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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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The controversy over a 1995 Chicago firefighter hiring test may finally be headed toward closure now that a federal appeals court has ruled the city must hire 111 black applicants who passed the test. In addition to hiring the firefighters, the city has offered to pay approximately 6,000 applicants who passed the test a portion of an estimated $30 million.

Minnesota employers may be finding fewer qualified applicants to fill their available job openings. The labor shortage isn’t because the state’s economy is suddenly booming again. It’s because employers in neighboring North Dakota are dipping into the Minnesota talent pool.

Good news for government agencies: People who apply for government work don’t have a property interest in a potential job, even if they make the list of finalists, and others on the list don’t want the job. That’s true even if the hiring committee states it plans to hire someone from the list and then does not.

Q. Are there any questions we cannot or should not ask a reference when screening applicants?
If state Rep. Bill Galloway has his way, certain employers may be re­quired to use the federal government’s E-Verify web-based employment eligibility verification system. Several states already mandate E-Verify, and the U.S. Supreme Court in June ruled that an Arizona law requiring employers to use it is constitutional.
Ohio-based Timken Co. will pay $120,000 to settle a gender and disability complaint from a woman who worked at the company’s ball bearing plant in Randleman.

Employees who don’t apply for a job or promotion generally can’t sue over the lost opportunity. But if promotions are never announced and there’s no process to apply, employees and applicants can sue. That’s why it is crucial to have some sort of application process in place that allows you to track applications and prove who applied—and by default, who did not.

Q. We are considering hiring several high school students to work at our company for the summer. What statutes or regulations do we need to consider?
Gov. Chris Christie has signed a bill barring discrimination against the unemployed, making it illegal for New Jersey employers to refuse to hire applicants just because they are not currently working. Violators face fines of up to $1,000 for a first offense and $5,000 for subsequent offenses.
The U.S. Supreme Court has concluded that federal immigration law does not pre-empt or invalidate an Arizona law that subjects Arizona employers to sanctions for knowingly or intentionally employing unauthorized workers and requiring them to use the federal government’s E-Verify online employment eligibility verification system.
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