When is an employer’s hiring process discriminatory?

On Behalf of | Aug 3, 2023 | Employment Law for Employers

The United States has strict laws against employment discrimination. These policies include discriminatory practices based on race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age and disability. Employees and employers have responsibilities to address and minimize these harmful behaviors in the workplace.

However, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) could impose more systematic regulations on employers. Aside from implementing anti-discriminatory policies at work, they must also amend and improve their processes to remove discriminatory practices, including hiring procedures.

The law enforces the following regulations on the following parts of an employer’s hiring process:

  • Advertisements for open positions: These ads must show no discriminatory preferences or biases.
  • Recruitment process: Procedures must be fair, allowing everyone equal opportunities. For example, recruiting only young candidates could be unlawful if the employer refuses older candidates who are equally or more qualified for the job.
  • Application process: Employers must allow qualified applicants to pursue the job opportunity. Refusing them could be a form of discrimination. Additionally, employers can only impose tests that are relevant to the job. Requiring inappropriate tests could be unlawful.
  • Referrals: Referring a person for the job should be based on skills, qualifications and competencies. If not, they might be unlawful.

These rules require implementation in compliance with federal and local employment laws. Failing to comply might result in legal actions and sanctions.

Collaborating for a safer workplace

The workplace should welcome people from all walks of life. The law provides comprehensive guidelines on how to make company policies more inclusive. However, some problematic practices might go undetected unless raised by an employee. Employers could address these risks by providing channels to their employees, encouraging collaboration against discrimination. Doing so could help determine what to improve and how to do it.