According to a recent King5.com story, Washington’s unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in five years. While this is positive news, unemployment is still a concern for many in Washington. For those still job-seeking, the interview process can be long and stressful. And the process may become more interesting and stressful in the near future according to a recent New York Times article. The article explains that employers, who are faced with an increased applicant pool, are turning more towards computer programs and video games to speed up and enhance the hiring process, respectively.
Unemployment & Applications
Long-term unemployment benefits recently came to an end. This affected thousands of job-seekers who have been out of work for more than 26 weeks. The shocking number of affected people shows that the job-seeking process can take a long time. Maintaining unemployment benefit eligibility status means actively seeking employment each week, and not refusing suitable job offers. This means that the millions of individuals who lost their long-term unemployment benefits had been actively seeking employment, and had not yet found any.
The New York Times article noted that the time it takes to find a job increased. It also noted the time it takes for employers to select a suitable applicant has also increased. Due to the sheer number of applicants for each position, before an applicant even makes it to an interview, it is likely that the applicant’s resume or application has already been screened, either by a person, or, more likely it has been processed through a computer program. The program looks for key terms relating to the jobs requirements, and eliminates any resume that does not have any of these terms. Those with matching key terms may make it to the first of possibly many interview stages with their potential employer.
Interviews & Video Games
Job interviews can be nerve-wracking. The new video game interview trend will likely make interviews even less pleasant for some. Employers are now using video games specifically designed to test for job related qualities, such as decision making, performance under pressure, and multi-tasking. While this could potentially be a problem for older applicants or those who are not as technically oriented, it is an interesting approach to “getting a feel” for a person’s personality and management style. Moreover, some employers, like the United States military, have been using this method for years. But until video games as interview tools become mainstream, it will be interesting to see how predictive the games results are and whether there are any
hidden and potentially discriminatory aspects of the process.
Interviews and unemployment can be stressful; a Washington employment law attorney can help reduce some of the stress of dealing with unemployment benefits and appeals while you continue