While the stock market and economic indicators such as the unemployment rate, hiring projects, and consumer confidence continue to show some consistent modest improvements, many employers are beginning to consider doing something they haven’t done en masse in years: hire more people. Keeping in mind that your organization and the managers and other staff members responsible for hiring those people may be a little rusty in this area, we present you with an easy three-step guide to how you can significantly increase the likelihood your business gets sued.
Please note that ERC actually strongly encourages you to do the exact OPPOSITE of the steps outlined below.
1. Ask inappropriate and illegal questions during interviews.
Follow the lead of fellow employers highlighted in case studies and articles like this recent article published in Fortune Magazine, and make sure those involved in the interview process have absolutely no idea what kind of questions they can and should ask job candidates. Ensure the questions are vague and have little (if any) connection to providing you relevant information to help you determine if the person is the right fit for the job. Also, encourage your staff to ask lots of questions about the personal background of candidates including their age, number of kids, religious beliefs, national origin, genetic history, disability status, and race. Actually, don’t encourage your staff to do anything at all. Better to leave them to their own devices and let them figure this stuff out themselves.
2. Conduct your own Internet background check.
Make sure that every candidate undergoes a thorough background check during which all those involved in the hiring process “Google” the person’s name and search the Internet for any blog postings, images, tweets, YouTube videos, Facebook wall posts, LinkedIn groups, or affiliations that would render that candidate as being a “less than ideal” fit for the culture of your organization. While you’re at it, make sure that everyone on your hiring team views at least one picture of each candidate that can clearly identify him or her as a part of a protected class, and just to have all your bases covered, be sure to read some kind of profile that provides personal information about each candidate such as age, race, and marital status. Finally, base your hiring decision solely on the information you find during this background check.
3. Rely on your gut. Always.
Spend as little time as possible collecting and analyzing empirical data about job candidates that can aide you in selecting the best person for the job. Never use tools like behavioral interviewing techniques or assessments that measure personality, cognitive abilities, or skills. Base all your decisions on hunches: the look in a candidate’s eyes…the color suit he or she did or didn’t wear…the way in which he or she grabbed his or her water glass and placed it back on the coaster on the table. These are the tried-and-true, time-tested, fail-safe techniques that you and all your staff involved in the hiring process should rely on explicitly.
If you’re venturing into the unfamiliar world of recruiting and hiring for the first time in a long time, and you’re committed to doing everything you can to land your employer in court, just follow the three easy steps outlined above and we can almost guarantee that you’ll increase the risk of litigation for your organization exponentially.
However, if you’re not so crazy about the idea of getting sued by job candidates, PLEASE do the exact opposite.
Interviewing Skills for Managers & Supervisors
This interactive program will review the employment process, including: legal issues facing interviewers; effective questions that provide the interviewer with information relevant to the position; and strategies to effectively plan, conduct, evaluate and follow up on an interview. For more information about this workshop click here.
FACE IT: Addressing Facebook's Status in the Workplace
Social media – and particularly Facebook – have brought a new set of challenges to employers. From employee privacy issues and workplace bullying to trade secrets and recruiting practices, nuances from Facebook are regularly affecting many aspects of HR and employee relations practices. Join ERC for an informative session that will provide participants with an overview of the various areas in which Facebook can have an impact on the HR role, an understanding of current case law that supports action or inaction on the employers' part, and guidance for writing policies that keep your organization compliant and employees safe. For more information about this workshop click here.