When one employee is terminated or quits, many bosses feel the pressure to advertise immediately and quickly hire to fill the void. In doing so, most employers turn to three main avenues for recruitment:

  1. Internal Sourcing: Often a tool for large employers such as government agencies, companies with multiple locations, and academic institutions. Posting a position can be easy by sending a company wide email or having a company managed website where current employees can apply for a different position within the same organization.
    1. This strategy saves money by avoiding the expenses of researching an outside candidate and builds employee morale by making promotions available for existing staff.
  2. External Sourcing: In this method, outside recruiting methods are implored to seek the best candidate. Companies can use job boards, newspaper ads, their own website application portal or other advertising to generate applicants.
    1. This method can be costly due to the expense of advertising, screening candidates and conducting background checks on new hires. Employers who have high turnover can benefit from hiring in-house recruitment staff and pay in bulk for ongoing advertisements throughout the year to maximize the number of qualified candidates that can be sourced.
  3. Third-party Sourcing: This method can be more expensive than the other two because it uses a professional hiring agency or headhunter to find qualified candidates. This method can be a great option for employers who are looking for employees with a specific skill set.

What Must be Included in a Job Posting?

No boss wants to waste time reviewing applications that do not meet the business needs. By including some basic elements, the advertisement can weed those applications down to candidates who might be a good fit. Your job posting should include the following:

  • Accurate Job Title: Check to make sure the position title is in line with your industry’s standards and properly reflects the duties and responsibilities of the position.
  • Summary of job duties: Provide an accurate summary in the form of a list or paragraph that summarizes what the candidate will be expected to do and how they fit within the organization.
  • Requirements: If you need a person with a specific degree, certificate or license, say so. Also, indicate the minimum amount of years of experience you are looking for and the qualities that they should demonstrate.
  • Job location: Be clear in the posting about where the candidate will be required to report for this job.
    • If your organization has multiple locations, specify where this position will be stationed. If travel is required, indicate the region and frequency with which travel will be required.
  • Statement of Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance: Be sure to finish your posting with language that indicates your organization complies with the EEOC standards in hiring.

What is Discrimination in Employment Advertising?

It is illegal in the United States to advertise in a way that discriminates against a person or group of persons based on a protected class. The following are a list of characteristics that if you prohibit or prefer one group over another can be illegal:

  • Race, color, or ethnicity;
  • Place of origin or ancestry;
  • Religion;
  • Marital status;
  • Family or parental status;
  • Age;
  • Physical or mental disability unless you have a bona fide qualification;
  • Sex or gender identity; and
  • Sexual orientation

What is Illegal to Put in a Job Posting?

You cannot use language that demonstrates a preference for or a prohibition of a group of people based on the list above. There may be exceptions that apply to your organization such as religious organization hiring a reverend that is a member of their religion.

What is Discrimination in Employment Provisions?

When you begin interviewing qualified candidates and possibly continuing with the hiring process, it is important to not ask questions or make statements that would demonstrate those illegal preferences or prohibitions.

Make sure your questions are designed to discover whether that person is qualified to perform the tasks and would be a good fit in the organization based on their personal qualifications and personality traits.

Are there “Illegal” Questions I Must Not Ask in an Interview?

Yes. You may not ask questions about their marital status, sexual orientation, whether they have any kids, what religion they practice, etc. You must not make any statements that indicate you prefer or do not like a group of people based on the above traits.

How Do I Attract Diverse and Qualified Applicants without Violating the Law?

Post the position at various sources including minority or religious job fairs. Design interview questions that target the job duties that are important to your position. Instead of being worried about hiring a parent with small children who may have less time on their hands, tell applicants about the intensity and time commitment required to perform well at your organization. They can make the decision about whether their other commitments, family or otherwise, are too important to take the job.

Do I Need a Lawyer to Help Me Advertise and Recruit New Employees Lawfully?

An employment lawyer can help craft application questions and interview questions that comply with the law. If you are facing allegations or a complaint that you discriminated in your process, a lawyer can investigate the claim and advise you regarding the case. They can also represent you and defend your actions if necessary.