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Sometimes, seemingly innocuous questions can cause a stir and, in some cases, can even be considered illegal.** The reason is that evaluating and assessing a candidate should be on skill and experience alone, not on any protected group. Thus, asking certain questions can be considered hinting at discrimination - examples of allowable questions provided below as well. The EEOC, which enforces federal law, evaluates and investigates any complaints that arise during whats considered pre-employment period. It is necessary to be mindful and steer clear of areas or subjects that could expose you to a lawsuit or other legal repercussions.
*DISCLAIMER: The following content is for informational purposes only and NOT for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney or a law firm to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or specific problems you may have or that arise.
Are you a citizen?
Are your parents / spouse US citizens?
When did you become a citizen?
Do you have the legal right to work in the US?
Are you able to provide proof of eligibility upon hire?
Do you have children at home?
How old / how many children?
Who cares for them?
Do you plan on having more?
This job requires overnight travel, for two or three days at a time, every month. Is that something you can commit to?
What are the nature and/or severity of any disabilities that you have?
Whats your medical history?
Are you able to carry out the necessary job assignments & perform them well and safely?
Ask about financial status, wage attachments, outstanding loans or obligations, or bankruptcy status.
After applicant is hired, employer can request info for benefits, stock options, and 401(k) & at applicants discretion.
Would you be comfortable as the only woman on the engineering team?
You cannot ask or hint about gender unless it is a bona fide occupational requirement.
How tall are you?
How heavy are you?
Explain lifting or other job requirements (e.g., for an Office Manager). You can demonstrate & require a physical examination.
Where do you live?
Do you live in town?
Do you own or rent?
Who do you live with?
Will you be able to start work at 8:00 am? (You can ask about an address to facilitate contact with the applicant)
Are you currently living with anyone?
Are you married / single/ engaged / divorced?
Do you live with your parents?
After hiring, ask status for insurance purposes.
Whats your cultural background?
What ethnicity are you?
Where were you born?
Where are your parents from?
What languages do you speak, read or write fluently?
Do you go to church?
Which religious holidays do you observe?
Can you work on Saturdays?
Sources: EEOC, University of Southern Maine, Monster, Nolo
“The Sourcery is always there when we need them. They can scale up or down in response to demand. The Sourcery doesn’t take a success fee. We only talk to pre-screened candidates who fit what we’re looking for.”
“We knew we needed help. We decided we might as well try this recruiting thing. We were able to hire a string of engineers in a very short time. The Sourcery took a ton off our plates immediately. Like In-House Recruiters, but better... It's hard to juggle the work to build the product and hit the milestones while also managing the hiring process.”
“They Made Me a Better Recruiter. Over the years, I’ve placed more than 20 software engineers through The Sourcery. They do a fantastic job of minimizing hiring overhead. I was okay at recruiting before I met them. Now I actually consider myself a pretty good recruiter.”
Speak to a USA based representative now by calling us at 415-423-2764 or schedule a consultation to speak to us this week about your hiring strategy.
"We were able to hire a string of engineers in a very short time. The Sourcery took a ton off our plates immediately. Like In-House Recruiters, but better... It's hard to juggle the work to build the product and hit the milestones while also managing the hiring process."