Hess Associates

Why do Companies Post Fake Job Ads?

There is no doubt that this happens – some companies will even admit this is you speak with them.
For a candidate looking for employment, or for a recruiting agency offering their search services,
this can be beyond frustrating and a total waste of time. The company is aware that job seekers will submit resumes to them in vain. They will also have to field many recruitment marketing calls for positions which one assumes must be hard to fill, since the postings never go away.
What companies are we talking about? Both hiring and recruiting companies (aka companies and agencies).

Why does this happen? There are a variety of reasons.

1. Companies and agencies buy job slots from trade organizations, employment sites, social media sites, and when they no longer have these open jobs (either they have been filled or there is a change In budget or downturn in business), they post ‘fake’ jobs to maintain their slots. At some point, things will turn around, and they can then post ‘real’ jobs in these slots. Just taking care of business.

2. Posting non-existent jobs serves as a good way for some companies to accumulate resumes for future reference. Why search for candidates when the need arises when all they have to do is consult their Applicant Tracking System (ATS)? This is very helpful for hiring companies, as a stockpile of good candidates will lessen the need to pay recruiting fees.

3. This also keeps the company’s profile relevant and active, serving as good publicity, making it look as if they are growing, and interesting. For the recruiter, it makes it look as if they are in great demand.

4. Bear in mind that some positions are very difficult to fill, due to a rare specialty requirement, government restriction on importing experts from abroad, unrealistic salary offerings, geographically unappealing job location. These are posted, remain on line, and are real.
As a recruiter, you may not want to take these on anyway.

How do you sort this out?

As a candidate, follow up your application with a phone call – a company or recruiter willing to engage
In a meaningful discussion about the position in question will clarify everything. Make sure your job search is not totally dependent on on-line postings. In some cases, it might behoove you not to apply directly yourself, but to see if a recruiting agency can represent you to the company. They may have better access to the hiring manager’s ear, and/or ascertaining the status of the position.

As a recruiter, call the company.

In this on-line world, the telephone is still the best device – nothing like speaking with a real person
to get to the heart of the matter. If no one wants to speak with you, you probably don’t want to work with them anyway.

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