중앙데일리

AI job interviews

Sept 23,2019
Jeon Young-sun
The author is a reporter for the industry team of the JoongAng Ilbo.

“Can/ This/ Be You?” writes Lee Hwan-cheon, a popular poet active on social media in his poem entitled “Self-introductory essay.” The self-introductory note commonly required in applications for colleges or job openings requires “fictional” work and literary imagination. Job-seekers during the fall season would have been wracking their brains trying to balance facts and fiction in polishing up their applications. The trick is to hide the shortcomings and highlight the strengths without appearing proud and self-indulged. It’s a tough job.

A growing number of workplaces have taken up reforming the hiring process to ensure more fairness by removing mention of schools, regions and some family background information. Self-pitch has become more important than ever to grab the hirer’s attention. One must dramatize one’s life to convince the employer why he or she is needed for the job. They must sometimes create an imaginary life and play the role instead of introducing one’s actual trajectory.

If one has a clear goal in life and conviction, it could be wise to plan out and build up experience for the ultimate goal. But not many can live life according to one’s wishes and plans. Life is unpredictable and full of stumbling blocks. One can change course on the way. But one still does not wish to betray a life of uncertainties. He or she spends time to bolster capabilities. They seek out exotic work experiences or volunteer work to differentiate themselves in their applications. They sometimes need to borrow the social and economic status of their parents.

A service business is bound to sprout to meet the demand. There are many agencies offering to write self-introductions. On the internet, they advertise they can deliver success with eye-catching self-introductions. The service ranges from consultancy and tutoring to help one writing their self-introduction to full packages. The paid services polishing up one’s credentials with novel experiences make others nervous. The cost and demand for the paid service go up when competition in the job market is heavy.

The wasteful toil and cost cannot be resolved easily. But there is a need to simplify the hiring process. Companies might consider scrapping paper applications and have all applicants sit down for interviews run by artificial intelligence to prevent involvement of human subjective judgment. That way, the rejection could be less harsh.


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