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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 contentious tax law signed by President Obama last week brings tax savings to workers nationwide—and contains several provisions that will affect HR. Here's a round-up of various elements—from Social Security withholding to tuition reimbursement to on-site child care—that you'll have to deal with when the law takes effect on Jan. 1.
Your organization likely tracks the individual performance of current new hires to determine their contribution. But most employers don’t measure and compare the aggregate performance of new hires year after year. There are different approaches to measuring quality of hire, but these two are among the most effective and widely used, according to HR consultants:

You may never see it coming: A disappointed applicant sues you after you give the job to someone else. However, you can be prepared—if you have held onto all documents and materials related to the hiring process. If you wind up in court and need to show why you didn’t select an applicant, those records may provide the rationale.

When she first stepped into a leadership position, Anne Berkowitch, co-founder and CEO of social-networking company SelectMinds, believed she should be like a military general. Now, she says, she envisions the way you steer a boat. “If you think about how you steer a boat, it’s always from the back,” she says, “and I’ve moved toward the back of the boat.”
Have you ever thought of not hiring an applicant because he or she had previously declared bankruptcy? Maybe you thought that was discriminatory. But a court last week said, “Don’t worry.” Private employers won’t violate the U.S. Bankruptcy Code if they refuse to hire. But firing based on bankruptcy status is another story…
Reading every word on every résumé simply isn’t a luxury HR professionals can afford. If you quickly scan résumés, however, you probably live in constant fear of discarding potential winners. Advice: Spot-read résumés during the first round to determine if they merit a more detailed review.

Will a court acknowledge a company “policy” that doesn’t exist on paper? One court recently did—even though the policy wasn’t written anywhere—because the policy was being followed by all managers. Still, when in doubt, it’s best to write it out.

While employee handbooks are not required by law, they can prove essential — especially for small business owners that can't afford to lose a harassment or discrimination lawsuit. The employee handbook has become an essential tool in the employer’s arsenal to defend against liability for employment decisions.

A Brooklyn court has extended an injunction preventing New York City from hiring new firefighters because existing hiring tests discriminate against minorities. The court proposed five alternative hiring plans that would bypass continued use of tests, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg claims all five require the city to use illegal quotas.
Q. To prevent productivity and morale problems, we would like to adopt a policy banning the hiring of our current employees’ spouses. Would this be lawful?
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