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Editor’s note: This week Alex gets back to his main problem – job hunting. Do you think he will make a goof postman?

This week’s article will return to one of the main focus points of my posts; news of my job search. Recently I have been assigned to a company called Avanta who deal with more specific job roles to the given person and future opportunities. I have spoken previously of the mediocre and inconsistent help you get at the Job Centre itself, although a few of the staff have their hearts in the right place. Another issue was with their technology, and this week I have spoken to a Job Centre advisor about their in-house machines that are supposed to assist you in local job searches. The advisor explained further about the fundamental software issues that ignore geographical search rely on the key words (e.g. Admin jobs), and deemed them pretty useless unless you like to travel a lot. This was what I already knew so it came to no surprise, but it does highlight the problem of the disgruntled staff who have become complicit and acceptant of poor equipment. The advisor I spoke to also said they were supposed to be getting brand new machines in January. It is now nearly August and the tired old pieces of junk are still there.

However, the Avanta work programme, which I will be attending weekly from here on in, seems set up to be firstly more personal:I say perfect, Job Hunter. The advisors want to get to know you as well as information on your work history.  What I’m most interested in is as to what doors they can unlock. This is not to disregard any effort on my part, but so far I’ve had only a handful of true job interview scenarios, and the majority of them are with call centre companies. Now, the problem I have with that sort of job is mostly based on how a lot of employees get paid by commission and the pressures are needlessly high, and hyped up. Also, I find it much easier to deal with people and their issues face to face than over the phone, as body language is much easier to read and adhere to accordingly than that of an angry phone call. This is why I have sent a lot of application forms and C.Vs to retail companies, catering companies and even pubs and bars. It’s a preference, but I think a justified one.

Perhaps I shouldn’t be so stubborn about the idea of working in a call centre, though for me it all doesn’t add up.  At least, the lack of a solid contract in a lot of these places certainly doesn’t inspire me. Instead, this week I have applied for a job as a postman, which is much more up my street (there’s probably a joke there somewhere). The strange and mysteriously tantalising thing about this job is that I’m not yet allowed to know the actual company it is for. This is due to the recent privatisation of the Royal Mail, and so for some reason left unexplained to me, I have to wait and hear back from them to find out who it is. Racking my brain I’d say it’s mostly likely UPS or Parcel Force, but I would have thought I have the right to know what and who I am applying for. There’s no big mystery really, it’s for the position of a postman, yet the major postal delivery services must have slight differences within the companies and their benefits. Nevertheless we shall wait and see, but I can’t help but be left thinking; what if I didn’t want to work for their company, whoever it is, in particular? Furthermore and finally on the subject, shouldn’t I be able to learn and understand everything I want to about the company, its current condition and future prospect? This is especially since some Royal Mail employees are going to be losing their jobs and the union members are already in a state of panic.

I suppose the only real important question is will they offer me an interview? Here’s hoping.

photo credit: snaps via photopin cc