Former Google Employee Applies To 50 Jobs That He’s Overqualified For And Tracks The Alarming Number Of Rejections

He came to an interesting realization about what hiring managers and recruiters are looking for when they see a resume on their desk.

Young happy man applying for job and giving his CV to a manager during the interview in the office. Drazen Zigic / Shutterstock

A former Google employee admitted that he's having a hard time finding a job despite his impressive resume.

In a TikTok video, a career content creator named Jonathan Javier revealed that despite working for some of the top tech companies in the world, his reputation wasn't something other corporations wanted or cared about, judging by the number of application rejections that came his way.

He applied for 50 jobs despite being overqualified for them and tracked the alarming number of rejections.

In his video, Javier showed a spreadsheet he'd created to track all the jobs he'd applied to at different companies, the date he applied, and whether or not he'd heard back for an interview or had been rejected. He pointed out that despite applying to 50 jobs that he was overqualified for, he only heard back from 48% of them.


Out of the 48% of responses, most, if not all, were rejections. This is shocking since Javier admitted that he worked at highly respected and coveted companies like Apple and Microsoft. He explained that this began as an experiment to see if recruiters would interview him if he was an "overqualified candidate."



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"Now, I did the same thing with another resume where I heard back from 30% of them. I've gotten rejected by 100% of companies so far even though I worked at companies like Google, Instagram, PWC, and PBS," Javier noticed. "I'm waiting on more data, but this actually tells us a couple of things."

One of the first things Javier observed while doing this experiment was that working at a big company didn't quite matter to hiring managers. He pointed out that experience matters more, and it's better if that experience matches the job that you are applying for. The second observation was that the job market is incredibly difficult right now.

Former Google Employee Applies To 50 Jobs And Tracks The Alarming Number Of RejectionsPhoto: juststock / Canva Pro


According to NBC News, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the U.S. economy added 275,000 jobs in February 2024, up from a revised 229,000 in January and above the 198,000 expected by economists. However, despite the growing number of jobs, the unemployment rate is steadily rising.

"We’re seeing that the job market is getting cooler," said Guy Berger, director of economic research at the Burning Glass Institute, a labor research group. He told NBC News, "It’s still not a bad one, but it’s looking more like what we saw in the mid-2010s — which was not a terrible job market but still a worse one than what we saw later that decade or what we had in the post-pandemic period."

Javier explained that recruiters are seeing hundreds of applications daily.

"For me, whenever I put a job break out, I get about 30 to 50 every single day," he said. "So again, everybody, it's sometimes not your resume. It's sometimes that there's so many qualified candidates that you might just be candidate number two and number three."

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In another TikTok video, Jonathan continued his experiment and explained that he applied to 50 jobs with two similar resumes. The first resume showed that he was overqualified, while the other showed that he was qualified. Jonathan quickly received 24 rejections for the overqualified resume, while he received 15 rejections for the qualified resume. Neither got him any interviews.



Something interesting that Javier noted was how fast he was rejected with his overqualified resume.

From this, he observed that overqualified candidates are often overlooked in favor of candidates that fit 100% of the qualities they are looking for. 


"That's unfortunate because it creates a bias for people who might be older or who might have a lot more experience, but they're trying to transition into a specific industry or a new position," he said. 

In research from global staffing firm Robert Half, HR managers said 42% of resumes they receive are from candidates who don't meet the job requirements. In a separate survey of workers, 78% admitted they would submit for a role when they don't match all the qualifications.

Javier's experiment is a sobering reminder of how flawed the job market and economy are and how much harder candidates have to work just to land an interview. This means that applicants have to approach finding a job strategically and adapt to an ever-changing market. 


Qualifications and experience should matter most when it comes to finding a job but often seem overshadowed by the biases that exist in hiring practices.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.