Overview: In this high-tech age, employers have more resources available than ever before to find job candidates. Online postings, state labor websites, LinkedIn and other forms of social media have taken their place alongside traditional press advertising, employment agencies and employee referrals as effective recruiting methods.
Referrals empower current employees by giving them the opportunity to assist in the hiring process. Employers should be cautious not to rely exclusively on referrals, however, as doing so may create discrimination risks under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act if it means a diverse range of candidates is not considered.
In addition, HR should use gender-neutral and age-neutral terms when posting job advertisements as part of HR's recruiting process to avoid unnecessarily limiting the potential range of applicants.
This holds true with the use of social media as well. While providing new avenues for recruitment, these sites also can provide new discrimination traps for unwary employers that access information about protected characteristics.
Trends: California, Illinois, Maryland and Michigan are among the many states that have passed laws prohibiting employers from asking job applicants for their social media passwords. Federal legislation has been proposed to ban this practice, and other states are looking into similar measures.
Author: David B. Weisenfeld, JD, Legal Editor
Updated to reflect the Portland Ban the Box Ordinance, effective July 1, 2016.
Updated to reflect new law permitting private employers to provide a veterans preference, effective July 6, 2016.
Updated to reflect a forthcoming ban on criminal history questions on an initial job application.
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) released a report today showing that many employers are facing increased difficulties in finding qualified applicants. The survey of more than 3,300 HR professionals revealed that 68% say their organization has had trouble recruiting in the current job market.
Updated to reflect forthcoming law granting employees the right to inspect their personnel files.
Updated to reflect the 2016 VEVRAA Hiring Benchmark, a revised OFCCP directive regarding Functional Affirmative Action Plans and forthcoming revised sex discrimination rules for federal contractors.
Updated policy in light of ongoing scrutiny at the state and federal level of employer's background checks policies and procedures.
Updated to reflect forthcoming state ban the box law affecting private employers.
Guidance on legal considerations in HR’s recruitment process. Support and advice on finding capable, qualified candidates in a legal manner.