The varied experience and fantastic references from bosses back home, made me feel ready to take on the job scene, bursting with confidence.
As I started to make applications I soon realised, it was not a cake walk. I got no calls whatsoever. I was sad, I was depressed. I spoke to an agent who said I was dismissed as a candidate only because I did not have any experience in the UK. The market is different from Asian markets and therefore my five years count as zilch.
Darn, I thought but I was not to give up so easily. I decided to look for roles which would employ graduates or apprentices.
After one such application to a Multinational company, as apprentice, I got a call from their hiring manager to say that I had five years of experience and could not qualify as a candidate for apprentice roles. He offered to put my resume in the ‘experienced’ talent pool and said he would be in touch if a suitable role came up.
After getting no calls for any such ‘fresher’ roles, I decided to do voluntary work as a way of gaining experience in the UK market. After spending a total of a year in voluntary roles across various charitable organisations, I still don’t qualify as having an experience in the UK market since the roles were voluntary.
As soon as the agent hears the word voluntary, he backs off!
Just last week, I got a response for an application for a job that required 3 years of experience. They said I had more experience than required, when I enquired why that was a bad thing, they said they suspect I might be using their role as a stop-gap arrangement , till I got a better role. Maybe given the tight market conditions, people did that!
So now I am applying for a range of roles, requiring freshers, graduates, 2-3 yrs experience, 3-4 years experience and 5 years experience.
The result? No calls still. Not to mention, a market hit badly by recession. So where does all of this leave me, am I an experienced or an inexperienced professional?