The Arnold Group (TAG) - Job Seeker Blog
The Arnold Group (TAG) - Job Seeker Blog
Our Biggest Pet Peeves About Job Seekers Revealed
Posted on Friday, February 14, 2020

Our Biggest Pet Peeves About Job Seekers Revealed

As a job seeker, it’s difficult to know what you should or shouldn’t do during an interview. Some things are more obvious such as you should dress for success, or you shouldn’t answer a text message while speaking with a recruiter. Other things aren’t quite as obvious.

When interviewing for a job, the last thing you want to do is annoy your interviewer… after all, that’s the person who could potentially offer you a job. In an effort to help job candidates get a better idea of some interview do’s and don’ts, we asked our team what job seekers do that annoys them the most. Here are some of their biggest pet peeves:


Not following simple directions

“My biggest pet peeve is when a candidate does not read instructions ahead of time. We are on a tight schedule, so when we send an email stating to either complete paperwork at home or show up 15 minutes prior, it’s bothersome to see them show up right on the dot and push my schedule back. If they are unable to follow those simple instructions, what will they do with our clients?”

--Jessica, Staffing Specialist

“One of the easiest ways to stand out among other applicants is to follow the basic steps outlined on an application. If you are going to take the time to apply, take the time to ensure your application is an accurate representation of your interest in the opportunity. "

--Sheila, Branch Manager

Applying for jobs that require experience – without having experience

“If the job description states under requirements: ‘Must have 2+ years forklift experience’, I have people applying for the job that have never operated a forklift before. Not only does it slow down the process for them as a job seeker, but it is inconvenient having to go back through and remove them from the opportunity, as they are not qualified.”

--Monica, Staffing Specialist

Unwanted accessories

“Chewing gum during an interview or bringing in their coffee. Even though our initial interview is much more informal compared to an interview with one of our clients, it’s still an interview none-the-less and should be treated as such.”

--Kendra, Staffing Specialist

Do you really want a job?

“My largest pet peeve has to be when a job seeker displays a lack of motivation when seeking a job. This is the type of person who during an interview does not pay attention to the questions, fails to give thoughtful answers, and acts as if they have a million better things to do aside from being here at that moment.”

--Jason, Staffing Specialist

Know your skills

“One of my biggest pet peeves is when a job seeker can’t answer what his or her weaknesses are. You don’t have to have a laundry list of things – even just one weakness will do, one that you can discuss and demonstrate how you are working to overcome it. It’s a huge turn-off when a job seeker either says ‘I don’t know’ about their weaknesses, or when the job seeker says ‘I don’t have one.’

On the flip side, it is also annoying when a job seeker says that they are a ‘jack of all trades’ or that they can do it all. Even if you do have a wide variety of skills, I would prefer for the person to focus on the skills that they feel the strongest in and the ones they enjoy doing the most. Acting too confident is a huge turn-off, even if you truly are a very skilled worker.”

--Collin, Staffing Specialist

Inaccurate resumes

“When a candidate does not update their resume to show they are no longer working with a company. I see so many candidates that leave it to say ‘present’ thinking it will appeal to clients, when in reality we find out during the interview they were termed 2 months prior. There is no need to fib on the resume as it will come out one way or another. Display good attention to detail and update your resume to show readiness for a new job.”

--Jessica, Staffing Specialist

“Either job seekers don’t have resumes or they have incomplete resumes with job duties/job history dates that are missing. This goes for incomplete information on a job application and lack of explaining all of their skills/work experience during an interview.”

--Alex, Staffing Specialist


“I find it very annoying when a candidate hounds you nearly every day looking for a job, then when you have the perfect job for them, they ghost you! You aren’t able to reach them by phone, text, email, etc.  Then after a week or two, they reach back out looking for work. When you ask why they didn’t respond when reaching out to them about the position it is usually followed by ‘my phone was turned off’ or ‘I was sick.’”

--Bailey, Staffing Specialist

“Recently had someone accept an assignment to start on Monday. Was in line with previous experience and the hours matched up with what she was looking for. Was excited on the phone for the opportunity, but then on Monday didn’t show up.  If you were not able to make it, simply let us know as this is common courtesy and would allow us time to find a replacement instead of the manager expecting someone and there is no one else there. Not only did you let that manager down, but also got yourself deactivated for a no call, no show.”

--Shane, Branch Manager

“Expressing their dire need for a job in order to live, but then when we go above and beyond to get them a position, they either don’t show up or they make an excuse as to why they can’t work. This never makes sense to me because they seem to be in need and so ready to find a job, but their actions don't demonstrate that they actually want a job.”

--Faith, Customer Service Coordinator

Beating around the truth

“I had a candidate who was getting ready to do a drug screen. He stated there was a chance he would fail. I asked him why: ‘Yeah, I was at a party last night and there were people smoking weed.’ I let him know the test only detects it if he smoked it. He then tried to tell me he kissed his girlfriend immediately after she smoked it. Needless to say – he did not gain employment that day.”

--Bailey, Staffing Specialist


Everybody has their own pet peeves, but you don’t want to make a mistake that stands in the way of potential employment. Now that you know some of the biggest annoyances our recruiters have encountered recently, you can better prepare on what to do or what not to do.