I don't mean to toot my own horn too much, but I am good at what I do. I've worked in a couple of really good technology stacks in Silicon Valley as well as having paid experience and a good track record in two current, hot-button, on demand tech stacks. I've done technical reviews of technical books. I know my stuff.

I went for an interview a couple of years ago with a very large well known company, and it went well. Surprisingly for both myself and the recruiter in question, they passed on my application. I'm not bothered, it happens. Most people don't realize that a job interview is a two way street. I have rejected companies in interviews, and/or thoroughly realized if they weren't interested that they were looking for XYZ and I'm XYA or whatever. Or either I wanted too much money, or they needed experience in something I didn't have. That is totally okay.

But they didn't tell the recruiter why. And I wasn't the only A-game candidate they passed on. To make things blunt and forward, recruiters don't get paid until they sign a contract. So they put in a lot of unpaid work sifting through resumes and arranging interviews, and if they don't pan out, there's nothing coming in. So whereas they didn't expect everyone they sent over to get hired - they damn well do expect some kind of feedback or information because they're not interested in doing a ton of legwork and just getting back "can you find more people?" with nothing to help them as to why the good people they found didn't work for them.

So the recruiter dropped this company as a client. They fired the employer.

I've slowly watched the Rake's Progress of this company. It used to hire a dedicated firm that was a contractor of that company to bring people in for days of intensive interviewing. Then they went with just the standard, known, good players in the interview game.

Just now I got a call from a Mid-Western state.

The accent on the other side was so thick it was incomprehensible. I have nothing against people of Indian origin (hello, West Coast?) and can understand quite a few Desi accents but but for me knowing the words he was trying to say, I wouldn't have been able to parse the stream of half-strangled syllables with letter shifts (v for w, for example) coming at me through the phone.

So, being a very experienced and skilled IT guy, I started asking him questions. I had to ask twice where the job was located. "At-a-lan-tea-ya, Gee- yah- gee- yah." Yes, that's nice, but metro Atlanta is a big place, is it Alpharetta, Duluth, Midtown, Downtown? I finally just settled with "Well, who's it with?" and lo and behold, it's that company.

I told them flat out I wasn't interested. They didn't seem surprised in the least, they just hung up.

And then had a woman call back 15 seconds later, asking me if I wanted the same job.

Usually when you get a call from the Mid-West for another market (California, Seattle, Atlanta, New York) it's because the company in question wants the cheapest possible body shop to perform the "Mongolian Hordes" technique to just find anyone who they can talk to. They have no idea what you, they have no idea what the company wants, they have the barest command of English possible. That is not a bigoted comment, when I answer the phone "Hello, this is TheAnglican, may I help you?" and their first question is, "Hello, eh, yes, am I speaking with TheAnglican?" it means that they didn't understand the import of my first sentence.

Which means either the company has a job that nobody wants ("Are you available for a two month COBOL contract in North Dakota, eight dollars an hour, no relocation provided, must fly at own expense to interview?") or the company has such a poor reputation in its own market that it has to try to find people in other cities to come on over.

Or it's gronked off enough reputable companies that outsourcing it to an underpaid, abused, exploited call center is what they're reduced to.

I had sympathy for both people who called, and unlike many in IT I don't have a knee-jerk racist reaction to hearing a Desi accent. (That's for another node, suffice it to say I had to walk away from my computer when Slashdot posted about India starting a space program and the comments section looked like Stormfront). But I knew full well what the import of that call meant. It meant they'd tried other avenues, and they couldn't get any interest.

Which is terrible, because even though their mere call is a red flag that you don't want to touch their client with a 10 foot barge pole, they too need to get paid. God love them.

EDIT: HOLY SHIT, as I was hitting the submit button on this, I got called AGAIN.