Here are ten best practices for employers during the hiring process with regard to employment applications:
- In most cases, require the application form to be filled out, instead of merely accepting a resume. If both are obtained, observe any inconsistencies.
- Include a statement in all application forms that you are an equal opportunity employer and, if applicable, an affirmative action employer.
- Include a statement that the applicant understands that if false or incomplete information is supplied, the applicant will not be hired or retained.
- Employers desiring to establish or maintain an employment-at-will relationship should include a clear employment-at-will statement, and disclaim any contrary representations.
- Attach a release form, allowing you to obtain information from prior and current employers.
- Ask for the names of prior and current employers, together with positions held, name of supervisor, dates of employment, and reasons for leaving.
- Unless precluded by “ban the box” rules, ask, “Have you ever been convicted of a crime? Explain fully.” The applicant should not be automatically rejected for answering “yes.” The type and date of the offense as well as the duties of the relevant job must be taken into account in making this decision.
- Ask, “Do you currently have any criminal charges pending against you? Explain fully.”
- For law enforcement agencies only, ask “Have you ever been arrested?”
- Include a statement acknowledging a shortened period of time in which claims or lawsuits may be filed against the employer.
Excerpted from the Michigan Chamber’s Employment Law Handbook: Hiring & Firing authored by attorneys from the Miller Canfield law firm.
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