Re: Followup to "experience required/survival tips" postin

Subject: Re: Followup to "experience required/survival tips" postin
From: Matt Ion <mion -at- DIRECT -dot- CA>
Date: Tue, 11 Jul 1995 10:32:03 PDT

On Tue, 11 Jul 1995 09:49:56 LCL you wrote:

> What I was getting at, and what I still defend, is that it doesn't
> take long to become basically proficient at using most software, and
> that "three years of experience required" usually means only that the
> employer doesn't want to teach you the basics. So yes, you're lying,
> because you're not an expert, but no, you're not defrauding the
> employer because you'll meet the expectations. (If you can't meet this
> part of the contract, don't say it.) I can live with those ethics.

I think in part it comes down to the wording and meaning of the employer's ad
- does it require "x years' experience with blah-blah software" or simply
"familiarity with doohickey word processor"? And if the latter, how do they
define "familiarity"?

I can claim "familiarity" with MS-Word for Windows 6.0 because I know what it
is and what it looks like. I used it a little bit a couple years ago when it
first came out and didn't like it much at all; can I claim two or three years'
experience with it? Or does that mean one must have been using it on a daily
basis over all that time? Or weekly? Or just monthly?

Besides, just having that "experience" doesn't necessarily make one proficient
in the software. One client I had (the same one with whom I first used Word
6) would have been better off with a plain text editor, for all he knew of
advanced word-processor features; even today, after three years working with
it, he doesn't do much that couldn't be accomplished with QEdit. Another
former employee of his, however, had the ins and outs of Word 2.0 down pat
after very little experience with it, and migrated very easily to using most
of Word 6.0's features.

That the latter person was very computer-literate to begin with, while the
former was and still is a computer-ignoramus, has far more to do with their
abilities to use the given software than sheer experience in the use of that

I rather suspect that that empoyee under Tara's command, as mentioned in
Misti's forwarded letter from Becca, that took SIX MONTHS (?!) to make the
leap from Word for DOS to Word for Windows was not entirely computer-literate
to begin with... on top of which, he was likely learning to use Windoze at the
same time. Seems to be rather an extreme case, n'est ce pas?

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