from the desk of... candidate 1


In one of my previous post I wrote about professional courtesy and how I would appreciate more correspondence from employers about my status as a candidate. Many readers connected with this post and several commented, echoing my sentiments. Well, now the pendulum has swung in the other direction and a potential employer has over communicated with me.

I couldn’t believe this happened, but yesterday one of the schools to which I applied sent me the same “Dear Candidate” email indicating that I would not be moving on in their selection process. This was the second time the email was sent to me. I was pissed. I mean it really stung the first time, because the school was one of my top choices for location and job type. And the second time it was a huge reminder that I am not “good enough” for them.

Clearly, it was not intentional. And I am sure there was a simple error behind the scenes that caused this to happen. But this is a cardinal sin as it relates to managing a hiring process. PLEASE send the right emails to the right people, and only send them once.

When I first shared with a friend that I would not be moving on in this school’s process, they suggested that it wasn’t meant to be and it was possibly a good thing. I sensed they knew more about the institution than I did. Well, being told “no” a second time confirmed for me what my friend suggested. While it is a small error, I am not sure I want to work at a place that is unable to effectively manage their hiring process.

Largely, the take-away is that there is A LOT going on with every institution that is seeking to hire new employees. Seemingly, some places have a system that works like a well-oiled machine and other places are disorganized and out of sync with the needs of candidates. Given our profession’s emphasis on research and our access to information, it may be beneficial to benchmark the best hiring practices and procedures of a college or university. Surely, there is plenty to learn and some schools may evolve with better systems.

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