If you were concerned about the state of your inbox in the face of the federal government’s plan to force job seekers to apply for 40 jobs a month, would it make you feel better to know Employment Minister Eric Abetz is having a worse day than you?
A Pozible crowdfunding campaign has been set up to fund an app that would cc Abetz into every email job application an employer gets – potentially generating tens of thousands of emails for the Minister for Employment.
Bill Malkin, an unemployed programmer from Adelaide, has started the campaign for a system he’s dubbed ‘SpamBludger’, which would automatically generate job applications and email them to potential employers.
Each of these emails will copy in Abetz’s personal email – “so that he can marvel at the success of his scheme,” according to the crowdfunding page.
And while Malkin admits to SmartCompany the app would end up spamming businesses, he says if Abetz’s policy was introduced, businesses would already find themselves spammed by unwanted applications.
“I wanted to make it fair to everybody, so I thought to cc in Abetz so they can see what businesses are going through and maybe that will encourage them [to rethink the policy],” says Malkin.
The new job seeker policy has been contentious from its first announcement, with both the opposition and business groups labelling the plan a “red tape nightmare” for small businesses.
SpamBludger users will be able to send anywhere from two to 10,000 appropriate applications a day, based on advertised job requirements and the job seeker’s resume, as well as other tongue-in-cheek pointers including gender, age, blood group, sexual preference, political and football club affiliations and shoe size.
Malkin says that for an additional fee, the maximum limit of 10,000 applications could be overridden so job seekers could “gain an advantage” over the other job seekers by sending out a greater amount of applications.
“This is a fairly crazy policy, there is a small job vacancy and a huge number of unemployed people,” says Malkin.
He says the app is about making a statement and “showing how silly” the legislation is. He says he will go ahead with the project if the policy gets the green light.
Malkin has been unemployed for the last few months and says the amount of rejection letters an unemployed person will now receive everyday will be incredibly disheartening.
But he says he also appreciates the problem with the policy from an employer’s perspective, having a friend in small business that has already been inundated with resumes.
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Malkin says his friend was forced to ask potential employees to write the word ‘dolphin’ at the top of their resumes, so he could weed out legitimate applications from the spam.
He says it would be wiser for the government to invest in creating their own app that matched potential employers with the best potential applicants, rather than forging ahead with this problematic policy.
At the time of publication, SpamBludger had raised $813 of its $30,000 taget.
The office of the Minister for Employment was contacted, but SmartCompany did not receive a response prior to publication.