Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Our Brave New Paperless World

So, I've recently been on the prowl for a second job to help supplement the income that the state feels the need to give to my ex-wife (based solely on the fact that she wanted to keep our children and I had no rights to protest because I don't have a uterus). It's been difficult. Finding a second job usually is. Most prospective employers lose interest the second they understand that they are going to be your second job. They view you as a call-off in the making.

Yet, perhaps the worst part of this process has been the fact that most of the corporate companies have gone paperless.

"I'm sorry sir, we don't actually have applications. You'll need to apply online."

Now, in a blog that centers around the stupidest statement I hear each day, this is bound to seem controversial. While the environmentalist in me wants to tip his hat at this gesture from corporate America, the pragmatist in me has to wonder...

As we always do, let us begin with the obvious. Not everyone has access to the internet. Obviously, I do. I use it and abuse it like an adolescent boy discovering himself in the shower.

Yet, not everyone is so privileged. In the vast world of the service industry (and those who staff it), there really are people that can't afford the internet. Even more surprising, there are people that don't know how to use a computer. I swear. I've met them.

And, maybe it's just me, but filling out an application is pain in the ass enough. Doing that exercise in futility online? Jesus wept. Listen, I can't type. Sure, I hunt and peck about 100 words a minute, but trying to fill out an online form of any kind leaves me feeling like I would have been further ahead to just jam a No. 2 lead pencil into my eyeball and hope for the best.

Have you ever filled out an application online? I have. The vast majority of them come with a disclaimer that reads along the lines of: this process may take upwards of 45 minutes. Please allow that amount of time, as you can not save your progress and closing the window will result in unsaved data. Because, yeah, I have 45 minutes of my life to devote to applying for a job. I can't even remember the last interview I was on that lasted that long!

And, you know what really chaps my ass? After you jump through these hoops and finally land an interview, whats the first thing they ask you to do? Fill out out a hard copy of the application you went half-blind over, filling out on your computer.

Tonight, some pompous asswipe is congratulating himself on the decision to take his company's application process paperless. He's made them look environmentally friendly, despite the fact that their half ton of shredded documents are hauled away by a company that will burn the refuse instead of recycling it. He'll jump in his BMW, mindless that the purchase stole jobs from a struggling American workforce and head home thinking he did a righteous deed. Moron.

We've learned to recycle paper for a reason. Perhaps if the government stepped in and forced these conglomerate whores to separate their recyclables from their trash, we'd be getting somewhere.

I'm no tree hugging hippie. Yet, I drink a great deal of beer and my girlfriend is pretty conscious of the environment. As a result, I'm treated to a twice a week ritual of hauling out the bottles and cans and listening to the mentally retarded lady that sits on her back porch behind us screeching "Oh my God! That's a lot of bottles!" Thank you for making me feel even more like the alchoholic than I already consider I might be, sweetheart.

In this day and age, going paperless isn't the answer. Being smart and assuming responsibility is. If corporations really wanted to help the environment, they would stop sponsoring NASCAR and donate those funds to research to take us off the oil tit. But, nobody wants that. It ends wars and creates an economy that is fair across the board. Can't have that.

We've raped this planet like a drunken high school girl at a frat party. We're suddenly going to save it by forcing people to apply for just-above-minimum-wage-jobs online? Give me a fucking break. The same places asking me to do this crap are the same places where the cash register spits out a receipt that I have no use for. You want to save a few trees? Eat a beaver.

The reality is that these companies aren't actually doing this because it has an impact on the planet. It saves them money. The cost of printing out 1,000 applications vs the cost of running a website? Thats a no-brainer.

Reality check. Most of the jobs I've been applying for are ones that I've found through the want-ads of the local newspaper. How, exactly, do you justify having a paperless application process when you are advertising in a newspaper? Show of hands, America...who besides me recycles their newspaper? Bueller? Bueller? Anyone?

I shouldn't have to jump through hoops to get a job. It's great that your company wants to put on a face and pretend like it gives a shit. But, no thanks. I'm a bit jaded, a bit scarred, and I'm not sure that I want to work for you if you're jumping on the bandwagon. I'm going to go out on a limb and bet that you guys get some type of federal kickback for being 'paperless', which you aren't.

Hey...maybe you can just scan the barcode tattooed on the back of my head and decide if I'd be a good fit for your company, or if I need Logan Runned.

No comments:

Post a Comment