Magazine article Personnel Journal

Does a Bad Driver Make a Good Employee

Magazine article Personnel Journal

Does a Bad Driver Make a Good Employee

Article excerpt

As part of your hiring process, driving records are reviewed during the background check for new hires. This is normal, because your employees are required to drive company cars at one time or another. Your managers have selected a candidate for a key position only to find out that the individual has had his license suspended twice in the past year and a half for driving under the influence of alcohol. The only recent activity shown on his driving record is a speeding ticket from last month. You, as the HR manager, are aware that the company could be liable if it has knowledge that an employee engages in conduct that is dangerous to the general public; but the hiring managers still want to hire him. What would be your recommendation?

What would you do?

Reviewing driving records must have become a part of the hiring process for a reason--to protect the company from making a bad hiring decision that could be costly and detrimental to the company.

As the HR manager, it's important to point out why checking driving records is a part of the hiring process, and why this candidate would be a poor choice. Continue to look for another candidate to fill the position.

Hiring managers are anxious to get a person hired, but the company will be better off in the long run if they find another candidate that meets all of their company's requirements, not just the ones that fill the hiring managers' short-term needs.

By continuing to search for the best candidate for the position', you (as the HR manager) will be doing the job the company hired you for.

Tona Schmidt Personnel Manager Balor Electric Co. Fort Smith, Arizona

As an HR manager, I would ask the insurance carrier that insures the company's vehicles and drivers to run a DMV report on the driver's license of a prospective employee.

Based upon past violations that are found on the DMV report, the insurance company would probably render a decision not to insure an applicant with a high level of violations because he or she would be a risk to the company. The company would have to pay a higher premium to cover any accidents or violations that may occur. The prospective employee would be placed into a pool of high-risk drivers.

I wouldn't recommend the hiring of the prospective employee. It wouldn't be cost-effective to hire such a high-risk individual.

Louise A. Hannafin Human Resources Assistant National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. New York, New York

First of all, if this individual is a recovering alcoholic, he is protected by the ADA. If this individual is the most qualified for the position, failure to hire him because of his previous driving record would be discriminatory.

The requirement to drive company cars at one time or another doesn't make driving one of the key functions of the job. This responsibility can be assigned to another employee or distributed among several other employees.

The fact that the individual's license has been suspended twice in the past year and a half for driving under the influence of alcohol is one of many factors in the selection process. I would share the information with the hiring managers. However, if the individual is the most qualified candidate for the position, the offer should be made.

Maria Ramos Lopez Human Resources Administrator General Dynamics/Imperial Valley Facility Imperial, California

As HR manager, it's my responsibility in the hiring process to assist the hiring manager in selecting the best-qualified candidate for the job while protecting the company from any future legal liabilities.

With the given information, I couldn't disqualify this candidate. …

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