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Old 05-28-2010, 06:14 PM
 
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Default Thoughts on "would you hire this person again?"

I am curious what people think about the question "would you hire this person again"?

If you are asked this question about a former successful employee, would you/could you always answer "yes"?

What if the employee left because they were hired for a higher level position (or something along those lines), and you really would not hire them again because they moved on for a reason. Or, what if they were succesful in that position and left on their own, but then you liked the next person you hired better. Would you be able to answer "yes"?

On the other side, if you've used this question when calling a reference for a potential employee, what kinds of answers have you received? Have you ever not hired someone because of an answer to this question?

If I was asked this question, I would not take it so literally and I would answer yes unless I would not recommend the person. However, I am not sure this always happens.

Thoughts?
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Old 05-28-2010, 06:29 PM
 
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I wouldn't answer it. No employer I've ever worked for has ever allowed anyone to answer this question but even if they did, I wouldn't.

The question is really a euphemism, a fishing expedition, for starters, and I don't play those kinds of games. And I think its kind of chicken of an employer. They should be capable of judging character and ability on their own, they shouldn't expect me to do that for them. But more importantly, there are just too many variables for me to answer the question honestly.
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Old 05-28-2010, 06:37 PM
 
Location: Buffalo, trying to leave
1,228 posts, read 1,779,957 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kodaka View Post
I wouldn't answer it. No employer I've ever worked for has ever allowed anyone to answer this question but even if they did, I wouldn't.

The question is really a euphemism, a fishing expedition, for starters, and I don't play those kinds of games. And I think its kind of chicken of an employer. They should be capable of judging character and ability on their own, they shouldn't expect me to do that for them. But more importantly, there are just too many variables for me to answer the question honestly.
If I'm not mistaken you're an HR manager right? How often do you hear this question?

I'm just curious because me and my manager have a personality conflict, and I'm pretty sure she wouldn't hire me again (although she can't fire me because I do my job very well).

The number I leave on applications is to my office, so she would do the talking, and my guess is that she would answer that question... I wonder if there's a way to prevent her from doing so.
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Old 05-28-2010, 07:02 PM
 
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I very much feel it's an unfair question. Just like HR putting people as "no rehires" on some supervisor's request.

I can see "no rehire" only in the case of crime or some serious workplace deliquency but I've seen it be done out of pure spite and arrogance and nothing more. Considering how many supervisors are nothing special, but can feel a sense of entitlement, they will try to destroy someone who leaves their control.

The way I see it - even if I don't get along with someone I supervise, it does not mean that 1) they may fit in fine with someone else, 2) they may have changed, maybe they were hitting a difficult place in their personal life and didn't choose to discuss it and their problems affected their work. Why destroy someone's chances at success when likely you don't know the whole story.
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Old 05-28-2010, 08:09 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthBound47 View Post
If I'm not mistaken you're an HR manager right? How often do you hear this question?

I'm just curious because me and my manager have a personality conflict, and I'm pretty sure she wouldn't hire me again (although she can't fire me because I do my job very well).

The number I leave on applications is to my office, so she would do the talking, and my guess is that she would answer that question... I wonder if there's a way to prevent her from doing so.
I'm not an HR manager, no. I've participated in hiring decisions and processes before, but I'm not an HR manager nor a hiring manager, and questions like these are not typically put to me.

Through my role as a participator though, I can tell you just about everyone has personality conflicts at some point in their career, unless you are The Man Who Wasn't There. Most hiring personnel are used to hearing this and take it with a grain of salt. They are also adept at 'reading between the lines' and figuring out what is just a minor personality conflict and what is a management problem. Particularly when an applicant is looking to leave their job voluntarily and begin employment elsewhere (as opposed to being fired or laid off), hiring personnel half expect there to be some dirty laundry there--if there wasn't, why would you be leaving?

If I were you, I'd try to put a main switchboard or an HR dept. telephone number on job applications rather than your departmental phone number. Even if an employer has your manager's name, putting a different phone number is more likely to get the call redirected to a person who can answer questions objectively.
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Old 05-28-2010, 08:31 PM
 
Location: Buffalo, trying to leave
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Quote:
If I were you, I'd try to put a main switchboard or an HR dept. telephone number on job applications rather than your departmental phone number. Even if an employer has your manager's name, putting a different phone number is more likely to get the call redirected to a person who can answer questions objectively.
My thoughts exactly, except our HR department is an internal number, and the switch board is totally useless, you literally cannot get to talk to someone.

I work for a company that employs 7500 people in my city, I don't even think I've met a human resources person.
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Old 05-28-2010, 08:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by SouthBound47 View Post
My thoughts exactly, except our HR department is an internal number, and the switch board is totally useless, you literally cannot get to talk to someone.

I work for a company that employs 7500 people in my city, I don't even think I've met a human resources person.
HR is an internal number? How do people reach them? Banks and insurance companies and vendors and the IRS and lawyers and the media and such? Whatever number those people use, is what you should put down.
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Old 05-29-2010, 01:45 AM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
37,565 posts, read 11,000,051 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kodaka View Post
I wouldn't answer it. No employer I've ever worked for has ever allowed anyone to answer this question but even if they did, I wouldn't.

The question is really a euphemism, a fishing expedition, for starters, and I don't play those kinds of games. And I think its kind of chicken of an employer. They should be capable of judging character and ability on their own, they shouldn't expect me to do that for them. But more importantly, there are just too many variables for me to answer the question honestly.
Since your company has a policy of not answering this question, what is the normal response when asked this question?
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Old 05-29-2010, 05:33 AM
 
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The question is usually posed as, "Is this person eligible for rehire." It's a yes or no question that can be expanded upon if that is the company policy.

Many companies I've worked for have had a policy where if the employee was terminated for cause (as opposed to laid off due to budget constraints) the only information that would be released was their hire and termination date, starting and ending salary, and that they were not eligible for rehire with no further comment. They've also had a policy where if the employee was eligible for rehire, that the manager was allowed to give a further positive reference at their discretion.

But what it really comes down to is that an employer can say whatever they want to say, as long as it's objective and true. If you were a great employee they can say so.

But if you were fired because you showed up every day for a month late and hungover (and were warned several times) they might want to stay away from the hungover part and instead simply say you were repeatedly late despite warnings. That way there's no possibility of anything subjective being said.

One thing to note, I've had several times that I worked for a large corporation that had a "no reference" policy, and my manager has gotten around it and given me a great reference by having me use their home phone number as the number to call.
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Old 05-29-2010, 06:41 AM
 
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Originally Posted by annerk View Post
The question is usually posed as, "Is this person eligible for rehire." It's a yes or no question that can be expanded upon if that is the company policy.
I know that the question is often asked that way. However, I have two situations where they asked the way I posted, "would you hire this person again?"

Seven years ago an ex-boss called me to tell me about the great reference she gave me. Then she mentioned one thing she said that she was not sure was good, which was when they asked her if she would hire me again, she said "no because I wanted someone with new ideas".

I had worked there for 5 years and left on my own and on great terms, and when I worked there I had many great ideas. My x-boss meant her answer literally in that the new people she hired had new ideas. I did not get that job, and then my x-boss said she could not give references anymore as she was not really supposed to anyway. Luckily, I did get another job shortly after this.

I am now in the job market again and recently references were called and asked "would you hire her again"? Two of my references called me and told me (and they answered yes!), however, it looks like I am not getting this job, and it got me thinking about that question and how it's not as easy to answer as it may sound. (I am not sure what happened to this one).
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