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Here’s something I’ve been wondering: Do managers and recruiters give employment applications placed online — whether an e-mailed resume or a Web-based application form — equal weight with employment applications placed in person? I don’t know…some people I know insist that it’s best to do it in person, but I’m really not so sure about that. I seem to recall having a conversation with Matt a while back in which he scoffed at people who would use snail-mail to apply for a tech position, and he’s in a position to know, since he’s at least partly in charge of tech hiring where he works. And when I was in restaurant management, it was quite impossible for me to remember the faces of every person who came in to hand me an application, so the ones who would insist on talking to the manager directly (as opposed to simply handing the thing to the host or hostess at the door) really didn’t have much of a leg-up. Sure, the ones who looked presentable and clean-cut might get a more immediate perusal of their application, but we never did “on-the-spot” interviews, and unless that person had obvious qualifications — say, five years or more of restaurant experience — they’d basically get the “We’re accepting applications now, and we’ll review them later and call the people we want to interview” spiel.

So I don’t know. I like to think it’s really convenient that I can apply with a lot of companies online and thus not spend a lot of time driving around picking up applications, but I’m likewise uncertain how that translates as far as getting an interview.

(There were other concerns we’d employ in the restaurants: for instance, if someone would call us during the Friday dinner hour or during Sunday breakfast/lunch hours to enquire about their application status, we’d take their name and immediately file them as an “also-ran”. Ditto people who would see our classified ad, which always included the “No phone calls please” clause, and call anyway.)

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