April 13, 2006
Illegal Interview Question: Are You a US Citizen?
Hire the Best People,
but don’t get sued
Your Business Blogger once ran the Human Resource function for a 14,000 employee enterprise. The boss demanded, “Get the best talent!”
And don’t get sued. It was like playing defense. You can’t win it, but you can lose it.
Anyway, when interviewing job candidates, a series of trick questions are necessary to:
1) Get answers and
2) Stay within the Law
Sometimes mutually exclusive, because the law is, well, an *ss.
So. During the interview, I would say, not ask, to the job candidate,
“That is a beautiful ring [on the third finger on the left hand]…”
“I have the five best kids on the planet…”
“I love California! I was born in San Diego…”
“I’ve been married to Charmaine for 16 years this May…”
This work is best left to your anti-personnel, personnel department. The HR professionals have become as vital as lawyers. And can kill a contact or contract even faster.
Here’s more from our friends at Military.com,
Illegal: Are you a U.S. citizen? Where were you or your parents born?
Legal: Are you authorized to work in the United States? What other languages do you speak? This question is okay as long as it relates to the job you are interviewing for.
Illegal: How old are you? When is your birthday?
Legal: Are you over 18 years of age? Again, this question is considered legal if it relates to the job.
Illegal: What’s your marital status? Who do you live with? Do you plan to have a family? How many kids do you have? Do you have childcare arrangements?
Legal: Travel is an important part of the job, would you be willing to travel as needed?
Illegal: Do you belong to any clubs? What are your affiliations?
Legal: Do you belong to any professional trade organizations that you consider relevant to your ability to perform this job?
Illegal: How tall are you? How much do you weigh?
Legal: Are you able to lift a 50 lb weight and carry it more than 100 yards for this job?
Illegal: Do you have any disabilities? Have you had any recent or past illnesses or operations? If so, please list the dates of these operations.
Legal: Are you able to perform the essential functions of this job with or without reasonable accommodations?
Illegal: Have you ever been arrested?
Legal: Have you ever been convicted of a crime? The crime in question should be related to the performance of the job in question.
Illegal: If you’ve been in the military, were you honorably discharged?
Legal: What type of training or education did you receive in the military?
And this is why you will never hear back from a company about why you didn’t didn’t get that job. It is rude. But it’s not personal. It’s personnel, and
It’s the Law. It has made us all *sses.
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Thank you (foot)notes:
Photo credit US Navy.
And this is why managers are socio-paths.
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