Money for work

Job hunting this year might become more difficult as University of Calgary Career Services plans to start charging employers $50 per job listing.

"It’s all driven around needing to improve our service," said Career Services Director Craig Fortner. "The whole point is that we are responding to needs for career services and there’s a financial investment required."

The changes have been planned since spring, when the employment advisory board consisting of the SU, employers, and students agreed in principle to charge for job postings.

"To me, it’s detrimental to the students’ best interests," said Bob McClean, Secretary Tresurer of Springbank Cleaning Services Limited. "I have work available to students that I can’t advertise if they charge me fifty dollars."

The SU believes that the $50 fee is a fair price.

"It’s comparable to a classified ad but the quality of the student applicants are of a higher quality," said Students’ Union Vice-President External Oliver Bladek. "Jobs listed at Career Services which are not relevant to students would be better served with a classified ad."

Fortner also agrees with the filtering function provided by the fee.

"There might be the occasional employer who may choose not to post," he said. "[But] I think the quality of postings will be higher because it will attract more career-related types of employers and positions and filter out [the others]," said Fortner.

MacLean, who has previously made use of Career Services job posting board, disagreed.

"What kind of positions could those be?" he asked. "I know that cleaning is pretty low on the students’ intellectual capability but the flexible hours we’re offering and the pay scale is why we’ve approached the students. I don’t see what kind of employer you would want to discourage from posting."

Additional services such as interview facilities with catering and resume collection provided for fees on top of the $50 posting fee did not draw the interest of some employers.

"I’m not sure that we’d list with the $50 fee or use the additional services," said Personally Yours, [an affiliate of Sears Canada] Manager Barbara Dyck. "We’d just [conduct interviews and collect resumés] at our own location."

"I wouldn’t find additional services useful. I don’t really need an interview room, it’s not going to be a great factor for me," said McClean.

Fortner pointed out the fees are competitive with other universities, citing a $90 fee at the University of Alberta.

"It’s not a surprise that for-profit businesses would like to get something for nothing," he said. "It’s set up so that employees can pick and choose what services they want. There’s a small amount that ask us to collect resumes, a smaller amount that ask for interview facilities, and an even smaller amount who ask for full services. I don’t expect all employers to use all the services by any means."

Career Services will start charging the fees on Sept. 17. Postings at the Management Career Centre and for non-profit organizations will remain free.

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