I've been working with a small law firm to develop some job and person specifications for new support roles. The work is interesting - partly because these will be the first roles of their kind for the firm and partly because fitting a new job into a small business is always a political, operational and social challenge.
One thing annoyed me about the process (and, just for the record, I have discussed this blog entry with the firm and they are content for me to use it so long as they are not identified). The firm said that they would not be 'going to the trouble' of acknowledging applications nor would they be communicating in any way with unsuccessful candidates.
I objected to this. Perhaps I have been the wrong side of this approach just once too often. I don't believe, however, that any firm, no matter its size, lacks the resources to be able to send out standard emails to firstly acknowledge that an application has been received and to send emails to those unsuccessful applicants. A simple two line email addressed to 'Dear Candidate' is sufficient - and not much more will be read in any case.
I believe that this basic level of courtesy is necessary - candidates deserve it and every one of them would like to be assured that the firm they want to work with will care - at lease a little - about them.
I won this battle - and the firm will be sending out the emails!