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Take a look at the latest HR stories that we’ve been discussing and debating in the P3 People Management office this week:
A recent report by Business in the Community and City & Guilds has discovered that two thirds of young candidates (aged between 16 and 24) admitted that they have been put off applying for a job because of the jargon within the job description. The research revealed that young candidates found a number of job descriptions confusing and impenetrable. The report suggested that many employers are over-complicating their job descriptions in an effort to “talk up” job roles. However, including so much jargon and business language is deterring those young candidates from actually applying for roles. The report went on to argue that a candidate’s ability to decipher this jargon does not indicate they are an ideal candidate.
We couldn’t agree more with this report. Too often businesses create overly-complex job descriptions that don’t necessarily attract the right candidates. This is particularly worrying when the job role is suitable for young candidates, perhaps those that are seeking their very first job. It is so important that employers send out the right message through their recruitment process; consider the type of candidate you want to attract, and then tailor your advert and job description to appeal to that individual.
A serial job applicant with questionable intentions has caught the eye of police in Scotland. Self-proclaimed business consultant Gerald Freedman has spent the past decade applying for hundreds of roles within charities, universities and colleges, making outlandish interview requests alongside his application. Some of Freedman’s request include Irn-Bru and sandwiches throughout the interview, £150 towards specialist shoes, business class flights to the interview and a two night hotel stay if the location is further than 60 miles away from his home. Freedman claims that these requests are “reasonable adjustments” that the potential employer must make due to his numerous debilitating conditions, which include chronic back pain, anxiety, lung illness and OCD.
While the Equality Act outlines obligations that employers must make in order to accommodate a candidate or employee’s disabilities, Freedman’s approach has been called into question. Not only are his requests over-the-top, but Freedman accompanies every job application he sends with a lengthy letter threatening legal action or media exposure should the company not offer him an interview or meet his requests. Understandably, the companies receiving Freedman’s applications have sought legal advice as to how to respond.
While employers are obliged to put in place special measures for individuals with disabilities, Freedman’s requests have been beyond what is deemed acceptable and his threatening approach has fuelled suspicions that his applications are spurious. Businesses who receive similar communications should seek the advice of a HR and employment law expert immediately. Under the Equality Act, employers must meet their obligations towards disabled individuals, but conversely individuals should not abuse this obligation by making eccentric and costly requests. If you need any advice or information regarding equality in the workplace, get in touch with a member of the P3 People Management team today.
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