UPDATE: A new article was just posted by the Wall Street Journal that has particular bearing on this post… check out “Software Screening Rejects Job Seekers” because this is EXACTLY what happened to me when I applied for AT&T’s open position. Just because I didn’t rank my MS Excel skills high enough…  I ask you, HOW MANY designers REALLY use Excel on a daily basis?!?  Ridiculous…

Now back to the original post…

A little background. I after 10 years of experience as a graphic designer in Seattle, I was laid off from the company I was working for because of the downturn in the economy. I spent two and a half years on Unemployment while freelancing at the same time. That’s why my Unemployment stretched so far – each time I’d do a job, I’d claim the income and not receive Unemployment benefits… it was really hard, and I was applying for 6+ jobs a WEEK. Several times I was told I was “overqualified”, a word I do not think belongs in our vocabulary of 2010-2012 economic conditions. If someone HAS THE EXPERIENCE, and is WILLING TO TAKE A JOB that pays less than they made before BECAUSE JOBS ARE SO SCARCE, then stinkin’ HIRE THEM!

Anyways, one such job I applied for was as a Visual Designer of Product Marketing for AT&T. At the time, I had 12 years of professional UI/UX, Web and Marketing design under my belt. The one skill I was lacking a bit… Excel…  Read on.

Dear William A. Blase, Jr. (Senior Executive Vice President, Human Resources), Chris Reckard (Art Director/Technical Director) and the AT&T Human Resources Department,

This afternoon I applied for your Visual Interactive Designer position (1049321). Within a minute of completing my application materials, your Taleo system shot me back a rejection notice, saying I did not meet the job criteria.

Obviously, your Taleo robot is short-circuiting, and likely on to the fact that I am aware of its participation in the coming robot apocalypse. Please reconsider my application materials, resume, and over 12 years of professional experience as an interactive and print designer. I assure you, I am more than qualified.

And please do not put your faith in a droid. They cannot be trusted.


Rob Christianson, Designer + Illustrator

http://www.RobTheDesigner.com | (253) 217-2032

Follow me on Twitter! http://www.twitter.com/robchristianson
Connect with me on LinkedIn! http://www.linkedin.com/in/robchristianson

Dear Rob,

Thank you for your interest in the position of AT&T Senior Product Marketing Manager – Visual & Interaction Design- Redmond, WA-1049321. Based on the required prescreen questions and/or required testing, you did not meet all of the required criteria for this position.

Please continue to check regularly to learn of other opportunities.

We thank you for your interest and wish you luck in your job search.

Best regards,
AT&T Management Staffing