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Recruiter Explains How 'Not Normal' The Current Job Market Is — 'It's Not You, It's Them'

Photo: David Gyung / Shutterstock
Woman job hunting

If you're looking for a job, you've felt it, and if you're not, you've certainly heard about it. Today's job market feels nightmarish on a level never seen before. 

It's easy to feel alone in this, or like it's your fault. But one recruiter has a message for professionals: "It's not you, it's them."

A recruiter explained how the current job market is not normal.

Even the experts agree, that our job market is not good, and it only seems to be getting worse. With round after round of layoffs making news and what seems to be an ever more insurmountable level of competition when applying for jobs, the prospect of finding and keeping a job is daunting.

It's easy to feel gaslit amid all this tumult, especially since experts, economists, politicians, and news stories continually tell us that the economy is booming and the job market has never been hotter. You're left with only one conclusion — you're the problem. 

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But recruiter and job market expert Bryan Creely is calling shenanigans on that notion. In a recent LinkedIn post, he shared just how totally bizarre the job market has gotten, and revealed in a follow-up video just what exactly is behind all this infuriating weirdness.

The recruiter called out several 'not normal' things about our current job market that are driving us all crazy.

"It's not normal to compete with 2,000 other candidates for a [bad] job," Creely wrote in a LinkedIn post. "It's not normal to go through seven rounds of interviews (only to get ghosted)."

"It's not normal to get laid off 1 month after getting promoted. It's not normal to be shamed for refusing to work for free to prove yourself," he went on to say, adding in other commonly reported experiences, like having a job offer rescinded at the last minute and return to office mandates that come with threats of firing.

Creely's post definitely resonated. Several people in the comments reported having experienced precisely what he described. One TikToker shared Creely's post to the app, calling his take "very important" for anyone "having hard times finding jobs or losing jobs."



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Her comments, too, were full of people at their wit's end with the current job market. So what exactly is going on? Several things and none of them are good. 

He says the glowing economic and job reports aren't telling the whole story and employers are using the confusion to their advantage.

"I've spent the better part of the last 20 years as a corporate recruiter and I've never seen the job market so wishy-washy," Creely said in a YouTube video addressing how bizarre our current job market is.

He said the glowing reports we constantly hear about the job market and the number of job openings do not at all accord with other indicators, such as waves of layoffs, especially those specifically targeting recruiting teams, as has happened at companies like Google.

Another factor dishonestly ginning up the job market numbers? The new trend of fake job openings, which companies post for a variety of reasons, including as a means of giving a false impression of company growth.

These two forces combine so that, as Creely put it, "a job that might only get 100 applications in a normal job market is now receiving a thousand," and a lot of those jobs aren't even real. Even when they are real, they're often shady. Creely said companies have also been laying off staff, then "[turning] right back around and [posting] those same jobs as contracts or short-term assignments."



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Making matters worse, the enormous number of people looking for jobs means employers who actually are hiring "can be abnormally picky." This is part of why so many people go through multiple rounds of interviews only to be ghosted, or to be given an offer that is then withdrawn at the last minute. There are so many candidates available that it ultimately doesn't matter.

So, what can you possibly do to combat all this?

Well, as much as we all wish there were magic solutions, Creely said it ultimately comes down to good, old-fashioned networking so that you can "skip the recruiter" and all their bizarre, unfair processes altogether. 

"The people who are getting these jobs quickly are people who are leveraging their network very effectively," he said. If that's not your forte, Creely suggested hiring coaches or taking online courses in things like resume optimization and how to use LinkedIn to your advantage. Whatever will help you stand out. 

But perhaps most importantly, he urged job seekers and those struggling in their careers not to "internalize these issues" and go down the rabbit hole of blaming themselves. As he so aptly put it in his LinkedIn post, "It's not you. It's them."

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice, and human interest topics.