Anybody else looking for work and finding it kind of depressing?

(45 Posts)
AlexanderSkarsgardOhYes Wed 22-Aug-12 17:13:57

I've been looking hard for a new job for a couple of months and have had only one (disasterous) interview (for details of that for those who don't know see here). Just rang up to get feedback for a job I thought I hadn't got and, though it turns out they haven't shortlisted for it yet so I'm still in with a chance, the HR person mentioned that they've had 105 applications. For a part-time library assistant job! I'm starting to despair a little bit.

Feel free to come join in my grumble!

NewStartSameStory Wed 22-Aug-12 17:24:58

Shockingly depressing but i am not thinking about it. fed up of the whole process too.

AlexanderSkarsgardOhYes Wed 22-Aug-12 19:57:58

Yes, it gets a bit much, filling out your personal details on an application form for the umpteenth time.

Lonelylou Wed 22-Aug-12 20:02:53

My dad used to say the best jobs aren't advertised. Meaning we were best hawking ourselves round to employers and asking if there was anything that might be suitable. and I mean anything. Once we were in some kind of employment we could then apply for other stuff from a 'safer' seat.

AlexanderSkarsgardOhYes Wed 22-Aug-12 20:33:32

I'm in employment but my current job sucks!

Have you got jobs by making speculative applications, Lonelylou? I've read a few careers books that have recommended this but have never got a job this way personally or known anybody who has, which has made me wary of doing it.

Lonelylou Wed 22-Aug-12 20:42:32

I got jobs by telling people I was looking. I was contacted for an interview without even filling in a form for a enjoyable job if not fantastcaly paid. (this was a couple of years ago)

Let employees know you're looking; not just employers.

LillethTheCat Wed 22-Aug-12 20:51:54

yes me. Though I have to admit Ive not been looking as hard as I could have done during the holidays. But in Sept I am really going to go for it.

So far Ive had 4 interviews and I can't remember the amount Ive applied for and every feedback I have got from interviews is the same. I was really good and professional, but there was somebody who was just that little bit better. There was nothing I did wrong and that they employed the person they did because they could picture them in the team more than me. Wonder what that says about me.

Lonelylou Wed 22-Aug-12 21:09:05

How about sounding disappointed and asking if they would keep you on record for any future vacancies LTC? Especially if this particular vacancy doesn't work out for the successful candidate. That worked for me once.

NewStartSameStory Wed 22-Aug-12 21:09:51

it says nothing about you. What is says to me is the fact that there are a lot of very well qualified and experienced people out there looking atm.

Capabilitymom Wed 22-Aug-12 23:44:28

Totally agree with NewStartSameStory. The fact you haven't been successful is no reflection on you - or me cos I'm in the same situation!
Realistically there are too many folk chasing too few vacancies .
But we have to stay positive and not let it dent our confidence. There is a job out there for us!

LillethTheCat Thu 23-Aug-12 09:59:06

Your right there is. Was feeling a bit fed up last night.

I'm going to start looking for Christmas work too. Even though I'm really trying to get back into the office, it will be something that will pay the bills for a few weeks and you never know where it may lead anyway. I've got retail experience, but the only thing I'm worried about is if I look for a Christmas job in a shop somewhere will that put off future potential employees in the offices? They will just look at my CV and see that my most recent work was retail so therefore will that be it?

higgle Tue 28-Aug-12 14:54:42

Lonelylou is right - I had a complete career change and retrain as a result of a bit of temporary work in a different sector when I was between jobs. On another occasion I went as a temp to be receptionist in a cardboard box factory and got offered a sales job while I was there ( well paid, company car etc. ) Once you have got a foot in the door most places would be far keener to exploit your skills than go through a full recruitment exercise to fill a post.

Pleiades45 Wed 29-Aug-12 10:47:39

I'm completely depressed by it.

I've been 'sort of' looking for the last year; I was in no rush as I still had DS3 doing half days but now he's going full time. I don't want to be sat home by myself.

I had 2 interviews last year, positive feedback with both. First seemed not to know what they wanted and I believe they were looking for the wrong thing. With the second they were discussing start dates and then decided to 'restructure'.

All summer I've been scouring the job sites and I've made my CV searchable. On one site it's had 81 viewings! People call me and tell me what a fantastic CV, how they wish they had more candidates like me, how versatile my CV is... and then nothing.

Twice now my CV has been put forward and I've not even made interview stage because the employer has chosen to go with a 'direct source'.

I've some prerequisites due to the children; my minimum salary is quite high because I need to cover childcare (3 DS) and this is all it will cover and also I don't want to be commuting into the local cities because it will mean leaving at 6.30 and getting home about 7.30 or 8pm.

I feel like I'm stuck in a black hole and can't get myself out. The fact that I've not worked in 7 years doesn't help.

I agree that if I can get a job of any sort for a year it will put me in a better position to progress my career. There are lots of people chasing the vacancies and this leads to people expecting you to tick all the boxes before they will consider you.

soontobedivorced Thu 30-Aug-12 02:24:58

Depressed here too. Have not worked for 9 years (apart from Saturday jobs) and I'm not even getting interviews despite matching the job specs and saying so and how in my cover letter and (I think) a good CV. Its really hard to keep the enthusiasm up. And pressure's on as now I'm a single mum also so no longer got a husband's salary to rely on. Its a complete nightmare.

volunteerexp Wed 19-Sep-12 10:56:08

Volunteering is also a very good way to boost your experience, your CV and your confidence. There are lots of opportunities locally from admin. to school governors to name a couple. You could do something you have done before or try something new. Alternatively, If you have business expertise to offer why not use it to help not-for-profit organisations in your area. To find out more in Buckinghamshire please visit for general volunteering and them move onto the Expert Volunteer page if you would like to offer your business skills.
If you live outside that county visit the Volunteer England website to see what's available near you.

TheCalmingManatee Wed 19-Sep-12 10:59:46

me - have been looking for TWO years sad had a couple of interviews but no job offer its horrible

madwomanintheattic Wed 19-Sep-12 18:06:39

18 months. Had a three month pt seasonal entry level job over the summer.

I have just called two recruiters and asked them honestly wtaf I was supposed to do. The first one was really nice, and said that she could see my cv had a lot of really interesting and valuable experience on it, but it wasn't quite enough for local opportunities (although I would be more than capable/ extremely proficient etc) - it would be a matter of her persuading employers that I was worth taking a gamble on.

The second guy was really not interested at all. I had sent them my cv last week to register as a job seeker through their agency. He didn't even bother to ask my name or look up my registration, just told me to look at the website and if I was interested in any of the positions to apply for them. Quite what he thinks I've been doing for the last 18 months is anyone's guess.

So, the first woman was at least interested and curious about my circumstances, and gave me some honest feedback. The second guy made me feel pretty much that if even the only freaking recruitment agency for 150kms isn't interested, I'm unlikely to be able to convince an employer.

I can't decide if I'm livid or exhausted.

I can't even get an entry level front desk job in a hotel, and I have over 20 years of customer service experience of varying sorts and levels. And there are at least ten such jobs advertised in the local rag every week. I have never even a call back for one of them.

I've had a couple of interviews for more senior level jobs. Great feedback, but they always go to people with direct experience of the situation involved. Everyone smiles and says do reapply, you were just unlucky this time as x had the experience we were looking for, but we have no doubt you could do the job and do it well.

We've been late paying our mortgage twice this year. I am slightly freaking out now.

madwomanintheattic Wed 19-Sep-12 21:49:50

Oh, and I've been a compulsive volunteer for years, including school governor twice. Believe me, it doesn't appear to have helped. <moan, whine>

GettinTrimmer Thu 20-Sep-12 17:33:03

Alex interesting you were told there were 105 applicants for p/t library job. I've had no luck with permanent library assistant applications. I have managed to get on their casual list, but in the past month have only been asked to work twice after being phoned up on the day and had to drop everything, get childcare for after school at very short notice. They won't book me in as they go to their people who have been casual staff with them for a long time and are experienced. Good luck to you though.

I feel your pain madwoman I'm fed up with volunteering, am secretary for the PTA, have done loads of volunteering for dc's school including reading stories to the whole class, school trips, reading, working with groups, etc, etc. For LSA jobs they can qualified teachers. I think I'm in with a chance of a school library job, but won't hold my breath as they can get highly qualified people. I was a dinner lady and trained a very experienced lady to do my job who had been teaching in France hmm

It's good to have a moan!!!!

Carry on applying everyone, keep going....

madwomanintheattic Thu 20-Sep-12 18:26:53

Hmm. I'm currently on two boards for not for profits (one as president, one as treasurer, where I've had to teach myself payroll and deal with a non-compliance investigation going back two years before I took over, as well as successfully bid for government grants - and I run a guide unit.)

I'm pretty gutted about the recruitment agency, tbh. They are literally the only ones in town, and I had been putting off calling them as a last resort (sort of thinking they would be the ones that could help if all else failed). And they were just so far beyond crap, and not even remotely interested, that it was like seeing my last hope dashed! I'm not being quite so melodramatic today. grin

Today is local rag day though. I spied an interesting looking opportunity last night that will be coming out in the paper today(they update one online version overnight, with full info in the paper version) closing date 1st Oct. I could definitely do it, and they ought to at least short list me with my experience... So I need to tailor the old cv again. It's coincidentally the best paid job I have seen advertised in the paper for a whole year, so you can bet there will be a raft of applicants.

There were 48 applicants with direct experience who applied for the last non-entry level job I went for (and I don't class myself as one of those - I had relevant experience, but not direct). I'm finding it really damned weird that you need a couple of years of experience for entry level jobs here, though. How on earth do you get a job as a school leaver? Bizarre.

I'm beginning to wonder if I need to just turn up at these places and introduce myself. I'm suspecting that on paper I look like a middle aged has been, when they are looking for a 25yo go-getter.

It's also such a small place that I'm feeling a bit goldfish bowl bound... And wondering if I need to smarten up my non-interview act grin.

madwomanintheattic Sun 30-Sep-12 03:20:06

Well, that'll be over a week since I last posted, about twenty more applications sent out (all cv tailored, all cover letters reflecting sincere interest in position and employer). I'm going wider. I'm now applying for jobs I have absolutely no experience in, with letters begging suggesting flexibility and general aptitude, as well as two jobs I have done but didn't really want to do again, but they are rare as hen's teeth and coincidentally came up out of the blue.

Quite a few closing dates coming up this week though, so let's see if I get short listed or called for an interview anywhere.

I am slightly concerned that paying my mortgage late twice this year might automatically rule me out of the two jobs I have applied for that I have actually done, though. <sigh> which would be an absolute pisser, as that really would be case of last resort having the door slammed shut. Hard.

How's everyone else doing?

Mosman Mon 01-Oct-12 13:45:22

There is no point in applying for jobs you have no experience in. A waste of everyone's time. Are you on LinkedIn ? I get two contacts a week from that site asking me if I'm looking and DH got his first proper job in 4 years through it.

madwomanintheattic Mon 01-Oct-12 14:56:09

Aye. You don't live in the mountains miles from anywhere, Mosman. It's a three hour round commute to the city (dh does it every day, even in winter when it's below -20 with blizzards if the highway is open) and I would stand a much better chance of getting a job in the city, it's true. But with both of us driving for 3 hours a day in the dark, and concomitant fuel expense, no one would be around to get the kids out of bed, fed, and to school. The youngest is 9 with cerebral palsy, and facilities for her are great here. Childcare for three kids before school for two hours from 6am isn't really a possibility.

We aren't against moving per se, we have moved every year or two for the last twenty years, but have now chosen to live here out of choice - the rest have been dictated by work. Even if we wanted to move to the city, we couldn't. We live in a 2 bed condo with a basement room. I have three (quite large) children and two dogs. There are about 200 similar properties empty on the market, and no buyers. We bought at the height of the house sales, the biggest property we could afford. <shrugs>

All linked-in would do is confirm that there are indeed more jobs available an hour and a half away. <shrugs> I know that already. Dh uses linked-in a lot, and has a huge network - at one point he was seriously considering setting up a recruitment consultancy on the side, as he has successfully introduced about thirty people to their new jobs, just by knowing which of his business contacts are looking, and knowing which of his previous colleagues fit the criteria. For people job hunting in urban areas it's a great tool. For people job hunting in large rural communities with a single industry emphasis, not so much. (And I did laugh a bit at the two contacts thing, you must be in quite a small industry!)

I have a large amount of transferable skills that mean I could do most of the jobs here. But I am in competition with people who have direct experience (and are twenty years younger). All I need is one employer to recognize that my skills are transferable, even if I don't have any direct experience, and then I'm cooking on gas. Whether that happens or not is out of my hands, but I have no choice but to keep on trying.

But, y'know. Thanks for suggesting I'm wasting everyone's time. I should just, what, give up?

Genuinely happy to take constructive suggestions though. Linked-in isn't a go-er here.

Mosman Mon 01-Oct-12 15:11:11

You should move but I guess you know that already. Employers don't have to take risks with transferable skills that you may or may not have right now, too many with the exact skill set to choose from.
Or start your own business.

madwomanintheattic Mon 01-Oct-12 15:38:44

We can't move because of the house issue (believe me, with 5 of us in a 2 bed, I'd love to) but we can't afford to unless I get a job. grin catch 22. This mortgage was predicated on us both working ft. grin with only dh in work, we'd struggle to qualify for the mortgage we have now, let alone move to a house built for a five person family, in or out of the city! grin

We've considered the start-up. There doesn't seem to be an obvious niche, tbh. Not here, anyway, but I'm always open to ideas. Must look out xenia's thread!

madwomanintheattic Mon 01-Oct-12 15:42:16

<it isn't a risk, really. But they don't know that. grin in actuality, I'm a far better option than the transient work force that is being recruited in my stead - but they are cheaper, and will probably be leaving within the year, so no necessity to pay wage increments or keep staff that you don't get on with. It's a low risk strategy. As an employer, I'd be wanting someone who was going to stay around and build corporate knowledge, but they cost more. I'm not disagreeing that as a short term and financial route, it has merit. It's no good for me though! grin>

madwomanintheattic Tue 02-Oct-12 19:38:33

So, I have two interviews on Thursday. For identikit jobs, doing what I did ten years ago at entry level because we lived miles from anywhere. <deja vu>

I noticed a large local employer had readvertised a job that I had applied for, (I didn't get an acknowledgement, let alone a no thanks lol) so I called the manager and explained that I realized I had been unsuccessful, but wondered if he would be able to offer any advice to someone seeking an entry level job in the industry. He said no one would employ me, even for an entry level job. grin so, that's good to know.

So I turned up at the equivalent of the job centre with my résumé and asked the receptionist how in heck you get a job in this here town, and she skimmed it, said it was perfect, and booked me an appointment with the counsellor tomorrow, who might have some contacts. Having utterly failed myself, I've turned myself in to the Govt. grin

Beccatheboo Fri 05-Oct-12 13:13:32

How are things going? Any joy?

I have just posted in Employment Issues. I haven't applied for shedloads of jobs, but the few I have, I haven't even secured an interview. Feeling very down and wondered if any of you had good news to report?!

Reading GettinTrimmer's post has actually made me even more depressed (but reiterated what I thought), that volunteering doesn't count for anything :-(

madwomanintheattic Fri 05-Oct-12 14:29:06

I had my two interviews yesterday. Have done the jobs before, and am v well qualified. They are entry level and both turned out to be part time (one 30 hours, one 18.75). The first interview was a telephone interview pre-screen before final face to face interview sift. It was really very stilted and very scripted, and I didn't get any sort of fuzzy vibe from the interviewer, none of this making the interviewee comfortable crap. grin the second one was kinda fun, and even if I don't get the job, it was a pleasant enough way to spend an hour and a quarter! She actually wants to make a decision today, and they are looking for two newbies to do a job share, so that should up my odds a bit. She was concerned that with the experience on my cv I would be bored, and would end up leaving for something else though, so we'll see.

I've also had a two line response from a developer looking for a (lol) high class hostess (!) to essentially man the show home. It's complete slave labour, and just hanging around smiling at people and answering questions, and handing out floor plans. As an additional tide-me-over, it's the middle aged equivalent of a paper round, but beggars can't be choosers. It's only two days a week when the out of towners come in, so I assume they want a posh British accent and Italian leather shoes. The development is right next door to dd1's school and on a huge golf course.

Becca, the volunteering thing is interesting. I think it very much depends on what you are doing and whether they are additional skills for your cv. I've got grant researching and application (and successful outcomes!), and payroll for volunteer positions, none of which appears anywhere else! (And to be fair, no one wants me to do either!) but I think unless it is directly relevant to the position you are applying for, it makes no difference at all. Volunteering shows you are a nice person, but being nice doesn't appear to get you a job. (I'm blardy lovely, I am wink). Tis is all pure conjecture, obv.

GettinTrimmer Fri 05-Oct-12 20:54:39

Hi all, I am pleased to say I have a job in a library, on Saturdays & every 8th Sunday. Not ideal but I,m pleased to have something. No luck with school librarian job, had the interview but it went to someone who has been a school administrator and run a pre-school.

Becca, other people have got school jobs through volunteering - an 18 year old lad turned up to volunteer at school and was offered work, some are lucky and you can use them as a reference. What sort of volunteering would you consider?

Madwoman, just being nosey whereabouts are you? Scotland? I hope you get something soon even if only to keep the wolf from the door for a while.

madwomanintheattic Fri 05-Oct-12 21:12:35

No, we moved to Canada a few years ago, and relocated last summer to the mountains. Very deliberate choice, but I obviously hadn't quite grasped the complexities of the job market.

I have been offered a job this morning, though. grin twenty hours a week, and no weekends or evenings. It's the same as I was doing ten years ago (and even then it was retrograde step to the max) but I'm just grateful to have got something... Subject to refs, credit checks etc. they all seem very friendly. I start a week on Monday. grin

Dear god, I hope my credit check is okay.

GettinTrimmer Fri 05-Oct-12 22:43:12

Well done smile

madwomanintheattic Sat 06-Oct-12 02:41:07

You too! grin

asianmum Sat 06-Oct-12 11:00:10

Same problem here.Im a professional accountant and Im even applying for admin roles but nothing happens. Ive been looking for a year now. Deppressing and im losing my self esteem already. But I keep telling myself not to give up.

GettinTrimmer Sat 06-Oct-12 18:13:55

Hi asianmum, carry on applying don't let it put you off. Are you mostly sending CVs off? Agencies?

Everhopeful Sun 07-Oct-12 00:38:32

There's a lot of this about - I'm not sure how much it helps to whinge, though it is a small comfort to know it's nothing to do with any one of us. What to do about it though: I've technically had my own business for quite a while, largely supported by regular clients who knew me from before I set up, but they've both retired. I took my eye off the business a bit when DD turned up, for which I am now paying, as I can't seem to get any new clients (well, got one, but that hasn't proven very lucrative yet). If I go in for speculative applications, I worry that I'll look desperate, so they won't hire me as I'm obviously rubbish, or the business would have worked. I guess I'll have to get over it though, as it is about the only thing I haven't tried yet.

CorkandFelt Tue 16-Oct-12 22:16:04

Hi, good to see there have been some successes on this thread (well done madwoman smile). Hope everyone else is making progress too. Everhopeful, you sound a bit like me. I've technically had my own business for a year but haven't had any income for 6 months. For the first 3 months it was a deliberate choice not to work ... for the past 3 months I have been looking hard for new clients and getting nowhere. Very frustrating, though I do know people who've been through similar in the past couple of years and who ended up getting the kind of work they wanted eventually. It's comforting to know it's not just me! Good luck to all.

financialwizard Mon 22-Oct-12 17:03:16

Well ladies, I hope you don't mind me joining this thread.

My husband and I have been based overseas for a few years, until we moved back in August. Having just bought our 'forever' home I am now on the look out for work. Only applied for a couple of jobs so far, but got a big fat NO from both, even though I was doing the same job up until June this year.

I think my CV needs an overhaul but I don't really know where to start, can anyone recommend any employment services?

Salbertina Mon 22-Oct-12 18:55:07

Shame! Am overseas so will be in similar situation. Good luck.,

AlexanderS Mon 22-Oct-12 20:02:43

Hi financialwizard, been following your posts on the support for housebuyers thread!

And hello again everybody, 'tis me, Alex - I had a little name change. Well, I didn't get that library assistant job, or the library assistant job I had an interview for last Tuesday.

I have also done a lot of volunteering, including jobs involving a fair bit of responsibility (for example, I've managed volunteers, and been a school governor), but it doesn't seem to impress employers in the least. GettinTrimmer, the guy you knew got work through volunteering, but it was with the organisation he volunteered for. It would have been interesting to see if he'd got the job if he'd volunteered at another school and they didn't know him. I have got a great reference through doing voluntary work but prospective employers never ask for it coz I never get past the interview stage.

AlexanderS Mon 22-Oct-12 20:08:19

By the way, congratulations madwoman and GettinTrimmer.

financialwizard Mon 22-Oct-12 21:39:15

Hi Alex. I have seen you around there. Shame about the jobs. I guess we all have to keep plugging away.

Salbertina, thanks. Might need that luck! I am a qualified mortgage underwriter/advisor but everyone wants recent experience, or the hours are not compatible with a husband that goes away all the time and two children. ah well, something will turn up if I keep going I hope

ronab2 Mon 16-Sep-13 19:35:46

I have a great work from home opportunity for anyone whos interested PM me

Hardtofindwork Tue 17-Sep-13 13:43:36

Hi, I was totally dispressed, feeling a bit crap about myself in general after applying to so many jobs and not even getting an acknowledgement but there is light at the end of the tunnel. I have been back in work for 12 weeks now, I have completed all my training so now have accredited training certificates in Health and Social Care. I am not sure if I will be a Support Worker for ever but so far every day has been different and I feel like I am growing in confidence each day as I am making a difference. I found the job through the jobcentre, but their jobs page is if any of you are interested. My husband has also just joined their relief bank and is working some saturday afternoon shifts to get some more money in for Christmas..

M1SSUNDERSTOOD Fri 20-Sep-13 13:05:44

Hi I have just had 3 rejections in one day for interviews
I attended in last 2 weeks. At least I get to interview stage but I must look good on paper. Latest feedback is I don't know enough about post I am applying for. This is true as they had advertised two posts and I thought is was interviewing for weekend post and turns out it was the weekday one. However as I already have a post 2 days a week I wouldn't have been able to fit it in! Should I phone and ask for an apointment for more feedback and explain this? Tbh they didn't make it very clear either but did ask if I thought I could have done anything better.
I replied read up a bit more on the job I was interviewing for. The other two posts I knew i hadn't a chance and didn't want them either. I would have quite liked the other job though. Any suggestions so that I could be considered
for any other vacancies they come up with?

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