Reader's Digest (a yearly gift from my mother) always has articles entitled, "Things Your (Blank) Won't Tell You." There have been cellular phone salesman, doctors, postal carriers, etc., but the newest article is Human Resources Representatives. I knew that I shouldn't have read this article from the title, but I did, and I'm angrier for it.
A few choice quotes,
"When it comes to getting a job, who you know really does matter. No matter how nice your resume is or how great your experience may be, it's all about connections."
"People assume someone's reading their cover letter. I haven't read one in 11 years."
"Is it harder to find a job if you're fat? Absolutely. Like George Clooney's character said in Up in The Air, 'I stereotype. It's faster.' "
"Most of us use applicant-tracking systems to scan resumes for keywords. The secret to getting your resume through the system is to pull keywords from the job description and put them on. The more matches you have, the more likely your resume will get picked and actually seen by a real person."
So wait, not only do you rely on computer programs, connections, and fat stereotypes to find applicants to interview, but you also don't actually read the cover letters when you do finally decide to start the interview process. It really begs the question, what exactly does the Human Resources Department do?
Not only do most HR departments actually employ people specifically for hiring (others are doing insurance, employee benefits, etc., unless there's a benefits department), but they also employ hiring managers in their respective departments to conduct interviews, rate applicants and make hiring decisions. What are these people doing? If immediately, because I'm overweight, I'm nixed in the interview process, why are you wasting my time? Clearly, you're not listening to anything that I'm saying about my experience, qualifications or gumption, so why not hire a bunch of sluts in daisy dukes and stop paying all of these HR liaisons? You could at least have a serious mud-wrestling competition, even if none of the actual work gets done.
I forgot, though, that it's perfectly acceptable to discriminate against fat people. God forbid you'd discriminate against a minority, but fat people...they're just gross and lazy.
I haven't had a corporate job since 2008, and I can clearly see why I've only been called in for a few interviews in the last three years. I should probably be more upset about that, but somehow, I'm glad that I'm not forced to sit in a cubicle all day staring at a computer screen. I have this zen-like sense of accomplishment at not being trapped in a shitty office that dictates my life before and after work, and judges me based upon how I look, who I know, and what I'm willing to take in order to make money.
So what are the alternatives? In a perfect world, I would love to start my own business that was run in a way that made me feel good about the product I was selling or the service I was providing. Making my own rules, living above the stereotypes and hiring those that I see fit without the stigma of physical appearance or connectedness.
Who wants to fund that?