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Seven Red Flags to Watch Out For During a Job Search

You were longing for independence. You were daydreaming about the time when you would have a job and maintain your living independently from your parents, college loans, and so on. And finally, after spending some time at post-graduate internships, you are finally looking for your dream job. At first, you feel incredibly excited; you think that you will find the job quickly. And often, you are lucky enough to do so. If not, your excitement slowly dies down – and because you may still have some college loans you have to pay, you are eager to take any job. That’s the time when your attention weakens, and you can end up having the worst working experience in your life.

Avoiding getting a lousy job is relatively easy if you watch out for the red flags. Checking out the job description or paying close attention to what recruiters say is as important as editing your essay was back in the day. But getting a “C” simply for not hiring professional essay editors is not as bad as having to spend time on the job that you hate. Those Studyfy writers really do have a perfect career!

But what are the red flags to watch out for on your job search? Is it actually something that recruiters say? Is it something in the job description or contract clauses? As a matter of fact, having strong intuition allows you to see them clearly, even those that are hidden well. But knowledge of the most common ones helps greatly.


A Vague Job Description

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The first step in your job seeker’s experience would be checking out various vacancies. And the job description can be the very first major red flag. While job descriptions are essential for attracting a prospective employee, dozens of employers get it absolutely wrong.

You may think that a wrongfully written job description is no big deal, as what matters is the actual work conditions. But keep in mind that your prospective manager most likely wrote it with help from the HR team. So, avoid applying for the job if the description is:


  • poorly written;
  • feels like an apparent copy-and-paste text;
  • leaves you unsure what the position involves;
  • contains an unrealistic list of skills;
  • contains gendered language.


If the description is poorly written, it showcases the company’s attitude towards a prospective employee—just as much as a copy-and-paste text. A vague description of responsibilities signifies that you may end up doing something that you are not skilled in. An unrealistic list of skills shows that the employer doesn’t know what they want.

Finally, the gendered language signifies that the company is biased towards prospective recruits. Your professional skills and work experience won’t mean a thing for the employer who believes that women shouldn’t be drivers or that men shouldn’t be receptionists.


Awkward Recruitment Process

Even though we live in the 2020s, there’s a horrific number of recruiters who seem to be stuck in the 20th century. With all the HR tools that can make the job application process in a few easy steps, some still ask applicants to go through several interviews and make several test assignments.

While many things depend on the position you want to occupy, the main three steps are an interview with a recruiter, an interview with the head of the department (or CEO if it’s a small business), and a test assignment, if necessary. If you have to go through a lengthier, inefficient, and frustrating application process, opt out of it. If the recruitment process is that difficult, imagine what working for the company is like.


High Turnover

If you monitor specific positions and see that one company publishes and unpublishes the same vacancy repeatedly, it’s better not to apply for it. But even if you do, don’t forget to ask the recruiter whether the position is new and if there’s been a high turnover for the role.

A high turnover for the position is a major red flag. It signifies that either a company or a specific department has a toxic culture. More precisely, it means that working conditions for the role will be unbearable. And unless you prefer unnecessary challenges, it’s better to avoid jobs like that.


Lack of a Clear Career Path



One of the main questions you should ask during the interview is what career opportunities you will have within the company. If the recruiter fails to answer the question or gives you some vague reply, it means that you’re offered a dead-end role. There will be no further promotion. And a dead-end position is not a wise career move.


A Salary Offer Is Lower Than Advertised Initially


When discussing your salary expectations, you suddenly learn that the actual salary is lower than the job description. It’s a huge red flag, and you shouldn’t buy into the interviewer’s promises of earning potential. The difference between offered and advertised salary suggests that more unpleasant surprises await you.


Poor Communication

Communication with the recruiter is tricky, as it depends on your perception of it. But there are several red flags that you should watch out for. A recruiter shouldn’t ghost you by simply stopping answering your questions. You must be provided with precise information about the application steps.


If the recruiter ghosts you or doesn’t provide you with the necessary information, opt out. Other red flags include communicating at odd hours or sending important information via text messages or social media.

Appalling Interview Process

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How a candidate is treated during the interview indicates how they will be treated as an employee. The first red flag you should watch out for is changing the interview appointment several times. The second major red flag is when an interviewer treats you dismissively with no apparent reason.

If you have an interview appointment at 2:00 pm, but you are being made to wait for more than what’s acceptable, it showcases the respect employees are treated with. Other red flags include the recruiter being distracted or seemingly uninterested in the interview. Or if the interviewer tries making you feel uncomfortable during the process.


Final Thoughts


If you watch out for the above-mentioned red flags, you can avoid getting employed by a company with a toxic culture. But that list of signs is incomplete, and the best thing you can do is trust your instincts. Aside from that, you should also check out the reviews for the company you are applying to – it may help you get a clearer picture of what to expect.

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