Pre-Employment Issues

In New Zealand, it is not an easy process to terminate an employee’s employment if they are unsuitable for a role. For this reason, if you are an employer, spend the time to ensure you offer employment to the best possible candidate for the role.

We suggest using a broad range of pre-employment checks. The first of these checks includes looking carefully at any CV supplied by a candidate. Look for irregularities, inconsistencies and embellishments. Do the dates match up? What has the candidate listed under education and qualifications? Having undertaken several law papers at university is not the same as obtaining an LLB. Ensure you are aware of exactly what qualifications the candidate has obtained, and when.

When you are satisfied that the CV represents the candidate truthfully, we suggest considering a pre-employment criminal record check. The Ministry of Justice receives 1500-2000 requests every day. Unfortunately the average time to allow to receive the result of a criminal check is 4-5 weeks. Criminal checks are especially useful if you are employing for roles involving dealing with cash, driving a vehicle or dealing with children.

Another useful check to undertake is a credit check. Credit checks can disclose a history of financial difficulty or recklessness that may make a candidate unsuitable for a particular role.

If the role involves driving a vehicle belonging to the business, it is essential to confirm any candidate being considered holds a valid driver’s licence. Do not rely on sighting a licence as many people disqualified from driving fail to surrender their driver licence card.

Explain to candidates that your business operates a robust pre-employment screening process as it is important to you that your business operates in a professional and transparent manner as you consider your staff to be your greatest asset.

This article is intended as a point of reference and should not be relied on as a substitute for professional advice. Specialist advice should always be sought in relation to any particular circumstances and no liability will be accepted for any losses incurred by those relying solely on this article.

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