A girl, a degree, and a muddled job market

Today I’ve had my first interview in three months- minus one nightmare of a job I was offered doing door-to-door sales. Granted this wasn’t really for a “job-job”  but for a staffing agency.

I realized while talking to the nice lady who was going to be the bridge between me and a paycheck, that I missed talking to people face to face. I’ve been job hunting now for so long and yet no one has called me in, even just to speak with me. What happened to that part of finding the right candidates?

It used to be that the resume opened the door and the interview got you the job. Despite what monster.com and other expensive resume writing companies want you to believe, you can only “spruce up” a resume so much, the rest is up to fate, luck, or a rich uncle. But what happens today are these huge hiring databases where you resume is uploaded analyzed using an algorithm, and set aside.

Sending out resumes online is like throwing stones down a bottomless well. It seems like you never know if they hit ground or not.

For all I know, the majority of the dozens and dozens of resumes and online applications I have sent out over the last six months haven’t even been seen by human eyes. The fast and easy processing system has cut out he most important part of finding a job, personal interaction.

 I do not have experience in my field, but I have internships, references, and life-experience from my few years off the grid after highschool (off the grid refering to my home town, where I worked and drank more than I should have at 19). The problem is, the databases almost always work against the recent graduate, because those “key” words someone punched into the computer may not come up.

Now the age old complaint from college graduates is, “how am I supposed to get experience if no one will give me the chance?” the answer, give up.

Just kidding, but recently I decided that things were not falling into place the way I had imagined before moving to Washington four months ago. Obviously I was not only being overly optimistic but pretty laissez faire towards the reality of what today’s job market entails. I did everything the career counselors, job search websites, and old-schoolers told me to do, but I wasn’t as worried as I should have been. I thought everything would just work out.

So, here’s where I’m at today: I got a job at a staffing agency where I’m set up to have an interview on Monday for a job that has nothing to do with my degree or even the fact that I possess a diploma at all. Despite this eeking feeling in my gut that I’m giving up on “my dream” (which, let’s be honest, that’s been vague since the beginning), I am actually very excited to be sitting down and having a real interview, where a person is going to come to the decision that they want me on their team, or not, just by a simple conversation.

I don’t know where this job could go, nothing about really sparks my drive, but you never know. I’ve heard enough success stories to know that life surprises people in their path, and can come up when they least expect it.

So here’s to moving forward, to living life, and to literally be working for a paycheck instead of waiting to win the lottery.

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