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  Reply # 1493520 16-Feb-2016 23:19
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dejadeadnz:

 

graemeh:

 

 

 

My final peeve for today is those managers who complain they can't find qualified and motivated staff for jobs that only pay barely above the minimum wage.  Why would a motivated intelligent individual want to work in an industry that pays so poorly?

 

 

I see your point but you need to distinguish between managers/employees who are (often) forced to offer ratbag salaries by their employers and employers (usually SMEs) who constantly wish to shift all training and development costs to other people by insisting that someone has to have X amount of experience. The latter group usually always consist of unmitigated cheapskates backed by the likes of the EMA and other employers' advocacy groups (I sadly have to deal with these people a lot for my job), whose apparent sole purpose for existence is to depress the employment market as much as possible and to pay as little as possible.

 

I'll also say one thing about corporates: there are plenty of things wrong with them but if you are looking at professional roles, at least most of them pay (at a minimum) a pretty fair middling salary, usually more. I have nothing but contempt for, for example, suburban law firms and accountancy firms that expect their staff to generate 300K in fees and then pay them 60K a year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's crazy. Graduates starting at the big law firms in London a week after coming down from University are on $100,000 equivalent.

 

It probably happens less here but many firms in the UK are still run like old partnerships and so many people I know were expected to work for decades on paltry salaries on the off chance that they managed to get to 45 without offending any of the existing partners, their wives, children etc etc and would get offered partnership and equity in the business. The saddest ones are the employees at 55 who have failed to make the grade or annoyed the wrong people or whatever and do not get offered it, retiring at 65 as 'Senior Associate' or something of that ilk.






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  Reply # 1493614 17-Feb-2016 08:22
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I [very much] dislike HR as I view them as a massive drain on resource. They produce absolutely nothing (except headaches) and swan around in an arrogant manner. The real rort they've managed to establish where I work is having a presence on every job interview (whether internal or external) which means a bunch of them get to zip around the country and claim all sorts of expenses.


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1493853 17-Feb-2016 12:11
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Dratsab:

 

I [very much] dislike HR as I view them as a massive drain on resource. They produce absolutely nothing (except headaches) and swan around in an arrogant manner. The real rort they've managed to establish where I work is having a presence on every job interview (whether internal or external) which means a bunch of them get to zip around the country and claim all sorts of expenses.

 

 

That is because they are not being used properly.

 

They should be the first port of call for every hiring request because their role ought to be to ensure that the company has uniform policies applied, does not break any of the multifarious laws covering employment, advertises correctly and most cost effectively and so forth.

 

Their presence in interviews is to make sure unskilled managers do not ask questions that will bring the company into the Tribunal or worse, to make sure that there is a quality benchmark for interviews that is maintained company wide and to ensure candidates are treated fairly.

 

However, if your HR department is (as usual) filled with people who just fell into the jobs and have no particular qualification or experience then this may well  not be happening.

 

This sort of organisation with recognised HR qualifications and continuing professional development is what is missing here. There is an NZ organisation but pretty much anyone can join and no exams etc are required.








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  Reply # 1493941 17-Feb-2016 12:49
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Geektastic:

 

 

 

That's crazy. Graduates starting at the big law firms in London a week after coming down from University are on $100,000 equivalent.

 

It probably happens less here but many firms in the UK are still run like old partnerships and so many people I know were expected to work for decades on paltry salaries on the off chance that they managed to get to 45 without offending any of the existing partners, their wives, children etc etc and would get offered partnership and equity in the business. The saddest ones are the employees at 55 who have failed to make the grade or annoyed the wrong people or whatever and do not get offered it, retiring at 65 as 'Senior Associate' or something of that ilk.

 

 

The pay these days for law grads in London is much reduced. And the competition for traineeships is fierce. Your description for how law firms work is bang on though and it's the same (and actually worse) here. As an informed consumer (ex-lawyer, big law firm refugee who engages external advice for my work), I resent the way law firms operate for -- more than anything else -- the impact upon the quality and pricing of their work. Just some random examples:

 

 

 

     

  1. When I was at a big firm, on the average day I would spend probably 7 to 8.5 hours of work to actually work in the business of giving legal advice and doing legal work. Unfortunately my typical days were 8.30am to 10.00pm (some of the work was done at home). 
  2. If you are wondering what my remaining hours involved, they were usually spent sitting in on meetings for which I could not charge the client any billable hours (and we of course had monthly and yearly billable targets to make), doing promotional work like writing client newsletters/case notes etc, entertaining/sucking up to clients, and doing other assorted rubbish.

 

All that led to a vicious cycle where frankly everyone was dead tired, feeling exploited and, most importantly, it became clear that the environment rewarded rainmakers who could bring in work through personal relationships far more than people capable of doing the hard analysis and problem solving but unwilling/unable to do (2). Unlike your average legal consumers, people like me aren't easily sweet-talked into accepted crap advice and frankly we avoid engaging a lot of the usual big firm teams as a result. The way the law firms here operate advantages only the senior partners.

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1493965 17-Feb-2016 13:12
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As an IT contractor working in the Auckland market I attend a fair few interviews every year for contract work.  My contracts typically range from 3 months to a couple of years, but the general rule seems to have become that you are always employed on a 3 month contract with a good chance of an extension (reading between the lines "..... if you are any good and fit into the team").  I have also done quite a bit of interviewing for contractors over the years to work in a project or team so I know both sides of the fence.

 

Totally agree with the comments on Recruitment Agents.  The amount of good ones I have come across I can count on one hand, and when you consider how much they are earning for every contractor they place it is really frustrating (typically $15ph so for a 3 month contract = $7,200 for generally doing very little).

 

I also love those interviews where I get to meet an HR person as well as the project person.  They I get to answer such questions as:

 

"What are your strengths and weaknesses?"

 

"My ability to sit through interviews with HR people is a real strength, and my desire not to answer that question is probably a weakness"

 

"Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?" (I kid you not)

 

"In another contract"

 

"Describe your career path so far and how it relates to this role"

 

"I've worked as a contractor for a number of years and you're looking for a contractor"

 

*slams head into desk and exits interview as quickly as possible*




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  Reply # 1494057 17-Feb-2016 14:50
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Horseychick:

 

 

 

I also love those interviews where I get to meet an HR person as well as the project person.  They I get to answer such questions as:

 

"What are your strengths and weaknesses?"

 

"My ability to sit through interviews with HR people is a real strength, and my desire not to answer that question is probably a weakness"

 

....

 

 

 

 

To me, what you are describing is exactly what Geektastic was saying about HR people that don't understand their roles/jobs. IMO, having contractors being interviewed by HR is a big mistake. What the hiring manager should make sure is that he/she has been adequately advised (or he or she knows enough about procurement/contractor management) to produce a contract that adequately balances the risks and benefits for the hiring organisation. More importantly, the hiring manager should have performed a thorough supplier/contractor due diligence. Instead, all that I am seeing is a bunch of people going through the motions/process for a situation that isn't quite comparable with hiring a contractor.

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1494100 17-Feb-2016 15:32
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dejadeadnz:

 

all that I am seeing is a bunch of people going through the motions/process

 

 

 

 

From a technical perspective I could design a simple web form process that harnesses the collective knowledge and abilities of HR staff.

 

Industry wise this looks like the next to be automated (thinking supermarket self service vs checkout operators here), at least at the initial lower screening level.

 

 

 

 

 

Most of it is straight tick boxes for pre prerequisites:

 

 

 

Do you have a Degree of some sort?

 

Do you have x type of industry certification?

 

Do you have an NZ Drivers License?

 

Are you and idiot?

 

Have you been to jail multiple times?

 

Did you get the sack from your last position in a dishonourable discharge manner?

 

Do you like rugby?

 

Do you like more rugby? (culture question)

 

 

 

 

 

And then switch to key word searches of text fields, eg for a Project Manager position:

 

 

 

 

 

What was your last job title:

 

Project Manager

 

Keyword Search ("Project Manager" = Pass)

 


Project Team Lead

 

Keyword Search ("Project Manager" = Fail)




 

 

 

 


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