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Thread: how do I contact a state agency about a job?

  1. #1
    Member CosmicMojo's avatar
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    how do I contact a state agency about a job?

    I applied to be a writer for a state housing agency. My most recent past job was as a technical writer for a private planning firm, so I have the expereince. But the ad called for a degree in English. I think my skills would be perfect, plus I know about housing, which most people with an English degree wouldn't know.

    They readvertised the position, indicating they didn't like any of the applicants, including me! When my career counselor read my cover letter, she said I'd definitely get called in for an interview. I didn't get called for an interview and I can't help but wonder if it's because I didn't have the degree they called for and I know sometimes HR people are very literal and don't see how skills can transfer. I'm convinced if the people in the housing department saw my expereince, they'd look over the fact that I don't have an English degree.

    I don't know if I should try to contact the HR people and ask if I can reapply, if I should try to get around the HR people, or just accept that they just aren't that into me!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    I ran into a similar situation coming out of grad school. A state agency had an opening, and I applied. Something in either my state application form or my resume didn't match up exactly with HR's checklist, so I got bounced before the interviews started (I still haven't figured it out - I met every requirement in the advertisement). I'd managed to make contact with the woman who would've been my boss before I applied to ask a few questions about the job (the director of my grad program knew her), so I was able to call her after my rejection to see if she could shed some light on the situation...she couldn't - her office's relationship with the agency's HR deparment was pretty touchy at the time, due to similar occurances. However, it was enough to get my name out there with her, so when another opening came up a couple of months later, she made sure I got an interview (and eventually I got the job). If you can figure out someone at the agency to contact directly - I'd suggest you do that, even if it's just along the lines of "hey - mind if I ask you a couple of questions about your opening". Every little bit helps.
    Last edited by Bubba; 07 Apr 2006 at 9:20 AM.

  3. #3
    Member CosmicMojo's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bubba
    If you can figure out someone at the agency to contact directly - I'd suggest you do that, even if it's just along the lines of "hey - mind if I ask you a couple of questinos about your opening". Every little bit helps.
    Thanks for helping.
    I checked the staff directory and didn't know anyone...also it's a huge agency and the staff directory didn't give enough of a title for me to know who to call outside of HR.
    I also know the whole point of HR is to keep people from bothering the staff about jobs, so I'd feel awkward. But I'm convinced my situation is just like you described, where the staff would like my expereince, but it doesn't match up exactly with HR's checklist, so it never gets forwarded to staff.

    Also, I know a lot of public agencies have specific rules such as "you must interview at least 5 people," so maybe they do want to talk to me, but need to find 4 other people. OK, pretty wishful thinking...

    I think I"ll just have to call HR today, say I noticed the readvertisment, ask the status of my application, and stress I"d like a chance to show I can do the job. Unless the great brain trust here comes up with something better.
    TIA!

  4. #4
    Cyburbian big_g's avatar
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    I have always found that trying to get noticed by state agency HR people is tough. Especially if you are relatively lean on experience or don't have a graduat degree.

    I once applied for an entry leve position with the Michigan Dept of Nat Res and it was six months before I even recieved a rejection letter ! With some state agencies your lucky to get a response at all. Gov employment screening processes are terribly slow, mystifying and make little sense to me.

    But don't give up. Something's gotta give sooner or later .

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