Conquent: Without Limits
Conquent: Without Limits
Kristen Fife's Blog

Why The Third Degree?

2009-11-10 06:45:05
Shortcut URL: http://t.conquent.com/k800

Yesterday on one of my community discussion lists, a candidate was trying to figure out why she is getting so many "questionnaires" for jobs she is pursuing. I've heard this a lot in the last year, and it frustrates jobs seekers. Here is a possible explanation.

From a recruiting perspective I can give you some possible additional insight. In 2005, a large number of companies across the country were hit with a new EEOC directive by the OFCCP (Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.) This initiative hits about 65-80% of companies in the Seattle area. It is any company that has *any* sort of contract *or sub-contract* with the government.

The new guidelines state that said companies must be able to prove from an auditable standpoint, that they are considering each and every qualified applicant for each and every position for which the applicant applies.

On the surface this may not seem to affect the recruiting process, but what has happened is that almost universally companies have decided to drive all applicant tracking to their corporate websites.

One of the stipulations of this initiative is that every candidate must be evaluated using the *exact same set of criteria.* That means that if the candidate passes the first screen (has the hard skills required for the job, including past experience and education), then all candidates must then be further evaluated *exactly the same*. This means that the same questions must be asked (verbally or in writing). In addition, *each and every applicant* must be "dispositioned" with the reason they have been dropped out of consideration at each stage of the hiring process.

These guidelines, at the time they were instituted, more than tripled the amount of work for recruiters on each open position. Add to that the economic impact of the 10% unemployment nationally and the huge number of applicants for every position, and perhaps this can help to illuminate the need for tighter screening across the board.

The financial consequences for *not* following these processes is twofold: loss of contracts and hefty fines for each infringement.





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