The job of applying for jobs

Sunday September 12 2021
life09pix

Author, Stella Riunga Rop.

By Stella Riunga Rop

Brethren, if any of you are in the season of applying for jobs, please receive my condolences. There is so much about the job application process that feels like being in a terrible relationship.

First of all, the employer wants to know everything about you before you know anything about them. The worst are the job adverts where the employer hides their identity so you apply blindly, not knowing if you are applying to work for the devil himself. 

And then there are the long, elaborate forms to fill in. In chronological order, you are supposed to list every place you’ve ever worked at (even your Uncle Kisanga’s kiosk) and also all the institutions where you’ve studied. Some are so petty as to require you to fill in the date you started employment. Ha ha ha! Are there any of us walking around with a journal where start and end dates of employment are jotted down? I’d really like to know!

Second, having spent hours filling in complicated forms, there is no response once the form is sent. Oh sure, there’s usually an auto-generated response to say that your application has been received, but that’s about it. Months and years will go by and you will never hear from the employer again, not even the ones that made you spend unreasonable amounts of money photocopying documents to send as hard copies. It would be nice to get a response like ‘Dear Candidate, we regret to inform you that the position you applied for has been filled. We wish you all the best in your future endeavours.’ 

Lastly, I really do feel that interviewees should be compensated for the time and money spent getting to and doing interviews. Most places won’t even offer you a cup of tea! By the way this is a really good way to get to know what to expect from your future employer. If they can’t spare a few shillings to get you a cup of tea and some biscuits, forget ever asking for a pay raise there.

Dear employers, please remember that we need the jobs but you need us too!

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