Friday, October 9, 2009

Resume and Interview Blunders

I receive at least five resumes every week seeking jobs and placement for internship. However, finding one good candidate among them is the most difficult task. Increasingly, I feel graduates these days have the slightest idea about resume writing and applying for a job.

These are some of the things that get to my nerve when reading their emails:

1. Almost all emails are written using SMS lingo with no proper salutations. You can hardly find one full sentence.

2. Some take the liberty to write on behalf of their fianc├ęs and friends. I interpret it as the person is not serious and takes no initiative in looking for a job.

3. Hardly any candidate sends a cover letter. It is difficult to judge a person with just all those bullet points. Whoever told these graduates that cover letter is a thing of the past.

4. Most don’t do their homework before preparing their resumes. I had an application from a top student from a local university who said his skills in laboratory techniques and equipments will help him to serve MABIC well. Didn’t he check MABIC website before sending the application? We don’t do research!

5. Once I called a candidate to fix an interview appointment. Two days before the interview, she called to say she will not be able to make it. And guess what the reason is: she has to meet her friend! She asked for another appointment and obviously I did not entertain that request.

6. There was another time when I called a candidate who has sent his application to MABIC to fix an appointment and the conversation went like this:

MABIC: Hello.

Candidate: Ah?

MABIC: Good morning. Is the XXXX?

Candidate: Ah.

MABIC: I am calling from MABIC and I received your application for the position of XXXX.
Candidate: Ah.

MABIC: Are you still interested in the position?

Candidate: Ahhhhh..... Taklah kot... tapi.... (ahhhhh.... maybe not.... but....)

MABIC: Oh, it is okay. Thank you.

His telephone etiquette simply beats me. I remember when I was applying for jobs, every phone call is attended to with full of anticipation, thinking it could be from one of my potential employers.

7. Finally need I say the level of the graduates’ English proficiency? You can hardly find someone who can write and speak well in the language. The standard of English among graduates really worries me.

These are just a few points. I have yet to discuss their general knowledge, attitude towards work, knowledge on current issues, etc. Where are we leading to? What is wrong with our education system? I rest my case.

By Mahaletchumy Arujanan


Anonymous said...

This rather frustrating experience is not peculiar to your esteemed establishment. In the sectors which I work in, my colleagues and I feel similar pain having to suffer unprepared interviewees wasting the precious time of the interviewer. Perhaps the aim of the eventual emergence of a Nobel Laureate by 2020 should precede by nurturing of serious researchers who are initiated, self-motivated and persistent. In passing, it is interesting to note that most Nobel-awarding work, except experimental ones, do not require massive funding. Instead, their birth require a lot of pain-staking thought and consideration. If scientific enthusiast who apply for a job do not take their job seriously, they are unlikely to be self-motivated enough to ask serious questions and follow through with similar rigor, challenging their thoughts as their work evolve.
Unless there is a fundamental attitude change, we are unlikely to have any substantial hope of growing a cluster of domestic scientists who do serious hard sciences that can gain international recognition.

Anonymous said...

An insightful post on "Resume and Interview Blunders".
An important point is a resume and cover letters are the marketing tools that helps the candidate to land in a perfect position. So it’s better to hire a professional service. One such specialized service is

Peter - How to write a professional cover letter and executive resume.

Danial Ikhwan Jaafar said...

wow..insightful indeed..
i must take note of every point made here. but i must say,in my case my academic result is not that appealing