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Forums » Smalltalk » AMA - HR Generalist + Administrative!

So! Short introduction about myself.

I've been in the workforce for quite a while (11 years), but the bulk of it's been in administrative and half of it has been in Human Resources in a hiring agency, on-job training. Only two years ago I started officially studying for the qualifications on my own earned dime, it's going well.

My tasks spanned on a broad spectrum from being the sole HR Generalist for a headcount of over 150 at the time, and whatever else my Director wanted me to squeeze in at the cost of sanity, as is the tale of every cog in the corporate wheel.

So, what do I bring to the AMA table?

What burning questions do you personally have about the recruitment process that you'd like answered? What insights behind the mysterious curtain can I tell? Because I will snitch on the entire corporate system. Like Mickey Mouse I will rat on them all. Like Chuck E. Cheese I'll tell you all the secrets to what they look out for in candidates.

Yes, I'll tell you why that company never got back to you on your application.

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Auberon Moderator

This is not me inviting a political debate, but itching to satisfy a genuine curiosity.

I'm wondering how much the so-called "quiet quitting" trend (or as some in the labor movement call it, "acting your wage") is actually impacting the workforce, and if so, what are the prevailing HR strategies for addressing it? There seems to -- from the employee perspective -- be an awful lot of push back for people doing exactly what their job description says. So, I'm wondering how much of that is manufactured outrage from the media and how much of it is a genuine point of contention/detriment from the other perspective. I'm really interested to know what that looks like from your end.
hexblading Topic Starter

Yes. A hard-hitting question. Yes.

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So let me tell you a story.

When high-ranking managers finally had their fill of being worked like horses on top of having their bonuses cut for things that were not their fault, they started looking for greener pastures. Boy, did that send quakes among management and to me especially, because I was doing half her work. We knew our director had his head in the clouds, because he's the type of management that goes like 'oh, you cover their job! Compensation? What's that? That's already in your salary, isn't it?' And we're already fill to bursting.

I will not pretend to speak for other establishments; maybe they have better practices than we do, but that manager quit in 2019 and last I heard they're still struggling to fill in her role. She left in huge shoes to fill, all because management didn't pay her for what she was worth. We struggled, and I was juggling her tasks while simultaneously not being qualified to handle her work while not being able to drop them, either. It was a very sink-or-swim atmosphere, but you're a team, and you have to haul butt.

And that's nothing to say about the engineering team, who were equally worked to the bone by the same director. He refused to pay them overtime, made them stay until upwards of midnight, yet demanded them report to work before 8:30am.

So yeah. To me, personally, quiet quitting works. If it doesn't get a message across to management, it lets everyone else who comes in knows that there's a high turnover rate and that the place you're applying for is a major red flag. When that happens, you should set boundaries before they are set for you. "How so?" Well, if enough people up and leave, the management's going to start taking in just about anyone who shows promise to fill in the blanks to keep work output running. And then you can just tell. There's no cohesion, everyone's awkward, someone's trying to stir up smalltalk, that other person wants to be left alone, the senior who's been there forever is tired of training the 7th trainee this month.

"But Hex! How can you tell?"

Haha. Ha.
Don't ask.
Auberon Moderator

Firstly, it's such a relief to see an HR person consider the employees' best interests rather than strictly the company's.

As someone who was once an on-call 24/7 AGM for two hotels who oversaw front desk for both AND housekeeping for one of the properties... I feel that being overworked thing in my bones. I always tried to hire employees at the highest wages I could manage (haha $8.50 which was $0.50 above min, and I had to FIGHT for it), but the turnover was brutal because the company was a "family" that frankly just did not care about us. My boss even told me straight up when I was promoted, "You will quickly find that you are not fairly compensated for this job." But hey, my pay doubled at the time. (Minimum wage is now higher than I made back then *laugh track*)

So glad to work for myself now gflkhjfghkj

What, in your opinion, would it take for the top dogs at your establishment to bounce back from this situation (aside from paying more money)? Do you think they even can walk this one back, or do you think they've burned all of their goodwill with the staff?
hexblading Topic Starter

Auberon wrote:
Firstly, it's such a relief to see an HR person consider the employees' best interests rather than strictly the company's.

As someone who was once an on-call 24/7 AGM for two hotels who oversaw front desk for both AND housekeeping for one of the properties... I feel that being overworked thing in my bones. I always tried to hire employees at the highest wages I could manage (haha $8.50 which was $0.50 above min, and I had to FIGHT for it), but the turnover was brutal because the company was a "family" that frankly just did not care about us. My boss even told me straight up when I was promoted, "You will quickly find that you are not fairly compensated for this job." But hey, my pay doubled at the time. (Minimum wage is now higher than I made back then *laugh track*)

So glad to work for myself now gflkhjfghkj

What, in your opinion, would it take for the top dogs at your establishment to bounce back from this situation (aside from paying more money)? Do you think they even can walk this one back, or do you think they've burned all of their goodwill with the staff?

I'm glad you found yourself out of that situation! Being worked like Santa's reindeers is no fun for anyone, and especially undercompensated as well... you have my sympathies. I meam, as HR, it's my duty to work in the interest of the employee as well as the company, but where priorities lie, they are always shifted towards the employee's welfare. Without staff, the company can't run. I'm sorry for the failings from other people that you had to go through all of that injustice.

I'll be straight up. Imho, management need to put their money where their mouth is, and start dealing out rightful compensation & benefits to keep staff around. One reason I left a job was because they provided me opportunities to branch out and grow sideways, but never up the ladder to be paid my proper wage. Just always below a certain level, and the scope and amount of responsibilities keep growing so they can trap you there with the promise of a growing wage that accumulates over the years, but I don't have that luxury to waste more years. Either you pay me or I'm out. So I was out, and got paid twice my wage.

There is no goodwill management can salvage from tired people who are worried about making their day to day, burnt out and on their wits' end. Sure, they can send out emails stating they're taking cuts to their bonuses and reducing expenditure to budgets to alleviate costs, but the main thing is, they are still spending on the company's dime. Lip service is all well and good, but either they front the money or they leave their workers alone.
I put in an application to *insert name of store or company here* and if I am lucky to hear back from them, all they says is, "I'm sorry, we're having trouble with the Administration right now, but we'll get back to you."

Of course, they never do get back to me. So...is this just another way of saying, "Sorry, we're not hiring right now. We don't need you." ????

Because if that's the case, why not just be straight with me instead of beating around the bush?
hexblading Topic Starter

Ultra-Knight wrote:
I put in an application to *insert name of store or company here* and if I am lucky to hear back from them, all they says is, "I'm sorry, we're having trouble with the Administration right now, but we'll get back to you."

Of course, they never do get back to me. So...is this just another way of saying, "Sorry, we're not hiring right now. We don't need you." ????

Because if that's the case, why not just be straight with me instead of beating around the bush?

One word: Litigation.

Anything said can and will be used against them. With the right angle and the right lawyer the likes of Saul Goodman, literally anything can be weaponized, so the best thing they can say during the hiring process is 'we're still in the middle of processing the applications, if there are any updates to your application, we will let you know as soon as possible'.

Of course, they're only humans working an extensive set of responsibilities themselves. They have other tasks to do than to get back to each applicant and tell them that they didn't qualify, which isn't part of their job scope. Very little people do this in practice, especially when the amount of applicants they receive per job post is massive. Sure, it's a kind gesture to be given closure, but personally I'd rather not be told I'm not good enough for a post that someone else snatched up. Look at it this way; your call minutes and cell data should only be spent on productive things. Never look back.

I've done some time as a recruiter myself, albeit at a shorter stint as compared to full-time recruiters who had brushes with people who demanded them to look for jobs outside of what we could provide them or else they'd bring them to court over false promises, when it was the candidate who mixed his recruiters up. It's a tough world out there, and everyone's trying to survive.

So we be mindful of what we say!
Kim Site Admin

A friend of mine recently went through almost a year of unemployment, and was applying for armloads of jobs daily.

Later, we found out through acquaintances in some of the companies he'd been aiming for, that they kept their want ads up continuously but were rarely actually hiring. This baffled me, since many of the sites they had those ads up on charge weekly.

Do you know why companies might do something like this?
hexblading Topic Starter

I do, and it would be unwise of me to publicly divulge the more illicit quiet practices of IRL people on RP boards.

Love you, Kim, and I wish I could tell you! But you know. Sometimes some things are best left not known.

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