Thursday, August 23, 2007

They must really need someone...

This morning I was phoned twice by a temporal employment agency in Bretten (a town not too far from my own). The second time I managed to get to the phone in time. But, honestly, it wasn't worth it.

I was told I had applied for a job with them and if I could come in for an interview this afternoon. When I asked for details about the job (I had not applied for), I was forwarded to another employee who told me that they had gotten a letter from the Arbeits­amt (which is an office of the German government, dealing with unemployed people - like me, currently). Since those letters normally are sent to both parties - the unemployed and the possible employer - and I haven't gotten mine (the postman comes to my house around twelve), they must have gotten theirs this very morning (and the first call was shortly after eight o'clock). Now, normally it would be my job to contact them (and most of the employers take their sweet time answering).

The fact alone that they get the letter and immediately phone me, even before I've gotten mine, is suspicious. And then the first words were something along the lines of "we've got a great job, wonderful office, interesting project". I mistrust such description when I asked before what kind of job this was. And then came the real damper: it's in Ettlingen. I personally only had contact with two call-centres in Ettlingen. One doesn't employ people from my hometown, because it's too far away and they usually have several hours break around noon. The other one is Walter Telemedien, a company I wouldn't work for if it were the last on earth. So I told them I wouldn't drive to Ettlingen from my hometown on a regular basis, it's too far and I need time for my web-master. They argued other employees would do it, that couldn't be the problem. But I know someone who drives over an hour for a call-center job from Stuttgart to my hometown, so the argument "others do it, too" doesn't really work for me.

I didn't even ask which call-centre it was, since first of all I find it very suspicious to 'catch' me like that, phoning and wanting the interview on the very same day - you never get that in Germany under normal circumstances - and in addition Ettlingen is too far away to drive there every day for a few Euros the hour (as temporal employment agencies never pay well, usually it's 7,41 before taxes). They obviously really need people for that job and if the office were so great and the people there were so nice, that shouldn't be the case. I would have gone there had the job been in Bretten or somewhere closer to home, but not to apply for a job in Ettlingen.

I've got another, regularly managed interview tomorrow (even though I doubt I'll take the job, it's quite far for those measly Euros as well, but there's a possibility to switch from the temporal employment agency to the regular employer, so I'll at least ask). And I've still got some time, I don't need to take the next best job, no matter where it is, who's employing me and what they pay for it.

What does that teach me? People who phone so early and urgently and can't just leave a message on the answering machine are not to be trusted.

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