Neither Snow nor Rain nor Atrocious UI

by theaudiencespeaks

Being, as of yet, in the unpleasant position of under-employment, I am once again, with much trepidation, wading out into the murky waters of the job market bog. It was suggested to me that I should apply to be a mail carrier with it’s decent pay, secure institutional benefits, and active lifestyle. I thought it was a fine idea, so I attempted to apply, and quickly found out I do not have the resolve for such a job.

I have to hand it to our mail carriers. In order for them to get a job today, they have to persevere through an application process that can take hours to complete. And to be sure you have a strong personal constitutional, you probably have to complete it in one go as the application does not have any apparent save function. By the way, you may actually want that save function so that you can easily pause and return later after the need to go look up invasive information. What invasive information? Why, information regarding the exact dates of beginning and discontinuing employment, exact dates of any traffic violations and car accidents over the past five years, and the exact dates of occupying your previous residencies. Oh and just in case you think you get by with close approximation, we want you to click this button beneath an agreement that states in no uncertain terms that you may be arrested for falsifying any information on this forum which we will verify using an independently conducted background check.

And if any of that didn’t scare you off, let me not pass over the fact that the whole application is created in SAP… Yeah… You know… that very businessy (and somewhat outdating) management software typically used to manage inventories and pricing information and conducting other routine business functions, and is known for oftentimes having unintuitive UI design. Yeah, the entire application is a bland and ill-optimized form, blocking you from accessing your browser’s spell checking, forcing you to manually retype in the city and state of your previous employers instead of utilizing autofill or drop down menu’s, and generally making you more aware by the moment that there has to be a better way to design these things.

Yep, I couldn’t abide it. I often find the application is a decent indicator of the quality of job, but it is a fickle rule of thumb that I’ll probably make a graph of some day. If the application was horribly designed, I generally take it that the actual workflow of the job will likewise be chaotic and poorly thought out. I would love to jump in and help to make things better, but I also realize that it is the way it is because of mounds of governmental regulation specifically regarding this one entity, USPS, and frankly, I don’t feel the desire to dig into the endless pile of document standards required to take on that kind of task, and I don’t want to be arrested along the way for forgetting exactly which day I got into a car wreck four and a half years ago.

I was going to write more about the generally toxic HR culture that is engulfing the american Job market, but I think I will save that for next week. I’m fighting depression just to write this much today, and you don’t deserve the torture of reading through another 1500 word diatribe today. So… Yeah. Not much of a closing point till next post. Sorry.

The Audience

And for the brief post script that you can skip if you aren’t into the more meta parts of this blog.

Got two more “likes” on my last blog post, or was it three? Two of them came from people who point to the same blog, some aggregator of financial/motivational advice along with some more hokey motivational materials for sale on how to make money with your blog. The other like came from a lady that looked promisingly like a real human being, but upon further inspection of their blog, it was filled with little more than vague aphorisms, and promotional material for their life coaching business. A business that in my completely unprofessional experience, is in dire need of a design coach. When the layout and format of each article changes in weird unexpected ways, and advertisements are wholesale peppered right in between lines of body text, I get the urge to begin running posts through plagiarism checking software and publishing the results. But, I’m not one to engage in that amount of shitstorm right now.