Thursday, October 22, 2015

Think that bloke will get a job? How much of your paycheck you want to bet on that?

Via my dose of pain that is a Google Alert for the term "transferable skills", the worst aspect of that term on display in this piece from the UK: 
Workers made redundant from the UK’s beleaguered steel industry have “excellent” skills that can be transferred into other sectors, recruiters say. 
Yesterday, Tata Steel Europe announced 1,200 jobs are being cut at its plants in Scunthorpe and Lanarkshire. The news follows administrators being appointed to parts of manufacturer Caparo Industries' steel operations in the Midlands and the recent closure of the SSI steel plant in Redcar. 
But manufacturing staffing specialists say these workers have skills and attributes employers will be looking to hire into their businesses. 
A spokesperson for specialist recruiter Acorn, which has a contract with Tata Steel, told Recruiter it is continuing to support any workers directly affected by the redundancies, supporting them with outplacement where it can.  
“There are some terrifically well-skilled people in the industry who have some excellent transferrable skills of use to the other manufacturing and technical environments in which we work, such as logistics, plant and civil engineering, energy and power and automotive industries.”
These sorts of statements disgust me. "I'm sorry you lost your job - I am sure you'll find another one" from a recruiter should be backed up by some sort of financial guarantee.  


  1. Tata Steel sponsors one of the largest annual chess tournaments, in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands.

    I wonder if that sponsorship may be reconsidered.

  2. Seems like in the west its a huge stigma against admitting the truth if its not optimistic or positive. If you cannot be optimistic (ie, steel works have fantastic transferable skills!) , you should at least feign it. Even if your life sucks you have to smile and fake it if you want opportunity to appear.

    1. That is the conundrum of our society: we are told to put on our game-face as a gesture of irrational faith that the system will somehow magically redeem us if we do so. However, the system in question also got us into this mess in the first place. We resign ourselves to this course of action, because of an evident lack of any better options. In short, we are caught in a trap of our own making.

      The only other thing which I can think of doing is to have faith in my own abilities, although that unfortunately still ultimately means having to rely on the decision of someone else somewhere down the line. And hence I am (yet) still unemployed.

  3. And from the academic side, here is a typical advertising blurb to attract people for graduate studies. Please note the lack any semblance of quantitative data as to how many of the graduating students actually find the indicated jobs, and how many of them end up doing something to stay alive for which they received no training in graduate school:

    "Our former students are found in academic positions at first-rate colleges and universities, in positions at government labs, and in industrial positions at leading pharmaceutical and chemical companies."

    This was directly copied out of the website of a PhD-granting university which is currently also advertising several faculty positions.


looks like Blogger doesn't work with anonymous comments from Chrome browsers at the moment - works in Microsoft Edge, or from Chrome with a Blogger account - sorry! CJ 3/21/20