Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Job Hunting

Walk to Entebbe road, bus-taxi into Entebbe, car-taxi to the airport. Ronnie had identified a few target companies for application before he picked me up that morning. We walked into his first target only to learn that they are not hiring. The aviation organization was larger, which meant that having a personal conversation with the Human Resources manager was not going to happen, although we did try.

Across the street we approached the guard at the next aviation organization and were told the job posting closed on Friday. Ronnie had put his application in then, among many others who waited in long lines. The guard said there had been 19 jobs available and over 3,500 applicants. This is the place where Ronnie learned about the two piles of CVs and how they were categorized. The guard indicated they typically have up to 10,000 applications for just a few jobs.

Since we were nearby, Ronnie wanted to check with the United Nations. A three-person boda ride to the heavily guarded gate resulted in being told to check for jobs online. Few organizations actually use online posting because internet services are unstable, user access is limited, and skilled web developers are scarce.

The over-full taxi ride back to Kawuku was quiet, as both Ronnie and I were contemplating the experience. He lamented that if he had parents he would have a larger pool of resources by which to get a nice job—parental relationships are a common means for getting work in Uganda. I let him have that moment because he was right. I’ve had those kinds of moments myself.