A business owner has hit out at job-seekers desperately looking for employment during the recession, saying 97 percent of applicants had failed to follow his advert's basic instructions.
Ryan Irving, 36, recently posted an ad telling people not to submit their CV to apply for a role at his web services company Ri Web, but instead to answer a handful of simple questions.
However, in a LinkedIn rant, Irving revealed that of the 183 people who applied, all but six were automatically declined.
He said the applicants' lack of attention was 'just not good enough' at a time when 'unemployment is high and opportunities are few'.
Irving, from Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, said in his LinkedIn post: "Jobseekers, please read job ads carefully and to the end.
"We recently ran a job ad which attracted 183 applications which, unfortunately, is symptomatic of the current job climate.
"Within our ad, we asked applicants to respond to a few simple questions instead of sending a CV and do you know how many responded as we'd requested? Six.
"At a time where unemployment is high and opportunities are few, this is just not good enough.
"I suspect many of these applicants are simply blanketly applying for everything and I can understand the mentality but it doesn't work.
"We've just had to immediately decline 177 applications because those applicants didn't bother to read the ad properly.
"I don't care if you have four masters degrees and 20 years' experience, if you can't follow some simple instructions, it's not a great start is it."
While some people supported the sentiment behind Irving's message, and his call for people to pay attention to detail when applying for jobs, others branded him 'sanctimonious' and said he was failing to see things from jobseekers' point of view.
One person commented: "Why wouldn't you read the ad? That seems crazy to me. If you have any real interest in a role you want to know every detail about what's involved. Skim reading doesn't scream enthusiastic, what a shame."
Another said the problem had grown worse since the pandemic struck, adding: "I'm finding that not reading things properly or following instructions has increased significantly post Covid. This is purely anecdotal although I have heard there is a term now Covid Brain.
"I find myself having to send things back or review them much more frequently."
But others said the post was 'patronising' and said Irving could have 'tried a different way of feedback'.
One commenter said the recruiter should have had more sympathy with how demoralising the job hunt can be.
They said: "Whilst I appreciate where you're coming from, Ryan, and would certainly have shared your frustrations when advertising for a role, now I'm on the other side looking for a job, I understand how truly exhausting and demoralising the process can be.
"It can be especially demoralising when you put time and effort into applying for a role with an elaborate cover letter having researched the organisation, and receive nothing back.
"So yes, it's frustrating people aren't reading every single word of your job ad. I get that. But perhaps it's because they feel that no one is reading a single word of their application. Just a thought."
Gulnaz Raja, who delivers legal, governance and risk support to startups and SMEs, said: "To decline 177 applicants doesn't seem right either.
"With unemployment increasing, to add an extra hurdle to the process will only exacerbate stress levels."
Hitting back at his critics, Irving commented: "That's disappointing to read that you feel my post came across that way.
"My intentions couldn't have been further as my only hope was that jobseekers may benefit from my experience by reading job ads in full before applying.
"We absolutely have responded to all applicants with details of why they were rejected, again, hoping to educate."
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