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ChapterEighteen - Work and Industry.docx

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Sociology 2169

Sociology – Work and Industry – Chapter Eighteen – Getting a Job How Do Canadians Search for Jobs?  Two primary ways of searching for a job o Formal job search methods – looking at ads or consulting company job postings, using government and private employment agencies, school career centers, union, or professional employment resources ....etc  To use this method has to be highly motivated and have good interpersonal skills o Informal job search methods – asking personal contacts and people in their networks  Most commonly used and most effective job search method  This type pays off for new graduates  Use for internet for job searching almost doubled between 1998 and 2000 Looking for Work in the Information Age  Thanks to the internet: job searching has become if not a science, a technology so complex that no mere job seeker can expect to master it alone  The internet alone will not get you a job  Reasons for using the internet for job searches: o Gives employers and job applicants cheap access to information o Sending a resume to an employer over the internet can signal that the applicant is computer and internet savvy o Employers report being overloaded with resumes – even with those who are not qualified  Two issues: o Are unemployed internet searches different from non-internet searchers:  Use internet = more human capital  Use internet = higher incomes, related to ability to afford a computer and internet access  White unemployed are more likely to use the internet than people of colour  More resourceful?  Searches of all age using the internet o Does the interned help people find jobs  1998 – increased chances of finding a job  Gave them a boost  2000 – 28% less likely to find a job than others  Boost disappeared by 2000  Why:  Only a small number of people used the internet in 1998 which gave them access to info about job openings that others with equal qualifications did not have  Considered that few workers applying through the internet in 1998 were technologically savvy and/or resourceful than others  By 2000 – when number of unemployed using the Internet doubled, advantaged disappeared  Change has been more about form than substance o There may be more info but it is not necessarily better o Quality of information vs. quantity Networking and Networks  Networking – the art of talking to as many people as you can without directly asking them for a job o Contacts in people’s networks can be helpful for finding out information about job openings as well as for being hired  Social networks – networks are a personal set of relationships among people who are ‘tied’ or linked to each other  Measure of network quality: o Number of ties  Many ties = dense network and is connected to lots of people o Strength of ties  Frequency of interaction, emotional intensity, and reciprocity between the individuals  Ties are weak if: acquaintance, the friend of a friend, or a parent’s co-worker  Strong ties would be useful in getting a job o BUT:  Being motivated to help is not what matters, good information about jobs, not just encouragement  Weak ties are in structural position to serve as bridges to new parts of a social universe  Better providers of new information about jobs  Have info that your strong ties do not  Not always readily available to the public  No competition  STRENGTH OF WEAK TIES  Social capital – resources that lead to positive outcomes that come out of the social relationship in your network o Result of “the size of network, the structure of the network, the investments in network members, and the resources of network members”  Contact with good or high-status resources improves chances of finding a better job  Women’s networks differ from men’s o Women –  Receive poorer job leads, rely on other women who tend to provide leads for worse jobs  Get job leads from men: get better jobs with higher pay o Men –  Gender of the contact person does not affect men’s leads at all  People with more occupational experience and those who work longer hours have better job contacts in their social networks  For people of colour: o Workers of colour more likely use personal contacts to get jobs o Quality of work is low Do Contacts Always Provide Information and Support?  Do not pass on info about jobs indiscriminately  Contacts will pass on info only if they know the person is looking for a job and they have casual or regular contact with that person  May withhold info from those they think will perform poorly or damage their reputations  Study of low income African-Americans o Some personal contacts were worried about a job seeker’s past behaviour and actions in the workplace  Can lie about job availability  Those who are most economically vulnerable and live in areas of ‘concentrated disadvantage,’ or high poverty neighbourhoods were more worried about damaging their reputation and less likely to refer friends than those in low moderate poverty neighbourhoods  Those living in the poorest environments with the most social problems are less likely to get the information they need  Social networks act as sources of information and recommendation  Workers of colour have the most to lose when information is not passed on o Rely more heavily on their personal contacts to get jobs The Role of Employers  Behaviours, strategies, and purposes play a central but neglected role in the process of matching people to jobs What Employers Want  Require a level of education or skill  Require workers to work in a team or get along with others  In restructuring environments: emphasis on ‘new’ qualities (flexibility, knowledge of technology, a willingness to learn, and good communication skills)  Needs are specific to the industry and occupations being filled  Look for different combinations of human capital and social capital  Work experience  Good contacts in better jobs  Lower-skilled occupations only requirement is minimal work experience and education  Social capital, or having good networks in the business, provides access to the better jobs What the Hiring Process Looks Like  Two distinct processes: o Recruitment – includes publicizing job openings to qualified applicants and assembling some ‘modest information about the pool of eligible persons’  Mix of formal and informal  Goal: build a good pool of applications o Selection – who gets hired or who gets job offers, and who gets turned away when a position is filled  Recruitment: o Use informal methods to find out about job candidates o Employee referrals – ‘richer hiring pool’  Refer only those who they believe are a good fit o Referrals can lead to ‘social enrichment’ – increased employee attachment to the firm o Friend at work will ease transition o Employers will develop relationships with those who know of good employees  Ex. high school teachers o Homophily – tendency of individuals to prefer to interact with others like themselves  Promoted with the use of information methods o Recommend using formal methods  Selection: o When recruits are winnowed down to those who will be hired o Two choices when picking a candidate:  Select a candidate on formal criteria (ex. education alone)  Make the extra effort to collect additional information through such methods as inter
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