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Can the World Really Be This Bizarre?

I'm filling out a job application at a major investment bank. One of the "canonical" banks people always blurt out when you ask them for an example of an IB.

You know the deal. You attach your resume and then get the pleasure of typing the whole thing again.

I'm working on my education history. I did my doctorate in physics, so I scroll down, and lo and behold, "Physics" is not a valid major. I look again. I look for "Quantum Gravity". Nada. There are almost 300 majors to choose from, but no Physics.

The "e-Commerce" major is there. "Ethics" is there. "Ethnic Studies" is there. But no Physics! Don't get me wrong, ethnic studies is a very important, very serious area of scholarly research, but if you're an IB, it doesn't seem as pertinent as a quantitative degree like Physics.

The instructions say "If your major isn't listed, simply use "Other".



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Maybe it's under Natural Sciences or some other generic STEM header.
Good guess, but no dice.

But even so, considering there's almost 300 majors, putting physics under STEM or Natural Sciences would be really strange.

Suppose Emanuel Derman wanted to apply for a job here. How would he enter his educational background? ;-)
Bank HR systems and the recruiting process in general are a world of BS. The faster you realize that the better you'll do!
No, I realize. It's pretty obvious when you go to apply for a job at some top tier place and "jobs.somebigname.com" gets redirected to "server.openjobsisourbiz.com".

Take a look at what I got this morning for a good laugh.

So, yeah. It is what it is, but it's still a necessary thing to deal with. :-/


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Bank HR systems and the recruiting process in general are a world of BS. The faster you realize that the better you'll do!
Perhaps next time the OP should try a recruiter and cut out this BS? Either that or get their CV in front of the line manager through a contact (which is what a recruiter does anyway).
Perhaps the OP did just that, and the internal recruiter instructed him to create a profile on their internal career system.

And maybe it's not just this IB. Perhaps one of the big-three ratings agencies also instructed him to fill out their internal profile after they approached him on LinkedIn.

You're confusing the search and interview processes. Yes, when you cold-send a resume, you fill out these annoying forms. But some companies make you fill them out so they can simply have you in their DB, whether you're recruited by internal staff, a headhunter, or via cold-sending. Granted, I've never seen it done before, but I've come across it twice now in the past month.

But really, what the OP is now most curious about is whether you normally use 3rd person to refer to people you communicate with.