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Passed over a qualified employee? You can fix the problem

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Sometimes, employers make promotion mistakes that are purely unintentional. That can happen, for example, if an employer somehow overlooked a qualified employee for a promotion. If that employee is a member of a protected class, however, it’s easy to believe that the reason was illegal discrimination rather than an innocent oversight. And it’s a reasonable assumption if everyone but members of his particular protected class receive opportunities.

You can counter that assumption—and protect yourself from discrimination complaints—if you take action as soon as you realize you may have passed over an able and willing employee. Sit down and discuss the matter with the employee and his supervisor. Then, arrange for the promotion process to begin. If you truly believe race or another protected classification played any role, you may also want to offer the opportunity retroactively—with back pay.

Recent case: David Johnson,...(register to read more)

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