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to be miffed that I didn't even get an interview?

(43 Posts)
Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:16:10

I applied for a job at my local hospital, P/T PA to the Trust Lead Occupational Therapist. Just got a message by email saying I hadn't been shortlisted. If I want to know why, to ring this number blah blah blah. My CV was written by a professional not long ago so I doubt that's letting me down.

Now, I am a little pissed off at this. My last job before I had DS (now 18 months old) was a PA to the MD of a large firm locally and my experience is centered around this type of role with many years working as a secretary and PA.

Why? I just don't understand why I didn't even get a shot at an interview. Is is because 18 months is too long to have been an at home Mum? This isn't the first job I've been turned down for either. I am beginning to wonder if it's just that I am a Mum full stop.

LadyStealthPolarBear Tue 01-Sep-09 19:18:09

I assume this was an NHS job? If so they won't even accept CV applications and everything should go through a standard app form?

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:18:58

CV was cut and pasted into relevant sections of the online NHS application process.

LadyStealthPolarBear Tue 01-Sep-09 19:20:34

right. Did you meet (and evidence) all the essential criteria on the person spec? If so you only wouldn't have been shortlisted if enough people also met desirables...unlikely!

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:23:24

Yep, checked all that too. This is why I don't understand.

LadyStealthPolarBear Tue 01-Sep-09 19:25:06

In that case ring the number. Either they've had loads of wonderful applicants, or they've been stupid, or the evidence you provided wasn't good enough. Or for whatever reason they've decided not to recruit and you've had an automated email from NHS Jobs - think the last one's probably the most likely!

MissSunny Tue 01-Sep-09 19:26:28

Message withdrawn

hotbot Tue 01-Sep-09 19:29:08

IMVHO they quite like nhs experience?

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:29:14

I just can't stand this. I need a job now. Why is it so effing hard to get one? Aaargh!

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:30:05

But surely if they are recruitong people who already have NHS experience, this could be seen as a form of discrimination (if you didn't have exp).

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:30:25

But surely if they are recruiting people who already have NHS experience, this could be seen as a form of discrimination (if you didn't have exp).

Eve4Walle Tue 01-Sep-09 19:30:46


TotalChaos Tue 01-Sep-09 19:31:31

if they have had loads of applicants they will probably prefer someone with NHS experience. Phone up and find out why; and ask how many people applied for the job.

Hormonesnomore Tue 01-Sep-09 19:43:08

They may have appointed someone internally but had to advertise externally as well. Happens all the time I'm afraid.

LadyStealthPolarBear Tue 01-Sep-09 19:59:12

If they put NHS experience on the job description then that's fine but I'd be amazed if it was an essential!
Also they may well have appointed an internal candidate, but should still have gone through interview and picked the best one - otherwise that's very naughty!

MANATEEequineOHARA Tue 01-Sep-09 20:00:14

Why don't you just ask? I recently applied for a new job, I like my job atm but I thought I would try and see because it would be a convenient job to get. I didn't even get shortlisted and emailed to ask why I was not short listed. Although I was a bit worried about asking, not being sure if it was proper etiquette, I got a very friendly reply saying that although I met all the criteria in the person specification, I had less experience than those shortlisted, and that they had many applicants.

LadyStealthPolarBear Tue 01-Sep-09 20:01:49

goodness, we're usually lucky to get enough decent applicants to fill a day of interviews angry

sussexoldspot Tue 01-Sep-09 20:18:34

I am also a PA in the NHS, having been a SAHM for 18 months after jacking in my job in the private sector when I fell pregnant. Our Trust recently advertised a part time PA role in the South East, daft hours, and had over 350 applicants. That and massive admin reviews (cuts) at PA level in various Trusts also means that competition is ferocious internally too.

In my experience, one of the first things NHS recruiters look for is relevant experience and a highly considered and personalised response, rather than a 'cut and paste' job in the 'Supporting information' bit, or whatever it's called. Also, hard business experience was a requirement for my role, where we're dealing with performance and nothing but, but it may be that they were looking for someone with more 'therapeutic' experience on the OT side.

Not sure if this helps, but I wish you lots of luck - we need more private sector people!

sussexoldspot Tue 01-Sep-09 20:24:04

Ooh, and yes - I would definitely phone for feedback - they're usually more than happy to talk to applicants.

GirlsAreLoud Tue 01-Sep-09 20:30:24

I've had lots of public sector jobs (and still do have one).

Application forms are competency and evidence based.

Cutting and pasting from a CV would not go down well IME. Generally there will be a person specification and you will have to refer to each point in the person specification and illustrate why your experience is relevant.

It doesn't sound as though you've done that but I may be wrong.

slowreadingprogress Tue 01-Sep-09 20:36:07

I think it is possible that your CV and therefore your form, was 'pitched' wrongly. You've worked in business and your CV was done by a 'professional' - I just think it may have sounded too private sector....public sector definitely has it's own 'lingo'!

Agree with Girls that cutting and pasting does not sound the way to go though of course it's difficult to judge without seeing or hearing it.

If this were me I would definitely phone for feedback - it should be useful in the future...FWIW it seems to me that there are usually loads of applications for NHS jobs as they're seen as a good employer with good conditions/flexible working etc so I'm very sure you were up against a huge amount of people....

MermaidSpam Tue 01-Sep-09 20:47:36

I think the most likely situation is that they already had someone in mind from another department.
Don't worry, something will come up eventually x

WebDude Tue 01-Sep-09 21:03:01

Might be worth asking, after hearing about why you didn't get an interview, if the appointment went to someone in the NHS.

Please let us know what you find out.

zipzap Tue 01-Sep-09 22:26:33

The other thing that happens is that they know they are going to spend a day (for example) interviewing which means they can do 12 interviews (or whatever the numbers are that they have time to do).

If they have 350 applicants, all of whom are pretty well qualified and lots of whom are really well qualified, you might find that they went through the first 100 applications (especially if that included a favoured internal candidate!), had filled up the interview slots and didn't have the manpower available to even review the remaining applications, let alone interview any great candidates.

yes they might have missed out on somebody amazing but they have also saved themselves lots of extra legwork and still got a pretty good person just because of the numbers of applicants.

But ringing up could stand in your favour - my mum's friend son (are you following!) got turned down for an interview for a job he thought he was perfectly qualified for so he rang up to find out why. turned out they had had so many applicants they had had to use some fairly random system to trim numbers of cvs down to reasonable levels to shortlist from, one of the things that was used was age, from which they postulated that if you weren't old enough then you couldn't have enough experience. he talked to them on the phone and showed that he was a great candidate and did have enough experience, managed to get the interview - and then the job, just because he rang up to find out why he wasn't being interviewed - it was literally because they had had so many cvs they hadn't looked at his beyond dates.

But when a candidate showed initiative and called etc they were happy to add him to the list of interviewees, so I guess what I am trying to say (in a very long winded way, sorry) is ring them up, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. It might also be worth asking them if they could put you on their list to be notified of any other similar jobs that come up or find out if they use a particular temp agency so that you can get a foot in the door and become that favoured internal applicant!

good luck...

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 22:32:15

zipzap that example you gave, hope it was before ahe discrimination became statute! that practice of cutting people out of the running due to age is now illegal!

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