May 15, 2008

Thought for Thursday - Applying for JOBs

JOB: Just Over Broke, Journey Of the Broke, or Just Out of Belief.

I've been mostly self-employed for the better part of 17 years now. Once you go self-employed it's really hard to go back to a j-o-b. I've never been good a playing politics or kissing ass. And the last few times I applied for a job that required an interview...well, let's just say it was an exercise in both humility and futility. Nevertheless, the good folks I'm working with right now are asking that I apply to continue working with them via a relationship with a new school district. That means filling out an online application and attaching a resume. Seems rather redundant if you ask me.

In actuality, the online application is the problem. Just because they have the technology doesn't mean they should use all of it. So after going through the hassle of updating a resume and putting in all this detail that they asked for, then they want each and every job entered into the application all over again with additional and redundant detail. But the worst part is the question they asked in the area about felonies and other charges. They want to know if the applicant has ever been terminated or asked to resign. Yes, it's true. I once was fired, allegedly for insubordination. But given that an unemployment mediator found in favor of me and both my immediate supervisor and her supervisor were fired within six months for several reasons including how I was dismissed, I think I was vindicated. But I still had to answer the dang question and explain myself.

Then the district has a company do a survey on how one feels about or deals with various teaching situations. I wouldn't mind it so much, but a lot of it is irrelevant to what I do since I'm not a teacher but a psychologist. Sigh. I spent several hours on the resume and the basics of the application before I got into the redundant parts which took hours all by themselves. Then I had to track down an old supervisor's name and references' phone numbers as well as figure out my grade point average from graduate school. For some reason I thought it was 3.7, but actually it was 3.86...woohoo! My college GPA was only 3.48 and just short of Magna Cum Laude
(thanks to a professor for a class I didn't actually need when it was all said and done...I was robbed!). My high school GPA was 3.92. I guess you could say I was mostly an "A" student. I'm pretty sure they'll want my transcripts anyway, but I won't know until tomorrow when I call them.

So the upshot of all this time and effort? I have no idea if I even want the job. A lot is dependent on how much time they'll want from me (the job posting says full time, but who knows if they'd offer part time) and how much they'll pay for that time. Most people look at jobs as a way to get guaranteed benefits and then they look at how much money they'll take home after taxes. And that's also how most people stay broke. It's much better to figure out how much gross you make including the dollar value of the benefits and then divide that amount by the number of hours you're expected to work. Right now as a consultant I make $60.00 an hour for my time as a school psychologist (I make more in finance, but it takes a bit more effort). I pay about 10% in taxes, because I can write off all of my mileage, expenses and most lunches when I'm consulting with educators. I pick my own benefit package (i.e. health insurance, etc.) and it's tax deductible too. Since I make way more money being self-employed and pay way less in taxes, that leaves money for investing for retirement and other goals. It's hard to take a pay cut that also involves having a boss and politics, not to mention an inflexible schedule (probably 7:30 to 4:30 five days a week vs. 20 to 30 hours a week and vacations whenever I have the inclination). Less time and more politics...hmmm...it better pay a lot of money.

7 comments:

Jdancer8 said...

I hate online applications that at the end say upload your resume...its true its the same information twice and truthfully a waste of time that I'll never get back. However a lot of employers are using online applications as a filter tool. I wish we could do that I'm sick of looking at resumes for a cook position and the person submits a resume that states they have fixed computers for the last ten years and have never worked in a kitchen.....(this is what I deal with...)

Best of luck on the position...keep me posted ;o)

TheWeyrd1 said...

I think the online application is okay...but I think they go overboard with asking all the questions they ask and wanting more detail about each previous job and THEN still wanting a resume uploaded. I think using them as a filter is fine to get down to a manageable amount of people to actually interview...good luck with that J...lol

citizen of the world said...

So, have you heard back from them o rmade a decision yet? I went from a regular job to being self-employed a few years ago. I miss little except for the insurance benfits.

TheWeyrd1 said...

Haven't heard about an interview yet. I'll post an update once everything is done...probably either a Make My Monday or a Thought for Thursday...

Trop said...

I loathe job applications. And why do they need undergraduate transcripts when graduate school transcripts ought to be enough?

Trop said...

Forgot to add that I'm making the leap to self-employment in July. I'm really looking forward to it. The consultants I'm with have guaranteed enough jobs to keep me flush for two years. By that time the number of projects should be sufficient to entirely support my minimum guarantee, and then some.

TheWeyrd1 said...

Trop...good luck with your endeavors then! I think you'll love being self-employed. It's good to have a bunch of projects already lined up too!