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Are Job Candidates Being Mislead?

I’ve been actively working with several career-minded clients looking for jobs. It’s all entry level positions they’re looking for, something they can do as they complete their studies and get back on their feet. It’s been a tough time for them, as well as myself. Regardless of the optimism we’re hearing from recent jobs and economics reports, the reality for many job candidates is just the opposite.

There could be several factors playing into this contradiction, such as what industry is being focused on, the client’s skill set, or maybe the monthly reports released to the public are just off. These days, it’s taking career-focused candidates much more time to find a job to their liking, one that will lead them to the next step in the career path they’re pursuing. When they do finally accept an offer, they’re having to deal with shady offerings where the job requirements change, or a lot of the incentives that were initially offered are immediately retracted once the position is accepted.

It’s tough to tell whether employers are pulling a fast one on new recruits or maybe they’re unaware of their recruiting team’s hiring practices, but misleading job candidates is becoming second nature lately.

During my career coaching sessions, when all is said and done, and a client has decided to turn down a job immediately after accepting it, I take the time to try and uncover what went wrong. Was it a miscommunication between the job candidate and the recruiter? Did something change between the time the position was offered and later occupied? Or is there just some shadiness happening at the expense of the employee? The client and I discuss these various scenarios and many times it turns out there was no lack of communication. The recruiter blatantly left out some information during the interview and document processing cycle that was never made privy to the client.

As solution-oriented as I am,  the coaching session immediately turns to learning to evaluate a company’s culture and worth through an online search before a job proposal is expected. We also discuss questions the client can pose at the end of the interview to get a better sense of whether the recruiters forgot to mention a major change in the job posting or whether the candidates are being lured insincerely.

The fact is, it’s really hard to tell even after all this preparation, so the only alternative left for the client is to walk out of the job as fast as they had accepted it. Which is odd that companies may continue taking this turnover risk since the hiring process is one of the most expensive costs companies incur.

Somewhere along the line, something has got to give. Either the job candidates will end up accepting a situation that’s emotionally and physically harmful to their health, or companies will continue to absorb the high cost of recruiting. I’d hate to know that somewhere down the line the latter wins, because it’s plainly clear through decades of research what happens when workers are disengaged and unhappy at their workplace.

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