Recruiters told to review interviewing skills after BBC report


Recruiters have been urged to take interviewing just as seriously when hiring for their agency as they would for their clients.

The call follows a report by the BBC claiming a candidate for a job as a consultant an unnamed recruitment agency in Cornwall raised concerns her interviewer was concerned that she was too old and wouldn't have the energy to do the role.

Katherine Irvine, who was 37 at the time, told the BBC: "It was a group interview and the interviewer commented that myself and one of the others were 'older'. There was a concern about us being able to work long hours." Irvine added she was then asked: "What do you think? Do you think you're too old?"

Commenting on Irvine’s claims, employment lawyer Jacqueline McDermott, consultant solicitor at law firm Keystone Law told Recruiter the candidate in this case could have brought a case for age discrimination during the hiring process as age is regarded as a protected characteristic.

“It does sound very much that they have been taking age into account when they shouldn’t have been. That may be why she didn’t get the job and that would be age discrimination.”

Consequently, McDermott added recruitment consultants should avoid asking candidates things like their age or how many children as there is no upper limit in terms for awards against firms found to be falling foul of the rules.

“The rules that apply that they put in place for their clients equally should apply to them!”

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