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Seb Anthony

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Where do I stand?


I have just taken on a new employee who came across very well at interview and who had a reasonable CV. However, by the end of the first week it has become very apparent that the information they have given us during the recruitment process is not true. A couple of examples of this are:
1) stated at interview she had experience of using word and outlook but is unable to do even very basic things like send an email, open a new word document.
2) stated on CV she was "meticulous" and "paid attention to detail" but was unable to sort some receipts into date order.

I realise not everyone has specific software skills and i am prepared to give training in this area. However, an admin assistant who cannot sort and file things correctly i'm not sure any amount of training would help.

Is it worth mentioning that we are now into week 2 and she has been off sick so far all week.

I am awaiting references from previous employers so do not know if they are satisfactory or not. She was employed on condition of receiving satisfactory references.

Any thoughts on the legal or moral issues would be greatly appreciated.

Tracy Murray
Tracy Murray

8 Responses

  1. Ok to dismiss, but you don’t have to
    I think by rights you could dismiss this individual – following a proper process – and you would be OK to do so. 1 week sick and 1 week of poor work in 2 weeks would lead to this.

    However if you could live with the issues mentioned you can get basic skills training free of charge (you can contact your local LSC for details) to get them up to speed.

    However, I’ve got to be fair based on what you’ve said I’d want to re-recruit for the position.

    Legally you are OK to fire, morally – no-one can give you advice on this, only you can decide what is fair in your moral code.

    Good luck.


  2. Probationer
    Dismiss fairly and re-recruit.

    Use a structured face to face interview and an ability test like the duties you describe you are expecting the current postholder to perform.

    If they can’t do the test at interview then don’t recruit.

    Manage the probation period well with regular supervision sessions to iron out any problems.

    You can dismiss more easily under 12 months service but don’t leave it too late.

  3. Get Rid (fairly of course)
    as with all other respondents I would also recommed dismissal.

    Only potential caveat is her sickness – if she is claiming a work related stress based injury you need to tread a little carefully (maybe need to get an occupational therapist involved) the Disability Discrimination Act is (rightly) very tough on employers who discriminate on the grounds of ill health – however unfortunately, some more unscrupulous employees take adantage of the act (not that im saying you employee is of course !!!??!!)

  4. How did you decide?
    I’d suggest you also review your recruitment process to see if there is any improvemnts you can make on judging who is the best person to employ.

    I’d suggest using behaviourial interviewing and some sort of work sample or IT test to provide a good basis for making a decision.

  5. References

    Never allow someone to start with you until references have been received, or you completely negate their worth and ‘subject to satisfactory references’ doesn’t cut ice.


  6. New Staff
    You may be a victim of somebody giving a good rap for somebody so thatthey can get rid of them.

    If as you say they were employed on the grounds of getting favourable referees reports, then you have a legit reason for say goodbye, however why not give her a set number of tasks to do to see what exactly she can do.
    I do not envy you.


  7. Problem Resolved
    Thanks everyone who has commented. I have taken your advice on-board for future recruitment re testing and references before applicant starts.

    This problem has resolved itself as the employee never returned and I received her letter of resignation. No reasons given but I guess she wasn’t happy either.




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