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To wonder how people cope with job hunting

(17 Posts)
user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:01:57

I qualified as a Social Worker a few months ago. Since then I have had 5 interviews. 1st one was horrendous and I knew I could do better. 2nd one was brilliant and I was very confident. I came second place and the interviewer said I was very confident, in control and when an opportunity comes up she will ring me. Third was good and I came third. Fourth and fifth the interviewers have been really standoffish and I've been very uncomfortable.

I find if the interviewers are warm and friendly I'm great. If they're cold I get uncomfortable. I don't get too nervous, just uncomfortable.

I feel that some days I sit down in an interview and the interviewers are smiling and have positive body language. Some days, wearing the same outfit and smile, I get cold stares. There's no difference in how I say hello or greet the interviewer.

I get the feeling that the interviewers are looking for something specific and you're either it or not.

I've found job hunting to be harder than any job I've ever had. The hours of job applications, the stress of the interview itself and the confidence knocking rejection that comes after. I've been doing this 10 months now and it's soul destroying. I honestly don't know how much more I can take.

The feedback I get is completely contradictory and unhelpful. I'm told I feel nervous when I know I didn't. I'm told I came across very confidently when infact I WAS nervous. I'm told me knowledge was good in one area and then the second interviewer will tell me I lacked knowledge in that area!!!!

I know I'm good at the job, and I'm sure sooner or later I will walk into an interview and just 'click' with the interviewers and get the job. The more I do the better I will get at them. But as I have no support network and working is very important to me. I'm really, really starting to feel very down.

Anyone been through this before and can tell me how on earth they kept sane?

ivykaty44 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:06:17

I take it you are going for interviews as a social worker?

Do you get compency interviews?

user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:09:28

Yes as a social worker.

Some are competency based but I've found how they take their notes and view your answers is based on their initial opinions of you.

I've done very well in some and badly in others so I don't think it's me. It's just my performance is affected if I find the interviewers cold. It puts me on edge.

I'm also much better with two interviewers than three.

My knowledge is good and I give detailed answers. Makes no difference if they've decided they don't like you.

GeekLove Thu 26-Jan-17 15:10:27

I don't have much to add as I am also jobseeking but the truth is you have to be in it to win it. There is no option BUT to jobseek.
The thing is unlike anything else there is no incremental thing - you either get the job or not. That and you are utterly dependant on other people.

I know it's not helping but I feel your pain. Do you have any contacts that might be able to give you some leads at least? This is what I have been doing the past week.

If you can, always apply directly. Avoid agencies if possible but it is worth putting your CV out there. I would recommend you have a jobseeking specific email otherwise you'll be choked in spam.

Ellasshitholekitchen Thu 26-Jan-17 15:11:14

Hi there,

Didn't want to read and run. I'm a fellow social worker and I just wanted to say that I think you will find you have more success at the start of the next financial year. I'm working for a Local authority and they are trying to claw back finances in a big way right now. They need to have a budget for a NQSW for all the training most LA have a couple of intakes a year for newly qualified so look out for them. Don't be hard on yourself, all the interviews are a great learning opportunity. Good luck l

WannaBe Thu 26-Jan-17 15:13:07

Have been looking for a job now for five years. My circumstances are slightly different in that I have a visual impairment and as such my opportunities are more limited and there is literally no support out there.

But what I would say is that you just have to keep focussed on what you want. So often interviews will be about differences in personalities and alternatively sometimes the job will just go to someone who happens to have that something you don't and it's not personal.

I'd like to say that it gets better but after a week where an opportunity for a year's paid work has fallen through due to unwillingness on the part of someone to commit to helping the disabled back into work I'm not so sure atm.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:15:35

This worries me! I'm about to try and get back into work after sah for so long. I literally can't remember my last interview. It sounds tough out there - ds1 currently applying for jobs which is a full time job in itself.

ToEarlyForDecorations Thu 26-Jan-17 15:17:31

Yeah, it's shit isn't it ?

JobSeeking is horrible. I went for a job interview this morning at 8.30am. I left it a little while before phoning the employment agency for feedback. When I did the temps controller spoke to me in that, 'why are you calling me' voice. OK, if she had anything to say she would contact me, but still.

Add that to the employment agency interview I had with her yesterday and I've basically had two interviews for the same job. I mean, I'm reasonably hopeful as there's three candidates and two vacancies but it's a hell of a song and dance for a temporary job paying not much more than the minimum wage and a long working day to boot.

user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:18:37

I live in an area with lots of opportunities for newly qualified social workers. I have had 5 interviews and got offered more but I had to turn 5 down.

Almost every job I apply for I get an interview as my final placement was a fantastic one. I've seen highly unsuitable students gets jobs before me and I often wonder what on earth I'm doing to deserve this.

It's not a lack of opportunities, it's just I'm not getting job offers. Although sometimes I come close, it's still not a job offer. It's horrible.

dollydaydream114 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:18:46

YANBU to find this difficult - I think most people do. And not every interview will be good; it will vary. Sometimes you will 'click' with the interviewers and sometimes you won't.

If you're applying for jobs with local authorities or similar organisations, then most interviews will be equal opportunities, competency-based, where they ask everyone exactly the same questions that are geared towards the specific competencies required for the job. Because it's so rigid, that can make interviewers seem much colder and more clinical.

DP was out of work for almost a year recently and felt exactly the same way you do - missed out on a couple of jobs by a whisker, feedback contradictory, varying rapport with interviewers. Then suddenly he got offered two jobs on the same day. You will get there.

user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 15:21:18

I don't mind if my answers are poor so I don't get the job. I just feel that as soon as I sit down sometimes the interviewers don't like me and nothing I say from that initial meeting goes anywhere.

The opposite has been true on two occasions.

PoochSmooch Thu 26-Jan-17 15:24:00

Job hunting and interviewing is soul destroying - you have my sympathy flowers It's like you're putting yourself out there and saying "LOVE ME", and being met with stony indifference. Awful.

It's hard, but try not to take it too personally. Most of the time the people doing recruiting haven't the foggiest what they're doing. In organisations I've worked it, it's just something you have to do when you get to a certain level, but you don't get trained or anything, you just have a stab at it. Even where people are trained how to do it, it's still a real lottery, I think. And you're right, your face will either fit or it won't. But chin up, sooner or later it WILL fit and you will get a job!

LiefieLiefie Thu 26-Jan-17 16:21:41

I have three interviews for next week, all for roles I'm interested in. I've always been successful in interviews - had three in my life and got all three, turned one down for a different role.

I wonder whether you are going in and treating it like an inquisition, where they are testing you and this is making you nervous and you are coming across as stand-offish? I've also interviewed people who have been overly prepared, have recited a script etc which is off-putting.

You are as much interviewing them as they are you. You want to know whether it will be a good fit for your personality, for your career aspirations.

Given the choice, would you really want to work for an organisation whose employees treat people coldly? It's an awful first impression.

You just have to keep going, as annoying and frustrating as it is. You WILL find a job that you just click with, it will come along. As cliched as it sounds.

user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 17:13:11

Before qualifying as a social worker I had never been for an interview and not got the job. But the competition is very high for social workers and it's hard. Not my interview technique as feedback has been generally positive.

user1485442361 Thu 26-Jan-17 17:14:21

When they're friendly I can interview them and be in complete control and come across wonderfully. If they're cold I don't feel able to because it's just met with uninterested replies.

Ubertasha2 Thu 26-Jan-17 21:10:33

Am a qualified teacher and experienced in various admin type work and trying to move more into this line of work due to less stress and time wasted planning lessons etc, but had so many odd knock backs where I've virtually been offered job on the spot then got a rejection. When I asked for feedback I was told that it was either because they'd found someone who had more relevant experience, or solely had more experience than me.

It's really tough out there. My first (Mickey Mouse, apparently) degree was in film, and after 2 years of trying to get frigging work experience in 'the Media', gave up and became a nanny abroad instead.

Can you lower your sights slightly temporarily and apply for a support worker position and go from there (i.e. once you're in, apply for better internal jobs), or would that not be a possibility?

user1485442361 Fri 27-Jan-17 12:17:15

It's horrible. I was such a happy person before job hunting. It's destroyed me. When I get a rejection I can feel almost suicidal. I'm doing nothing with my life. Might aswell have never become educated and spent so much hard work in training. There's nothing to show for it :-(

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