Hiring Do's and Don'ts

June 8, 2010 - Tags: Employers Regulations

Finding the best employees for your business means looking at some best practices that will help you get the results you need, while meeting government requirements.

Before advertising a job and screening applicants, you should write a job description that outlines the job requirements and separates skills that are essential from those that are helpful. In the posting, you should specify the minimum requirements of the job, as well as the salary range.

You may choose to conduct a pre-employment assessment, before you begin the hiring process, using tests to collect information from job applicants on topics such as motives, ethics, personality traits, work experience, intelligence, skills, preferences and preferred work hours.

It is helpful to develop an interview schedule and make sure all interviewers are on the same page, when it comes to what is relevant information. All candidates should receive equal treatment and there should be consistency in the interview process.

Read Evaluating and Testing Job Applicants from Human Resources Management for more information on assessments.

You should interview at least three to six candidates for the position, and only interview people you think you would want to hire, based on the information available to you ahead of time. Knowing what you need from your potential employee is as important as finding out what he/she has to offer.

During the interviews, keep notes on the answers given by each candidate. Focus on learning about their experience, ability and personal qualities that will directly affect how they will perform the job and fit your business situation. Ask open-ended questions and pay attention to non-verbal body language.

The Canadian Human Rights Act entitles all individuals to equal employment opportunities without regard to race or colour, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, family or marital status, gender, pardoned conviction, disability or sexual orientation. Avoid asking questions about these things, unless it is very relevant to the applicant's ability to perform the job. Find out more in the Guide to Screening and Selection in Employment from the Canadian Human Rights Commission.


Posted by Canada.ca on October 28, 2011
Dear Vicki,

The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) is Canada's new private sector privacy law.

There are a few things to keep in mind while collecting personal information. The basic outline of PIPEDA looks like this:

• If your business wants to collect, use or disclose personal information about people, you need their consent, except in a few specific and limited circumstances.
• You can use or disclose people's personal information only for the purpose for which they gave consent.
• Even with consent, you have to limit collection, use and disclosure to purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate under the circumstances.
• Individuals have a right to see the personal information that your business holds about them, and to correct any inaccuracies.
• There's oversight, through the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, to ensure that the law is respected, and redress if people's rights are violated.

Based on the Canadian Standards Association's Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information, PIPEDA lists 10 principles of fair information practices. The fifth one, which pertains to your question, is summarized as follows:

Limiting use, disclosure, and retention: Use or disclose personal information only for the purpose for which it was collected, unless the individual consents, or the use or disclosure is authorized by the Act; keep personal information only as long as necessary to satisfy the purposes; put guidelines and procedures in place for retaining and destroying personal information; keep personal information used to make a decision about a person for a reasonable time period. This should allow the person to obtain the information after the decision and pursue redress; destroy, erase or render anonymous information that is no longer required for an identified purpose or a legal requirement.

If you have any further questions, please contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada at 1-800-282-1376 or visit the website.
Posted by Vicki on October 27, 2011
Is it a requirement that employers keep all resumes and applications on file even if they don't hire or interview that candidate? If so, how long is the retention requirement?
Posted by Roseanna on June 9, 2011
That's way more clear than I was expecting. Thanks!
Posted by Canada.ca on July 15, 2010
Hi Susan,

Employment standards for your workplace are either covered under federal or provincial/territorial labour laws. Most workplaces (90%) come under provincial jurisdiction. Contact your provincial/territorial Ministry of Labour to find out more information on hours of work in your area.
Posted by susan on June 18, 2010
Hi I'm writing to ask a question about my job I'm at now. it's been 3 years now. I like my job, and I don't want to leave it. My question is I'm only 2 hours a week and I've been asking for more hours for the past 6 months and nothing yet. I'm also a disable person. Is there anything I could do about this? I love to go out and work, it makes me feel good about myself.
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