Getting shunned because you’ve been jobless too long?

Are you getting shut out from jobs because you’ve been unemployed for a long time?

Even though about half of Georgia’s jobless have been unemployed for at least six months, some companies are telling them not to bother applying for open jobs at their firms, AJC staffer Dan Chapman reports. They’d rather pick from among the currently employed or recently unemployed.

Has this happened to you? Getting nowhere again and again?

What do you think of this practice? Justified because companies are getting flooded with resumes and have to have some criteria? Or an example of kicking people people when they’re already down?

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter.

79 comments Add your comment

GLM

October 4th, 2010
6:41 am

I was unemployed 14months prior to accepting my present position. I know that this is not a record by any means in my line of business. Although this form of discrimination may not violate the ‘letter of the law’, it seems quite apparent to me that legal intentions are severely compromised.

A.S.Mathew

October 4th, 2010
7:46 am

This is a cruel fun of the employers not to hire people who were not employed for long! Can they
explain, how the long unemployed can be employed? Such companies must be penalized for discrimination.

#1 Foxy Lady

October 4th, 2010
8:56 am

I think they could hire me. They has the money. But they doesn’t because of racism and discriminations.

SayWhat

October 4th, 2010
9:17 am

Foxy Lady – “they doesn’t” for sure if you speak the way you type. Ever heard of grammar?

This practice or “trend” is just wrong. That’s all – just wrong.

This is Mrs.Norman Maine

October 4th, 2010
9:23 am

This certainly is disturbing. What is the rationale for this discrimination, I wonder?

Savvy

October 4th, 2010
9:24 am

#1 Foxy Lady, your so called grammatical errors were not errors at all. You intentionally typed that to sound ignorant to make fun of people. It shows what a classless, unintelligent person you are.

#1 Foxy Lady

October 4th, 2010
9:31 am

Sawy,
You more than unintelligent. You disintelligent.

Mike

October 4th, 2010
10:39 am

Folks, please drop the high school drama & get back to the point. I have relatives who are struggling b/c of this very issue. They think all of their time doing charity events will help their resumes look good while umemployed. Personally, I believe low-ranking jobs (eg, grocery baggers) on your resumes give you a better chance at getting a real job – no matter what age you are! Something recent on your resume is better than 12+ mos of no work experience. It shows character!

Light

October 4th, 2010
10:40 am

Let God will be done thru this blog http://lightoftheearth.blogspot.com/

Vcatron

October 4th, 2010
10:55 am

Having been thru un/under employment for 18 months in 2003/4 the discrimination is real for both time and age. While time is not necessarly illegal age descrimination is (they do it below board and never provide a reason for not hiring). Because I did take other jobs till I was hired by my current employer in 2004 my gaps were sort.

In the current job market with many people looking for any employment landing ANY JOB is difficult. There is nothing wrong with doing charity work, and if properly put in resume it will help. Many people who have lost their jobs were NOT at fault. You have no control if your company goes out of business or is bought out. If you were let go for cause or poor performance that onis is on you,

Kim

October 4th, 2010
10:57 am

Foxy lady….I seriously doubt discrimination had anything to do with you not being hired. You have HIDEOUS grammar. They HAS the money? Discriminations?

You are ignorant, and THAT’S why you are not hired. Quit using the race card and learn to SPEAK!

SAR

October 4th, 2010
11:05 am

This trend is VERY disturbing. This and some of the practices of employment agencies…otherwise known as Temp Agencies. I think it may be time for the dreaded government to take a long hard look at them for regulation. Practices such as putting up ads for jobs that don’t exist, just to get applicants to sign up with them and build a database that they then champion to employers as their “broad base of resumes to pull from”….These are CRUEL practices indeed to play on the unemployed in this economy. Furthermore, this added layer of requirements for the unemployed to go through in order to get a job is ripe for misuse. Employers can utilize the cover of a temp agency when discriminating against applicants.

Currently the unemployed person is STUCK with using the online application process with employers and temp agencies. If you sign up with them, there is currently NOTHING in place that says they have to show you jobs when they are available, and ask that your resume be presented for that job. It USED TO BE that a person could PRESENT THEIR OWN RESUME directly to any employer. NOT SO anymore!

Let me be the FIRST TO CRY “FOUL!” if no one else has! This is a terrible practice! Often times on the online application systems, there is NO ADDRESS OR NAME for the employer (if there really is one), and there is NO CONTACT PERSON. They claim that this helps them manage the masses of resumes they would receive. BUT THIS NEEDS TO BE REGULATED.

People should have a right to know when they apply with temp agencies that they will be notified of available jobs, that there really IS a job when an ad is placed, and that there is indeed activity going on to help them find work. They should also have a RIGHT to apply for jobs with ANY EMPLOYER without any agency being in the middle between them and the job!

There seriously needs to be some scrutiny in this area.

Uncle Jack

October 4th, 2010
11:07 am

Add to a resume “Mortgage Broker” and see what kind of discrimination you get. I’ve been told to my face “we don’t want any of those kind of people on our staff”. Just shows how ignorant the “e-” generation is! You may have 20 yrs experience, but if you can’t update your twitter account with your eyes closed you’re not working here!

Steve

October 4th, 2010
11:10 am

I completely think this is BS by companies for doing this. How can the economy get better if you only hire people with jobs…it will always leave the ones without one still just sitting there and nothing will ever get better. As far as the whole experience thing, if your are truly qualified, it will only take a couple weeks to become fully sharp again. If anything companies should try to hire only people who are unemployed so more people will start working and spending again and the economy and job market can start to rebound quickly, otherwise the U.S. will be in this mess for for 2-4 more years easily.

Clay

October 4th, 2010
11:11 am

While I do not find this practice acceptable, I think the intention is to keep people who apply for every job listed from applying when they know they are not qualified.

J

October 4th, 2010
11:12 am

Seems to me that if we got together and started picketing outside of employment offices that practice these methods, we could cause them some major embarrassment or negative news coverage.

If there’s one thing the unemployed (and there are *many* of us) might have, it’s time.

Jimbo

October 4th, 2010
11:16 am

The sad fact is that this happens all the time, even if not expressly put into the job ad. After I was downsized (with 750 others) I became a stay-at-home Dad. After 20 yrs in the IT field with F50 companies at upper-level management, it was not by choice but by the economic crash. Now, after two yrs, I’m being told not to apply for a job and that I am less desirable than a college (no experience) student? And you wonder why the USA has become a 2nd-rate country??? God help us all (and our kids).

CanThinkForMyself

October 4th, 2010
11:17 am

So the bottom line seems to be the only way to make this illegal is to show it is hurting minorities. How stuipd is that? It is hitting many regardless of race.

So here’s a plan. Those of us that are employed, let’s go interveiw for these jobs, accept them, then at the last minute tell the prospective employer that your current employer really wants you to stay on so they’ve given you <> When these companies have nobody to work for them maybe they will get smart and hire unemployed people.

are you kidding me?

October 4th, 2010
11:18 am

What they are doing IS discrimination! What makes these companies sure that someone that is currently employed will be willing to leave & get a new job? I wouldn’t take that chance.

I have applied for jobs recently & have not received a response & now I know why.

I have forwarded the article to family members that have said “why don’t you get a job”? one too many times.

CanThinkForMyself

October 4th, 2010
11:19 am

For some reason the comment inside the brackets didn’t post. It was (a pay raise, perk, etc. Whatever works for you.)

hahaha

October 4th, 2010
11:20 am

This “discrimination” makes perfect sense. If you’ve been unemployed for 14 months, you prob aren’t as good a worker as someone that currently has a job. You can’t get mad at a company for trying to hire the best worker they can…

The Grim Reaper

October 4th, 2010
11:22 am

These pratices are dead wrong and employers need to remember that these applicants may be their customers in the future. Another practice is sending the applicant a test that mimics the “job duties” of the position. I some cases you submit a complete analysis of a situation, well what prevents the company from denying you a position and using your ideas, analysis, or methods to solve an actual business problem?

Lets Get Even

October 4th, 2010
11:26 am

Here’s an idea: Start sending a “resume” with a short statement about how you find their hiring practices, mentioning that even though you are unemployed you’d never work for such a scummy company and when you do find a job you will never purchase a product from them or use their services. Then, when their company downsizes and THEY are unemployed, you can delete their resume! Payback is a bi*ch!

Vern

October 4th, 2010
11:29 am

Companies don’t like to hire the long-term unemployed because they feel as though your job skills have gotten rusty and you won’t be able to absorb change.

All of us know that technology changes so fast that most of us have a hard time keeping pace with it. After a year out of the loop, you’re pretty much obsolete.

The same is true for workers over 50 years old. Companies don’t like to hire older workers because it’s expensive. It drives up insurance costs.

The real question is “What do you do with an “obsolete 45 or 50 year old person?” They have plenty of tread left on their tires, but no one wants them.

The Grim Reaper

October 4th, 2010
11:31 am

@hahaha- so you are saying you would prefer to ride on plane built by an employed worker, who just so happens to have built only 1 plane, instead of plane built by an unemployed worker who has built 100 planes? Help me overstand.

hahaha

October 4th, 2010
11:40 am

Um, no, Grim Reaper, but with so many unemployed, you can find someone that has built 100 planes (to use your analogy) and *hasn’t* been unemployed for 14 months. When there are hundreds applying to each job, you gotta start somewhere…

RealitySetsIn

October 4th, 2010
11:46 am

Leave it to those who don’t have something that others do, to scream discrimination. Until you can legally PROVE that you were over looked, because you were unemployed for a long stretch, give it a break.

Why were you unemployed for so long? Too good to get a lower paying job, and satisfied with your weekly check from the gov’t? No reason to work an entry level job, or something new to your resume?

I wouldn’t hire people that have a huge blank spot over a year in their resume, personally. To me that just shows complacency, and lack of will/drive.. If someone was out a $100,000 a yr/job and was at home for 6-8 months, and then you see that they were a sale associate at a dept. store making much, much less, with longer hours. That shows someone who wants to work.

I know several college grads.. with BS’s and MS’s….. Didn’t get hired out of school, living at home, all over 25 and close to 30, and never had a job after 2 plus years or more!!! That’s a shame, and regardless of their education, I certainly would have to re-think my position on hiring someone like that.

I’m not ragging on people without jobs. I know far too many of them that wish they could go to work in the morning, and wish things would pick up. But the screaming for discrimination and the sense of entitlement many people have these days, is the reason we’re in a bunch of this mess.

Al

Tychus Findlay

October 4th, 2010
11:46 am

Big shock, the longer a person’s unemployment, the less desirable they are as a candidate. The person who is never unemployed is assumed to be the ideal candidate because everyone wants them working for them. The guy who hasn’t had steady work in 18 months, what’s his deal? Employers are afforded the luxury of pitting the unemployed against each other in hopes of hiring the best person possible…usually that person is employed or has been unemployed the least amount of time.

The Grim Reaper

October 4th, 2010
11:47 am

I understand the premise…by hiring an employed worker, I create a job opening at the company that I hired the worker from, however, the cost cutting measures in place, today, the former company IS NOT replacing the lost worker…rather they go lean and mean to cut costs.

Fedup

October 4th, 2010
11:49 am

This makes no sense whatsoever. After being unemployed for one year, have had two interviews at a salary that wouldn’t be enough to pay the light bill, no less the mortgage, food and everything else. I am talking minimum wage…..with a college degree and a great resume. It is the volumes of resumes that every job gets that is the problem. Prospective employers land up dumping some very good prospects for a hasty hire.

Nothing has changed ...

October 4th, 2010
11:49 am

… except the economy. HR policies have not changed, they have always been like this. It has always been easier to get a job when you are currently employed. What has changed is the people that are doing the hiring, their job is now on the line more than ever. The people they answer to demand the best, and historically that person is employed.

Hiring a new employee is expensive. Why hire someone that will quit when something better comes along? The costly process starts all over again. There is no room for errors anymore!

H

October 4th, 2010
11:55 am

I find this whole job search thing hilarious…they say follow up is a huge key to being successful. I tell you what, I have a huge list of HR people, companies, recruiters, etc…that don’t follow up at all after interviews. Give me a yes or no, I don’t care, its an answer. Don’t give me that excuse you have too many applicants to follow up with-thats just being lazy, especially after I’ve had a phone or in-person interview.

I also love the phantom job postings…that should be illegal ASAP! What is this…the i’ve collected more resumes than you today so I get a free lunch at Subway today game.

Their needs to be some serious regulation going on here.. IF THE JOB DOESN’T EXIST, THE POSTING SHOULDN’T EXIST!

One final thought. Through this job search struggle I have learned that customer service in this country is horrendous. It is beyond awful. I hope that in this recession we all have made the decision not to work with some companies anymore. Your customer service stinks, you lose me as a customer. This country needs to go back to basics and it starts with customer service.

The Grim Reaper

October 4th, 2010
11:55 am

However you view it, the unemployed are not contributed to the economy, so let’s get rid of them before they resort to home invasions, car jacking and bank robbery, K? I’m in the Funeral business anyway so that would increase my economy.

Tychus Findlay

October 4th, 2010
11:59 am

Here’s some job hunting advice- what is your personal value proposition? Why should a company hire you, other than the fact that you have experience, are hardworking, and loyal(like everyone else)?

CobbGOPer

October 4th, 2010
12:00 pm

@Mike 10:39am

I agree with you, but how is someone with a college degree supposed to get a job bagging groceries? When I was unemployed last year, believe me I tried. Retail, restaurants, warehouses, anything to be working while I looked for something in line with my career. No one would bite, they knew from my resume that I would be out of there as soon as I found something better. They won’t hire you in the first place, they’ll hire the teenager. But the better jobs want you to be currently employed, or to have only been unemployed a short time. As well, there’s the stigma of “Well if you were laid off, you must not have been a good employee.” Sometimes that is the case, sure, but in the vast majority of cases people are laid off because the company decides that in tightening its belt, your position is expendeble (and will save them X amount of dollars). A company I worked for let go nearly its entire call center staff (I was in marketing), not because they were terrible employees (they were not), but because they made the least amount of money (i.e. no influence within the company, just drones) and the company decided they could run the center on a skeleton crew and save $1million a year. Purely a business decision that should not reflect poorly on those individuals. But I’m sure they all had trouble (and I’m sure some still do now) with finding new work due to the stigma held by other companies and HR directors.

It’s all a vicious cycle, but one the companies propagate themselves through their bias.

CobbGOPer

October 4th, 2010
12:01 pm

“Expendable”

Need more coffee, spelling is disappoint.

Vern

October 4th, 2010
12:06 pm

The simple fact that companies practice this “weeding out” of the long term unemployed and those over 50 will leave a big group of people who will become the new underclass. The will become the “new poor.”

If you’re an unemployed 50 years old, you have 12 years to wait until you can collect social security.

What do you do in the meantime?

TempRecruiter

October 4th, 2010
12:07 pm

I’d like to tell SAR that I work for a legitimate staffing agency and you might want to open up your mind a little and realize they’re not all the same. Sorry for your poor experience but it sounds like you’re not looking in the right place, or are not aware of what is a scam and what is not.

In addition, on a regular basis, I have people turn down jobs because they don’t want to give up their unemployment benefits. Let me “be the first to cry ‘FOUL!’” to this practice.

Maybe the government should regulate THAT.

Mary

October 4th, 2010
12:08 pm

I don’t care if your purple, white or black, this is JUST wrong. Those people that have lost their jobs deserve another job. If this is the thinking of our new generation then boy we are all in trouble, we have a President and Staff that is running this country into the ground and now the private sector is doing this. Great..Way to America, you are really showing the other countries now aren’t you. Just plain WRONG!!!

Chief Wiggum

October 4th, 2010
12:10 pm

It’s a very real thing. I’ve been either unemployed or under-employed for about 18 months. I’ve applied at all of the grocery stores, the big box stores, and I’ve never heard a peep. I have 18+ years of progressive engineering and management experience, and I have no doubt I could be the best dang (bagger, cashier, customer service employee) they have. But they won’t bite.

I was laid off in early 2009, but I have a really good relationship with my former company, in that I am technically an hourly contract employee for them if they need me (signed contact). Doesn’t matter, the economy is awful, and nobody is biting.

Fedup

October 4th, 2010
12:16 pm

By calling this a ‘vicious cycle” is like hitting the proverbial nail on the head. Take the low paying job and go to the poor house faster than if you are on unemployment…Take unemployment and you are viewed as undesirable if you are on it for any length of time while trying to find that job that will meet your financial needs. This is the first time in my 30 plus years of working that I have ever even been on unemployment!!! Doesn’t that speak volumes….helloooooooo anybody listening? BTW…Grim Reaper, don’t you have a body to take care of? Seems you have plenty of time on your hands, day in and day out, with your blogs. If someone is paying you, you’d better watch out as you could be replaced.

JustMe

October 4th, 2010
12:36 pm

I recently found a job after 18 months of looking and although I was never told this was the reason why I wasn’t hired by any particular employer, I have to wonder. Quite honestly this whole notion really pisses me off. Unless you did something that caused you to lose your job (which in this day and age happens less and less likely) then they shouldn’t be able to do that. What I would love to see happen is to put the people that are doing this in the shoes of the unemployed and see how they like being treated like that. Sorry, but IMO, people like this are nothing but POS).

H

October 4th, 2010
12:39 pm

Sar, I even like the HR depts and employment agencies that have a computer program set where if your resume doesn’t have the key words/phrases on it or is not in the right format, it will automatically kick out the “thank you for applying but we have decided to move on with more qualified candidates” message from an email you can’t reply back to. I actually feel sorry for some of the firms using this method because they are missing out on a whole lot of qualified people just because their resume has the word loyal instead of dedicated.

Don’t worry this economy will turn around and when it does some companies and agencies are going to be seriously hurting looking for folks to fill spots. Everything goes in a cycle. People do remember what you say and do during difficult times.

braveshopper

October 4th, 2010
12:41 pm

I am one of those over 50, but not on S.S., nor unemployment. No income!
Those employed simply cannot understand what we’ve been through, getting turned down constantly. I haven’t seen a doctor, dentist or eye-care specialist in over a year. No a.c. this summer, no heat this winter, as I have to keep my savings intact as long as possible.

The corporations that refuse to hire even though they’re doing well, like Fed Ex, etc., don’t seem to realize that if they all would hire instead of playing Russian Roulette with the masses, people like me would be able to AFFORD some of what is out there, like clothes, a tv, a new blanket.

My daughter lives in Canada – she can’t believe how bad it is here. In Canada they still have ‘Help Wanted’ signs on storefronts.

Hmmm ...

October 4th, 2010
12:44 pm

“Don’t give me that excuse you have too many applicants to follow up with-thats just being lazy, especially after I’ve had a phone or in-person interview.”

… but you sound so charming and personable! Your phone should be ringing constantly!

manofthehouse

October 4th, 2010
12:49 pm

I’ve been unemployed for almost a year now after being let go by a company that had been sold and the new owners downsized. I’ve been to job fairs and have applied to many jobs online. What is discouraging is that I haven’t had one interview. I’ve been doing odd jobs to help? Honestly I’m afraid that if I dont find a job soon I’ll loose the things that I’ve worked so hard for(house,cars)and wont be able to provide the basics for my family. To those that are making negative remarks, you don’t know what it’s like until you find yourself unemployed and unable to find a job that provide you the resources to maintain a lower middleclass lifestyle. I was once like you.

hahaha

October 4th, 2010
12:51 pm

Canucks’ unemployment rate is 8.1% fyi (a little lower than Texas which is best off large US state)

H

October 4th, 2010
12:53 pm

Hmmmm, get back to work before your boss catches you on a blog….remember your too busy to respond…

Oh wait…I fogot…you have to leave at 5 everyday because its 2 for 1 at Wild Wings..

TheBoss

October 4th, 2010
12:55 pm

Unfortunately discrimination and bias exists in most every facet of life. Even the owners of this web site have bias in their writing. My opinion on this subject is if it’s my business I’ll hire who I want, based on the criteria I want. If I only want working people for whatever reason, it’s my choice. If you are out of work and don’t like that start your own business and run it anyway you want. I’m sure there are thousands of small businesses across the country that have bias in their hiring decisions. They just won’t admit it.

Needabailout,too!

October 4th, 2010
12:58 pm

A friend has a theory that in this new age and time of economic downturn and job loss, a side product of getting a new job very often comes down to ‘who-you-know’ in hiring or in high places of the new company. An average of six people apply for every job posted, sometimes many, many more, into the thousands. If the hiring manger already knows you (favorably), along with your qualifications, it beats the hell out of weeding through the many resumes/applications, interviewing candidates and expensive background checks. I know, this isn’t much solace for those who know no one in the potential new company…

I’ve been laid-off since 9/09, I have 15 solid years in medical technology, a bachelor degree in medical science and several up-to-date licenses/certifications pertinent to my industry. I’m often called for interviews and feel that I interview well, but it’s no longer about finding the most qualified, competent employee, but more about the company’s bottom line. The amount a company spends in payroll is a ‘controllable’ cost, and companies often choose to hire the less experienced for a reduced salary. I’m so screwed.