Recruiting Tips

Check References - Limit Your Liability

So many of us skip the reference checking process. Why? We figure that the past employers will only give up job title and dates of employment, and that's not worth it.
Number 1 - If you make the call and get only job title and dates of employment, you will at least have limited your liability for negligent hiring.

Negligent hiring is a cause of action that makes an employer liable to a third party when a worker injures the third party and the employer knew or should have known that the worker was likely to cause harm. For example, in one of the early cases, a utility company worker assaulted a customer while making repairs in the customer's home. The customer sued the utility, alleging that if it had investigated the worker's background, it would have learned that he had been fired from a previous job for assaulting a co-worker.

By making a reasonable effort to contact all references and prior empl9yers, even if they do not provide any useful information, you will have exercised reasonable care to avoid hiring a dangerous person. This effort can be very helpful in defending a negligent hiring claim.

Thanks to Marc R. Jacobs, D'Ancona Labor & Employment Group

Number 2 - The person you speak with may give you additional information - but you'll never know unless you try. Only ask (with the job description in front of you) about past performance, using the skills listed in the job description.
Number 3 - We have the candidate contact their former employer to tell them about the skills needed on the job and ask them to call us with their description of the person's abilities rega45rdingh those skills. If the past employer doesn't call, we let the candidate know that we can't consider them until we hear from them, or we then call the employer (it'll be an easier conversation, since they know about the job already!)

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