Effective recruitment is the key to having the people with the right skills, expertise and qualifications in the right jobs. Diversity and equality of opportunity should be central to the process. As well as getting the right person for the job, a fair and consistent process will help lower:
Below, we highlight the necessary steps to ensure you get the recruitment process right.
Highlighting the requirements of the role, the job description should be created for every new role and updated when existing positions become vacant. You should avoid jargon and abbreviations and include in the job description:
The person specification describes your ideal candidate’s abilities, skills and knowledge, helping you select the best person for the job, not the person you like the most. It provides the foundations for the recruitment advertisement, shortlisting criteria and interview questions. When writing consider:
The Equality Act ensures applicants are treated fairly and equally in the areas of:
You should make it clear in the advertisement that an applicant will not be excluded on the grounds of sex, gender reassignment, pregnancy, maternity, race, marital status, disability, age, religion, belief or sexual orientation. Use neutral language such as ‘sales assistant’ not ‘sales girl’ and avoid sex-specific titles such as ‘craftsman’ and ‘waitress’.
It is good practice for illustrated adverts to represent both sexes and to include a multi-cultural mix. For example, it could be discriminatory to advertise a job that illustrates a woman in a profession traditionally undertaken by women. To counteract the effect, either depict a man in equal prominence or add an obvious disclaimer that the job is open to men and women. If a discriminatory advert is published, the advertiser (you as the employer), your agents (recruitment agencies) and the publisher are liable.
Application forms mean applicants answer questions in the same format in order to ensure equal opportunities. However, they should be treated with caution. If an applicant feels they have been discriminated against on the basis of information they have provided (for example their marital status), they could take you to a Tribunal. Only seek personal data relevant to the role. You can ask about:
Remember to include:
It is good practice for you to adopt a monitoring procedure to record the personal characteristics such as the race and sex of applicants and appointees. Attach the monitoring form to the application form or job information pack. On the form, advise applicants that all information will be treated in confidence and will not be seen by any of your staff directly involved with the appointment.
You should ensure that at least two people from the interview panel should prepare the interview shortlist:
Interview panels should have at least two members, preferably who have been involved in shortlisting. The date and time should be arranged at the beginning of the recruitment process, but be flexible. Before the interview:
Avoid questions, conduct and procedures from which discrimination can be inferred. For example, do not ask: ‘Will your family commitments prevent you from working overtime?’ or ‘What child care arrangements have you got?’. Only ask questions that are relevant and necessary to the job and avoid making snap judgements on the basis of intuition or subjective personality assessments. So, for a final checklist:
When all interviews have taken place, you should go through the interview notes and ensure that all candidates meet the essential criteria. Then:
Jobcentre Plus runs a Two Tick Scheme for best practice in employing disabled people.
Martin Searle Solicitors is the trading name of ms solicitors ltd, which is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, and is registered in England under company number 05067303.© 2023