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(PBS)   America's human resources system is "fundamentally broken" despite the fact it is performing wonderfully at making sure you never get a decent job   (pbs.org ) divider line 81
    More: Scary, Ask the Headhunter, job boards, contrarians, Seth Godin, CareerBuilder  
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2993 clicks; posted to Business » on 27 Aug 2013 at 2:30 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-08-27 02:40:03 PM  
Maybe the first sign it was broken was the existence of "headhunters."
 
2013-08-27 02:40:54 PM  
"On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time.   They don't predict anything."

No shiat.
 
2013-08-27 02:45:45 PM  
3 jobs in the past 3 years, now at a long-term stable-ish position.  Never had any luck with resume filters and online applications because my major (Music Performance) means that I apparently don't know what computers are and am a pot-smoking hippie.

The only postings I have any success with are where there is a person with a name, phone number, and company email (not a 3rd party recruiter or staffing agency) where I can send a unique cover letter and tailored resume with a follow up phone call.  The two JumboMegaCorps in town that only hire through their Taleo (or similar) tool bemoan the lack of talent in the region, but it is just that their HR drones are lazy and don't have the latitude to think.
 
2013-08-27 02:46:59 PM  
On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time. They don't predict anything.

Bullshiat. They predict with with a very high level of confidence that the person asking the question is a complete moron.
 
2013-08-27 02:47:12 PM  
No shiat! It's easy to identify the people at my company who are bad at their job. Even in the HR department. I work in the Finance field and I work with a lot of admins who are full of themselves. The worst one I've met is an older admin who's a busybody and just bossy to everyone. Then she spends time on the phone talking smack about her co-workers. Terrible hire.
 
2013-08-27 02:47:24 PM  

tricycleracer: "On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time.   They don't predict anything."

No shiat.


I think Google was attempting to hire only smart people, but at some point it became a game of who can out geek who.
 
2013-08-27 02:48:48 PM  
In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss
 
2013-08-27 02:49:39 PM  
The problem with HR systems is that the entire HR division is just a dumping ground for people who had no better idea what they wanted to do with their lives.

"Gee, i have no idea what i want to do with my life and only have a generic degree,  but i know how to use outlook and excel. I guess i can apply for that HR job"

Nobody wants to be in HR. You just kinda drift there.


And the overuse of keyword hunting is completely true. The job postings these days just have and endless list of requirements, like being proficient in all of twenty software packages. In my field, i see postings asking for CAD, Revit, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, SketchUp, Rhino, and 3Dmax, and thats all for one job. First, if you need that many software programs to get your work done, you aren't being very efficient, and wasting a lot of money on seat licences. Second, this is for a mid-level position. I really doubt they want someone for that pay rate to just sit there all day and grind out graphics. Thats what interns are for.
 
2013-08-27 02:49:53 PM  
Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.
 
2013-08-27 02:50:55 PM  

mcreadyblue: tricycleracer: "On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time.   They don't predict anything."

No shiat.

I think Google was attempting to hire only smart people, but at some point it became a game of who can out geek who.


I guess if you're hiring Stanford grads with zero real world experience and you yourself are an introvert with no social skills, fantasy trivia questions are your crutch.
 
2013-08-27 02:52:23 PM  

DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss


Well, when "Personnel" (as in, staff are people) became "Human Resources" (as in, staff is equipment and raw materials) is when the game was up.
 
2013-08-27 02:54:30 PM  

MmmCrime: Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.


I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"
 
2013-08-27 02:57:58 PM  
Marketing guru Seth Godin once said, "Don't find customers for your products; find products for your customers."

Is this why TLC stopped being The Learning Channel?
 
2013-08-27 02:58:10 PM  
...and they be hatin' too!
 
2013-08-27 02:58:29 PM  
HR is broken because they hire a bunch of farking idiots who can't do anything for HR positions.

I remember sitting through sexual harassment training a few years ago - they were trying to tell us not to do it, not how to do it properly - just thinking this chick teaching the class is kind of hot.

She was actually the most intelligent person in the HR department and they laid her off.
 
2013-08-27 02:58:35 PM  

LemSkroob: MmmCrime: Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.

I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"


5 years of experience administering SharePoint 2013.
 
2013-08-27 02:59:02 PM  

LemSkroob: MmmCrime: Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.

I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"


1) Apply and get rejected
2) Sue for false advertisement (It did say "entry level")
3) Profit!
 
2013-08-27 02:59:34 PM  

LemSkroob: MmmCrime: Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.

I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"


Let me guess, either a lead draftsman or a takeoff estimator.  Must be able to blend a hybrid of AutoCAD and Revit together without making good use of either one, answer phones, handle 27 RFIs per day, review submittals and all for the high wage of $30K a year salary.  Must be willing to work 60 hours a week.
 
2013-08-27 03:04:40 PM  

LemSkroob: DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss

Well, when "Personnel" (as in, staff are people) became "Human Resources" (as in, staff is equipment and raw materials) is when the game was up.


Agreed and agreed. Discussion over?

/pretty simple stuff, HR is pointless nowadays
 
2013-08-27 03:10:46 PM  

Kyosuke: Maybe the first sign it was broken was the existence of "headhunters."


Not true.

I have used headhunters to find talent. I had one I worked with for years and he was AWESOME at bringing me good candidates (and NOT bringing me bad ones).

Sure, some of them just play "match the buzzword", but some of them are very helpful.
 
2013-08-27 03:17:58 PM  

DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss


Clint Eastwood nailed it The Enforcer


i1.ytimg.com
Personnel!?!? That's for assh*les!



/Of course, that was before he went senile and started arguing with empty chairs
 
2013-08-27 03:20:48 PM  

LemSkroob: MmmCrime: Someone needs to inform HR everywhere that if your job description states: "Entry level" the following sentence can't be "3-5 years experience required.

I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"


My favorites are the ones that require more experience than actually possible, ie.

Must have 14 years Android development experience

 
2013-08-27 03:24:04 PM  

LemSkroob: I've seen ones along the lines of "4-6 years of experience required, with 7-10 years being in XYZ-field"


and XYZ is a tech that's only existed for 2 years.
 
2013-08-27 03:28:35 PM  

SpectroBoy: Kyosuke: Maybe the first sign it was broken was the existence of "headhunters."

Not true.

I have used headhunters to find talent. I had one I worked with for years and he was AWESOME at bringing me good candidates (and NOT bringing me bad ones).

Sure, some of them just play "match the buzzword", but some of them are very helpful.


I think he was saying that if HR was actually doing their job - then headhunters would not be necessary.  Personally I don't think its the role of HR to actually find people.  But I seem to be in the minority on that.
 
2013-08-27 03:34:48 PM  

SpectroBoy: Must have 14 years Android development experience


They're still sort of worth applying for sometimes.

dilbert.com
 
2013-08-27 03:36:03 PM  
My favorite one from the other side was a guy whose resume said he was a 'Windows XP expert'.  It had been released for a week when I interviewed him.  The resume had probably been bouncing around HR for weeks.

But yeah, HR sucks, but your resume sucks too.

One page (maybe two if you are a rock star), white paper, nothing fancy, no typos.

Want to really get hired?  Put one or both of these lines under your jobs "Made the company $XXX by doing YYYY" or "Saved the company $ZZZZ by doing VVVVV"
 
2013-08-27 03:36:56 PM  
If you talk to folks in HR they might tell you a story similar to this one.

HR: "This candidate meets most of your criteria and shows real potential."
Manager: "Well they look alright but I don't want to train them. Is there anyone else? Anyone who could just pick up the work and go?"
HR: "They are very capable, I don't think they will need much assistance."
Manager: "Look, I don't have time to train anyone. My staff and I are working ourselves to death."

//Have a friend in HR
//The story ends with the candidate being rejected and the job announcement being pulled.
 
2013-08-27 03:45:22 PM  

togaman2k: 3 jobs in the past 3 years, now at a long-term stable-ish position.  Never had any luck with resume filters and online applications because my major (Music Performance) means that I apparently don't know what computers are and am a pot-smoking hippie.

The only postings I have any success with are where there is a person with a name, phone number, and company email (not a 3rd party recruiter or staffing agency) where I can send a unique cover letter and tailored resume with a follow up phone call.  The two JumboMegaCorps in town that only hire through their Taleo (or similar) tool bemoan the lack of talent in the region, but it is just that their HR drones are lazy and don't have the latitude to think.


Sounds like how MN's state HR website filters candidates. 10 years in IT working multiple OSes and platforms and as I was a Communication and Media Studies major I can barely check email on my own according to them, meanwhile all the CompSci people I went to college with are programmers and would never touch the hardware and end user support I excel at (which was the nature of the positions I was applying for with the state of MN).
 
2013-08-27 03:48:20 PM  
Don't find people for your jobs; create jobs for talented people

Oh for Fark's sake.  Yes, I try to move people where they are talented and will succeed best.  But I have functions to fill in the organization.  If I'm hiring a Circulation Clerk and you apply for that with 5 years experience in Accounting, I'm not going to create an accounting job for you.  I don't need an accountant.  I need a Circ Clerk.

I love platitudinous bullshiat HR advice.
 
2013-08-27 03:56:02 PM  
"Find the most talented people in your field".

Sure, what do you do for the other 99% of the positions your company needs filled?

More bad HR advice.
 
2013-08-27 04:10:15 PM  

LemSkroob: DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss

Well, when "Personnel" (as in, staff are people) became "Human Resources" (as in, staff is equipment and raw materials) is when the game was up.


Yep, you are now a resource, not a person.

I was arguing with a local HR head recently about their desire to have a BS in Computer Science requirement for a Lead system admin position.  Now, I have a BS in CS so I felt more than qualified to point out to him that the overlap between an accredited CS program and the skills needed to be a successful Sysadmin are essentially zero.  It's as if you required a degree in metallurgy for a position changing the oil in trucks.

Nonetheless, they tossed out the CV from the guy who had 20 years experience, MCSEs from NT3.5 to 2012 and ITIL certification and Unix experience  because he'd never graduated college.
 
2013-08-27 04:17:19 PM  

skozlaw: On the hiring side, we found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time. They don't predict anything.

Bullshiat. They predict with with a very high level of confidence that the person asking the question is a complete moron.


That's not a prediction, that's a diagnosis.
 
2013-08-27 04:18:44 PM  
 Human Resource  ... I think that name pretty well sums up the concept of how employees are viewed..
 
2013-08-27 04:21:40 PM  

gingerjet: I think he was saying that if HR was actually doing their job - then headhunters would not be necessary. Personally I don't think its the role of HR to actually find people. But I seem to be in the minority on that.


From what I can tell, HR's role is to schedule me for Diversity Training every time I complement a coworker's breasts.
 
2013-08-27 04:30:17 PM  

Mr. Eugenides: LemSkroob: DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss

Well, when "Personnel" (as in, staff are people) became "Human Resources" (as in, staff is equipment and raw materials) is when the game was up.

Yep, you are now a resource, not a person.

I was arguing with a local HR head recently about their desire to have a BS in Computer Science requirement for a Lead system admin position.  Now, I have a BS in CS so I felt more than qualified to point out to him that the overlap between an accredited CS program and the skills needed to be a successful Sysadmin are essentially zero.  It's as if you required a degree in metallurgy for a position changing the oil in trucks.

Nonetheless, they tossed out the CV from the guy who had 20 years experience, MCSEs from NT3.5 to 2012 and ITIL certification and Unix experience  because he'd never graduated college.


I've had a similar argument with HR in NY tech firms regarding non-technical jobs, such as finance.

four firms at a recent career fair were looking for a "top-tier" MBA graduate that was a financial analyst before the MBA, and want to continue being a financial analyst (not, you know, advance into management or something)

Beyond the issue that those top-tier MBA grads are going to Google/Amazon/management consulting, not your tiny startup for ~$70k/yr in NYC.......each firm indicated that I was the first person at the event to even ask about those positions, and that they were struggling to fill them. Gee, I wonder why?
 
2013-08-27 04:56:52 PM  

Smeggy Smurf: Let me guess, either a lead draftsman or a takeoff estimator. Must be able to blend a hybrid of AutoCAD and Revit together without making good use of either one, answer phones, handle 27 RFIs per day, review submittals and all for the high wage of $30K a year salary.  Must be willing to work 60 hours a week.



Project Architect / Intermediate Architect / Architect II / Asst. Project Manager / Job Captain / etc.

I have to say the clarity of job descriptions in this industry between one firm and another is just oh so helpful!
 
2013-08-27 05:02:27 PM  

LemSkroob: The problem with HR systems is that the entire HR division is just a dumping ground for people who had no better idea what they wanted to do with their lives.

"Gee, i have no idea what i want to do with my life and only have a generic degree,  but i know how to use outlook and excel. I guess i can apply for that HR job"

Nobody wants to be in HR. You just kinda drift there.


And the overuse of keyword hunting is completely true. The job postings these days just have and endless list of requirements, like being proficient in all of twenty software packages. In my field, i see postings asking for CAD, Revit, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, SketchUp, Rhino, and 3Dmax, and thats all for one job. First, if you need that many software programs to get your work done, you aren't being very efficient, and wasting a lot of money on seat licences. Second, this is for a mid-level position. I really doubt they want someone for that pay rate to just sit there all day and grind out graphics. Thats what interns are for.


The HR Dept at my company is fully staffed by employees with college degrees in HR.
 
2013-08-27 05:04:04 PM  
It's not the HR system, it's the HR "professionals".

Honestly, between HR and Sourcing/Procurement...those are the two Corporate departments where common sense, logic and reason go to die.
 
2013-08-27 05:17:44 PM  
i39.tinypic.com
 
2013-08-27 05:19:22 PM  
i44.tinypic.com
 
2013-08-27 05:22:38 PM  
i41.tinypic.com
 
2013-08-27 05:26:10 PM  
In my interview with HR -
Me: I want the opportunity to advance.
HR lady: I don't want to have someone moving around a lot because then I would have to replace that position.
 
2013-08-27 05:27:13 PM  
Yep. How about the really cool thing, where if you were arrested you can't ever get a job again, because no one in HR bothers to read through to see "charges dismissed."
 
2013-08-27 05:52:54 PM  

LemSkroob: DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss

Well, when "Personnel" (as in, staff are people) became "Human Resources" (as in, staff is equipment and raw materials) is when the game was up.


I worked for a company that renamed HR to "Human Capital Management".

That was an excruciating lesson on "cues to update the resume and GTFO"
 
2013-08-27 06:35:24 PM  

Mr. Eugenides: Nonetheless, they tossed out the CV from the guy who had 20 years experience, MCSEs from NT3.5 to 2012 and ITIL certification and Unix experience because he'd never graduated college.


Many people, once they've jumped through the hoops required to obtain a degree, latch onto having one as a sign of valuation, that without one you can't possibly be as good as someone who has one.
 
2013-08-27 08:04:44 PM  
I have no idea what the three people in our local HR department do since most every function has been farmed out to a vendor.  Payroll, benefits, recruiting, etc.  I don't even know why the performance evals have to run through them.  We already know corporate is only coughing up 3% this year.  The incentive programs are laughable and directed from corporate.  Everything us falls to us middle managers.  But yeah, hey, three of them to hand out 800 #s so employees can call an automated service to tell them to press 2 for Dental benefits.

Wait, once a week they set up for an all company meeting.  So basically, my HR department could be farmed out to part-time catering firm.  Maybe I'll submit that as a profit improvement suggestion.
 
2013-08-27 08:21:24 PM  

DrZiffle: In my experience, "human resources" is neither humane nor resourceful.

/discuss


IMHO Human Resources has only done a couple of things:

1) Accelerate degree inflation
2) Promulgate useless corporate policies
3) Waste everyone's time
 
2013-08-27 08:41:04 PM  

Soup4Bonnie: I have no idea what the three people in our local HR department do since most every function has been farmed out to a vendor.  Payroll, benefits, recruiting, etc.  I don't even know why the performance evals have to run through them.  We already know corporate is only coughing up 3% this year.  The incentive programs are laughable and directed from corporate.  Everything us falls to us middle managers.  But yeah, hey, three of them to hand out 800 #s so employees can call an automated service to tell them to press 2 for Dental benefits.

Wait, once a week they set up for an all company meeting.  So basically, my HR department could be farmed out to part-time catering firm.  Maybe I'll submit that as a profit improvement suggestion.


I work for a small family-owned company. Our H/R employee is a recently retired military guy and family friend of ownership. Honest, nice, hard-working guy, but limited workplace experience. Everything he does is exceptionally slow and methodical. Processing a 20-employee payroll is a complex bi-weekly adventure which requires significant participation from multiple employees 1/2 somehow takes close to 1/2 of his workweek. We ALSO pay an outside H/R vendor mid $$$$$ for H/R. I am convinced that H/R professionals, up to a point, reside somewhere near social media professionals in terms of actual 'expertise' and organizational value.

I believe strongly that a single talented compliance officer (tax, regulatory, accounting, etc) can more effectively manage most H/R responsibilities than a typical H/R department. Performance reviews are best handled by managers who are likely to be familiar with the work under evaluation. Some instances may require participation from two layers of management to introduce a 'neutral H/R' role, when necessary. As an added bonus, this breeds an environment where managers are accountable for knowing, following and enforcing the rules that pertain to their managerial scope.
 
2013-08-27 09:04:18 PM  

skozlaw: SpectroBoy: Must have 14 years Android development experience

They're still sort of worth applying for sometimes.

[640x196 from http://dilbert.com/dyn/str_strip/000000000/00000000/0000000/000000/100 00/8000/400/18434/18434.strip.gif image 640x196]


I kinda had an interview like that about two years ago... Firm called me up for an interview after finding my resume on-line.  We talked it out and I didn't really have any of the background they were looking for but the money seemed good and it might have even been an interesting job.  I even told the HR manager I spoke with that and she said, "That's fine... Your resume is amazing, we'd love to talk to you anyways."  I already had a job that I liked, but why not?

So I go in there to the interview and they start asking me a series of questions about my background and experience, when it was quickly becoming obvious that I was really not the guy they were looking for.  Finally the manager looks at me and asks, "So... Why did you apply with us?  Judging from your background, what made you come find us?"

"Sir... I didn't.  I never submitted an application... Before yesterday I had never even heard of your company.  Your HR manager called me out of the blue.  Honestly, I have no idea why you'd even want to talk to me, but she seemed pretty excited about it so here I am."

They were pretty pissed at their HR biatch and ended up going out for a beer and talked about fishing.

I don't really know where the hell I was going with that, but I'm a little drunk.

Good talk.
 
2013-08-27 09:04:53 PM  
FTA: Don't find people for your jobs; create jobs for talented people.

In today's America?

cache.ohinternet.com

This is the same B.S. advice I heard when I was going to school a few years ago. "You have to collect all that talent and hang on tight to it! You'll need all these talented Millenials on board and up to speed so they can take the reigns when the Boomers retire!"

A great recession, a jobless recovery and a noticable absence of retiree Boomers later, and the attitude towards hiring is: "You'll get nothing. You'll get nothing and you'll like it."


/Works in HR
//It isn't rocket science
///Many HR people seem to think it is
 
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