Belfast Telegraph

Business owner finally finds right candidate for post

By Margaret Canning

One lucky candidate has been told “you’re hired” by a businessman who earlier contacted this newspaper to lament the quality of applicants for a receptionist’s job, the Belfast Telegraph can reveal.

The successful candidate appeared for interview on Wednesday, the day in which the Co Down man related how others had shown up with tattoos, piercings, ripped jeans and “multi-coloured hair”.

“Maybe she read the paper on the way to the interview and thought: “I’d better step it up a bit,” said the boss, who wants to remain anonymous.

He praised his new receptionist’s competence and demeanour in interview, adding that she had applied with a two page CV, instead of the seven or eight pages which some candidates had sent.

The company owner added: “Applying for a job she was qualified to do was a start. She wasn’t applying for a job as an astronaut or a nuclear scientist.”

He said the job market was “competitive” but added: “Some people are doing themselves no favours.”

Among his pet hates were CVs which were longer than two pages — and the use of cliches, including “I work well as part of a team and also on my own initiative”.

“If I ruled the world I would ban that word so that I never have to read it on a CV again.”

For a job as a receptionist, good English was a must. But not all candidates were well-spoken. “I may sound like a snob, but there was also a lot of ‘theminz’ and ‘useinz’.”

Recruitment expert Neal Lucas said companies were trying to achieve more with fewer resources, leaving potential candidates too busy to chase new opportunities.

He added: “I find people are still applying for jobs that are not suitable for them under the popular misconception that if you’re not in, you can’t win.”

Background

THE Co Down businessman was searching for a receptionist at a wage of between £14,000 and £16,000. Among 267 CVs were applications from law graduates and a trained medical doctor. But 200 CVs had to be discarded due to spelling mistakes. He exposed the perceived failings of people in the job market shortly after statistics showed that more than 60,000 people are signing on — the highest since 1997 — and job vacancies on Jobfinder.co.uk total 5,665.

Belfast Telegraph

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