Help Wanted

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Our Help Wanted participant, Jim, expresses his frustration over answering bogus or misleading job advertisements. Nick Corcodilos, the man behind and author of How Can I Change Careers?, sheds light on the problem.


Jim and Nick Corcodilos

Comments [20]

Evelyn from Jersey City, NJ

@Annie Schreffler - You have my e-mail address. Feel free to let me know if anyone has questions about the AXA IT positions.

Mar. 16 2010 01:01 PM
Annie Shreffler from WNYC

Several of your comments will be reposted on our Help Wanted Forum on Facebook:

Thanks to those of you who wrote here, especially if FB is blocked from work. We welcome your participation in any way possible.


Mar. 16 2010 12:21 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

I'll check back for more Q's we didn't get to during the segment - so please post.

But I'd like to leave you with this: You can't buy a job. Anyone who offers you a job for a fee is scamming you. Some might be able to help you, but you must check them out before spending a dime. The career industry is rife with scams today because people are desperate for work. As I pointed out in the segment, websites like Monster fill only 1-4% of jobs. The time you invest taking that gamble is better spent finding and hanging out with people who do the work you want to do - that's where jobs come from. And you actually get to MEET people and make new friends...

It's not all doom and gloom. But we've lost our common sense in our desperation. Think about the basics:

If anyone's gotten something useful out of my comments, I'm glad. It's not easy out there.

Mar. 16 2010 12:18 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@Jim: I believe there's a reason that news organizations aren't covering the career scams. It's simple: they are part of the problem. Companies like Wall Street Journal operate career sites that generate revenue from job listings and by charging folks for access. They run "advertorials" designed to look like "news articles" to draw business. CareerBuilder is connected to the biggest newpaper chains in the US - it's a revenue generator.

I wrote a long article about this questionable connection several years ago, titled Job-board Journalism: Selling out the American job hunter

8 years later, the main issue is the same: Conflict of interest. These publications are not interested in helping you find work. They are interested in selling job listings and access to them. This is why WNYC is such an important news outlet on these topics.

Mar. 16 2010 12:14 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@Bo Wildhax: A guy who worked for such a "career management firm" exposes how they operate here:

It's pretty frightful. Many of these firms get busted, only to quickly resurface under other names right down the street. Again: GET REFERENCES. Check a place out. And please, consider that the idea of "paying to get a job" is virtual nonsense. Jobs come from credible referrals from people who know you. Better to invest your time developing your circle of friends and contacts.

Mar. 16 2010 12:10 PM
Jim Warwick from Port Washington, NY

I am glad that some news organization is covering the 15% of Americans stymied by this unemployment situation. It is amazing to me, that with the exception of WNYC, no one media company is following with any regularity. The Department of Labor is a joke, that is costing us several billion a year.

Mar. 16 2010 12:08 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@TC: I think it's only a rare person who really needs help with a resume. Some services will charge you hundreds of dollars to produce a resume using a template that you can find in a resume book at your library. Keep this in mind: A manager spends about 30 seconds on the average resume. What matters is that you tailor it to that manager and briefly describe how you can help that maanger at the top of the page. This article tells a bit more:

Mar. 16 2010 12:07 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@Connie: That's the other side of many of the "job boards." They offer you something for free - washed-out job listings - and as soon as they get your address, they pummel you with offers to write your resume or other services. As I said during the segment, it's important to check references before you pay for any of these services. If you need a resume written, talk to friends, find out who they used. Better yet: Go to the library, get a book, and write your own!

Mar. 16 2010 12:04 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@Hugh Sansom: That's the test of any of these services. And the jobs on most of them are freely advailable elsewhere. That raises a bigger question: How old are the listings? Are they active and legit? Or are you wasting your time? Try the smaller niche boards and employers' OWN websites.

Mar. 16 2010 12:02 PM
Nick Corcodilos from New Jersey

@Robert T: You can read more about people's experiences with Ladders here:

Mar. 16 2010 12:01 PM
Bo Wildhax from New Jersey

This happened to me in 2005 -I went to a company that was going to do "introductions" for a $4000 fee that would reimbursed to me when I was at the job they placed me for a year. I didn't have a single interview after many hours of "counseling" and I was able to get a job through my own contacts. Still annoyed and through research found the company owner moved to the Westchester and is running the same scam.

Mar. 16 2010 12:01 PM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

Part of the problem is that the Department of Labor just isn't doing a thing. Age discrimination (what I really confront) is monstrous and there is *nothing* being done about -- it is not even on the radar of the people in Washington.

Mar. 16 2010 11:57 AM
TC from Manhattan

What about resume writing help? Is it worth it to pay for that service?

Mar. 16 2010 11:56 AM
Chris from Brooklyn, NY

Sorry, I filed a complaint with NYS Attorney General's Office.

Mar. 16 2010 11:56 AM

What about ""? I applied there and they keep sending me emails to sign up for their resume writing and personal recruiter type of programs?

Mar. 16 2010 11:54 AM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

For freelancers, there is a huge growth in bait-and-switch. I have had more difficulty than at any time in the past 20 years getting clients to pay.

Mar. 16 2010 11:52 AM
Chris from Brooklyn, NY

I was scammed by a company which claimed to have security jobs. They wanted me to pay to get multiple security licenses. They then promised jobs that didn't exist. They also claimed they were an education institute licensed by some bogus state organization.

I filed a complaint with the NYS Attorney and the company begrudgingly gave me my money back.

I should have known when I found they had no website, changed addresses, etc.

Mar. 16 2010 11:52 AM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY is like theLadders but for television and film.

You pay $14 or $15 per month for stuff that is online for free.

I google expressions from the job listings (which are displayed in part for all, but without contact or ID info) and *usually* find the listing elsewhere at no cost.

Mar. 16 2010 11:51 AM
Evelyn from Jersey City, NJ

I can't access Facebook from work, but if any of your Help Wanted participants are looking for IT work, AXA-Equitable is seriously looking for people.

Mar. 16 2010 11:50 AM
Robert T. from Manhattan

Thank you! In desperation, I've been tempted to sign up for The Ladders. It did smell a little fishy, but times are tough. Thanks to your advice, I just blocked them from my e-mail.

Mar. 16 2010 11:49 AM

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