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Back to Work - The Sequel

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The "gift" of feedback...one of the greatest gifts someone can receive is the gift of truthful candor.  A friend of mine likes to say, "we all need 'grace and truth' but remember 'grace' comes first for a reason."  Throughout the year, I have received my share of 'undeserved favor'...that is grace, and thankfully my share of LUVing truth.  This blog has been a blessing in both of these areas.  In particular, one of the longest running threads, "Back to Work" has given our Recruiting Team real insight into the questions, hopes, and dreams of the People applying to work at Southwest Airlines.  As our small gift back to those trying to work here, our Recruiting Team will monitor this new blog thread and periodically respond directly to questions.  They will try to anticipate questions and leave a tip or two that might make the application process seem less like a process.  My thanks to all of you for giving all of us in the People Department at Southwest Airlines the gift of feedback.
214 Comments
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Hello, It's James again. I was under the assumption that resumes were defunct after 6 months. At least, that's the way it is at most other airlines. If I submitted my FA resume (I only submitted one for some stupid reason) in May, is there a chance that I am still in the pool? Also, how long does an internal reference stay on file? Thanx, James
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Leah asks, "I wonder what the ZIP stands for in ZIP Code." You are thinking of Ming Chan's acronym thread Leah. ZIP - well, sometimes people think ZIP stands for Zero Intelligent People. But over the past two years I have worked with a company that does a LOT of direct mail and the postal service is really in truly top notch. ZIP = Zone Improvement Plan. The entire ZIP Code history and usage is actually fascinating. My first "lesson" about mail and ZIP Codes was to read the Wikipedia article - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zip_code
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The guy in ZIP Code 79922 wrote, "Ming ChanÃ
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Leah, How about Tbg? Tulsa blog girl. Or some new investment company! Ding!
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Those are great, Jim & Ding! boy. Oh, I LUV it! Thanks. :) Can anyone tell me if the TUL station is more for Senior employees like I thought one of me friends here said? I'm really curious. Thought for the day: Why is what you what you wear on your wrist called a watch & what you have by your bed (& on your wall, in the car, etc.) called a clock since you use both to tell time? Wow, that probably made no sense! SWA LUV! 🙂
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To "Shari Perez - Sr." - Great info in the "Interviewing Tips 101", Really great info. Would like to see more of this type of info. Quite honestly, in the first section under "Don't Panic"... Well, when you are looking at Life Changing events for yourself in an enviroment to where you may be moving away from you home to many states away, and some where that you want to spend the rest of your carrier working days... Those are hard decision, and sometimes "panic!" and "Anxiety" are hard items to control in an interview, and I think that any decent person applying for a carrier (not just a job) is going to have a certain amount of neviousness about that. After all, the person conducting the Interview in many cases has alot of our lives in there hands. Please post more advice. It is well received and appreciated. It is good to see management posting that sort of information to those of us who are interested in spending a good portion of our lives with SouthWest Airlines. I know that I am active seeking your company,and I must say that I feel that I am a very qualified person (sorry tooting my own horn), and I do not mind saying that I am also quite nervous about it, even though I am very confident that it is the correct decision to make... I only hope that SouthWest feels the same about me when I complete the Interview and Testing processes.
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Hi Everyone! It has been a little while since my last post. I always come here to read Leah's posts, knowing I will get a laugh. Thank you Jeff for keeping this blog going; it is very informative. I have a couple questions that maybe someone can answer: I interviewed with the Aircraft Maintenance Department last July and felt it did not go so well. This was due to my mother-in-law's cancer diagnosis just before the interview. My mind was preoccupied and I did not answer some of the questions thoroughly. Since I wasn't selected for the position, can I apply for other positions in the same department or do I have to wait twelve months to re-apply? I have submitted my resume for several other positions within the department but haven't heard anything. Also, I have wanted to follow up with a phone call to the super awesome person in the People Department who interviewed me over the phone and also in person. Do you think a call would just interrupt her busy day or would it show I am still interested in working for the best airline this country has to offer? Also, thanks for the increased service in DEN! Even though I currently work for another airline, my family has flown more on Southwest than with pass travel with my company...you can't beat the good service, friendly employees, and great prices on SWA! As my kids say, "Southwest ROCKS!"
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Thanks, Mike! 🙂 I'm sorry you felt your interview didn't go well, & about your mother-in-law. 😞 I know from experience it's disappointing not to be selected. We just have to keep trying! To answer your first question, I'm not really sure. I'm glad you've applied for other positions & I hope you hear something good soon! To answer your second one, I think it'd be okay to call. How long has it been since you interviewed? I've called before after I waited a few weeks. Please keep us posted! Thought for the day: Do people on the TV still talk when you turn it off? SWA LUV! 🙂
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Thank you, Leah, for the kind words. My mother-in-law is doing better, which is a huge relief for the entire family. The prognosis seven months ago was that she had six months at the most. She is beating the odds! She is so much like my mom; we are very close. It was disappointing not being selected; however, like you, I am not one to give up. I continue to send my resume for the different positions that open up, but havenÃ
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Months of patience and pulling out my hair. I have orientation January 25, 08 and start as a CSA at SFO January 29, 08. I've had many happy moments in life and this new beginning ranks high with the rest of my joyous moments. Thanks SWA for the opportunity Good luck to other applicants! Denese
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You're welcome, Mike! I'm glad your mother-in-law is doing better. :) Surely you didn't leave a bad impression! I highly doubt you did. What are some other positions you've applied for? I'll have to think of an answer to your thought for the day! Joke for the day: What did one pair of scissors say to the other? Cut it out! Ha, ha. I made that up by my very own self! SWA LUV! 🙂
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Mike, I join Leah in saying that I am very glad to hear that your mother in law is doing well. The answer to your question is "Yes", you can continue to apply for other positions at Southwest and within the Maintenance Department. We only ask that you wait a year to re-apply for the same position. I am sorry to hear that you did not feel like things went well in your first interview. We are honored by your continued interest in working for Southwest, and my guess is that another candidate was just simply more competitive at that time. We want to do our best to match you up to the right position and Team, and I am sorry that last time things didnt work out the way you had hoped. Please continue to apply when you see jobs that you are interested in, and feel free to email me so I can get you in touch with the Recruiter who interviewed you. I am confident they would love to hear from you, and it would certainly not be an interruption. My email is amy.webb@wnco.com. Thanks again for being interested in joining our FunLuving family here at SWA ! And Thanks to your folks for flying SWA 🙂 We truly appreciate you and their business!
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Mike, I misunderstood your first question. I read Amy's response & understand now what you mean. That was my goof! Yes, I've applied before for different careers there, too. Thought for the day: Since there is a pop called Dr. Pepper, why is there not one called Nurse Salt, or Dr. Salt? Oh, that was a very weird thought! SWA LUV! 🙂
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Hi Everyone! I actually found this website by accident. I have a 1 on 1 interview in Baltimore for a FA position and I am truly excited about it. Since I received my e-mail on Jan. 17th it is all that I can think about. I actually did a Happy Dance around my house. I'm anxious, eager and even a little nervous because this is my dream career and I know its a position that over 250,000 people have applied for. I'm truly sorry for everyone who has not received a call back but keep on trying.... I've been trying since 2004. Never give up and eventually you CAN make your dream a reality. I just wanted to know if anyone had any tips on having a sucessful interview.... this means soooooooooooo much 2 me. Well, I wish everyone out ther chasing the same dream to be a part of SWA FunLuvin Family the Best of Luck. Keep your fingers crossed for me. Thanx Candice
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Hello, I found this website months ago and have loved reading the interesting comments and great information. I have thought about applying for SWA for years, because I have in-laws who work there and love it. I have 7 years customer service/quality assurance experience at a call center. I applied for the reservations positions at the call center in Tempe, AZ but also for a part time CSA position at Phx (which is the one I would really love to get). I am wondering if they will consider my mostly-phone customer service experience good enough for a face to face position? I am have great personality, love people and working face to face, so I am hoping I will have the opportunity to show that in an interview. Are the CSA shifts pretty stable or does your shift change a lot from mornings to evening, different days, etc? What about the reservations position? Also, I submitted my resume online in Dec and I wonder when I can expect a respose? It seems from the posts I have read that it is not uncommon for months to go by without being contacted (due to the large numbers of resumes). Does SWA always send some kind of response, either an invitation or rejection, or has anyone just not received a response? Any insight would be helpful. Thanks!
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Under the contract, the person with the lowest seniority will be asked to work the extra time first, if no one else volunteers. Cool! More $$$$ Pay to the order of Ding! boy joe!
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Thank you for the quick responses regardins shift hours, etc! I appreciate the feedback. If anyone has information regarding my other question, I would be thrilled to hear any experience or knowledge regarding that as well: "Also, I submitted my resume online in Dec and I wonder when I can expect a response? It seems from the posts I have read that it is not uncommon for months to go by without being contacted (due to the large numbers of resumes). Does SWA always send some kind of response, either an invitation or rejection, or has anyone just not received a response?"
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Brittany, I submitted resumes for ramp and csa in dtw and never heard anything.I also submitted for appearance tech at mdw and am waiting for a start date. Another poster here has said that they received a letter which is bad. A phone call is good. The time that I submitted a resume for ramp was when they were accepting them, but not actually hiring. So, that is probably why I didn't hear anything. Good luck with yours and hope you hear something soon. joe!
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Brittany, You have a great question regarding resumes submitted to Southwest Airlines. Unfortunately, there are times when we simply cannot contact everyone due to the volume of resumes we receive, as well as our current technology does not allow for automated responses. There also may be times that the needs of the hiring department may change, and external interviews are not conducted. We realize that it may appear that resumes somehow end up in the Ã
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if you want to work for sw go to the job fair ........ my god sometime some of you dont have the right attitute for the jobs.........just be FUNNNNNNN!!!!!!! if you want to work for sw that bad move to Bwi.....
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I just wanted to add that I found out today that I was placed into the pool for CSA for BHM. I flew to Chicago on December 13 for fingerprinting and had not heard anything since. I finally called today after having not heard anything back and was informed that I had cleared all of the background checks and was in the pool! How exciting! So, just because you haven't heard anything doesn't mean that you were forgotten. Does anyone know if once you're in the "pool" you remain there until a position comes open, or if you stay there for a certain amount of time and have to go back through the entire interviewprocess again? Thanks for your help!!
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wellllllll you alll need to go to bwi job fair if u want work for southwest stop asking about funnning comment, such as hiring pool and wasted time....... if you want to work for southwest go to bwi..... that alll i have to said.......RAMp AGENT is to beginning with at southwest...........
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Michelle, Yes you will remain in the pool until a position becomes open. You wont need to be re interviewed. You may need a partial rescreen if you are in the pool for longer than 11 mos. Traffic and weather together separately so we don't mess you up. Ding! boy joe!
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First I just want to say I love southwest ... only airline I will fly with! I am trying to pass some info on to my cousin. He wants to change his field of work and lives near MDW. He currently has a decent job but wants a more hands-on, promising career. I informed him that SWA was hiring for Ramp Agents. He was familiar with the job description of a Ramp Agent but was unsure of their pay. Once we checked the website and seen that starting pay was $10.18 he determined if he was hired with SWA he'd be taking a slight paycut. This isn't a big deal b/c he knows he can move up in the company if hired. His only concern is if he gets an interview, passing the background check. He does have something on his background from 1996 (10+ years) . And the online application states that you must have a clean background for the past 10 years. Currently he works in HR Management conducting interviews, background checks (ironically) etc for a food shipping facility. My question is does having a past record (although it was longer than 10yrs ago) automatically disqualify him for a position as a Ramp Agent?
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Renee, Thank you so much for your kind words about Southwest and we value your commitment to flying Southwest. The airline industry is a highly regulated industry and, as such, we are required to adhere to certain requirements concerning past criminal history. Federal Regulations refer to certain disqualifying criminal convictions and if an applicant has a conviction for any of these crimes during the past ten years they are not eligible for employment. If your cousin's criminal conviction is outside the ten years as you have indicated, he should not be disqualified based on the Federal Regulations. If your cousin is interested in seeking a career with Southwest, please have him log on to www.southwest.com and check the jobs currently available in his area. There are various phases of the employment process and the background check is just one of the checks required before an individual can be hired on with Southwest. Thanks again for your support and being and 'outside recruiter' for us!!
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My one and only flight was on Southwest and I loved it! I am a graduate student at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois. I am taking a leadership class and we have to do a research project on leadership. I have noticed that your leadership program is ranked really high and would like to get more information on that program. My professor is also a big fan of your airline, and he travels quite often, so I thought that it would be a perfect fit. If you could give me some direction that would be wonderful. Keep up the good work and I hope to hear from you soon! Thanks
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Thanks Shari, I appreciate your input and your quick response. I love SW and will continue to be an 'outside recruiter" for anyone wanting a lasting career with a great company.
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Hi every one. My name is Sal and recently received an e-mail inviting me to a hiring event for ramp agents. It states that itÃ
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Hi Sal, Thank you for your email as well as for your interest in Southwest Airlines. I hope we will see you at one of our Group Information Sessions soon. Your question about the Group Information Session is a common one and many people express confusion and/or anxiety about the process, typically because they have not experienced it before. 11 years ago when I was interviewing with Southwest Airlines I had never heard of a Group Information Session and I was incredibly nervous just before the process because I did not know what to expect. However, once the process began and I saw how friendly the Recruiter and the Employee were, I was able to relax. It was then that I realized the key to doing my best in an interview involves my ability to calm down enough to express myself clearly. To answer your question the Group Information Session will have several people that are interested in the same position (ie Ramp Agent). We send out invitations and sometimes we can have 20+ people respond and sometimes less. We set up the chairs in a half circle so we can all see and hear each other. During the Group Information Session we do our best to tell our Candidates about all of the great things the position entails as well as the awesome benefits Southwes Airlines offers its Employees. There is so much information to share it is difficult to accomplish this task and finish the Group Session within a few hours. Then yes we do ask everyone to stand up one at a time, state their name, and answer a question or two that relates to the position you are interviewing for. I am not able to tell you the questions not because they are top secret, but rather because they do change from time to time and vary based on the position one is interviewing for. If you were interviewing for Customer Service Agent the Recruiter may ask you to discuss a time you delivered excellent Customer Service. If you were interviewing for Ramp Agent you may asked about a time you worked in a position that required continuous lifting. The questions are always related to the position that one is interviewing for. The good news is you are only speaking for a short period of time and the other good news is that in that short period of time you have the opportunity to answer the questions asked of you and really let your experiences and personality shine. I hope this helps with your questions and again I hope to see you in one of our Group Information Sessions soon! Regards, Tim Conners
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I want so badly to resubmit my resumÃ
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Leah, Thank you for your continued passion and desire to work for Southwest! For the Flight Attendant position, I wish I could give you a definite date as to when we will be accepting resumes again, but I canÃ
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Thanks, Shari! That helps. I'll just have to try for the other 2 positions I'm interested in again & later for FA. Thought for the day: Why are they called fingernails & toenails when they're not made out of nails? SWA LUV! 🙂
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Good Morning, I recently got a call to do a 1-on-1 interview for a RSA position. I am REALLY excited and have always wanted to work for SWA. Can anyone give me any tips on what to expect in the interview as it relates to this postion and how to increase my chances of being hired. If hired when does benefits and paid vacation (how many days?) kicks in? Also, if hired, I can see myself working for SWA until I retire. I wouldn't mind working in other areas if the opportunity is availble. So my last question is how long do I have to stay in one position before I can be accepted into another. My goal is to be a regional manager or VP of a department some day (A girl can dream)! Any info provided will be greatly appreciated. Wish me luck!
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I recently applied on the Southwest website for a partime CSA & a ramp agent and happy to say that I have an interview Friday the 14th for the CSA and Sat. the 15th for the ramp agent! I am soooo very excited and really hope & pray for a great opportunity with the best, Southwest! I have been diligently researching all the blogs and info that I can find. I must say to all of you, THANK YOU! I find that all of the info posted has help prepare me for this exciting opportunity....I am still very nervous just because I want this so badly. I am looking forward to joining the team and hope that it is very soon but i am a very patient person and like Leah I want an opportunity with Southwest very very much! Please wish me luck and any tips that you can think of will be greatly appreciated! Thanks Again To You All!
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Lisa, Congratulations on your interview for the RSA position! I hope it goes well. I know this blog is getting lengthy, but if you scroll up to January 10th, you will see a list of Ã
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Hi everyone...Wow I went to the Sacramento hiring event today and man it was so packed in there that they had to do two presentations... I'm a little disappointed because after the first around I was not called again. Even though I told them that I'm welling to relocate to anywhere if the position in Sacramento filled up. But IÃ
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Congratulations, Kathy & Lisa! Please let us know how the interview goes. I certainly remember my excitement, & even nervousness, when I was asked for second interviews for the positions I want. :) I'm sorry you didn't get asked back, Sal. 😞 Well, just keep trying for all the positions you're interested in again! What did you interview for today, & which ones are you interested in? Well, I must get ready for bed now! It's 10:29. Zzzzzz. SWA LUV! 🙂
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I think I answered my own question, Sal. It was for Ramp Agent, right? I looked under the Careers section at the Recruiting Events. I, too, am willing to relocate! I don't have a thought for the day. SWA LUV! 🙂
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Thanks Shari. Your Interview tips were very helpful. Last question ... I think? How in depth is the bacground check. I'm no criminal so I'm not worried on that end, but I heard that a credit history is pulled and that SW has a way to view your overall performance on work history. Is this true? The reason I ask is because I don't have the best credit score and I filed a greivance with one employer. So I don't know what they may have provided about my "performance" based on the incedent that took place. I listed their contact number for SW to contact them. But is additional info collected from another agency about that job? Should I be ready to speak to those incidents. I viewied both as private matters (credit/grievance) Does background investigations have the ability to reveal so much? I guess what I am asking is aside from crimal history and contacting my employers based on what I provided what more is there to check?
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Yes it was for Ramp Agent...One of the supervisors even told me that it will be a good idea because she said that they need a lot more people in OAK... But I don't know, I have not heard anything... I guess everything is just down nowÃ
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Lisa, Thanks so much for giving me the opportunity to answer your questions on Southwest Airlines Background process. Each applicant situation is unique, so it would be difficult to give you a definitive answer. My best advice to you is, be honest and every situation will be evaluated. Hope this answer helps clarify your concerns. I wish the best for you! Randy Nist-Manager People
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I had my interview for CSA in Las Vegas today! I was so nervous I slept maybe 4 hours and arrived 45 mins early! But that worked out to my advantage because it took a while to find a parking spot & the conference room. After meeting the recruiters all my nervousness went away, they made me feel so comfortable and welcome, like I was already part of the Southwest family. While sitting in the room with 24 other candidates we were shown all the Southwest commercials starting back in the 70's to current. I really enjoyed that, it just reminded me of how styles and things have changed through the years. I LUV those "It must be football season" commercials, we all had some good laughs. We were then told about all the benefits, the job description and that we should expect to work holidays & weekends because we would be the newbies. Scheduling is given out in seniority so you have to be willing to work towards getting the schedule you would like to have. We also met a few Southwest family members and they told us about how long they have been with the company and a few things about the position. Then one by one we were called into a different room to have our interviews. I felt very comfortable during the interview process and talked with Beth like she was an old friend, it was great! I was then asked to go to a different office for fingerprinting and a brief survey. I was told that it could take up to 30 days for all the employment & background checks to come back, so I am patient 🙂 Was also told that I if I accepted another job while waiting that Southwest would gladly allow me to give a 2 wk notice which I thought was really nice. I am very excited & look forward to hearing from someone within 30 days! Thanks again to Leah & everybody else for helping me prepare for this AWESOME opportunity!
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Hey Lisa! Congrats on your opportunity with SWA! Hope all goes well for you! I found out today in my interview an answer to one of the questions you asked on March 12th. You have to work in the position you're hired for, for 6 months before being eligible for a different position and you will have to go through the interview process as well. Hope this helps and best of luck to you!
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Hi Sal, I conducted a little research on your question regarding the hiring event you attended in Sacramento. The Employment Coordinator for Sacramento informed me that all notifications have not gone out for that particular event. It can take up to 14 days to receive notice of the outcome. If not selected ,I encourage you to re-apply in one year if it is still your desire to work at Southwest Airlines. Thanks for your interest in Southwest Airlines and I wish you the very best! Randy Nist Manager-People
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Hi Kathy, I was thrilled to read your comments regarding your positive experience in Las Vegas today. We try our very best to make every applicant feel at home. I wish you the very best! Randy Nist Manager-People
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Thanks Randy! I wish every interview that I have attended could have been that wonderful! Looking forward to joining the SWA family soon!
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This thread has been incredibly helpful, so I am hoping someone can answer some questions for me. I submitted a resume a few weeks ago for a corporate position. Now the career section of your website has changed and it looks like resumes can be submitted in different formats. Should I submit a new resume, and is there any way to find out when a position will close?
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Natalie, we did upgrade our technology and made, hopefully (!), some good improvements to our Career page and to the user's experience of reviewing our current job listings and submitting a resume. We timed this upgrade with the closure of several positions (with a few exceptions). If you submitted a resume, we have it and there is no need to submit another one. For many of our positions, we do not have predetermined close dates. We keep a position open until we believe that we have sufficient volume and quality of candidates. My advice is to apply at the time you see the job listing rather than wait. Also, with our new technology, you will be able to automate your job search with Southwest Airlines Job Alerts and get notified immediately when new jobs that meet your criteria become available. Thanks for your interest in Southwest Airlines! Julie Weber, Director - Employment
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Thanks Kathy, I'm gald your interview went well and I pray in the meantime that you get the job. My interview is Wed and I'm still searching for any information that can can help make my interview go smoothly. Thanks again! Lisa