Q: I worked at a large company and recently left. I am now working for a small company. We have little HR support here so occasionally I will call my former HR Director with a question or two. She seems willing to respond as long as I don’t take up too much time. One recent response has me dumbfounded though. I asked her about posting jobs internally because we used to post open jobs all the time at my last company. She said she highly recommends posting all jobs internally first because it is against the law not to post them for all employees first. We are a small consulting firm and we have posted some jobs but not all jobs. Are we breaking the law?
A: Your employer is probably not breaking the law. Generally, posting all jobs is not required by law. Federal contractors are required to post open positions. Additionally, employers with collective bargaining agreements may also have specific posting procedures designed to encourage internal applicants to apply before considering external applicants.
However, most employers are able to determine their own recruiting and posting policies, as long as they are non-discriminatory. Some companies may post positions at certain levels, while another company may post all positions. It is a practice worth considering for most positions. Posting jobs internally encourages upward mobility for existing employees while also sending a message that the company is hiring. Sometimes a posting system may also encourage external referrals from employees after a certain period of time, usually 7-10 days.
Maybe your former employer was a government contractor or had a union in place. Perhaps that is why your former HR Director shared that response.
by Pattie Hunt Sinacole, First Beacon Group LLC
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