I get it... we're information starved. Most cities in the US have unemployment rates north of 10% and employers think that if they have a ton of info they'll hire the right person. However, applying for jobs has gotten rather absurd.
I've been looking for something new lately and it's daunting just how lengthy some application processes are, even for entry-level positions.
- I interviewed 4 times with a company for a trade show coordinator. An entry-level position. The interview included personality studies and panel discussion. It was a small company with maybe 4 people in the marketing department. So whoever got the job would NOT have been a long-term solution simply because there was no room for them to advance.
- I applied for a basic graphic design job that required you provide 10 years of employment history! For me that'd include crummy part-time jobs I held in high school.
- Virtually every company wants the name of your previous manager along with their phone #. These are the same companies that will not give employment references for their own ex-employees.
- I've applied for numerous project management gigs where the recruiter/interviewer wanted detailed information regarding previous projects I've overseen. They seem surprised/offended when you explain that many of the details they ask for are proprietary/confidential.
All this time/effort and still, the majority of hiring decisions are based on gut feeling. Some of my favorite companies have something along the lines of a place to submit your resume/cover letter and then a question or two asking what you know about the company and why you want to work there. I think you can learn a ton more about a candidate from those two questions than anything else.
Sorry, had to vent my frustration somewhere.