Job Postings…the official mind game for jobseekers

Today's post is short and to the point – we're efficient like that at FOT…

Right before the holiday, a friend of mine emailed me looking for sourcing advice, and in passing mentioned he had a couple of VP opportunities he was looking to fill, di

d I know anyone?

Yes…yes I do. I live in this quirky neighborhood in the burbs with neighbors in spitting distance that have engineering, telecom, software, sales, business development type experience with a few teachers, chefs and accountants in the mix (and then you've got me, the sourcer who likes to think of herself as an association/nonprofit specialist). And many of these people have clearances too.

And I'm extremely happy to make connections, to see a referral request, check out the job posting and then pass the info on to a friend. I love this time of year, when people are looking for a new career move and want to start fresh in January. It's a fun time. So I'm happy to share the opportunity I have and I always email the job posting link to the friend, because if it's posted it's real, right?

Well maybe in the land of retained search where I live it's real, but apparently in corporate, sometimes it's not. I call b******. If the job isn't real, and you arent' going to interview, don't post the job. Don't ask for me referrals. When you ask me for a referral and then say we're not really going to do anything for 45-60 days, well that's bad.

Really bad.

You and I both lose credibility in this situation. And loss of credibility will cost us future referrals. Me from my neighbor and you from me.

And guess what? I'm totally going to tell my referral what you've told me about the job status. He's got other fish to fry. I'm not going to encourage to wait this thing out. That's silly. We're in a really competitive marketplace and this is a huge problem if you think jobseekers are going to wait for you. They're not.

My advice? Pull down the posting. When you know what you're doing, post it. When you know what you're doing, ask for referrals. Until then? Get your ducks in a row.


FOT Background Check

Kelly Dingee
Kelly Dingee is a Senior Manager, Global Talent Acquisition for Marriott International. She has extensive sourcing experience having worked for Staffing Advisors (retained search), AIRS (training!) and Thales Communications, Inc., (cleared/telecom) and got her start in the profession while a full life cycle recruiter at Acterna (now known as Viavi). Lucky for Kelly, she had a boss who could see the potential of sourcing candidates from the web, and in 1998, she stepped into a newly created sourcing role. No truth to the rumor that she has a side business to help you push your resume to the top of Google search results…


  1. I like this from a jobseeker’s POV and as someone who called upon to help find candidates, misleading – possible opportunities suck. Especially when you have tell the person you referred its on hold or whatever the case.

    Well played.

  2. Dan G. says:

    As my company’s recruiter/sourcer/trainer/dog walker, I find myself put in a situation often where the company “thinks” it’s going to fill the position and 4-5 weeks into the search, changes it’s collective mind. This would be fine if there were no candidates but by this point I’ve usually interviewed several great people. To help with this I’ve been sending the cost of the searches to them to make sure they know what this costs the company to post when they don’t really know what they want. I’d call out the management on this but most of the postings are legit and I fill them quickly. Well, that and I shamefully like my executive leadership to like me.

  3. Kelly, I usually agree with your posts, but I’m not so sure on this one. I will say that a V.P. position is not one you just casually search out a candidates for, so I see your point in this instance. That being said, I have positions that I am always recruiting for. I leave the posts up all the time. If I get a candidate that really makes me say, “wow,” I’ll bring them in for an interview even if we don’t have an opening. I always encouraged my clients to be open to this concept as well. I have a small business, so the door opens in my company when the right candidate is walking through.

  4. Kelly Dingee says:

    Amy – I might agree with you if I wasn’t asked for a referral. When you ask for a referral I have an expectation that the job is real, live and you’re interviewing – especially at the VP level.

  5. Josh Tolan says:

    Great post! When companies post their job descriptions with no intention of hiring in a reasonable time-frame (or ever) what they’re really doing is burning bridges. They’re burning bridges with people who they ask for referrals (like you) and with the job seekers applying for the position. Some companies will even interview candidates, whether in person or through online video, only to change the criteria of what they want. This is likely to result in a bad candidate experience and can mean bad word-of-mouth for your company from candidates who have been burned by the process.

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