(Closed) Getting knocked back for being "over qualified" VENT

posted 5 years ago in Career
Post # 3
424 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I’ve encountered this situation before – I just wanted a part time job during while I was finished my M.S. and no one would take me seriously because I’m technically qualified for a much higher paying ‘real’ job.  Its frustrating!  Can you maybe leave off some of the last couple years of work from your application?  I wouldn’t think a gap in employment would matter too much for a bartending/retail/secretarial position. 

Post # 4
9648 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2019

That is so frustrating! They probably want someone entry level who they can pay a lower rate.

Post # 5
855 posts
Busy bee

As much as it sucks, the ‘over qualified’ bit is a valid reason.

Say you get offered the job – and then 3 months later a job comes up that you ARE qualified for and it’s more mentally stimulating. You’re going to leave this job and go to the better one. Companies don’t want to hire people that will most likely leave in a couple of months.

Hang in there! Something will come along soon xx

EDIT: I’m currently hiring for a position that is part-time. I hate getting CVs from people who are trying to ‘get their foot in’ because it’s not that kind of opportunity. In fact, it’s better for Stay-At-Home Mom who need a bit of extra cash. As soon as they give me their personal story, I instantly know if they’d be suitable. Have you explained your situation? I got a job straight away at a shop over Christmas because I explained I just needed some extra cash for my wedding! No ‘over-qualified’, just honesty 🙂

Post # 6
13099 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

@Miss Jackrabbit:  “Companies don’t want to hire people that will most likely leave in a couple of months.”

Exactly.  When they see that you could qualify for something that would pay better and be more fulfilling, they figure you’ll be leaving soon for a better opportunity.  It wouldn’t be worth their time to hire and train you if you aren’t going to stick around.

Post # 7
2131 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

@krayzay87:  I agree with @Miss Jackrabbit: just be honest with them. Tell them you are seeking something part time because you will be starting school in a couple of months. {Hugs} I know it gets frustrating.


Post # 8
1293 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2018

@krayzay87:  You have to try and understand it from the company’s perspective. It costs them money to onboard and train you, and if you are overqualified for a role then they are wasting their money.

No one will stay in a role that they are overqualified for because they won’t be happy and they will also be underpaid. It saves the company time and money to properly recruit for roles. They hire for fit and longevity.

I get it’s frustrating, but you can’t blame them. Doing part time hours in your own field would be an idea.

Post # 9
10367 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

It costs a lot for companies to go through the hiring process and train someone. They don’t want to hire someone, spend all that money, and then be treated like a career stepping stone/temporary position. Too much investment for them.

You could try dumbing down your resume, or try going through an actual temp agency. When the understanding is that the jobs are temporary, you may have a better shot?

Post # 10
8389 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Honestly I would dumb down your resume a bit when applying for these entry level type jobs.

Post # 11
776 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I totally agree with the PPs – when I hire and see people with Masters degrees applying for admin/entry level work I feel for them, I really do, but we can’t afford the turnover. I KNOW this job will bore the living daylights out of you and I will have a hard time keeping you engaged, plus I know you’ll leave when something better comes along because I can only pay you so much. It sucks, but from a hiring perspective it makes sense even though it can be heartbreaking.

Post # 12
3041 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

@krayzay87:  I agree with what everyone said – #1. “dumb down” your resume/cover letter & #2. Companies don’t want someone who is leaving soon so you need to explain that you’re going to be in school & looking for a part time job, in your cover letter.


Why don’t you try dog walking? Or pet sitting? Especially if you know how to give medication to pets (like if the dog needs a daily shot or pills). If you’re going to school for animal studies than try to find something animal related.


Post # 14
405 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

i am having the EXACT same problem. Left my job as a police dispatcher last year and have been looking for part time work. I never get called back and when i contact the employers for a reason why is always “over qualified”. its very frustrating and my Fiance keeps telling me dont worry i will get hired when the time is right but im so used to having my own money. i tried dumbing down my resume AND im always honest during interviews on why i need the job but nothing yet. I wish you well!

Post # 16
8435 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@krayzay87:  It is also a little bit different in Australia to the US.  On top of the reasons already given about the investment into a new employee and job retention there is also the issue of legal reprecussions of hiring an overqualified applicant. Here is the scenario that is probably running through the recuriters head- we employ over qualified Krayzay87. In a month or two Krayzay87 gets bored and starts going above and beyond their position description. In another month or two Krayzay87 gets frustrated with doing more work at a higher level but getting paid lower than other employees. Krayzay87 lodges a complaint with fair work Australia and the company are dragged into court and eventually loses the case and has to reclassify the position and pay Krayzay87 more money.

This is the exact thing that our recruiters tell us managers when we are going through the shortlisting process. Never shortlist an overquailified applicant.

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