Thursday, July 30, 2020

Walled Off

"Getting your job application through computer firewalls" is an interesting title for a post, as it draws a parallel between computerized applicant tracking systems and a firewall, despite the fact that they have very different functions. But what's interesting about the title is that I suspect it speaks to something that many job seekers would tell you: They feel the relationship between businesses (or, at least their human resources departments) and candidates for employment is becoming adversarial. ATS = Firewall implies that businesses see job seekers as dangerous, something that needs to be kept away from the valuable and fragile inner workings of the company. Rather than being a way to manage the potentially large numbers of applications for open roles that a largely internet-based application system enables, job seekers have come to see applicant tracking systems as deliberate stumbling blocks placed in the way of people who need work, whether that's because it makes it easier to hire preferred candidates, to prevent sympathetic humans from helping candidates bypass unreasonable requirements or simply to shut people out of desirable jobs.

And while the article itself never revisits the ATS as firewall comparison, the fact that it's so prominent in the title seems deliberate. After all, LinkedIn is not above clickbait, and nothing drives clicks like a catchy headline.

No comments: