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7 Red Flags to Look Out For When Job Searching



When searching for a new job, it's important to do your research on the company and the role. It's also crucial to look for red flags that may indicate that this isn't a good match for you or them. Here are some things to consider:


The application process is overly complicated


If you have to jump through hoops to apply for a job, it's probably not worth it. If it takes more than one or two steps, it's probably not worth it. If it takes more than one or two minutes, it's definitely not worth your time and energy (unless you're applying for a job that pays extremely well).


The job post is vague or poorly written


  • Job posts should be clear and concise. If the job post is vague, poorly written or full of errors, it may be an indication that the company is not serious about hiring someone.

  • Job posts should be free of spelling and grammatical errors. If you're applying for a job as a proofreader, this can be especially important since you'll likely be given more responsibility than other applicants!

  • Job posts should contain minimal jargon, buzzwords or vague language. It can make your resume stand out if you use simple language rather than industry-specific terms (e.g., "retail" vs "consumer goods").

  • Job posts should include active voice instead of passive voice ("We train our employees in customer service.")


You've already been ghosted


If you've been ghosted, it's a sign that the company doesn't see the fit for you and is not interested in pursuing your application further. In most cases, this means that your resume and cover letter were not strong enough to attract their attention.


If you're applying for a job online through an online application form or emailing someone directly about an open position, don't be surprised if you never hear back from them again once they've gotten what they wanted from you (your resume). The same goes for resumes sent over snail mail—the post office won't care if your letter gets read or not; they just want their stamp money!


They want you to "buy in"


It's important to note that while these agreements are common in the corporate world, they have no place in a small business. If your small business is suddenly asking you to sign one of these documents, there's a good chance they're trying to take advantage of you.

If you see any of these agreements:

  • Non-compete agreement - this means your employer wants to restrict where and how much time you can spend working for other companies after leaving their company. This can be very unethical and unfair if it's not written correctly (and often times it isn't).

  • Non-disclosure agreement - this means that your employer doesn't want you talking about them or sharing information about them with anyone else at all—even after leaving the company! This is also highly unethical and unfair because often times employers will ask for information from former employees which could potentially put them at risk if disclosed improperly.


The interviewer seems distracted or tired


It's a good idea to pay attention to the body language of your interviewer. If they seem distracted or tired, it could be a sign that they're not interested in you as a candidate—or even just not interested in their job itself.


It could also mean that the company is understaffed and overworked, so they don't have time to treat you with respect or give you proper attention during an interview process.

Or perhaps they are just unhappy with their position at this organization and don't want to be there anymore.


The interviewer doesn't know much about the position


If an interviewer doesn't seem to have a handle on what the job entails, it's a red flag. If they don't know who you are and why you're there, it's a red flag. If they keep asking you questions about things that should be common knowledge, it's a red flag.


What does this mean for you? If your interviewer doesn't seem to know much about the position or company (or even who is doing the interviewing), it may be time to move on.


You're given a list of competitors to research and a test that you have to take during the interview


In some cases, you may be asked to do research on competitors before an interview. This is a waste of your time and just another way for the company to save money by getting free labor from applicants. If they want you to come in with knowledge about the industry, they should pay for a background check or skills assessment test from one of their third-party vendors instead of asking you to do it for free.


The same goes for tests that ask how much research you can do online based on keywords and websites provided by the company; these types of tests are more about your ability to use Google than they are about what kind of work you could actually do in the field (or at least how well).


If you see any of these signs, it's time to move on from that company


If you see any of these signs, it's time to move on from that company.

  • If the job is too good to be true

  • If you are asked to pay for a job

  • If you are asked to pay for a job interview

  • If you are asked to pay for a job application

  • If you are asked to pay for a job training

So, what can you do if you come across these red flags? First, take some time to think it over. If you're really interested in the job and the interview went well, then go ahead and accept it. But if something seems off or off-putting during your initial interactions with a potential employer, don't be afraid to walk away from that opportunity—you'll thank yourself later!


If you want to apply to a legit work from home with zero red flags, check out the latest remote opportunities from Legit Mom Jobs here. We do all of the research for you so you know the job you're applying to is totally legit!

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