Despite a U.S. unemployment rate hovering at 4.3–4.4% since April, some labor experts see continued sluggish job growth in the midst of record EEOC claims for 2017. One analyst, human resources veteran Patrick Valtin of HireBox.com, says flawed hiring practices and lack of familiarity with labor laws are the core issues.
(Clearwater FL) September 18, 2017—When the U.S. unemployment rate dropped to 4.3% in April of this year—the lowest it’s been in 16 years—rather than toasting the health of the national economy, human resource managers have been cautiously pondering the disturbing trends in 2017. To illustrate, in 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) resolved 97,443 employment discrimination cases, up from 74,308 in 2006,(1) resulting in $482 million in compensation paid to claimants as a result of their litigation efforts and voluntary agreements. Furthermore, 2016 saw 91,503 new charges filed; there are 73,508 cases still pending today.(2) According to HireBox.com, a results-based applicant testing platform, hiring and managing new personnel without a complete knowledge of the changing regulatory environment can be fatal for smaller companies.
“Complete familiarity with the laws regarding the EEOC’s list of prohibited discriminations is critical, from the moment a ‘help wanted’ ad is posted until the job applicant walks through the door, and after,” says Patrick Valtin, president and CEO of HireBox.
Recruiters need to be certain of the hiring choices they make. In addition to offering competitive compensation in this applicant-driven market, they’re having to face the threat of increasingly complex, often punitive EEOC regulations. Recent data from specialty insurer Hiscox indicates that one in five small to mid-sized employers (under 500 employees) will face an employment discrimination charge, accompanied by an average of $125,000 in attorneys’ fees and settlement costs.(3)
However, the greatest threat to an unprepared employer comes after an initial charge has been filed claiming discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, number or age of children, gender identity, genetic information, etc. Secondary claims of employer retaliation—perceived or real—have nearly doubled over the last 10 years, from 22,555 in 2006 to 42,018 in 2016, and comprise a staggering 45.9% of all claims made.(4)(5)
Employees or applicants can charge employers with retaliation for having reported, participated in, and/or opposed a discriminatory practice.(6) Because the burden of proof lies with the accused employer, the retaliation charge acts as an insurance policy that inoculates the applicant/employee against any subsequent disciplinary action the employer might take, whether justified or not.(5)
“The solution is knowing all the applicable EEOC regulations well, and how to apply them,” says Valtin. He continued to explain that Personnel recruiters need to become adept at looking beyond a job applicant’s résumé, which typically emphasizes hard skills—measurable abilities such as bookkeeping, programming, etc.—that someone has been trained to do.
However, despite whatever hard skills individuals may possess, over 78% of personnel terminations are due to lack of soft skills—those hard-to-measure ‘people skills’ that enable someone to interact with others effectively and harmoniously.(6) Valtin says by learning how to hire the right person, based on vital job-related soft skills, nearly all legal issues can be avoided. About HireBox.com
HireBox is a results-based testing platform providing legal quality control on applicants’ job-based soft skills, to give hiring missions the best outcome. Founded by Patrick Valtin, the Hirebox job-matching assessments and internal evaluations provide vital information about potential and current employees to human resource professionals, executive coaches, management consultants and CPAs.
Based on the evaluation of over 25,000 applicants, Patrick Valtin has come to the conclusion that no matter the talent, competencies or experience, the odds of a successful hire are very, very low if the willingness AND ability to contribute to the success and happiness of one’s team are missing as selection criteria. For more information on HireBox and its successful tools for recruitment, assessment, hiring, onboarding and retention, visit www.hirebox.com.
About Patrick Valtin
Patrick Valtin is the president and CEO of New Era Management and HireBox, as well as an international speaker and author. Considered an industry leader in recruiting, pre-employment assessment, personnel performance evaluation and human resources development, he has trained more than 120,000 people in over 35 countries over the last 29 years.
Patrick Valtin was an international business consultant for the Belgian government between 1986 and 1988, later starting his Belgian company, U-MAN, in 1988. The company remains today one of the biggest training companies for small businesses in the country.
Valtin received an MBA in International Business Studies from the Moore Business School at the University of South Carolina in 1982; his clients over the last 29 years have included executives and sales representatives from Ford Motor Co., BMW, Mercedes, Motorola, IBM and Century 21. His book, No-Fail Hiring 2.0, is a bestseller on Amazon.