Thursday, May 31, 2007

First Return Whisper From the Job Market

I AM SCHEDULED TO interview next Thursday at a local magazine publisher/trade show company. Oddly enough, the office is within walking distance of the career counseling outfit I used. This is only a 15-minute drive via back roads.

I found this position online, rather than via direct contact with hiring managers as per my program guidelines. The career counselors state that online ads yield far fewer jobs than networking directly with hiring managers or those close to them. Still, they do advise using a blend of tactics, as long as the time invested in each method corresponds to the odds it will work. Pure percentages. This poker degenerate can appreciate that. So I do look at online ads during the week, but not all day.

I got a call back early Wednesday afternoon, which gave me some hope as I had sent the note and resume first thing that morning to a contact with a West Coast area code. The screener interview went well. The woman who called told me straight out that they wanted to have me in, then asked me some screener questions (she actually used this term). I would have imagined the opposite sequence of events, so I relaxed, feeling I had a bit of an advantage.

The only point where I felt I had to do a quick save was on the topic of the subject matter. She asked me if I had any experience working with medical material. I replied that I have extensive scientific-journal layout experience, as well as several years' worth of psychology copyediting under my belt, and that I used American Medical Association style for some of it. I covered many of the desired proficiencies in the ad via my cover letter, though, so I suspect — as per India Amos's friend in the comment to this post — my experience and flexibility will make for a short learning curve.

The search continues, though. I got a good letter out to Dow Jones for a desktop publishing position that was another close match to my resume. This gig would be at Harborside Financial Center in Jersey City, so my commuting time would still be fairly long and a two-step process. There is also the slight possibility that, if hired, I might eventually become an employee of billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch. Are stellar benefits worth working for the Devil? I might just have an opportunity to find out. For now, though, I am looking forward to this first interview.

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