Your first assignment is to recruit a new marketing

3HIRING ETHICAL PEOPLEWhat would you do?Resume InformationUpon graduation, you obtain a job on the staff of a Human Resource Department at agrowing health care company. Your first assignment is to recruit a new marketingemployee. After an extensive job search process, you are very impressed by Tim, a recentcollege graduate, and one other job applicant. You perform income tax verification for thejobs listed on Tim’s resume, which include several part-time and summer positions in thearea of sales and marketing. Everything is fine except there is no tax record for a threemonth retail store marketing job. When you call Tim to clarify the situation, he tells youthat it was an unpaid internship.You hire Tim because of his excellent grades, relevant work experience in marketing,involvement in student organizations, and high personal integrity. You are immediatelyimpressed by Tim’s knowledge, hard work, and conscientiousness.Three weeks into the new job, an emotionally upset Tim comes into your office. “I feelreally terrible about something,” Tim says. “You know that retail marketingposition that appeared on my resume. That was a lie. You see, my friend had an excellentresume format. I copied his resume and then changed everything based on my ownaccomplishments and activities. But I forgot to delete his retail store job. That was hisjob, not mine. Everything else on the resume is absolutely true. When you asked meabout the job, I froze and realized what happened. This is my dream job and I was afraidyou wouldn’t hire me if I told you about the mistake. But this really bothers me and I’mhaving trouble sleeping knowing that I lied to you.”Tim committed a fraud and was hired based on false information.What would you do? Would you1) Fire Tim for providing false information on the resume and lying about it; then hire thesecond job finalist, who also had impressive credentials?2) Forgive Tim and give him a second chance to earn your trust?(Collins 73)Chapter ObjectivesAfter reading this chapter, you will be able to•Screen job candidates for their ethics •factorsUnderstand which job candidateare illegal to consider when hiring • Obtain accurate behavior information from resumes,reference checks, background checks, and integrity tests•Use personality test scales that measure ethics•Ask interview questions that address ethi- cal issues•Understand when drug and polygraph tests can be administeredSometimes, after dismissing an employee for an ethical breach, a manager might wonder:How did this person get through the hiring process? There are millions of good-heartedand well-intentioned people, but this person was not one of them. The best safeguardagainst unethical activities at work is hiring people of high integrity.This chapter provides a six-step process for determining the ethics of job can- didates.Notify job candidates about the ethics job screen and then diligently gather information ina way that does not violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Poten- tial sources of ethicsinformation about job candidates include resumes, reference checks, background checks,personality tests, interview questions, and drug tests.Importance of an Ethics ScreenThe most important factor for developing and reinforcing a high-integrity work culture ishiring ethical job applicants. Employing someone whose ethics does not match that of ahigh-integrity work culture can contaminate an organization. The inappropriate hire mayattract like-minded employees, who previously restrained themselves, and lead them indirections detrimental to organizational operations.For instance, an organization may have a strongly stated policy forbidding em- ployees touse email for personal reasons during work hours. The new employee, during regularworking hours, decides to send out several personal emails. A few organizationalmembers, who had previously never broken the “no personal email” policy despitepressing personal demands, may now believe it is permissible to do likewise.Ethical borderlines can be a slippery slope. Personal email use during work hours canlead to doing other personal tasks during work hours. If a customer emergency arises, aformer diligent employee may delay responding until completing a personal task, aproblem that never arose prior to hiring the new employee.Maximizing ethical work behaviors begins with the hiring process. Hiring some- one isinviting the person into your home, if your organization is small, or your com- munity, ifthe organization is large. Some people are kind, helpful, trustworthy, and friendly, whileothers are mean-spirited, irritating, dishonest, and annoying. One bad hire can make thedaily life of many employees miserable.(Collins 74)CHAPTER 3 Hiring Ethical People 75The typical hiring process consists of reviewing resumes and job application forms forknowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to perform the job task.1 Ethics is oftenassumed or overlooked. Task ability and passion matter a great deal. But the prospectiveemployee’s knowledge, skills, and abilities need to be complemented with moral values,such as respect for other people and rules. Personal integrity and high ethical standardsare indispensible attributes to possess.The Six-Step Ethics Job Screen ProcessAssume you are responsible for hiring a new employee. Two highly qualified job candidates have the requisite knowledge, skills, and abilities. How can you determine whichof the two is more ethical?A wide range of methods are available to help managers determine a job can- didate’sethics. The six-step Ethics Job Screen Process outlined in Exhibit 3.1 in- tegrates the bestpractices into a systematic, chronologic framework that comple- ments an organization’sjob-recruiting process.The first step is a notification that attracts ethical job candidates and discourages peoplewho tend to behave unethically from applying. The second step is a caution- ary one,ensuring that any method used by the employer to determine ethics does not violatefederal law. The next four steps are information sources.Exhibit 3.1 Six-Step Ethics Job Screen ProcessStepExplanation1. Ethics Screen Notice2. Legal Ground Rules3. Behavioral Information4. Personality Traits and Related Characteristics5. Interview QuestionsInform potential job applicants about the organization’s ethics job screen.Gather and use information in a way that does not discriminate against job candidatesbased on their race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, or disability.Review behavioral information from resumes, reference checks, background checks, andintegrity tests.Obtain scores for personality traits and related characteristics such as conscientiousness,Organizational Citizenship Behavior, Social Dominance Orientation, and bullying.Interview job finalists about their responses to ethical dilemmas experienced at previousworkplaces and how they would respond to ethical dilemmas experienced by currentemployees. In addition, clarify inconsistencies and ambiguities that arose during theprevious two steps.Where appropriate, conduct drug and polygraph tests.6. Post-Interview Tests(Collins 75)76PART IIGetting Everyone on Board Step 1: Ethics Screen NoticeIndustrial psychologist Benjamin Schneider’s Attraction-Selection-Attrition cycle (ASA)highlights how individuals are attracted to organizations that reflect their values andgoals, organizations select applicants with personal attributes that “fit” the work culture,and then individuals depart if the fit is inappropriate.2Notifying potential job candidates about the organization’s ethics screen attracts ethicalapplicants and discourages morally egregious people from applying. Include a sentence inthe job announcement noting that background and reference checks will be conductedand ethics is part of annual performance appraisals.3People who behave ethically want to be members of ethical organizations. Ethi- calpeople employed by another organization with questionable ethics are usually searchingfor employment with other organizations where there is greater congru- ence betweentheir ethics and those of their employer and coworkers. Notifying job applicants thatethics matters provides ethical people with additional job-related information they findappealing. Ethical people want to report to ethical managers, work with ethicalcolleagues, manage ethical subordinates, and represent ethical organizations in thebroader community.People who behave unethically, on the other hand, are not likely to apply for jobs withorganizations that advertise the strength of their ethics job-screening pro- cess. The ethicsnotice informs unethical people that previous unethical behaviors will be revealed, whichputs them at a significant disadvantage with equally skilled applicants who behavedethically at previous places of employment.Some job applicants may be concerned that the ethics screen is an invasion of privacy.Clarify that the ethics screen focuses on job-related issues and not activities unrelated towork. Inform job candidates that the information gathered will be used to assess theapplicant’s workplace ethics and remain confidential between the ap- plicant andemployer.Ben & Jerry’s takes an extra step by broadcasting the organization’s progres- sive socialmission throughout its website in hopes of attracting like-minded people. The company’sthree-part corporate mission focuses employees on achieving profit and growth(economic mission) by making high-quality ice cream (product mission) while improvingthe quality of life for all stakeholders (social mission). The “Best Practice in Use” exhibithighlights 2009 accomplishments related to these three so- cial mission goals.4BEST PRACTICE IN USEBen & Jerry’s Social Mission Goals1. Use our company to further the cause of Peace and Justice:• Fair Trade—All global flavors will be sourced from fair trade suppliers by year-end2013.• Civil Rights—Lobbied Vermont (headquarters state) legislators to support a billallowing same-sex marriage(Collins 76)CHAPTER 3 Hiring Ethical People 77Step 2: Legal Ground RulesFor nearly two centuries, employers could use any hiring selection criteria they desired.Explicit discrimination was widespread. Some employers displayed signs that read: “‘X’Need Not Apply” with “X” being anyone of a different gender (usually women), religion(usually Jews, atheists, and Catholics), race (usually Af- rican Americans and Asians), orethnicity (usually the latest group of immigrants). During the 1950s, classifiedadvertisements in newspapers were often segregated according to “Male” and “Female”jobs. Secretarial and airline stewardess job openings noted preference would be given toyoung and attractive women appli- cants, who were then questioned about their childrearing plans and spousal jobs.Many federal and state laws now govern the types of information an employer can gatheron job candidates and the reasons an employer can invoke for selecting one job candidateover another. Gather and use information in a way that does not discriminate among jobcandidates based on their race, color, religion, gender, na- tional origin, age, or disability.Employers signal good ethics to job candidates by respecting the law when recruiting andselecting employees.• Peace Partnerships—Financially supported “Peace One Day” (the NGO sponsorsSeptember 21 as an annual day of global cease fire and non-violence in conjunction withthe UN International Day of Peace).• Ben & Jerry’s Foundation—Contributed $2 million in small grants to nonprofit,grassroots organizations working for progressive social change.• Community Action—Franchisees directly contributed $600,000 in time, ice cream, andscholarships in support of community projects.2. Harmonize our global supply chain and ensure its alignment with our values:• Cage-free and free-range eggs—Sourced 83 percent of the eggs used in U.S. productionfrom cage-free farms; plan to use only Certified Humane cage-free eggs in the U.S. byyear-end 2010.• Sustainable Packaging—Phased in Forest Stewardship Council certified paperboard forU.S. pint containers; the paperboard comes from forests that are managed for theprotection of wildlife habitat, maintenance of biodiversity, avoidance of geneticallymodified tree species, and protection of traditional and civil rights.• Climate Change—Completed a carbon inventory of U.S. business operations; offset allemissions associated with Vermont manufacturing facilities and employee air travel withthe help of Vermont-based NativeEnergy, a provider of high quality carbon offsets.3. Take the lead promoting global sustainable dairy practices:• Caring DairyTM—Program helped many farmers in Vermont and the Netherlandsimprove their social, economic, and environmental performance, including reducing theirclimate impacts.• rBGH—Opposed the use of rBGH, a genetically engineered hormone given to cowsused to increase milk production.(Collins 77)78PART IIGetting Everyone on Board Title VII of the Civil Rights ActIn 1964, President Lyndon Johnson pressured Congress to pass the far-reaching CivilRights Act. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits businesses fromdiscriminating among job applicants based on the person’s race, color, religion, gender, ornational origin.5 These groups of previously discriminated people are referred to asprotected classes. Title VII has been expanded to prohibit employers from discriminatingbased on age and physical or mental disabilities. Some states and municipalities havepassed legislation that includes “sexual orientation” as a protected class, but not at thefederal level.The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was created in 1965 tooversee provisions of the Civil Rights Act. The EEOC’s scope extended with the passage of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 and the Americans withDisabilities Act of 1990. The federal agency investigates discrimination complaints, seeksnegotiated solutions to violations, and litigates when conciliation does not occur.Three major exemptions to Title VII are:• If an organization employs fewer than 15 people—small businesses are exempt- edfrom many regulations so as not to overwhelm them with regulatory compli- anceburdens• If an organization serves a religious purpose• If it is a bona fide occupational qualification for which the discrimination relates to the“essence” or “central mission” of the employer’s business (i.e., preference for a Chineseperson as a waiter in a Chinese restaurant) Managers can refuse to hire people they do notlike, but the dislike cannot bebased on the job candidate being a member of a protected class.Disparate ImpactsUnlawful discrimination can occur on the front end or the back end of the hiring process.Front-end job discrimination occurs when members of protected classes are excludedfrom the job candidate pool. This can happen intentionally, when organi- zations targetonly men or Caucasians, or unintentionally. Word-of-mouth recruit- ing, such asrecommendations from other employees or colleagues, is often a very effective means ofattracting high-quality employees. But if the organization has a homogenous workforceconsisting of Caucasian males, this could result in a job ap- plication pool of onlyCaucasian males.Back-end job discrimination can be intentional or unintentional. Intentional jobdiscrimination would occur if a male manager decides not to hire a woman finalist because the other men in the office are sexist and would not follow orders from a woman.Other times the discrimination could be unintended. A job selection rule that does notexplicitly discriminate against a protected class but results in a disparate impact, mayviolate the Civil Rights Act. Disparate impacts occur when members of a protected classrarely make it through all the job-screening filters, suggesting that one of the decisionrules could be unintentionally discriminatory.6 Most disparate impact challenges areassociated with written tests, height and weight requirements, educational requirements,and subjective procedures that are not associated with the specific tasks required toperform the job.(Collins 78)CHAPTER 3 Hiring Ethical People 79An organization’s gender, racial, and ethnic employee profile should reflect the gender,racial, and ethnic profile of people living in the geographical region quali- fied to performthe job task. The EEOC recommends applying a four-fifths rule to determine whether anapparently nondiscriminatory selection process may result in disparate impacts.7 Themethod consists of determining the acceptance rate for two groups of job applicants and,if nondiscriminatory, the acceptance rates would be within 80 percent of each other. Thisis calculated by dividing the percentage of protected class acceptances by the percentageof majority group (Caucasian or male) acceptances. A disparate impact calculator isavailable online.8For instance, assume that over a seven-year period, a company hired 5 women and 15men for 20 entry-level marketing job openings requiring a college degree. During thesame seven-year period, 50 women and 60 men with marketing degrees applied for thejobs. The company hired 10 percent of the female (5/50) and 25 percent of the male(15/60) applicants. This violates the four-fifths rule (using the formula: 0.10/0.25 = 40percent), suggesting that the selection process might be discriminatory. If sued, the company would have to provide a compelling reason that its job-screening process does notdiscriminate based on gender. For instance, a large percentage of the women applicantsmay have chosen employment at regional competitors offering better pay and benefits.Some personality tests and background checks may also result in disparate im- pacts,eliminating highly qualified job applicants from further consideration because their nonjob-related personality traits or previous life experiences differ from those of theCaucasian males making the hiring decisions.Affirmative ActionAn organization may implement an affirmative action plan if its gender or racial profiledoes not reflect the gender or racial profile of people living in the geographical regionqualified to perform the job task. Affirmative action plans remedy past discrimina- torybehaviors by actively seeking, hiring, and promoting minority group members andwomen to equalize opportunities previously limited to Caucasian males. People withdisabilities and certain veterans of the armed forces are also targeted recipients ofaffirmative action plans.9The EEOC requires federal contractors and subcontractors to have an affirma- tive actionplan that demonstrates commitment to the government’s goal of equal employmentopportunities. The requirement usually targets companies with at least 50 employees andcontracts in excess of $50,000. Some states and municipalities have similar requirements.Affirmative action plans remain controversial.10 Some people claim that affirma- tiveaction plans are an unconstitutional form of “reverse discrimination,” whereby Caucasianmales are discriminated against based solely on their race and gender. Others opposeaffirmative action plans on the grounds that they are no longer neces- sary becausehistorical forms of racial and gender discrimination have been eliminat- ed, orremediation for discrimination can be addressed through the justice system.11Some employers try to avoid litigation by instituting a protected class quota system. Forinstance, an organization may need 10 African Americans to meet the community’s racialprofile because qualified African Americans are applying for job openings else- where.But employing 10 unqualified African Americans sets protected class quota re- cipientsup for failure, reinforces negative stereotyping, and damages employee morale.(Collins 79)80PART IIGetting Everyone on Board Other Legal IssuesTitle VII of the Civil Rights Act has been supplemented with legislation prohibit- ingdiscrimination based on age, pregnancy, and disability. The Age Discrimination inEmployment Act of 1967, amended in 1978 and 1986, prohibits organizations from nothiring someone because he or she is over the age of 40. The Pregnancy DiscriminationAct of 1978 clarified that unlawful sex discrimination included not hiring a womanbecause of a visible pregnancy or the likelihood of her becoming pregnant. TheAmericans with Disabilities Act of 1990 extended civil rights protec- tions to qualifiedjob applicants with disabilities (defined as “a physical or mental impairment thatsubstantially limits a major life activity”).12 Employers are expected to select theapplicant who can most successfully perform the job, regardless of age, pregnancy status,or disability.The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence reports that 6.6 percent offull-time employees are heavy drinkers.13 Alcohol use is responsible for $33 billion to$68 billion in workplace losses. Alcoholics and problem drink- ers are absent from workfour to eight times more often than other employees.14 If job related, employers can askapplicants about drunken driving arrests. Questions about being an alcoholic, however,are illegal under the Americans with Disabilities Act because alcoholism is categorized asa disability.15An increasing number of immigrants from a variety of nations illegally enter the UnitedStates because of immigration quota restrictions. Experts estimate that 25 percent of the47 million Latinos living in the United States are undocumented, having crossed theborder illegally.16 Hiring an illegal immigrant violates federal law. Employers mustcarefully approach this topic because asking only Latino job applicants if they are illegalimmigrants discriminates based on national origin. Em- ployment lawyers recommendthat all job applicants be asked if they are legally authorized to work in the United Stateson a full-time basis.17Exhibit 3.2 provides a checklist for determining the viability of a job selection rule. A“Yes” response to any of the three rules could result in a discrimination lawsuit. Requireintegrity and personality test vendors to affirm in writing that, based on use by otherclients, the instrument has been proven not to violate any of the rules.Exhibit 3.2 Job Selection Rule ChecklistRule Explanation1.Does the selection rule discriminate against job candidates based on their race,color, religion, gender, national origin, or age?2.Does the selection rule discriminate against job candidates with physical ormental disabilities?3.Does the selection rule result in outcomes whereby members of protected classes,who live in the geographic region and possess the basic level of education and experiencerequired, are disproportionately underrepresented?(Collins 80)CHAPTER 3 Hiring Ethical People 81The legal system is equally demanding about the obligations job candidates owe theemployer. Job candidates are legally required to respond truthfully to all job- relatedquestions on application forms and submitted materials, such as resumes. Highlight thisobligation by inserting a sentence directly above the job candidate’s signature line statingthat181. All answers provided by the job candidate are truthful.2. Any false or purposely omitted information will lead to the job candidate’sdisqualification.3. Any false or purposely omitted information that becomes known after employ- mentwill lead to job termination.Step 3: Behavioral InformationBehavioral information about a job candidate’s ethics is more reliable than attitu- dinalsurvey results or responses to hypothetical dilemmas. Four recruiting tools provide usefulbehavioral information about a job candidate’s ethics: resumes, refer- ence checks,background checks, and integrity tests. Each of these has strengths and weaknesses.ResumesThe best predictor of future performance is past performance. A job candidate’s previousaccomplishments are encapsulated on a resume or job application. Typi- cally, resumescontain valuable information about previous work experience and educational attainment,as well as committee responsibilities and community service activities. Serving on highprofile committees at work suggests that a job candidate is trustworthy, dependable, andwell respected. Volunteer activities in the community suggest that the individual isconcerned about the welfare of others.Some job candidates stretch the truth, or lie outright, on resumes. Researchers estimate

 

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