Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Interviewing for future Deputies

I’ve been interviewing people for a job opening in my office, a Deputy Coroner position. It has been an interesting process, at times even enjoyable. However, before anyone gets fired up to send me a resume, we are not taking any more applications at this time.

Nearly 100 people applied with a wider range of backgrounds than you might think. (Before you say it is not surprising to get that many applications for such a high profile job read on) Reviewing those applications, I (actually my Chief Deputy and I) winnowed them down to about 20. Those 20 are the individuals going through the interview process currently. One thing has amazed and irritated me, the answers I am getting to my second question of the interview:

Tell me what you know about the Coroner business.

It has amazed me how many of the interviewees can not give me a reasonable answer to that question. I am irritated that they apparently didn’t really care enough to find out something about what we do before they would apply for a job in the field. Every one of those individuals gets scratched from the list immediately. With the availability of the Internet to query about every topic one could imagine and with what seems to be 40 or 50 Coroner-related TV shows on the air, it shouldn’t be that hard to do a little research before you decide this is the field you really want to get into. Are people lazy? Do they not care? Obviously they are clueless about whether this is the field that they want to make their profession. I am looking for individuals committed to this field of endeavor; committed to this as a profession, not a passing fancy (and I do have some of those aps too,just not as many as I thought I would).

If one of those still scheduled to come in for an interview happens across this rant, know the answer to that question or save us both time and don’t come in.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In defense of the applicants you are interviewing for the Deputy Coroner position, I urge you to not put too much emphasis on just one question during the interview. I’m sure there are many applicants with excellent backgrounds for pursuing a career as a Deputy Coroner, and you will eliminate a qualified candidate needlessly by rejecting their answer to something as vague as “Tell me what you know about the Coroner business.”
Do not assume candidates who do not know the precise, “correct” answer are lazy or uncaring. They simply do not have the experience to answer it to your specifications. I doubt many, if any, applicants have held this exact position in another county. Most applicants know the generalities of such a position, but you need to let them inquire about the details of the day-to-day operations at the interview. Afterall, the interview is a time for the applicant to inquire about the job and decide for themselves if this is the career path for them.
I also totally disagree with the statement that the applicants should research the job description by watching the “40 or 50 Coroner-related TV shows on the air.” CSI-like programs on TV do not paint an accurate picture of what the job entails and will only mislead them into thinking they’ll be solving crimes, instead of just determining cause of death.
For any other applicants that came across your “rant” online, I urge them to not be offended by your ignorant opinion of them. I know I wasn’t.