A Criteria for (Not) Hiring

Kudos for trying to build screening tools using video and other media for selecting viable candidates.  http://bit.ly/fuqSIq [Using New Tools For Screening Candidates – Ty Abernethy‘s Blog, ERE.Net].

It might, however raise the specter that pictures and sound might be more a weapon to keep certain candidates out?

I’m sure you’re quite aware that when the recovery takes place the recruitment process will be a huge funnel; many, many potential candidates will get in at the top; make the first cut.  During the process the funnel gets narrower and criteria more stringent winnowing those whom you believe can not only do the job – but must also please your client, your Hiring Manager.

That said what do the first acceptable potentials at the top of the funnel appear as?  Well, presumably all have the chops to do the job, have the recommendations, and, entertain me here – will differ only by subjective intuitive intangibles.  No, not gender, race, ethnicity, appearance, even comfort in front of the camera — age is what’s left from which to distinguish them from the coming hordes.

Age is the unspoken shibboleth among hiring managers and recruiters.  There’ll be four, maybe five distinct age groups shoulder to shoulder at the top of the funnel.  Moreover, by the time the few distilled candidates drip out the bottom you can bet age will be determining criteria for promotion to the next stage.

Mark this down: Age related issues will come to dominate the hiring process.  It will be the talk of broadcasters who will pick up on the story pronto.  Remember older workers are politic and not unfamiliar with how to start and feed a movement—we’re talking boomers here.  There are few ways.  e.g. the law, to restrict classes of people from employment.  Though mature workers are a cohort recognized in non-discrimination statutes – it only has teeth after hiring – that is, you can’t classify a worker as too old, nor terminate strictly for age.

But at the top of your funnel, when candidates have to stand up before a camera and discuss their qualifications and make their case – recruiters and hiring managers will play the age card – and after looking at the video, for sure.

The tragedy is, I’m willing to bet, older workers will never have their key cards validated.  And forced to the beach will be hundreds of thousands of experiences, intelligences, skills, and humanity never to be seen nor heard from again.

So, hey, use what tools you need to process the tsunami predictably hyped up by the talking heads.  For those 18 million or so unemployed or underemployed who are over, say 55, need never change into their swim trunks.

Especially when you get a good look at them first.

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