corporations will require applicants to record their interest in employment through their own data capture systems in the form of corporate career sites.

Now let me say that I am not against regulation of corporations, mainly because I believe that most companies are not altruistic. Increasing profit and shareholder value is of primary concern to a corporate entity. We have many regulations in human resources that are set up to protect some people from the behavior of other people. However there oftentimes are unintended consequences.

Sarbanes Oxley was supposed to protect shareholders and the public from the mis-deeds of large corporations, however in the execution of compliance with The Act, corporations are now burdened with complex regulations; so many regulations in fact, that a large SOX Compliance industry has sprung up to help public corporations comply!

Hiring third-party companies to help comply with government regulations is expensive. Paying fines for non-compliance is expensive. Ensuring non-discrimination of minorities is expensive…and necessary. Nonetheless these escalating costs have forced many companies to reduce their HR department budgets. This nearly always translates into a lower HR headcount, fewer people looking at resumes, fewer people receiving callbacks and follow-up. Very often this is why your resume may never get seen, and why no one seems to know anything about the status of a particular advertised position.

So what is the answer? I can’t find one, but I wish I could. How do we teach several generations of workers and bosses to play fair? How do we instill a moral compass into every man and woman rendering constrictive government regulations unnecessary and obsolete? And what has happened to company loyalty – both to and from employees? It seems as though they both disappeared at the same time in a kind of “chicken and egg” relationship. Which came first? Who knows? But I don’t suppose it matters since that kind of employer/employee trust is gone from both sides now.

I will admit to you that I am not particularly happy about what is happening in the employment space right now – and I haven’t liked it for some time. Everything is more complicated and it isn’t helping people to get hired.

If there is a bright spot in any of this I can tell you that if you do take your valuable time to complete your CPGjobs Candidate Profile and you see a job on CPGjobs for which you are well-qualified, we can help get your resume in front of the hiring manager at our client companies through our Candidate Spotlight. Sure, you have to take it from there. But this is a real leg-up when you consider the possible fate of your application when you simply apply for a position – along with thousands of other applicants – solely on a corporate career site.

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