I’ve been underemployed for about a year now. I’ve interviewed for a number of tech jobs, many of which I didn’t get. No surprise there — I’m a good programmer, but this economy has flooded the market with good programmers, and lurking in that crowd are technical ninjas with better skills than I. Or that’s what I tend to think when I don’t make the cut. Over the past year, I was one company’s second choice, one company’s “We want to make you an offer–oh wait, the job just changed and requires design skills as well as coding skills, sorry”, and one company’s “We love your code, but we’d rather go silent than offer you the job.”
All too often, I hear about these jobs (or others like them) many months after I didn’t get them, and they’re still open. This is the part where I ask why. Could I have done those jobs? I personally think so. Could at least one candidate over months’ worth of interviews have done those jobs? Most definitely.
One of my previous companies used to spend just as long hiring someone as that hire ended up staying. This happened twice in my memory — one guy left after 4 or 5 months, the other after 8 months. My theory is that this economy has sent a lot of employers on golden goose hunts. Or maybe golden snipe hunts. They look for the perfect candidate, and after months of reality show eliminations and not-quite-perfect contenders, they pick someone who doesn’t work out, or they pick the candidate who they liked from a month and a half ago — the one who got sick of waiting and went with a different job.
I’ll say one thing — after 2, 3 or 4 staffing agencies cold call me and all try to pitch me same the “perfect fit” job — one that I’ve already been turned down for — the Fail begins to irritate me.