Hiring

When hiring employees, negligent hiring practices can doom the process. Learn from your colleagues’ successes – and avoid their pitfalls.

Smart interview questions, well-written job descriptions, and sharp interviewing result in hiring employees that work out well, AND make you look good in the process.

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Q. I understand there are lots of questions we can’t ask during interviews. But what if the applicant brings up the subject? For example, if she mentions that she just had a baby, can I ask if she’s made child care arrangements? If a person is coming from out of town, I may ask why. If they say “boyfriend/girlfriend,” can I ask if it’s a permanent move?

When you have several good applicants for a job opening, picking the best-qualified candidate isn’t easy. While you should be as objective as possible, the final decision can have a subjective element. Just make sure you document a good business reason to back up your choice.

Q. When, if ever, can our company legally ask an applicant about his or her religious affiliation?
Stevens Transport, a Dallas-area trucking company, has agreed to pay $50,000 to settle EEOC charges that it refused to hire a paraplegic man for a management position due to his disability.
Marymount Manhattan College’s refusal to hire a 64-year-old choreography instructor for a tenure-track position has left the New York City liberal arts school tap dancing around age discrimination charges.
The EEOC is investigating the Marylou’s Coffee chain, looking into its apparent practice of hiring attractive young women. According to the Fisher Phillips law firm, “the EEOC’s big adventure raises a troubling question: Is the EEOC trying to establish that it’s illegal for an employer to prefer attractive employees over unattractive ones?”
The U.S. Supreme Court overturned many of the provisions in a controversial 2010 Arizona immigration law. The impact, according to the Foley Lardner law firm, could be a chilling effect on state immigration laws.
The current version of the Employment Eligibility Verification (I-9) Form carries an Aug. 31, 2012, expiration date. The feds are considering changes to the form, but said employers should continue to use the current version until further notice. Follow our link for the official word from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Most managers want to choose the best candidate for the job. But assessing what constitutes “best” can often feel a bit subjective. That’s OK. Just make sure you can point to objective factors that back up your choice, e.g., experience, education or even the most recent performance evaluation.

Both written words and oral promises must be chosen carefully to avoid creating either actual or implied employment contracts during the hiring process. Employee lawsuits can erupt when managers make promises in an interview that can't be kept, create job offer letters that leave no room for flexibility, or inadvertently oversell the potential for monetary rewards creating an implied employment contract.

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