If you’ve been long-term follower of my blog or twitter, you’ll know that I’ve spent the past year or so looking for a new job. You’ll also have seen the frustration I’ve had due to the constant stream of “thank you for applying, but…” form-emails that the HR gatekeepers send out.
To be honest, it’s difficult to keep looking. Chemistry as a whole has not bounced back since everything went into the toilet in 2008. The job market for chemists is pretty much glutted with those who were laid off, all applying for the same bench positions. And, like a hot girl at a venue, these companies can be extremely selective in who they actually want to talk to. So, for most of January I took a break from looking.
Now, I could go all Real Alpha Male™ and say that those companies are faggot losers for not employing me and using my intellect/skills to make them boatloads of money, but I don’t have the ability to do so. I know my limitations with regards to my work experience. I’ve been away from the bench for almost 7 years now, and I understand the hesitation a hiring manager might have with considering me for a lab position.
The problem is that if I don’t get away from my current job, I may never get out of it. What I do is very niche and is honestly applicable to only this position. While the work itself is not that difficult (and frankly, shouldn’t require education past a Bachelor’s), it is mind-numbing and repetitive. Coupled with the absolute lack of coworkers in my department who are actually my peers (I was a statistical outlier via Q-test until about a year ago), didn’t really have me springing out of bed in the morning ready to go to work.
Doing essentially glorified data entry on a computer eight hours a day, 5 days a week doesn’t allow for the creative juices to flow. Coupled with the fact that there is no path for growth within this job (you do the same thing everyday, every year with little variation) and I don’t want to become a manager means that I have to try to strike out and find a new position.
Am I frustrated with the lack of opportunities? Yes.
Am I going to give up completely? No.
I just have to live life as I always have, day-by-day.