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Why Aren't You Getting More Applicants?


I'm doing an application for a RN job at a hospital. Step 1 of 8 (it's actually 12 steps):


The first step in the application is the consent agreement. I pasted it into Word and it's three pages, single spaced.


It contains the usual gems like, "I authorize human resources to share my application for other positions". What if I don't want that? What if I don't want the ICU manager to know that I applied for a position at urgent care? There are a hundred reasons both personal and professional that candidates would hesitate here.


It also requires that I authorize human resources to verify statements and employment. Of course, I can check "no" to the "May we contact this employer?" question. But I already signed an agreement at the beginning saying you could.


I'm required to agree in order to continue.


Again, this is the very first step that I'm expected to take as a candidate. I've never even spoken to someone at this hospital. I don't even know if I'd be the right person for this job, and I don't know that because I've never spoken to the unit manager, recruiter, or anything.


Perhaps it's absurd to ask this of candidates before they ever get to talk to anyone.


 

Steps 2 & 3 is where I start answering questions. Some are ok, like asking if I'm over 18 years old and if I'm legally authorized to work in the US.


Then we get to a question that asks if I [have relatives that work, current or previous, at the hospital, or share domicile in common with any other employees].


Do I what?

Hang on...


You....You need to know if I live with someone who works at the hospital? Or if a relative ever has?


I know there are policies regarding relatives working together. But again, this is one of the first questions on the application. And again, there are a hundred reasons that I wouldn't want to answer this. Or simply wouldn't know how to answer. Like, if I'm in the process of getting divorced from my spouse and my step-son works there but he's about to quit. Plus he works in a completely different department then which I'm applying.


When we ask applicants questions like this, the answer can be complicated. Or, more importantly, the applicant can feel like it's complicated.


And this, my friends, is how we get abandoned applications. Poof. Gone. The candidate was interested and we blew it.


 

Steps 4-7:

Spoiler- Step 4 had four separate steps (which is what made the process 12 steps instead of 8). It's the part where I had to upload a resume and then still go through and fill out or correct all the details and other god-forsaken things that prevent organizations from getting applicants.


Ah the wonderful part where I upload my resume. I prepared a resume in order to apply for jobs, so it makes sense that I would upload it. And let me tell you, it sure is easier than entering each detail like the name of the company, dates, responsibilities, reason for leaving for every single job. Not to mention the education details.


Yes I'm glad I can simply upload my resume in 2023.


Ok it's uploaded! On to the next steps!

I click continue.

hmm

Can't continue...


It's....no, wait, no....NO!!! I uploaded my resume and now I still have to enter details for all previous employment and education.


Actually it's not that bad.

Some of the info from my resume populated to fill out these fields, so it's not that bad after all.


Never mind. My resume was parsed into the fields but most of it is wrong. Like the dates for my most recent position are showing up under the position I had 5 years ago. Fiddlesticks.


If I was a real candidate I would have been gone 10 minutes ago.


 


Steps 8 & 9.

The next steps are the disability disclosure forms. Options include but are not limited to: Intellectual disability, major depression, and IBS. This might be an unpopular opinion, but I think it's best to lead any introduction by talking about medical issues. (If you have a sarcasm meter, it should be off the charts).




Remember, this is supposed to be the very first part of the hiring process. I know....I know, I know, I know we have to ask about disability and whether a candidate can perform the functions of the job.



Why on earth would anyone expect candidates to disclose this to someone they’ve never met with no idea who is looking at it? Wouldn’t it be easier to ask candidates this after we’re a little further in the process. Like, maybe after TALKING TO THEM for 10 minutes





 

Steps 10-12.

The overall theme continues.


I probably didn't need 5 separate posts to get this point across. However, I needed to be specific about the issues that prevent a candidate from applying or finishing an application.


Employers: Should you really have an expectation that the candidate disclose SO MUCH information before they even know if they'll get to speak to a recruiter or manager?


I think it's asking too much. The dismal number of applicants speaks for itself.


The final thing about doing this application that made me laugh was the last few questions. After 25 minutes of answering questions about my depression and IBS; agreeing that it's ok to tell anyone you want that I applied; sharing every detail about where I've worked, and then having to correct it because the resume parsing ain't workin'; and explaining complicated situations with relatives who once worked there....


I finally get to this question....


Are you a Registered Nurse? I laughed out loud. No, I am not.


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