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What are the worst mistakes hiring managers make?

By April 7, 2010August 6th, 2019Uncategorized

Somebody in one of my LinkedIn HR groups posted this as discussion today and I thought I would take the opportunity to share my thoughts, not only in that forum, but on here as well.

As always, we are very interested in hearing your opinion –  share your comments (see below, at bottom of post) and we’ll post them on our blog.

Here’s my two cents:

Unfortunately, even in this day and age, some employers overlook talent because of disability or some other barrier, such as a lack of Canadian work experience.

Educated and skilled professionals are sometimes passed over simply because they lack experience in this country. Often they possess adequate business communication and interpersonal skills but never get the opportunity to demonstrate this because their resumes are dismissed immediately because they lack local experience and in some regrettable cases, because of prejudices within the individual or the organization as a whole.

I have spoken to employers (in previous roles) who have confided that they are apprehensive about hiring persons with disabilities due to concerns over potential legal issues, sick days, costs or turnover. They are surprised then when I am able to produce facts that debunk these myths and show that accommodations usually have little or no financial cost and that sick days and turnover typically go down significantly for employees with disabilities. Of course, persons with disabilities also bring a valuable and unique set of abilities to the workplace, often skills acquired as a result of adapting to and overcoming their disability.

Employers may also make the mistake of underestimating the value inexperienced youth – particularly recent graduates – can bring to the workplace, not taking into consideration the transferable skills acquired in university. The work ethic required to excel in school is a major asset to an organization, as is the experience gained in group projects (team work) and extra-curricular activities.

Persons with disabilities are largely underrepresented in Canadian workplaces, and immigrants are often underemployed – their skills underutilized. Youth in Canada currently have a higher rate of unemployment than the general population, and many turn to unpaid work to gain experience.

The good news is that these mistakes are easily corrected – a paid internship is a low-cost, risk-free and effective way to try hiring outside of the usual talent pool, and it increases the opportunity to find top-quality talent.