One month ago I started an awesome new job. I’m now a software engineer at Redbubble!

Of course, that means that earlier this year I spent some time job hunting. I read a lot of job listings—some were appealing, some not so much.

And sometimes I saw things that were just so off-putting, I had to make a note of them for future blogging.

Now that I’m done looking, here’s why I didn’t apply to your job:

  1. You described your hiring process as a “tournament”.
  2. Your listing said, “We don’t require a cover letter, because you don’t want to write one and we don’t want to read them,” but your application had 7 essay questions.
  3. A cover letter was required, in the form of a PDF attachment. Give me a text box!
  4. I couldn’t start an application without creating a username and password.
  5. Your system required me to manually input information that is on my resume. I was honestly impressed by how good most resume parsers were, so there’s no excuse for this!
  6. Four essay questions including “What are your thoughts on Agile Engineering?” Sure, I have some thoughts about agile. Thoughts I’d be happy to share with you some day, after we get to know each other a bit. Thoughts that will take more time to put into words than I am willing to invest in applying to this job, Company I’ve Never Heard Of.
  7. Your ad said:

    You follow the SOLID principles of software design and are familiar with other acronyms like DRY, YAGNI, KISS, etc.

    Because the important thing is not knowing the concepts. It’s knowing the acronyms.

  8. Your ad listed “senior only team” as a perk. Now, this one just turned me off because I figured a team full of people who consider not having to work with any junior developers a perk must be a team full of assholes, but when I mentioned this on Twitter, people shared a few other good reasons why this should be a red flag. As Pete Holiday said:

    Not everything that has to get done requires senior-level skills – so a team with all seniors means that either lots of people are stuck doing work they probably find boring or it’s actually a team of mid-level folks + title inflation.

    And Melissa McEwen added:

    my experience with such teams is they provide zero professional development and are basically just constant crunchtime.

  9. The salary range was $50,000–200,000. I applied to plenty of jobs that didn’t include a salary range at all, so the lack of information is not the problem here. A range this big for the same role just feels shady somehow.
  10. To start the application process, you simply provided an email address with no instructions other than “Get in touch!”