From fake job ads to refusing to hire smokers, HRM wraps up some of this month’s recruitment news.
Are recruiters posting fake job advertisements? Applicants who believe they have been suckered in for the purpose of beefing up recruiters’ numbers have aired their grievances in a recent article for news.com.au by Jessica Muddit (who regularly contributes to HRM).
According to one disgruntled IT worker, “When recruiters on LinkedIn approached me, they’d often be quite vague and the feeling I got was that they were phishing for CVs to fill a quota or something”.
Michael Berger, director of Brisbane-based recruitment firm Talent Blueprint, said there are several reasons for this relatively common practice. In the event of a failing new hire, companies sometimes want to test the market for a replacement. Also recruiters may simply want to increase their existing pool of candidates to offer to clients.
A person identified in the article only as Julia elaborates: “The reason we do fake interviews is because we don’t want to wait for a real job to come in before we speak to candidates. That would make the process really slow and we wouldn’t meet our monthly targets.”
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) says that misleading people for commercial gain is in breach of the law, however proving a job ad is fake can be difficult.
Muddit provides some warning signs that a job ad is not all that’s it’s cracked up to be:
- vague job descriptions;
- jobs that sounds too good to be true often are;
- unprofessional contact listed, such as a Yahoo or Gmail email address;
- absence of detail about the team you would be working with; and
- If the recruiter refuses to give you the name of the company once you’re shortlisted.
Job prospects up in smoke
Does being a smoker hurt your chances of finding a job? A simple search on Seek showed that “dozens” of job ads for positions around the country requested applicants be non-smokers, according to a recent article on ABC online.
The available positions were for a wide range of roles, from blue-collar jobs such as truck drivers, roofers and gardeners, to office-based professions such as administrators and receptionists.
And this exclusion is not considered to be discriminatory conduct.“Smoking is not a protected attribute, and it is not an impairment under the act,” the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Commission says.“Although smokers might be addicted to nicotine, it is possible to deal with the addiction by using patches rather than smoking.”
But it might not be that simple, as addiction to nicotine could potentially be seen as a disability or impairment.
“We have recently seen some decisions coming out where ‘addiction’ has been considered a form of disability,” says Christie Toy, an employment law and workplace relations expert with Shine Lawyers.
“These type of decisions include addiction to drugs and gambling. A similar case would need to be run about smoking, and it would need to be established that it creates an addiction that is viewed as a disability or impairment.”
Keep on branding
Strong employer branding has a significant impact on successful recruitment, a recent US study found. Of the respondents surveyed, 77 per cent say recruitment marketing is a top priority for them in 2018.
A poorly thought out recruitment strategy can impact an employer’s reputation and keep top talent at bay. As HRM has written previously, recruitment marketing is a strategy to bring in candidates much like customers. It’s something that has become more and more pertinent in an online marketplace. US based portal HR Dive provided some interesting insights into the impact of employer brand on prospective candidates:
- job seekers will read around seven online reviews before applying for a job in a company
- 76 per cent of job seekers will research a company for applying; and
- one in five job seekers will apply for a job with an organisation that has a bad reputation.
As one marketer put it in Business2Community: “I can’t think of a business transaction where the stakes are much higher than in recruitment. Both sides are taking a big risk, both are investing a bunch of time, and both are ultimately relying on a mixture of trust, hope and luck that it all works in the end.”
Learn about the employment life cycle and the current legislation and labour conventions that underpin practice, in the AHRI short course ‘Recruitment and workplace relations’.