I asked for a covering letter with your application…

I asked for a covering letter with your application…

You failed at the first hurdle! When I asked all applicants to include a covering letter with their CV, what conclusions do I draw when you don’t include a covering letter? I have a few options…

  1. You can’t read
  2. You can’t write a letter
  3. You have no attention to detail
  4. You are belligerent
  5. You have already assumed you won’t get the job
  6. You don’t really want the job
  7. You are lazy
  8. You think you are better than others

In one of recent recruitment processes, we have routinely been automatically rejecting candidates who don’t include the required covering letter. But, one slipped through the net last week as their CV looked good so we invested about 90 minutes of our time interviewing them and £100+ on online assessments.

But the applicant then failed to take our assessment process seriously resulting in a score we couldn’t use.

More fool me for turning a blind eye to their failure to submit the required covering letter. The writing was on the wall and I didn’t stick to my own rules for who we sift out.

How often in life do we put safety measures or ‘ rules’ in place, seeking to avoid the errors of the past, only to override them when common sense momentarily leaves the room?

In contrast though, these last few weeks I have also experienced an organisation that has so many inflexible rules in place, seeking to eliminate every possible risk, that dealing with them has damn near killed me.

Their rules and inflexibility have given me a sense of powerlessness, of immense frustration at just how many impossible hurdles can be put in place to cut out all risk, with no one in the organisation brave enough to challenge the stupidity of it all. Fear rules. Protect your back and sod the customers 😀

I wouldn’t last a week in that organisation. I wouldn’t want to either.

The lesson of course is that, as with life, business is all about compromise. I give a little, you give a little and slowly we work towards an outcome that suits us all.

I don’t regret giving that candidate with no covering letter a chance to show what they’re made if in an interview. I do regret not reading the signs better during the interview that would have saved me £100 in post interview testing. The things I could have better spent that money on…

A massage to de-stress me…Cinema tickets for 4 or 5 of the team…a contribution towards our next team dinner…flowers for two of our clients who are currently been put through the mill by their employees…

I hate chucking money and time down the drain…but will I remember that the next time I’m tempted to break my own rules to give someone a chance?

This is a personal blog written by Helen Jamieson. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Jaluch Ltd. The views and opinions posted in response to this blog are solely those of the contributor and do not necessarily represent those of Helen Jamieson or Jaluch Ltd. Jaluch Ltd is not responsible for the accuracy of the information within this blog.

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