HR Recruiting Staffing

Human Resources Recruiting and Placement Information for Employers

As a recognized leader in HR recruiting and placement services nationwide, HR Personnel Services dedicates itself completely to creating ideal matches between the needs of our corporate clients and talented, resourceful HR professional candidates to meet those needs. Part of our commitment to complete service includes providing information to our client companies regarding the recruiting and staffing process. The guidelines on this page are designed to help clients create job descriptions that attract candidates who are ideally qualified for an open position. Based on our extensive service experience, we’ve also provided tips that you can use to avoid issues that can arise during the interview and documentation process.

Key Points for Human Resources Job Descriptions

To find the most qualified person for the job, make sure that you have an adequate job description. Every position should have a current and accurate job description. Notwithstanding compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the job description helps to focus the hiring process and decision as well as provide a standard for later performance evaluations.

By having a detailed and accurate job description, one will be able to identify the essential functions of the position. The job description should clearly explain why the position is open as well as the job related qualifications. With clearly stated qualifications and expectations, the recruiting, screening and interviewing process progresses more smoothly.

While the job description will help eliminate non-qualified candidates from applying, one must be careful not to include qualifications that are not relevant to the essential functions of the position. Be certain not to add statements that do not relate to the position or that relate to a protected class. This would include statements like “single” or age related statements like “mature.” Even statements like “energetic” and “fresh” could be implied as a violation of age discrimination laws.

Human resources employment applications should also be up to date. If information is not relevant to the position or hiring decision, it should not be included on the application. Be careful about asking for year graduated from high school or birth date as this could lead to age discrimination violations. Additionally, some states do not allow hiring or employment decisions to be made on the basis of legal, off duty conduct. Asking questions regarding a candidate’s activities while off duty could violate employment laws.

Interview Questions for Human Resources Job Candidates

The interview is an opportunity to gain information about a prospective candidate and to inform the prospective employee about the position and organization. While the interviewer wants to get a clear perspective on the knowledge, skills, and abilities of an employee, one must be careful not to ask illegal questions during an interview. Not informing your hiring managers or interviewers of what not to ask could prove to be a costly mistake.

Generally, employers can ask questions about the applicant’s knowledge and experience in the area in which he or she will be working should they get the job, any other qualifications for the job, strengths and weaknesses associated with the tasks required by the job, and the ability to work with others. Question areas specifically prohibited include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Age – including date of birth and even, arguably, dates graduated from high school or college;
  • Marital Status – including questions like “Would your husband object to relocation?”
  • Children – including questions like “Are you planning to start a family?” or “In the event you get this job, would you need to obtain child care?”
  • Medical History – including questions about past injuries, illnesses and workers’ compensation claims.
  • Religious Affiliations – including questions like “Do you have a problem working Sundays?”
  • Bank Accounts and Other Personal Financial Information – rarely relevant to the job.
  • Union or Club Memberships – blanket inquiries may reveal information employers are not entitled to, such as religious affiliation, national origin, or disability.
  • Transportation – unless vehicle ownership or the ability to get to off-site projects is required for the job.
  • National Origin – including questions about an applicant’s native language and where the applicant is originally from.

On the other hand, the following are examples of similar questions that, when answered, will supply the employer with similar necessary information but without the risk of a discrimination claim:

  • This job will require a number of weekend conferences you will need to attend. Does overnight or weekend travel present a problem for you?
  • This job requires you to move 45 to 50 lb. boxes from one area to another. Are you able to do that with or without reasonable accommodation?
  • This job requires fluency in Spanish. Are you fluent in that language?
  • Will you be able to work the scheduled hours, with or without difficulty?
  • Are you legally entitled to work in this country? This question is also legally required.

Remember this simple rule: If a question is not truly job-related, do not ask it.

Make Sure Your Workforce Is Properly Documented

The immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 created for the first time a requirement that U.S. employers verify the work authorization of all new employees (Form I-9). The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) oversaw employer compliance until 2003, when the Department of Homeland Security was formed. The Department of Homeland Security now encompasses three agencies that were formally the INS. The enforcement of I-9s is now in the hands of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). They are responsible for interior enforcement of U.S. immigration laws and customs regulations including worksite enforcement and removal of aliens. The INS focuses on arresting and detaining illegal aliens employed by an organization rather than the organization itself. ICE is focused on targeting owners and managers who knowingly employ illegal aliens with criminal enforcement measures. Enforcement measures have changed and employers should review their I-9 practices. Key points include:

  • Have all I-9’s completed and managed by a single person or group of people who are well trained in I-9 requirements. These individuals should be trained in identifying false documents. Review and audit on a regular basis.
  • Develop and implement an effective system for completing, storing, re-verifying and destroying I-9 files and copies in a timely manner. Be sure to keep all I-9’s separate from personnel files and implement a policy consistently. I-9’s must be maintained through the period of employment, but may be destroyed after terminations (either three years from date of hire or one year after termination; whichever occurs last).
  • Always examine original documents. Never accept photocopies. Receipt notices of impending applications may be accepted under limited special circumstances.
  • Remember, if you copy the front and back of each document submitted by employee in support of I-9 verification for one employee, you must do it for all employees.
  • It is against the law to require a social security card or to deny employment due to lack of the card. The employee will have to provide the social security number for IRS purposes.
  • Give all three pages of I-9 form to employees and simply point the employee to documents listed on page three. Never request specific documents.
  • Initial and date all corrections during self audits. Never backdate. If you need to complete a new I-9 (re-verification employment authorization) retain the old one.
  • Have a written corporate policy stating that employer may terminate employee if fraud is discovered.
  • If using contract labor, be certain to use a reputable staffing organization. Check to see what policies are in place to enforce I-9 verifications. If the staffing firm reviews and verifies I-9’s, then do not do the same as it makes you look more like an actual employer and you may be then held liable for violations.
Complete Specialized HR Recruiting and Placement Services

As part of our commitment to recruiting ideally matched HR professionals to fill open positions with our corporate clients nationwide, the recruiters at HR Personnel Services constantly strive to assist clients with information that helps them attract and select candidates who will quickly become valuable assets to their Human Resources Department. Creating accurate and complete job descriptions and avoiding pitfalls in the interview and documentation process are important for successful placement. Our HR recruiting team is always happy to answer your questions in these areas, and will work closely with you toward matching ideal candidates with your open positions.