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Old 05-13-2013, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Corona the I.E.
10,075 posts, read 14,007,151 times
Reputation: 8918

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I have had a number of interviews over that last 11 months and I am surprised by some of the irrelevant questions I get asked.

1. What was your GPA a recruiter asked me today? Hello genius I graduated in 94 that's not even relevant today.

2. Then she wanted to know details about compensation history. I told her accurate ballpark numbers I was making and explained to her I have a non disclosure agreement with a couple of former employers. She seemed surprised. Then she keep on and I told her two more times NDA would need permission from former employer. I am interested in the job, but not getting sued over it.

3. I had her, and a couple of other recruiters ask me where I was interviewing and by now I was annoyed with her so I just said "how is that relevant"? and there was a pause she stumbled and explained that the sales manager was out of country and explained how long the process was going to take.

I really wanted to tell her conversation shouldn't be reading off of a script card.

I have noticed a trend. Small companies don't have a dedicated HR person so they take on recruiters to act like quasi HR and most of them aren't professional. They like to represent they work for the companies but when you clarify and ask questions about the company and products they say I do some work on the side independently and this is a contract position. Ok I get it just be honest about it so I don't ask you questions about the company and products that make you look stupid.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:23 PM
 
7,422 posts, read 13,706,702 times
Reputation: 4944
when an interviewer asks you what other prospects you have, sometimes they are trying to gauge if they need to take steps to move faster in order to get you first. that question can be a very good sign. if they're trying to make you give them specific company names, that's weird, but you should be able to answer in general terms about where you are in the process at other places.

the rest of those questions are pretty dumb though.

i don't recall recruiters asking me stupid questions, but this is my experience with a pair who were hired to vet applicants for a small company:

1. first i had a phone interview. very by the numbers reading off a card, but pretty normal.
2. then they scheduled a second interview with a different recruiter, via gotomeeting. i cleared the time with my boss, found a room to use, brought in my laptop, dressed up, found coverage for something i had to do at the time, and they canceled it literally 1 minute before the scheduled time.
3. After they rescheduled, the feed wasn't working on the recruiter's end so it ended up being a phone interview again. This recruiter asked me EXACTLY the same questions.
4. They asked me for references and called them minutes later.
5. They had me fill out some stupid psychological assessment test.
6. The hiring manager called me about setting up an in person interview. This was when there was that giant blizzard in New England so it got rescheduled again.
6. They called my references again, left messages and never called back when their calls were returned.
7. I asked the hiring manager if she could let me know the salary range since I would be making the trip just for that interview. I never heard back from them again. the end.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:23 PM
 
Location: San Antonio Texas
11,435 posts, read 16,463,060 times
Reputation: 5224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado xxxxx View Post
I have had a number of interviews over that last 11 months and I am surprised by some of the irrelevant questions I get asked.

1. What was your GPA a recruiter asked me today? Hello genius I graduated in 94 that's not even relevant today.

2. Then she wanted to know details about compensation history. I told her accurate ballpark numbers I was making and explained to her I have a non disclosure agreement with a couple of former employers. She seemed surprised. Then she keep on and I told her two more times NDA would need permission from former employer. I am interested in the job, but not getting sued over it.

3. I had her, and a couple of other recruiters ask me where I was interviewing and by now I was annoyed with her so I just said "how is that relevant"? and there was a pause she stumbled and explained that the sales manager was out of country and explained how long the process was going to take.

I really wanted to tell her conversation shouldn't be reading off of a script card.

I have noticed a trend. Small companies don't have a dedicated HR person so they take on recruiters to act like quasi HR and most of them aren't professional. They like to represent they work for the companies but when you clarify and ask questions about the company and products they say I do some work on the side independently and this is a contract position. Ok I get it just be honest about it so I don't ask you questions about the company and products that make you look stupid.
Even larger companies use those third party recruiters nowadays. It's kind of silly that they don't have the particular answers for you, but also gives an opportunity to how you're going to say it to the company person.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:28 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
13,343 posts, read 17,392,796 times
Reputation: 19654
Google likes to ask for college GPA (I've heard that they're going away from this) so when they asked me this I replied "Are you looking to hire a new college grad?" When the persisted, I simply said "I don't remember what my GPA was since it was 20+ years ago."

For question 2, I've never had any company asked for a "history". I'm not sure how knowing how much I made 10 years ago is relevant.

I've had some asked with whom I was interviewing with and I always say "A large tech company" or "A small start-up in storage" ... even when I don't have anything serious going on.
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:56 PM
 
396 posts, read 1,505,261 times
Reputation: 312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado xxxxx View Post
3. I had her, and a couple of other recruiters ask me where I was interviewing and by now I was annoyed with her so I just said "how is that relevant"? and there was a pause she stumbled and explained that the sales manager was out of country and explained how long the process was going to take.
Recently I had several screening calls ask me "Are you seeking other positions?" I just say: "Your company is my number one choice because ... (and provide a specific reason)." That gets me an invite to an in-person interview.
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Old 05-13-2013, 02:48 PM
FBJ
 
Location: Tall Building down by the river
39,615 posts, read 50,267,937 times
Reputation: 9451
When she asked where else are you interviewing you should have said


"You know I think we are done here because these questions are very inappropriate and have nothing to do with the job. So thank you for the invite and have a nice day"
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Old 05-13-2013, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Corona the I.E.
10,075 posts, read 14,007,151 times
Reputation: 8918
Thanks for the feedback.

Wow stand up for yourself and you get some respect. They just sent me an invite for an in person interview next week. Bizarro world.
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:53 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,749 posts, read 54,373,866 times
Reputation: 31030
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaypee View Post
Google likes to ask for college GPA (I've heard that they're going away from this) so when they asked me this I replied "Are you looking to hire a new college grad?" When the persisted, I simply said "I don't remember what my GPA was since it was 20+ years ago."

For question 2, I've never had any company asked for a "history". I'm not sure how knowing how much I made 10 years ago is relevant.

I've had some asked with whom I was interviewing with and I always say "A large tech company" or "A small start-up in storage" ... even when I don't have anything serious going on.
I graduated in 1975 and I still remember my GPA.

I suppose that is stupid, but if you want a job you have to answer their questions. If you think the recruiter is incompetent, just as well to walk away, the rest of the people there are probably just as bad, and you'll be unhappy working there.
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Old 05-13-2013, 10:55 PM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
12,564 posts, read 15,036,884 times
Reputation: 12113
I always tell them that I am talking to other companies (even when I am not). When they perceive that other employers are interested in you, they will need to "up the ante" when offer time comes. It also makes you appear more desirable. When they perceive that nobody is interested in potentially hiring you, it is not a good perception to leave with a potential employer. I don't give them company names though.
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Old 05-13-2013, 11:19 PM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 39,742,240 times
Reputation: 16145
Why would a company have a non disclosure agreement about your salary? Why would that be so secret? What if you were applying for a mortgage and they wanted copies of your pay stubs or bank statements?
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