April 23, 2018

How can you avoid discrimination in job adverts?

Firstly you should know and recognize a few key areas where discrimination occurs, so you know to avoid making these mistakes and falling foul of the law with your job advert.  Hospitality recruitment can be a tricky business to get right, and you need to keep yourself on the right path well before the interview stage.

In the hospitality industry, we understand that almost every employee is a public facing member of staff.  You may want to have a specific face to greet your guests and serve your customers, however, you are not allowed to discriminate when recruiting.

It’s in your best interest as well.. wouldn’t you want the best person working for you, regardless of anything else?

To avoid discrimination, your job advert should;

  1. avoid sexual discrimination
  2. avoid racial discrimination
  3. avoid disability discrimination
  4. avoid age discrimination

There isn’t a list of specific words or phrases which you can’t use in job adverts.  You’ll have to use your discretion to ensure you stay on the correct side with your job posts.

It’s best to think of this sentence when you read through your job advert.

Would an ordinary, reasonable person with no special knowledge think the advertisement is discriminatory?

Avoid sexual discrimination

Your venue may be geared towards having a specific gender behind the bar, or similarly, you want to even out your team with more members of the opposite sex, this is strictly forbidden to ask for within a job advert.

The job title you use should not be gender specific.  “Waitress” and ‘manageress’ are job titles that are not allowed.

Try to keep your job advert gender neutral, and you’ll stay on the right side of the law with this one.

Avoid racial discrimination

In bars and clubs, any member of the public can come through your door.  So why would the person greeting and serving them be any different?

Only in some very specialist jobs can this be encouraged, and is often seen in police services, to match officers with the local population.  However, there is no reason for discrimination in hospitality the industry.

If you’d like specific languages to be spoken, you’re still not allowed to advertise for a French person.  You can say you’re looking for someone who can speak French though, as skill such as these are not racially discriminatory, and can be of great benefit to your venue if required.

Avoid disability discrimination

Employers should ensure disabled candidates have as many opportunities to join your company as anybody else. To stay on the right side of this, there should be no mention of specific abilities, or limiting disabilities in your job adverts. It might also depend on whether your venue is wheelchair accessible, or has specific facilities. None-the-less, your job advert should not discriminate any disability from applying to your job posting.

In hospitality, we recognize there can sometimes be physical activity required, but you must make sure this is a genuine necessity for the role rather than a ‘nice to have’, as many job seekers can carry out many of the tasks required in this industry.

Avoid age discrimination

Unfortunately you are no longer allowed to specify an upper or lower age limit for job applicants.  Even implied terms such as “youthful” should be avoided, as they can be interpreted as excluding others from applying to your job due to age.

Discriminatory adverts on our site

As per our terms and conditions we try to monitor all job adverts to ensure they adhere to these laws, and amend / remove those that fall foul of them. However, we cannot always go through every job that gets posted, and is up to you to ensure that the job advert you post adheres to the laws.  You are responsible for the content you post, and as such, it will be you that gets a call from the authorities if found to be in breach of the law.

We provide a “preview” stage when posting your job.  This gives you the opportunity to go through your job advert again, and make sure it says exactly what you need it to say.  You should check that it does not include anything that is discriminatory, and rephrase it, if it does.

If you notice a job that is discriminatory on our site, please make us aware of it, but copying the url, and sending it to us in our contact page asap